Archives for posts with tag: raindrops on roses

I woke to the sound of rain. It’s the sort of steady rain of well-separated medium-sized raindrops that keeps the pavement looking soaked, and the air smelling fresh, without every becoming a downpour. I made coffee, standing at the kitchen window, staring out past the driveway to the street beyond, not really watching the cars go by, still half-wrapped in sleep, not quite awake, yet. I’d considered sitting down and reading some news articles while I waited for water to boil (I like a “pour over” in the morning)… decided it against it, after glancing at headlines. I am not ready for the cesspool that is “newsworthy” humanity, before my coffee. lol

California was more or less “as advertised”, generally in a pleasant way.

I got home far more easily, with fewer moments of stress, and a much more enjoyable (quiet) flight. I wondered later if time of day was something to have considered when I made the plans (the unpleasant flight to LAX was late afternoon, getting me there by 6:30 pm, the flight home to PDX departed from LAX at close to 8:00 pm, and we did not land until well-past 10:00 pm)? There were no chatterboxes or fussy children on the flight home; it was filled with quieter people, traveling purposefully, and keeping to themselves. I chuckle to myself as I read back these past couple of sentences; how much of my experience was actually just… me? Something to consider, too.

I missed my roses while I was away.

My homecoming was pleasant, relaxed, easy; we missed each other, we welcome each other with open arms, and smiles, with appreciation, and gratitude. Friday was very busy, and I’d forgotten to grab the power cord for my laptop when I returned to the hotel Thursday evening. The low battery, and the need to pack with care before work that morning, resulted in letting go my usual “best time” to write. Yesterday? Yesterday was mine to cherish, a sweet day of leisure and romance with my Traveling Partner, time to catch up, time to enjoy each other, time to spend together. I didn’t write, yesterday, because it is most definitely a solitary activity that takes my presence away from my partner’s experience, and on a day we choose for deliberately enjoying each other, sharing our time, our love, and our presence, that would be sort of rude, wouldn’t it? πŸ™‚

…It feels like life is settling into a useful cadence of work and life and love, as the months together go by. Was it January he moved in with me? Or December, before the Yule holidays? I don’t remember now; it feels as if we’ve never been separated by different addresses, at all. πŸ™‚

I arrived home to a lovely, tidy, welcoming, orderly, aesthetically pleasing home that very much looks like I live here. That makes sense – I do. πŸ˜€ I very much appreciate that I have my partners help with all the housekeeping and household maintenance – it makes for a wonderful shared experience. I notice a few things that are “better than I left it”, and remind myself to level up to better household care, on those tasks, myself. When everyone works, and the work is shared such that each person is valued, the quantity of work is equitable, and the effort is reciprocal, there is no room for resentment, or hurt feelings, over housework. πŸ˜€

Signs of autumn approaching begin to turn up in the garden on the deck…and also, a baby praying mantis or two, that have survived long enough to be easily noticed.

Another lovely day begins right here, listening to the rain fall. I feel like walking, although my arthritis flared up with the coming of the rain. I consider the day ahead… visit a nearby farmer’s market… run an errand or two, perhaps… get ready for the work week ahead… It’s an ordinary enough Sunday, pleasant, and relaxed. These are the qualities I am choosing, and choosing to foster, to build, to nurture, to act upon. Beginning again is a willful thing, a considered, deliberate reset, not merely the tick of a clock from one moment to the next; there are choices to make, and verbs to act upon. πŸ™‚ My results may vary…

…None of that stops me; it’s still time to begin again. πŸ™‚

It was evening. I was home. There wasn’t much going on. As I recall, we’d already had dinner, and were just hanging out when I caught the first flash out of the corner of my eye (I exclaimed “lightning!” rather exuberantly, and also rudely interrupting my Traveling Partner with my unexpected enthusiasm). Dramatic clouds that had darkened the skies during the commute home, finally became something of note; a thunderstorm. Uncommon here. Enough so that we put further conversation on hold, and I opened the patio door and stood in the electrified breeze, listening to the thunder crashing in the distance, watching for the flashes of lightening. The air tasted fresh and inspiring. I felt homesick for the childhood innocence of being excited to see lightening, to hear thunder; I let myself have the moment.

Thunderstorms were quite common where I grew up. I thought of then. I thought of now. It felt like a choice send off for my Mom. We used to enjoy the thunderstorms together; my bouncing excitement, her feigned gruffness masking her own. She would make a point of stopping me from rushing out into the yard, cautioning me about lightning strikes. Last night, my Traveling Partner was her “stand in” when I jumped to my feet excitedly exclaiming that I was going to “go out in it!” to stand on the deck and feel the wind wrap around me. “Out on the deck? Why not just open the curtains, and open up the door?” We enjoyed the storm together, while it lasted. Storms pass.

