I remember when we were kids, and Mom was fed up and desperately needed a break, she would roar, “Go outside and get the stink off ya.” I used to think that was an odd thing to say to a gang of raggle-taggle farm kids who liked to play in the cow pasture. But as an adult who is approaching 50 (although still a kid at heart), it makes a lot more sense to me now.
I don’t know about you, but when the days get shorter and crisper, I tend to make less time to get outside and enjoy nature. By the time all of life’s demands are taken care of, darkness has fallen. Then I just want to settle into my warm cozy home, eat home-cooked meals, and snuggle down to a good book or movie. Today, I made the time to take an oceanside walk.
Today nothing deterred me. Not the call to work harder. Not the lure to do something “more productive.” Not even the chill in the air. Nothing stopped me today.
In spite of the cool air, the sun warmed me nicely. I meandered down the path, hypnotized by the frothy, rolling waves. I imagined the sounds of the waves sending messages from faraway places. I observed the ravens congregating in a triangular pattern, and wondered what they were saying that was so urgent. I caught a whiff of a faint scent similar to sweet grass; and I noticed how the wind had shaped the trees along the pathway.
My heart pounded, reminding me of how long it had been since I climbed these stairs to Mori Point, this favorite place of mine in Pacifica. And just as I reached the top, a bunny hopped out of from the brush, as if to greet me. She seemed to freeze in the moment. I wondered if this was out of fear or fearlessness. Either way I felt comforted by her soft, warm presence.
And even though I had enjoyed this view hundreds of times, I marveled at the beauty of this sanctuary. For years, it has provided me a place to relax and contemplate, a place to remember, and a place to give gratitude. I thought of how this place had helped me LET GO of "old stuff,” and how new dreams were inspired here. As I stood overlooking the ocean, I thought of my Mother’s words. Today I was grateful for “going outside and getting the stink off me.”