the view from here


christmas tree reflectionMorning breaks on Christmas Eve. December 24. Just like last year.

James and the dogs are still sleeping. The only sounds are the clicking of my keyboard, our whirring refrigerator and seabirds passing overhead. I might also be slurping my coffee a little since no one’s within earshot.

Our weather, cold and rainy, reminds me of winters past in Houston (though today, Houston is expected to reach 80 degrees). El Niño has arrived in central California, and the rain comes often. The brown, crunchy land has turned green again, a contented sigh of oxygen coming from the earth. It’s soothing to look at the thick grass and clover covering our yard, and the dogs are enjoying a soft carpet underfoot on which to make their morning deposits.

At night, the ocean is loud. We can hear the waves pounding rocks at the shore. The sound makes me want to run down the hill to the coast, camera in hand, but I never do. Too cold. Too dark. Too drunk.

James and I are off for 11 days, today through January 3. A vacation in the place where we’d travel on vacation if we still lived in Houston. Assuming the rain stays away, we’ll do some hiking in Big Sur. Maybe drive up to San Francisco. Work in the yard, removing the beautiful clover that threatens to overtake our drought-tolerant plants. Read books. Watch TV. Try new restaurants. Go for drives. Take naps. A bit of soul rejuvenation at the end of the year.

Tomorrow is Christmas, our first without family. We knew the dark side of the bargain when we made this move. It sometimes means not being there when you want to be. It often means not being there when you want to be. But our people are a phone call away, and the gifts we’ve exchanged are a tangible connection. And I’m coming home for a visit in less than three months. Time moves so fast now, three months will feel more like three weeks.

The dude abides, and so do I.

However and whatever you’re celebrating as we close out 2015, cheers friend.


4 thoughts on “the view from here

  1. Couple of questions about the cabinet (or whatever) with what appears to be a Christmas tree inside. Is that indeed what that is? We have 8 dogs and 3 cats, so that might be what we need.
    Also…the glove or hand on top left of said cabinet???

      1. Merry Christmas, Crystal! 82 and sunny here in Houston this morning…
        Just checked out Tohner’s site…wow!!! Two talented people in one family!

        1. Thank you, Harry. From building big houses to crafting the smallest piece of art, Tohner’s incredibly talented. My family is full of makers, whether of the word or more tangible variety. Some do both.

          Guess you could say you guys are having a green Christmas this year. Cold weather is on the way, though, so don’t put your jacket away quite yet.

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