After the storm, a hurried shot taken while the rain fell. I got the focus wrong, but… this is sort of common with me, generally. πŸ˜‰

A couple more work shifts, then the weekend. I sip my coffee and smile, recalling the text from my sister, yesterday evening, asking me if I would like to have Mom’s favorite cup and saucer…? My smile becomes a grin; it was that particular type of floral pattern, that got me interested in porcelain tea cups and saucers, so many years ago. I have a lovely collection of them now, gathered over years, and miles, of lifetime. I eagerly accepted, and later stood in the doorway, listening to the thunder, thinking of my Mom, and of “having a coffee with her”, anytime, always, by enjoying mine in her favored cup. Still smiling, I notice the aphorism on my weighty, serviceable, ceramic mug this morning; life is good. Yes, yes it is…

…If nothing else, it’s better than the alternative (at least as far as I can know). πŸ™‚

I’m enjoying a moment. This one. It is a morning moment, served up with a side of pre-dawn quiet, and a cup of hot coffee. I woke just ahead of the alarm, uncertain, in the darkness, if it was worth trying to go back to sleep… wanting to… as I thought it over, though, the alarm caught up with me, and announced the beginning of a new day.

I sip my coffee and appreciate things. I mean, just generally. There’s no doubt life has some challenges to offer, and having experienced a fair few, I maintain awareness that there are likely more ahead; it’s not personal, it’s just living a life. My coffee is hot, well-made, tasty – and in this particular moment, right here, it is enough to enjoy it quietly. Sufficiency. Mindfulness. Gratitude. It is a pleasant start to the day.

I stay with the moment awhile longer. This coffee. This moment. Present. Here. Now. Nothing fancy or expensive to it, and “presence” is not an especially complicated or difficult practice. I let go of ruminations over past challenges. I refrain from launching my consciousness into explorations of potential future challenges. I exist in this present, right now moment, content with my hot coffee. (Maybe you prefer tea? The practice of being present and mindful does not have to change, whatever your preferred beverage! πŸ˜‰ )

My thoughts drift to recent photographs; representations of recent moments. Lovely urban shots of spring. Pretty pictures of raindrops on rose leaves extended into the afternoon sunshine, sparkling as if edged with glitter. Traffic. Sunrises. Sunsets. My camera has failed me several times recently – great shots that didn’t save – but my memory does not.Β  It’s a fair exchange, I suppose. I smile, and continue to sip my coffee.

…Another day, another photograph, another moment… another memory. It’s already time to begin again.

I woke to the sound of rainfall. It was only a patter on the window glass, then. I’ve been up some minutes now, and the rain is falling with real commitment to soaking everything, deeply so, and doing it with some rhythm. I take my coffee out onto the patio briefly.

I enjoy the rain, and I enjoy the metaphor…although, today isn’t ideal for falling rain metaphors. Rainy days of the heart, stormy moments, experiences weighed down by gray clouds of despair… these are exceptional moments for falling rain. I am frankly pleased that today I am simply listening to the rain fall, content with my morning coffee, calm after morning meditation, and feeling generally well and enthused about the day.  There will be other days more suited to the rain falling so steadily; this morning I enjoy it as it is.

This too shall pass. Isn’t that the underlying truth of impermanence? What I cling to will betray me with its impermanence, again and again, and not even “on purpose” or with any intention of causing me pain; most things, good and less so, end at some point. “Forever” joins its friend “happily ever  after” on the bookshelf marked “fiction”. That’s even totally okay – the highest highs need at least some bit of perspective on life’s lows to understand their dizzying heights. Things end. Things begin. We walk on.

Love and raindrops

Love and raindrops

I enjoyed a quiet evening with my traveling partner. Weekday evenings are so short now. I enjoy spending the time with him. “What do you want to do?” he asks at one point. I struggled to find the words. I could have said “Only to relax with you, quite comfortably, as though you live here every day.” It is the simplest expression of how I felt at that moment. I think what I said was “watch a movie?”, which wasn’t at all what I meant. Still, somehow the point gets across, I think, and we spend the evening looking for an anime to share together, settling perhaps not definitely on watching an old favorite again, but in Japanese instead of the English translation. Hearing such difference voices, and the emotion delivered somewhat differently, is engaging and beautiful. I don’t at all mind reading subtitles (and have to, since I don’t speak or read Japanese).

This morning, I begin again. A rainy commute will lead me to a day at work which will end with a crowded evening commute and a short quiet evening at home… solo? Maybe. I won’t know until then becomes now. I’m mostly okay with that, most of the time, although I do like planning, and prefer to have clear expectations of things to come. It’s been important to let go of my attachment to other people planning things as I do; it caused me a lot of unnecessary suffering.

I sip my coffee thinking about things that don’t happen, and things that do, and all the wasted planning that goes on in the calendars of people who plan. I think about all the wasted time that goes on in the days of people who don’t plan at all. I smile. I sip my coffee. We’re each having our own experience. It’s very human.

