A Love Note

Becky and the trees in their joy!


I’ve got several things I need to write about, but I’ve chosen my trip to the California Redwoods with my cousins Linda, Michael, and Tutu, since it is still fresh in my mind. Indulge me if this seems like “nature porn” to you. My sister, Sarah (the originator of the term nature porn), made me aware that some of my last posts about nature border on…intimate. The thing is, that is how I feel about nature. I can’t help it. Please accept my flowery prose as yes, a love note to nature. Just roll your eyes behind my back. Or nod your head and say to yourself, right on Becky!
I watched The Celestine Prophecy the night before I left for my Redwoods adventure. I have read the book no less than six times, but seeing one director’s interpretation of the story in action was unforgettable. If you’re not familiar with it, it’s a book written about eight insights that the main character discovers throughout his journey to Peru. Much of the story takes place in the jungle, a most beautiful and magical setting, and coincidentally much like the place I was to see in my own upcoming adventures. The main character was a naïve history teacher, not knowing that when he got laid off, everything that had happened up until that moment was all a part of his greater plan. One of the insights he learned was that he needed to start paying attention to every little thing that was happening around him. Notice the coincidences around you; they all mean something. His journey also taught him to be in the moment, and manifest what you want.
I have been exploring these themes in my own life for several years now, as you know if you have read my blog before. It occurs to me that each time I experience The Celestine Prophecy I learn something new. The lesson that everything happens for a reason was highlighted when I realized there was absolutely a reason that I watched this movie right before heading to my own magical locale. Of course I’ve always understood that the history teacher made his way to a beautiful place. Every story needs a setting. It just never dawned on me that the jungle was actually a character in his story, as the Redwoods would become a character in my story.
They glowed under my attention, and I in theirs. The minute I was in them, I could feel their energy. In the movie, when the history teacher focuses his gaze on a philodendron, he sees its energy, or aura. It touches him. I felt the same in the midst of the giant trees and their unique ecosystem. As the sun pushed its way down, all the way down—dozens of feet of each tree—the beams would touch and highlight the brilliant green of the undergrowth. The effect was visually magical, and physically warming. The opulence of the trees, and the knowledge that they have seen more than any human can ever tell, was stunning. Did you know these trees have been around since the time of the dinosaurs? The fact that they are still on earth because of the stubbornness and love of a few special people was fantastical. These trees had been 90% harvested until the Save-the-Redwoods League was created to protect them. I felt that history with every move I made. I was being hugged by the spirit of these trees; I could actually feel a lovely thickness around me. Inside, I felt a peace and fullness. Most of all I experienced love. I know it may sound a little silly; trees don’t have the cognitive ability to love. But if I can love the forest, why can’t it love me back?
My family wandered the woods with me. We spoke excitedly some, but mostly we all just drank it in. Tutu, my 82-year old cousin, repeated softly to me, “We are so lucky, do you know how lucky we are to be here?” I appreciated her comment, but instead of feeling lucky I felt more blessed than anything. It wasn’t luck that brought me here; it was my will, and the will of the Universe. It wasn’t luck that led me to drive the five hours each way from Portland to Medford where my cousins Linda and Michael live, and then on another few hours to California. It was my desire to Be there.
I had been traveling for two weeks straight before this trip and I almost cancelled because I was so tired of living out of a suitcase. I just wanted to relax in my own home. But the Universe gave me a little nudge and told me that this was something I needed to experience NOW. Wouldn’t you know it, but the Universe was right again! To share this trip in words is something that is less than adequate, but it is all I have. I hope, if you visit, the trees give you the same love they gave to me.
 

No way!

I cannot believe my eyes! The counter on my blog page says that This Curious Universe has been viewed 787 times! Whaaaat?!? That is amazing!
I am so grateful for this experience. In the last four months I have grown exponentially, and my life journey will forever be altered by my decision to create this blog. I thought it would be difficult to find things to write about every week, but that just isn’t so. I am usually bursting at the seams with ideas. I love the feedback I am getting from you loyal readers. I love that I’ve found a community of other writers who, like me, want to share their words. And I really love that a special few of you have chosen to highlight MY blog on your own websites! Networking, baby!
So, from the bottom of my heart, thank you for participating in this experiment. It is truly something I treasure every day. I can’t wait to share the next post with you!

The Beautiful Hike

Again, I am compelled to write. I am so moved and so very grateful for this time in my life, especially the last few days. I can feel my place on earth shifting. I’m not sure how to put this into words, exactly. It just feels like I am moving into the place I am supposed to be at this time in my life, surrounded by the people who are supposed to be in it. It is a good and strong feeling; it is comfortable.
Yesterday was a typical weekend day for me—hiking with friends. It was also atypical, and magical. There were four of us. In the beginning I expected about eight people, but some people cancelled for various reasons. It is always so. I wasn’t offended, but I was a little sad they would miss out on the experience. As it turned out, it was meant to be.
Coincidentally, none of the people who came to hike with me yesterday knew each other. There was Chris, a guy I met through salsa dancing, but who quickly became a staple hiking buddy. I never actually invited him to go hiking, but he took a chance when he saw my post on Facebook one day and decided spontaneously to ask to join my friends and me. We instantly clicked and we have been hiking together ever since!
I’ve known Chrissy for a long time. In fact, she was one of the first friends I made in Oregon. We worked together for a short time, stayed friends, lived together for three years, and after eight years we know each other through and through. She doesn’t usually hike with me, although she has a strong love for the outdoors. I was so pleased she decided to come because we hadn’t spent much time together since moving out of our apartment a year ago.
I met Kim a few years back when, in a panic about an ill-fitting bellydance costume, my cousin Yemaya came to the rescue and hooked me up with her. Kim is a bellydance designer and seamstress, and she fixed my costume, amazingly, in the 36 hours before I had to leave for the Oregon Country Fair, where I would be performing for the first time ever! (For more on that experience, please read the blog post entitled “The Art of the Dance.” http://wp.me/p1AwLQ-I) Some years into our business relationship we decided we genuinely liked eachother and decided to hang out outside of bellydance events. It was a successful venture, and we continue to hang out!
Since there were so few of us, we were able to drive down to Silver Falls State Park in one car. The drive was over an hour long and we didn’t stop gabbing once. The conversation flowed easily and it seemed everyone felt completely comfortable with everyone, as if they’d known eachother for a long time. The vibe continued when we got to the falls. The conversations were full of giggles, exclamations, intensity, and were all very interesting.
As it happened it was the day before the anniversary of September 11th, 2001. I am not prone to going on about this event. I will not post about it on Facebook or Twitter. I mostly keep my feelings about it to myself. Interestingly enough, though, all of us shared our “I was at…” experiences about that day ten years ago. It didn’t seem awkward like I expected it to. I felt like it bonded us. We didn’t mull over it, but our sharing created a feeling of love inside me, as did all of our topics of conversation.
At the end of the hike I felt a ball of light rising from my stomach into my heart. I couldn’t hold it in, I had to share it! I knew that this day would have a special place in my heart for a long time. Now I will be able to come back to this post and relive that day whenever I want.