I came home from my trip to California to see my parents to find the weather here has turned fall-ish! Between that and the rejuvenation of my visit, I feel like a new person.
I indulged in some favorite simple pleasures, such as stopping at Granzella’s for a sandwich and a walk through their gift shop. I practiced yoga twice, and took several walks around my mom’s property, making the acquaintance of some cows and some horses.
One of my favorite things is the way it smells out there. I breathed deeply as I explored the landscape of my childhood summers.
I bought books at Cal’s used bookstore (and had to have them shipped home since they wouldn’t fit in my suitcase). One afternoon, my aunt and cousin came for tea and a cutthroat game of dominoes.
|How now brown cow?|
|The ladies next door|
At my dad’s I went shopping with my stepmom, filled up on my dad’s delicious salad, admired the changes they’d made to their home, and loved on their kitty.
|Best. Salad. Ever.|
I always become introspective on trips. Somehow the distance from my everyday life lends itself to pondering. This trip was no different. Two main themes developed: consciousness of mortality and gratitude.
I don’t think about dying often but on this trip I realized that continued life is not a guarantee. I’m blessed to have my parents still living, but they are both aging and have health problems (though they’re hanging in there and following doctors’ orders). I can’t help but worry about them and wish I could check in on them in person more frequently. Seeing their challenges makes me want to take better care of myself to give myself the best chance possible to have healthy senior years.
Also, to bring the mortality theme home, while I was in California, a good friend of mine from high school died from an aneurysm. He was just 52.
While I’m sobered, I’m also filled with gratitude. I love my life right now! Overall, things are going the way I want them to go. I have work, friends, family, and animals that I love. I was ready to come home when my trip was done instead of wanting to extend it for more days.
I’m all unpacked and the suitcase is put away. Because of the East Coast/West Coast time difference, I’m still having trouble going to sleep (and staying asleep), but that will pass. I’m back at my Monday morning exercise class today and will likely ride Tank tomorrow. I’m grateful. I’m lucky.
I’m happy at home.