Today is a good day to let the rain fall. Today is a good day to begin again. Today is a good day to make plans, and when plans fall through it is a good day not to take is personally. It’s okay to let the rain be enough, just as it is. πŸ™‚

I woke up later than my idea of early, but while the most of the community is still sleeping on a Saturday. I returned to bed, but failed to return to sleep, and rose to face the sort of heavy gray clouds hanging low overhead that render the phrase ‘overcast’ a joke; this sky means business. The forecast agrees with my impression of the sky, and suggests rain is likely. I’m thinking about the multitude of area farmer’s markets and wondering whether the trip downtown (today) feels worth the time commitment. The nearer farmer’s market is also quite a nice one, having its own character entirely.

I hear the rain begin, a soft tapping on the tall meadow grasses beyond the window. I hear the distant persistent wail of a freight train, so far away it is mixed like a… a good metaphor escapes me; I am listening.

the view of a rainy day

Gray autumn sky overhead, and the day begins.

My thinking seems fuzzy and distractedΒ byΒ the many sounds this morning; geese overhead, raindrops falling more steadily, that train way over there somewhere, the unfortunately rather ceaseless sound of traffic on the nearby road, birdsong, crows conversing, all mixing in my awareness as a sort of blended, endless, buzzing, humming, lowing, rumbling… noise. As noises go, it’s quiet, and very much in the background aside from the crows, whose morning planning meeting on the lawn appears to have run long. πŸ™‚ In this moment, the noise in the background is not an irritant, merely the soundtrack of morning.

rain

Yep. Raining.

It’s definitely raining. The patter of raindrops on leaves is quite audible now. Nice for the garden. I pause and really look out across the meadow, to the trees on the far side of the park, see that the leaves are beginning to turn. Autumn is coming. The leaves of gold and amber, hints of red or orange here and there, tell me it’s true and not just an impression on a chilly morning. I still have the windows and patio door open. It’s too soon for heaters, barely chilly enough for sweaters, and the cool morning breezes with the intoxicating scent of petrichor are delightful. The rain is back! I smile and breathe deeply.

Writing is "inactive" time... so is reading, meditating, and quietly inhaling the scent of a rain morning. There is so much to enjoy in life that requires us to take a moment of stillness. :-)

Writing is “inactive” time… so is reading, meditating, and quietly inhaling the scent of a rain morning.Β 

It’s been a busy week, filled with stressors that didn’t quite become a bother, and one that did. None of it seems very “real” right now, sitting by the window, contentedly gazing out the window to the meadow and marsh beyond. Any small adjustment in position reveals new things about a new day: a duck sitting just at the edge of my patio, runners on the path just beyond the playground, a cat patrolling the edge of the meadow, a raccoon mother leading her young home after a night out, songbirds taking a moment in a nearby tree, an egret stepping through the marsh gently, and even the ever-changing cloudy sky, as the clouds shift and roil into a smooth homogeneous gray. These are nothing to do with me, directly, they’re only observations through a window. Verbs, changes, choices – but not mine. I am only observing the verbs, changes, and choices of other creatures, which is my choice in this moment, and observation my only verb (trust me, my fitness tracker is pretty firm with me that writing is “inactive” time, which suggests rather pathetically that writing is not a serious verb πŸ˜‰ lol). I am, however, changed – and changing.

Another perspective on rain drops and roses...

Another perspective on rain drops and roses

This moment of calm contentment and observation is a practice that I love, and it has proven to be quite powerful. It’s one I want most to be skillfully able to share, this idea of being engaged and present in this moment, right here, observing, aware, awake. It’s a meditation of sorts, I suppose, but perhaps more a state of being? When I meditate, as in seated on a cushion meditating, my observational awareness is directed mostly within, although I am also aware of my environment and surroundings, because otherwise how mindful am I really? This other thing, this “being engaged and present in this moment”, is a little different. My observational awareness is simply awake, aware, present, and engaged in living life. A letting go of over thinking and planning in favor of being and doing describes it some…

raindrops on roses

Is it the difference between saying “stop and smell the roses” and doing it? I think so. Today is a good day to test that theory. πŸ˜‰

I pause awhile, considering my words, and I am again drawn into the sounds of morning. Where will today take me? Where will I take the day? I sip my coffee and wonder if those are entirely different questions, different ways of asking the same thing, or really not at all different aside from word order. My brain playfully suggests perhaps this is important enough to spend a lot of time on…? I sense an “inner child” eager to distract me with delights, and reluctant to follow through on adulthood this morning. After all – it’s raining! I breathe, and pull my attention back to this moment, here, now. I breathe in the fresh scent of rain. I listen, really listen, to the sounds of it: spattering raindrops, rivulets in rain gutters, tires on wet roadway.

IMAG8161

Today is a good day to be, and to become. Today is a good day for a journey built on choice – and built on change. Today is a good day to be here, now.

…And the rain comes, no mistake. Right now it is a steady downpour.Β Change is. I sit back and enjoy the rain while it lasts. Impermanence also is, and this moment, here, now, is enough. Β πŸ™‚