13 days until I fly for New Zealand.
Things are coming together well here. Business is good and today I think I sold my venerable old 1976 Toyota Landcruiser for $7000 USD.
I’ll miss Lulu Belle (the Landcruiser’s name). Acquiring her was coincident with getting married to Sharon and moving from California to Washington 16 years ago and that began what has undoubtedly been the finest part of my life.
There are a lot of memories since we moved which all have Lulu Belle in them or somewhere in their background. Our three beloved Japanese Akitas; Kato, Misha and Panda, are woven in and out with Lulu Belle from their first puppy days until they each passed away ten years on. Pulling logs and stumps from the forest to the burn piles. Hauling rocks for our dry stream bed from a building site. Taking the top off most springs and putting it back on most falls. Driving out to the Olympic Peninsula with my son, Chris, and up into the forest roads here with Sharon. The day that Basil, our sheep, jumped in the back to “go for a ride” because he imagined he was a dog too. Memories.
I drove her today and talked to her as if she were a child or a lover and I told her in all sincerity how much she meant to me and how well she had served and how much I hoped her future would go well with her new owner.
I think the emotions that arise when we let something go like this are somehow related to our mortality. I’m not sure just how – but it seems like letting something deeply loved go is like a reminder that someday, we must let it all go. Everything that’s touched us, scarred us and changed us comprise the memories which are unique to us, are that which makes our lives ours, which are special just to us and yet transient, just like us.
Lulu Belle’s going and I won’t come this way again my heart whispers.
Ah, life is good. Life is good. Years ago, in my thirties, I used to sit up late at night alone drinking wine and writing poetry to stoke my emotional fires and to make myself feel as if I was alive. Now, I watch a poignant movie, think too long about a dog that I loved, or wake up from a dream about my sons when they were young and the tears come easily.
These days, I’m close to the pulse and the heart in my life. Then, the walls were high and it took a lot to break through them and I wondered when it was all going to feel real. Now, it is all paper thin and very real and I cherish it all so much more.
These days, when I get out of bed in the morning, I thank the Beloved for this life, my wife, my health and everything that’s happening in my life. And when I get on my motorcycle, I ask the Beloved to be kind to me. These days, magic whispers around the edges of my life.
Today, I sold Lulu Belle for $7000 and that money will help defray my costs in New Zealand so that my time there won’t burden our business too badly over the winter. It means that I can probably buy a small car there and sit more often in a sunlite sidewalk cafe watching another culture walk by and realizing that there are other ways to do things than how we’ve been doing them of late in this country. There are alternatives.
Tonight, we’re going to go out for dinner together. With less than two weeks left and three months of separation before us, we’re already beginning to feel the sensation of missing each other.