Where the road leads…

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May 20, 2016 marks the beginning of a new chapter –
This was the road out of town on that Friday afternoon.

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I’m still not sure what my next adventure looks like, but sometimes, you just have to make the leap and hope to land on your feet… um, right?

As scary as it is, I know that it is time to move on.
“To see the change, you have to be the change.”
(Or… something like that)

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Hang on!
After all, life is a Vagarious Voyage… 

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bannerPhoto – Punta Cana, December 27, 2015

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In a stroke of incredible luck, I got a two-day beach vacation!
The best part — being surrounded by people that were there to have fun.
Smiles! Positive Attitudes! Goofing off!

It was a not-so-subtle reminder that my mood has been sliding a slippery slope – down, down, down….
I think some of that has been absorbed from some of the people around me.
Some of that is my own head-game.
Some of it is expectations that I have for myself and a (possibly?) unreasonable lack of patience for “achieving” greater goals…

But, in a beautiful New Year cliché, I’m going to do my best to hold on to the sunshine… both internally – my own mood, and externally – expressing gratitude and openness.

It’s amazing what a smile and a “hello” can do!

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Here’s to the beach! Here’s to the sun! Here’s to waking up and thinking, this day is the one!
Here’s to a rum drink and here’s to dancing on the roof! Here’s to believing in tomorrow, even without proof!
Here’s to a good morning! Here’s to a good week! Here is to the new year and reaching the next peak!

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Blood Orange

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My sweet, spoiled fur child hates being left out of adventures and he doesn’t like feeling trapped… so waiting in the car alone is basically torture. One look at his sad eyes and floppy ears… you’ll be tempted to take him with you into the store. But, I had some shopping to do in a store that he would likely be kicked out of right away, so I couldn’t take him in. Other than a serious pout-fest… it doesn’t actually do him any harm to sit in the car (on a cool day, with blankets on the back seat).

 

When I finally got myself out of the store and back to the car, I could see the black and white fur of my dog streaked with an orange-red color, from his eye down to his chin. I couldn’t yet see below his neck, but there was enough blood streaked over his face to give me a minor heart attack. What kind of trouble had my puppy gotten himself into within the confines of my car?!

 

Trying not to panic, I opened the back to store my bags before going up front to survey the damage.

 

There, on the passenger seat, were two munched-on flower petals. I might have given the silly fur kid a good scolding… except I was too relieved to discover his face was not, after all, covered in blood. His face was decorated with flower pollen, from a lily that had apparently tasted awful, seeing as how it was now staining the upholstery on the seat.

 

The treat I had given him before going into the store (did I mention he’s a sweet but spoiled fur child?) was untouched. He ate that as soon as I stuck the key in the ignition and started the engine, a sign that I was not leaving him alone any longer.

 

At home, I let my dog out into the yard and carried the flowers inside. The next morning, I noticed a that one of the blooms had been knocked loose. There it was, placed like a painting, frozen, on top of the snow.

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Flash-Snow in October

Engine white-noise creates an artificial silence in the navy-black sky, with shiny, diamond point stars.

The intercom beeps and the flight attendant’s even voice informs us that our 38 minute flight from Denver is now delayed. The weather in Casper has deteriorated rapidly, and the airport is now closed.

Collectively, the unanimous nap of the passengers becomes idle chatter concerning the news.

If we have to go back to Denver, let’s go now.

If we get to go home, it will be worth an extra 20 minutes of circling the sky.

Soon, the pilot’s voice comes up over the intercom and the message is repeated, as a matter of fact, with apologies for the delay and a thank-you for our patience. We are informed that the aircraft has been supplied with extra fuel. Visibility in Casper is half of a mile.

How much fuel is “extra” for a 38 minute flight?

The flight attendant offers us coffee and water. We again, go quiet, blanketed in the vastness of a night sky. Stars above us, and a pillowy cloud layer below.

“Ladies and Gentleman, visibility may have improved, slightly. We will be attempting the approach. We will be descending into Casper, but if it turns out we still can’t see, we will have to come back up and return to Denver.”

How close do you get before you know you can’t see?

“Your flight attendant will be through the cabin to collect any last items you may have. Please, be seated and buckle your seat-belts. We expect turbulence on our approach.”

Down into the cloud we go. Fluffy puffs from under us become sideways streaks of white, like an old TV station that doesn’t come in. We are a silent cabin of air travelers, jetting through the snowstorm at the speed of our plane.

The flaps creak, in a low mechanical moan of sound, extending out from the body of the wing.

We bank right. Leaning sideways, as our collective mass pivots through the sky.

Extended wing flaps seem like a sign of landing. Banking through the snowstorm could mean anything. There are no visual reference points for orientation.

Where are we now?

KA-THUNK

A half-inch of space is briefly created between the seats and the people in them, as we all jump. Then the space is gone, as we are all seat-belted in.

Landing gear.

Our voices remain absent. The snowstorm blasts past us in sideways streaks. We bank to the right again. All eyes trying to focus out into the fuzzy white outside.

Lights!

Runway lights!

Is it cold enough for the runway to be icy?

Like the collaborating cells of an organism, we sit back in our seats, as the wheels touch down. The gate agent waits to greet us with a rolling staircase, taking us to the ground.