• Category Archives The Move
  • Guests

    Summer and the Summer Moon Above

    Monday gratefuls: Tom. Roxann. Lodgepoles. Aspens. Sunlight. Another blue Sky day. Ruth and Gabe in North Carolina. Joan. Tal. CBE. Israel. Trip payments. Fixing the wireless keyboard. Dead hearing aid. Marilyn and her award. The Bread Lounge. Quiet days, cool nights.

    Sparks of Joy and Awe: Guests

    One brief shining: Sentences can run from harsh to gentle, grating along the tongue of the mind or softly caressing it, making the tongue recoil or roll over in delight sentences can be funny or serious delighting the mind or causing it to work carefully and sentences can confound the mind throwing it into utter confusion what power sentences have!


    Tom’s visit comes to a close with our final breakfast out this morning. It’s been a real delight to have him here, continuing our Colorado conversation begun on December 19th, 2014 when he drove Kepler, Vega, Rigel, and me out here. We slept on the floor in sleeping bags that night. Gertie came with Kate in a packed rental van. She fed Gertie cheeseburgers along the way.

    He returns to the heat and humidity of a Minnesota Summer. Different from the arid West.

    It’s been a season of visits for me. Ode and Dennis in May. Mary a week ago Saturday. BJ and Sarah that Sunday night. Tom last Thursday until today. Nice to have folks in the house for a bit.

    Tom has noted it feels strange for there to be no welcoming dog here. And it’s true. I’m dog identified. Yet I don’t feel their absence in the same way. I would love to have another dog, but I’m also enjoying having no one to care for but myself. So easy to contemplate travel, staying longer somewhere in the afternoon. Getting up at any time. Perhaps it’s the memories of so many dogs that keeps me company. Iris and Buck. Celt and Sorsha. Scot and Morgana. Tully and Tira. Bridget and Emma. Tor and Orion. Hilo and Kona. Rigel and Vega. Gertie and Kepler. 18 dogs. All still alive in memory, each one’s memory a blessing. As is Kate’s.


    How bout those Russians, eh? Can’t fight a war, didn’t stop a rebellion. Putin’s looking a lot less like a strong man since the weekend. Instead of putting down the Wagner group when it seized a military HQ in Rostov-on-Don he allowed Prigozhin to slip away into Belarus and Prighozhin’s troops to stand down with no penalties in either case.

    May they both get what they deserve.


    Lots of ideas still floating around for Herme and Cold Mountain. Enough for a one act play? I won’t know unless I try to write one. The idea gives me energy. I like the idea of a one person play: Herme and Cold Mountain.

    I also like the idea which resurfaced as Tom and I talked about cooking yesterday afternoon. A serious class in cooking basics and maybe one on a particular cuisine. At a cooking school. Realized I’ve taken all these other classes, why not one that will positively affect my daily life?




  • Alan and Rich

    Imbolc and the Waiting to Cross Moon

    Saturday gratefuls: Kep, who nudged and nudged. The New Right. The Dissident Right. The Far Right. Elites and their fantasies. Including me. The USA. Japan. Amazon. Korea. Hawai’i. On energy around lifelong fascinations. ChatbotGPT. Chatbots. The singularity. The Hubble. The Webb. Gravitational waves. The LIGO. Bahrain. Ruby. Getting her detailed. Life on Shadow Mountain.

    Sparks of Joy and Awe: Alan and Rich


    Yesterday was a relationship day. Breakfast with Rich at the Muddybuck. Lunch with Alan at Illegal Burger. Rich and I discussed the New Right and his upcoming trip to DC with his honors class at Mines. They’re going to the Extreme Court to hear arguments. But on a silly case: Jack Daniels vs. Bad Spaniels. Jack has sued a dog toy company which made a toy in the shape of a Jack Daniels bottle with a black label that reads, Bad Spaniels. Trademark infringement.

    The Muddy Buck occupies the former lobby of the Evergreen Hotel. Western. Old exposed wood ceiling, floor, and support pillars. Tobacco stained a rich dark brown. With a very modern espresso bar and young folks behind the counter serving cinnamon roles, avocado toast, breakfast burritos, and croissant egg and bacon sandwiches.

    A few long tables. Four or five high tables. A counter looking out on Evergreen’s main tourist drag. Chairs and a couch in a nook with a fireplace. A gathering place. One table had a family, a little girl with rabbit ears on a head band. Dad hovering. Two other young kids who looked like they’d just gotten up. 8 am.

    Rich believes the internal political pressures in the U.S. give us only a hundred more years as a nation. He would vote for a Romney/Cheney ticket if they ran. Why? Because they could be unifiers. Surprised me. A grim forecast.

    No wonder Abraham Lincoln is his guy. He even named his dog Abraham Lincoln. When asked by his class to name his five favorite presidents he said: Abraham Lincoln. Abraham Lincoln. FDR. Lincoln in his second term. Lincoln in his first term. FDR.


