What a treat the sights of the High Sierras are – and I witnessed my first snowfall in manyyyy years. Was actually very enjoyable – to view the snow dance while resting in a cozy room.
the next day – and the ones prior – it was like this:
I was very happy on the trail with my Camino walking poles and ARIAT shoes with their familiar sounds for crunching the pebbles or dry pine needles while I explored again a bit of the area around the retreat. All my Camino-aquired ‘shape’ was nowhere to be found or felt and it was back to huffing and puffing through the landscape. But what a landscape it is….and the scents of the pines: marvelous simple wonders indeed.
and when I arrived home again – I had a lovely garden surprise …. pretty and fragrant
and these three fellows here below practically jumped into my bag prior to departure from the Sierras – apparently feeling adventurous and wanting to explore a bit the coastal regions of California perhaps. Not sure if my teak-table was quite what they had in mind regarding their adventure ambitions, but that’s where these chaps ended up … for now.
They do have company though… the old cedar trees are very close by. And … I even planted a baby tree some time ago … now a Baby Cedar. Am actually planting trees now. Who’d thought? — and already have an even babier baby-cedar in another pot. Smaller pot of course. But that one seemed too shy for a photo taking session. So it will be for another day. But here is my first Cedar Baby …
I am still in my annual deep-denial about the approaching autumn and winter season – but at least I have updated my closet and it now features woolen clothing, much cashmere and other warm things. Three neat stacks of sweaters: Black – Red – Cream. – (Wonder why my green “mainly-for-St-Patrick’s- Day” sweater ended up?) Pants: all black or grey. Hmm, I am realizing that I am thoroughly a very, very boring winter dresser. Oh well …. I shall bear this curious affliction with dignity 🙂
In the other “news-of-the-week”: I’ve also attended a workshop with my martial arts teacher Master Lam (Oct 18&19, a few miles down from where I live) – It’s an internal martial arts form, also called “Zhan Zhuang” – or “Standing like a tree”.
No, I am not being sarcastic, that’s what it’s called – but I am sure you appreciate the irony of me choosing a style that is about standing still. Needless to say, I love it ….
This is a video series I discovered many years ago & saved the bookmark of the link. Thought it was brilliant. And: But: I did nothing. – Then in January this year I thought: If I ever get to go on that Camino, I’d better get cracking aka exercising. – And I remembered those video’s that were filmed almost 20years ago in London and China by a UK TV station. Was very successful apparently. – Now, this time I bothered to notice his name, and researched it online, and voila’: turned out that Master Lam now lives: here! 3 miles from my flat…In that case I could no longer justify continued doing nothing – so I went there on a Saturday morning in the pouring rain (oh, those were the days….) – and thus finally started my internal martial arts class and practice… Standing still like a tree! Curious but true: you’d be surprised how one can develop a decent sweat by just standing there … like a tree. In the Water posture, or Earth, or Metal … and the charming Fire posture. (It is called like that for a reason, let me assure you).
“In gains, be tranquil.
In losses, be mild.
To struggle is inevitable
Just abide by nature.”
Since it is very intense to be standing still like a tree, and I certainly wasn’t prepared to spend two days like that … Master Lam and his son Tin had also prepared a presentation at the beginning of the workshop – sharing the philosophy behind that particular path.
“Fortune and Misfortune are from the same doorstep.
Gain and loss are neighbors.
Not even the Gods and Sages could separate them.”