Here, in the west, in Northern California, I wear Jenny Rosen’s purple socks without shame. I sit at a kitchen table in full sight of other travelers, in pajamas and a melon-colored shawl. I drive for hours and sit drinking coffee with an artist whom I hadn’t previously met but whose kinship I never questioned.
I watch the sea through the window of the hostel. She ripples gently today. Yesterday she rose to meet the fog and crashed against the rocks. We smaller beings sat on benches awed by the dance. Fog entwined itself around the pulsing waves of water. The tendrils sparkled with the kiss of those other waves, waves of healing light from the autumn sun. We humans, on our benches, did not question where we stood in the chain of power.
Out beyond the reach of my inadequate lens, a ridge of rocks rises from the sea. I could see a boat coming around its edge, if one should venture there. But none does and the sea laps against those rocks undisturbed. Seagulls rise and fall in their unfailing line across the pale sky. Grey clouds glint with the promise of the day. Here, in the west, on the edge of everything, I wonder if that commitment extends to me.
It’s the fourteenth day of the forty-fifth month of My Year Without Complaining. Life continues.