    Back up the hill from Evergreen to let Kep out, watch a short segment on F1 tv about the upcoming grand prix, then back to the far side of Evergreen, near I-70 to pick up Alan from the car detailing spot. We went to Illegal Burger for lunch. Didn’t even know we had an Illegal Burger.

    Given my mostly fish and chicken diet I felt fine having a burger. Clogging my arteries didn’t occur even once to me.

    Alan and Cheri have empty boxes along the walls. And still a lot of unpacking to do. I’m not moving for another 27 years. Yeah. I get it. Moving is a bitch.

    However. Yesterday for breakfast they took the elevator down, walked over to a deli. On the way back they picked up coffee beans at a nearby shop. They’ve been in the building’s hot tub. And ate takeout with friends in the Skytop Lounge. When they wake their view is to the southeast with Pikes Peak in the far distance and 17th Street right below. Urban living. With no forest fire threat.

    Glad for him.

  • Waiting To Cross

    Imbolc and the Waiting to Cross Moon

    Monday gratefuls: Dr. Eigner. Dr. Simpson. Kep, the early. Snow. More Snow. Mild temperatures. The Ukraine. Biden. The James Webb. Tom and Bill, the science bros. Max, getting older. Ode, the well-rooted wanderer. Paul, the steadfast. Alan, the cheerful. The Ancient Brothers, a true Sangha. Zoom. Korean fried chicken. Jon, a memory. Kate, always Kate. Ivory. Ruby. Oncology.

    Sparks of Joy and Awe: The Ancient Brothers


    So I said it out loud. My reaction to mom’s death turned me from a confident, ready to take on the world teenager to a frightened, hesitant young adult. One who dropped German because he was failing it. Shame. One who convinced himself there was not enough money for Wabash because he was afraid to go back. Shame. One who entered then a great teacher’s college, but a mediocre university. Ball State University. Shame.

    Not a lot of shame in my life. Very little. That’s where it lies. Perhaps now having put it out there. So late. 76. It will fall away. It took me years, nearly three decades, to put the pain of her death in perspective. Treatment for alcoholism. Quitting smoking. Quitting the ministry. Years of Jungian analysis. Finally. Meeting Kate. 26 years later. I finally passed the threshold of grieving mom’s death.

    And started living my life. As a writer. A gardener. A dog lover. A beekeeper. An anachronistic blogger. With a woman who loved me as I was and one whom I loved as she was. A love where we wanted and supported the best life for each other. We traveled. A lot. We stood with both sons fully.

    Abundance. Yes. Ode’s word for our Andover home. Yes. Flowers. Meadow. Fruits. Nuts. Berries. Grapes. Honey. Plums. Pears. Apples. Cherries. Iris. Tulips. Spring ephemerals. Roses. Hosta. Gooseberries. Beans. Heirloom tomatoes. Leeks. Garlic. Onions. Kale. Collard Greens. Lettuce. Carrots. Ground Cherry. Raspberries.

    The fire pit. The woods.

    The dogs. So many dogs. Celt. Sorsha. Morgana. Scot. Tira. Tully. Orion. Tor. The Wolfhounds. Iris. Buck. Hilo. Emma. Kona. Bridget. The Whippets. Vega and Rigel. The IW/Coyote Hound sisters. Gertie, the German Short Hair. And Kep, the Akita.

    It was so good. Until the work became burdensome. Until I visited Colorado one year and Ruth ran away from the door because she didn’t expect me. A surprise visit. Then we had to come. The two. A push. The work of Seven Oaks had become too much. A pull. We wanted, needed to be there for Ruth and Gabe.

    So we packed everything up. And on the Winter Solstice of 2014 moved here, to the top of Shadow Mountain. 8,800 feet above sea level. Into the Wildland/Urban Interface, the WUI. With four dogs: Kep, Gertie, Rigel, and Vega. Again, thanks to Tom for helping with the dog move.

    When the time came, we put away Andover and envisioned a life together in the Rocky Mountains. Kate felt like she was on vacation every day until she died. Where she found the Jewish life she had always wanted. Where we both found ourselves immersed in the lives of our grandchildren, of their parents.

    Now Kate is dead. Vega is dead. Gertie is dead. Rigel is dead. Only Kep and I remain alive. I’m at another threshold, waiting to cross.

  • Dutiful

    Winter and the Wolf Moon

    Sunday gratefuls: Breakfast with Jen, Ruth, Gabe, Barb. Driving back up the hill. F1. The MIA. The Walker. The docent program. My many years there with good friends and art. Acting class. Creativity class. Origins of North America. Finding the volume of a Mountain. Korean. Pruning moving forward. Interior painting, early February. Probate. Still moving. slow. ly. The Good Life. Scott and Helen Nearing. Eudaimonia. Kristen Gonzalez. Psoriasis. Mark and the USPS. Mary in Kobe. Ancient Brothers.

