Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween!

Here are some pictures of Nina's Sweet Sixteen Haloween party. They had a good time I guess
because they staid until 12:30 am!

Nina's little graveyard in the backyard complete with ghost!

The witches den...

Mummy head on a platter!

Have a safe Halloween!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

California On Fire!

First off I need to say that I am grateful and thankful for all that I have and for the fact that we are not directly in harms way and that we have not lost our home. Not everyone here can say that. With more than a half million people evacuated, over 300,000 acres burning out of control and over 700 homes burned as of this morning, we are lucky to be in one of the safer areas of San Diego. We are also fortunate to have such a wonderful fire crew that works so tirelessly. We have had the help of so many volunteer crews and crews from other cities as well.

From my home, which sits a top a hill I have the vantage point to see quite vividly the ridgelines of the Fallbrook “Rice” fire and the newest Camp Pendleton Fires burn. We did not go into work Tuesday as the Mayor asked everyone to try to stay home and to stay off their cell phones. The sky here is burnt orange and very thick with smoke. We kept the windows closed yesterday so we would not breathe in as much smoke. Visibility was very murky. It is very surreal and strange here right now. Taking the train in this morning I noticed so many RV’s parked at the beach, their horses tied to the rigs.

Monday night was Bijan’s birthday and we went to the Carlsbad High which had been set up as an evacuation center and dropped off blankets, pillows and playing cards for those who needed to stay there. I have heard this said so many times but it really is true, “San Diego is the largest small town you will ever find”. When we pulled up to the school there were people from all over just stopping by to drop off things and help out. We pulled up to ask what was needed and when we came back with our donations there were even more people coming up asking what they could do. Yesterday I called a friend of mine who was collecting donations from the hotels in town to drop off. I hope I don’t sound corny but San Diego really takes care of its own and those who can respond, respond generously.

Please say prayers, keep positive thoughts and do a rain dance or two for California.

Friday, October 05, 2007

The Red Badge of Courage Part 3

It may seem as though I have forgotten all about the journey that I set out on – I have not. I have spent some time exploring, gaining lots of ground and sometimes coming back upon familiar territory.

In conversations with my sister I have referred to personal issues as something like a passenger in the back seat of the car. There was a Twilight Zone episode in which a woman picks up a hitchhiker and she keeps seeing him in the backseat of the car even though she let him off miles before. Of course he turns out to be the angel of death or some spooky thing like that. Life’s issues are like the hitchhiker. You may think they got out a while back but they still show up in the rear view mirror and when you look over your shoulder, sure enough they are sitting there staring you right in the face.

Courage is the high road that must be chosen when dealing with these types of clingy passengers. It is amazing how long I can just drive and drive and not look in the rear view mirror. I know that I ought to check all the mirrors in my vehicle from time to time, but I don’t. Often that simple minded barreling down the highway is intentional. Sometimes I just drive like a bat out of hell! It takes courage to look in the rear view mirror; it takes courage to choose to actually see. In that gaze I see not only who is in the back seat (making themselves comfy) but I see all the terrain I have left behind.

I have been in the process of trying to get to know these pesky little hitchhikers, who are they and what do they want? (Sometimes I’ve got to stare fear in the face and just look at what I don’t like about myself or my life.) If I am to have traveling buddies I want to get to know them a little better. I can not say they are interested in me the same way, on the contrary, I find they expect the same old fearful reactions from me. These stowaways expect me to be startled and runaway from the pressure of uncovering what I want from this journey. To consistently move past limitations and define my life on my own terms is not the trip my passengers thought we were taking.

I have had to take a few u-turns and detours on this route, but I am still in the driver’s seat. I am determined to reach my destination and the road is getting straighter and the pathway clearer everyday.

I love the creativity of these questions – Where do you want to go today? What do you want to create? How do you want to live? Who do you want to touch? What do you want to give?

Happy trails to you…