I look back at the history of this blog and ponder "what happened?" I used to write every day, sometimes more than once. I had hundreds of photos to share, adventures to post, and curious moments to ponder. What happened?
Moving to Michigan was the big "thing" that happened. Now, you might think "hey - a whole new place to explore!" and I surely did think the same. But moving from a life surrounded by wilderness (literally) to a place that is so developed and overrun by the influences of humanity has left me feeling as barren as the landscape.
At work I spend most of my day staring at a computer screen (have I mentioned the "mouse elbow" I developed nearly a year ago and after two agonizing shots of cortisone and three months of physical therapy remains nearly as painful as it was before all that?), and with a half-hour commute each way between home and the office (where I often put in 10 hours a day), I don't have a lot of time to spend at home exploring.
The passing of Toby also had a profound impact. Since the end of March, when I said my final goodbye, I have not gone for a single walk that wasn't work-related (and even those are few and far between)! I've become a sofa curmudgeon!
The afore-mentioned arm problem meant no gardening to speak of: couldn't dig or weed. In fact, this year's carrot crop is still in the ground, rotting, because I could not harvest it. And the weeds took over the veg garden - I have robust crops of grasses, pigweed, ground cherries and more. The peas and beans died on the vines. Had a great onion crop, but I don't have a good place to store them, so they either froze on the back porch or have started to sprout in the laundry room. You'd think an old farm house with a root cellar would have ideal root storage capabilities, but when the guys put in the insulation, it resulted in a warmed up root cellar and a jammed door. End result: root cellar is no longer functional as such.
The arm, which was healing after the first round of PT, suffered a relapse when I did the October paddle. It is from this trip that the arm has never recovered, and the PT stopped working. Prognosis: no more paddling! ACK! Something will have to be done.
To make up for the lack of a dog in my life, I began volunteering at the local humane society this fall. I started off cleaning kennels (arm objected and therapist said "no more"), but have graduated to dog walker. I go, when I can, to walk and work with many of the needy pups who are looking for their forever homes. I don't go nearly enough, although I did put in three days already this week! If you follow my Facebook pages, you will have "met" several of the dogs I help take care of.
Frustrations at work and with my arm built up to a head this month. At the suggestion of a friend I went and had a Reiki session, and it has sent me off in a new direction...or revisiting an old direction. My poor spirit, like my beans, has been withering in the vine. I'm now making an effort to feed and heal my spirit, and maybe my arm will follow in its wake!
So, a complex year draws to a close. I fully intended to do a winter solstice celebration this year, to cleanse the pains of the old year and welcome the new...but I fell asleep on the sofa! Still, I can transfer the intentions of that night to the upcoming turn of the calendar year.
And Adirondacks, beware! I'm planning to come back in 2014 - at the very least leading an eco-tour from here! No more just sitting here and wishing I was there; this year I'm going to go back, even if it is just for a visit.
Happy New Year, everyone.