    Sparks of joy and awe: Eudaimonia


    Human flourishing. Eudaimonia. Satisfaction. More important than happiness. Duty is just another word for cultural norms received and accepted. Obligations. On the other hand. Imposed. Why do we do what we do?

    Assessing the life that is neither heroic nor mediocre. Since that’s where most of us end up. No need to measure ourselves against the ends of the bell curve. No need to measure ourselves. But can we be at peace with a life without comparisons?

    As for me, I choose eudaimonia. Flourishing. Satisfaction. And, yes. Duty plays a role. Family. Sacrifice. Friends too. Being there. Wherever love is, there is duty. To be honest. Sincere. Kind. Helpful. To support the best for the other. Right down to the end. And by implication to support the best for yourself. Also, duty. The unexamined life is not worth living. Yes. A duty to yourself to know thyself. And to thy own known Self be true.


    What’s interesting for me right now is how much a sense of duty has played in my life. Oh, no! The original oppositional defiant guy admitting to a sense of duty. I who even rebel against my superego. You can’t make me!!! Yes, duty.

    A minor yet significant example. As a convinced feminist of the Betty Friedan/Simone de Beauvoir second wave. At the age of 26. In seminary. Went to the Rice Street Clinic late on a Winter afternoon. A scalpel I felt on the first cut slashed my vas deferens on both sides. Shutting down sperm from my testicles. Being responsible for my own contraception.

    Another. One I’ve mentioned before. Fits here. No. I don’t want a Johns-Manville full scholarship to college. Managing people in a large corporation is not me. Will never be me. High school.

    Once convinced of Vietnam’s sturdiness as a nation, one that had held back China for over 3,000 years. No. I will not fight, nor support that war.

    After reading a convincing study about the future job prospects for Ph.D.’s. No to graduate school.

    Family. Staying in the fire with Jon. Ruth. Gabe. Kate in later life. Mark. Yet also. Cut your hair or leave! Leaving.

    These may not at first reading seem like duty. But they are. A duty to myself, to my own understanding of how to be present in the world.

    When I realized Ruth and Gabe needed us in Colorado. Broaching the idea of a move. Kate on board. Following through.

    Those two and a half acres in Andover. Leaving them better than when we bought them. How? Working it out with Kate over the years. Together. Staying the course with the full cycle of responsibilities throughout the year. Each year.

    And, dogs. Living into their lives. With them from puppyhood to death. Oh. Sweet duty. Painful duty. Life realized in full.

  • So much to see. To learn.

    Winter and the Wolf Moon

    Tuesday gratefuls: 8 years in Colorado. On the Solstice. The long dog ride with Tom. Memories. Challenges. Family. Death. Divorce. Mental and physical illnesses. Beauty. The Rocky Mountains. The Wild Neighbors. Mountain hiking. Deep snow. Sudden. Then, suddenly gone. Living at altitude. Becoming a member of CBE. Elk and Mule Deer visiting our back. Blue Skies. Black Mountain. Vega. Gertie. Rigel. Kep. Kate, always Kate. Who loved the Mountains.

    Sparks of joy and awe: That dog ride 8 years ago. Talking story.


    Back of the car anthropology. Two vanity plates. YAHWEHS. ODACIOUS. The first on a jet black fancy Audi. The other on a Lexus sedan. Also. Stickers. I heart Aging and Dying. No baby on board. Feel free to ram me. Toyoda. With yoda ears on the T and the a. I love the way we express ourselves on the back of our vehicles. So revealing. Full disclosure. I have a large decal of Lake Superior on the back window of Ruby. And, an ADL Dissent is Patriotic on a side window. There are too the cars seemingly held together by stickers like the occupants got started on the project and just. couldn’t. stop.


    On December 20th, 2014 Tom Crane and I loaded Rigel, Vega, and Kep in Ivory. All three trazodoned. Tom drove straight through. We talked the whole way. Talking story. The conversation continues now, eight years later. Gertie rode with Kate in the rental van filled with stuff we didn’t want the movers to take. I remember Kate telling me she bought Gertie a hamburger at one of their stops. A satisfied dog.

    These have not been easy years. No. They have been fulfilling, satisfying years though. Deep intimacy between Kate and me, especially as she began her long decline. Putting cancer in the chronic illness box. Being here for the kids and Jon after the divorce. Now for Ruth and Gabe after Jon’s death. Becoming part of the CBE community. Making friends. Learning from the ancient civilization of the Jews. Kabbalah. The Torah. Mussar. Talmud. Mitzvahs.

