Saturday, July 23, 2005

Lunchtime surprise is cause for pause

It's so easy to get caught up in the busy-ness of life. We really need to take regular time to just stop and be quiet. Once in a while something happens to make me pause for a few minutes. Like this that happened a few days ago for me.

It's not every day that you get to see a great blue heron from 100 feet. Well, at least not for me.

I usually take my lunch outside the building and drive to a community garden and park in the shade of a huge tree. I enjoy the break from the work environment (I work inside four windowless walls at a well-known global high tech giant), just to let my mind wander, read a little, often catch a short nap, or occasionally write in my journal.

I found this setting last summer when I was searching for someplace more calm than the city park where a number of people took their lunch. I wanted to be away from the parking lot speeders and playground screams and shouts.

The roadside sign said "Wilsonville Community Garden," and being the curious sort that I am, I decided to see what it was. It's been my "secret" lunchtime site ever since.

Down a slight grade the road gently bends to the left, crosses a creek, and opens to a field bordered on three sides by tall evergreens, scrub brush and a mixture of deciduous trees. The creek meanders through tall grasses and shrubs.

Today as I was drifting between dozing and reading, my dozing was interrupted as the book fell off my steering and there just ahead of me about 100 feet was this great blue heron in the middle of the bend in the road.

For a full 10 minutes I just sat there and enjoyed the serenity of watching this majestic bird stand still and erect, then step slowly to one edge of the road, then stop and stand straight again, step slowly toward the other edge of the road.

Overhead a hawk floated on the thermals of the first really warm day in a couple of weeks, its shadow racing across the road and into the shubbery and trees, all the while calling and echoing to what must be its young family in the wood.

Wilsonville (Oregon) isn't a huge community, but it's high tech businesses (Xerox, InFocus, FLIR among them), burgeoning wine industry and rural appeal have attracted an affluent population and fueled its growth.

Living in suburbia I sometimes forget that wild animals still live among us; they've just learned to hide well. Earlier this week as I started up the curve of the road from my lunchtime shade tree, I was startled to see young buck -- two short points, large black nose -- emerging from the creekside shrubbery onto the road. Equally startled it hastily did a 180 and crashed back in the direction it had come.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Let's get on with this journey

Some men claim to be not very complicated.

Some men are complicated. I've discovered that I'm more complicated than I thought I was. I've been learning how much what happened to me in my childhood has affected who and why I am what I am today, and how that's affecting the people I care for the most.

In this blog I'm sharing some things I've been discovering in my life's journey, and I invite you to share your discoveries in your life.

In the last couple of years -- due to certain people coming into my life, reading some important books, and I think reaching mid-life -- I've embarked on my journey to live a genuine, authentic life. I find that I don't usually do well at that. But I think part of the journey is to always strive to do so.