    The Wild Neighbors. The Mountains. The Streams. The hiking. Mountain adjustments. Four Seasons. Eight Seasons. The Mountain Fall. Golden Aspens. Against green Lodgepoles. Black Mountain punctuated with gold, then green. Snow flocked in Winter. Wildflowers in the Mountain Spring. Fawns. Kits. Cubs. Elk and Moose Calves. The long Summers. Beautiful in their own right, yet also angsty with the ever present threat of Wildfire.

    Living here has been, is an adventure. In relationships. In deep learning. An immersion in the world of Mountains. After the world of Lakes and Rivers and rich Soil.

    So much more to see. To learn.


    Visited Carmax yesterday. The Jeep. Prepared to sell it, then Uber home. A first for me. But. Can’t take a North Carolina power of attorney. Colorado makes it difficult. Do you want me to get you the necessary papers? Yes. Talked to Sarah while the nice lady in the blue Carmax smock did that. Took fifteen minutes. Many pieces of paper. Post it notes. Sign here stickers. OK. Thanks. Back up the hill.


    Got two calendars as presents.  Aimed at different parts of me. A Zen Calendar from Tom. A New Yorker Cartoons calendar from Sarah and Jerry. Yep. I recognize both of those guys as resident within me. Wonderful to be seen.



  • A fascinating time to be alive

    Samain and the Holimonth Moon

    Thursday gratefuls: Dinner with Tom at the Willows last night. Long time friends. Diane. A Mountain Wind. Snow knocked off the Lodgepoles. Snow and Ice on Black Mountain Drive. Advent. Sussex. The Jacquie Lawson advent calendar. Going to bed. Waking up. The Chrysalis Effect by Phillip Slater. CJ Box. Kep, the old dog. US vs. Netherlands. How to become a pagan. Acting class. Nitya. Teaching the Ancient Brothers.

    Sparks of Joy and Awe: Holimonth


    Acting class has been hit by illness. Tal, the teacher, has the flu or something like it. Nitya, a class member, spent several days in the ICU and is still recovering in the hospital. Not sure what will happen. Tal wants to hold a class on Friday, but I’m reluctant to go given the recency of his bout with the flu. A tough wind down for what has been an interesting and challenging experience.

    I was ready. I’d gotten both monologues memorized and somewhat polished. I knew all the lines in my two scenes. Not wasted work. Good work. Helps the brain. Adds some literature to the bank.

    Tomorrow morning I present in the Creativity class. Think I’m going to do my How to become a pagan piece. Wrote it yesterday. Gotta see how long it is when spoken. Going to lean into writing and art over the winter as I said yesterday. This was a start.


    High Wind warning today. The Lodgepoles have begun to sway. Dancing with each other as Sunlight makes their tops glow. I haven’t written about it but the Mountains and their Trees and Wild Neighbors? I would have missed them. A lot. Couldn’t imagine being in a city environment where no Pine Trees framed the Nighttime Stars. Will not trade this beauty for a place with less. Hawai’i matches the Mountains with its Oceans and old Volcanic Mountains, its rich fauna. Someday. But right now. This wonderful place is home.


    The world. Russia looking like a blind Bear in the Ukraine. Wrecking the place, striking out wildly. China finding that suppression and repression have their limits. Even with a newly anointed dear leader. The US struggling with divisions at home and new fractures among European allies. Not a great time to be a world power.


    It is however a fascinating time to be alive. Talks of a moon base. Be still my John Carter, Flash Gordon little boy heart. The James Webb showing us more and more of the universe in which we live and move and have our becoming. A world shifting its long term basic rules. Climate change accelerating. Women growing in power. China and Russia and the upstart USA. All in flux.

    Glad to have these years as my last ones.

  • Well…

    Samain and the Decision Moon

    Wednesday gratefuls: No red wave. Judy’s courage. Tal. A fine director. Astrov, a wonderful character. Memorization. Rebecca. Georgeta. Nittya. Hamish. Emily. How do I feel? Relieved. Chekhov. Kate’s courage. Always Kate. Jon, a memory. Ruth and Gabe. Cold weather coming. A property manager. Vince. (have him handle appliances, too?) Hawai’i. Such a fine place to be. CBE, home turf. Shadow Mountain, home. Kep, dogged. Dan, who brought me home grown marijuana and honey from his own hives yesterday. Past president of the congregation.

    Sparks of Joy and Awe: Democracy’s faint pulse


    First. My friend Judy died yesterday. If she followed the path she had explained to me, she took the medication with a trusted friend by her side reading the Psalms. Her shiva minyan is tomorrow night. I’ll be there. Kate, too, chose her own death. This kind of courage needs celebration. It says we can choose to leave life with honesty, with compassion for ourselves and for those we love. It will never be an easy choice which insures its integrity. Judy leaves behind a collection of recipes for the foods she often brought to our meetings. I’ll make at least one this next week in her memory. May her memory be for a blessing.


    Second. No red wave. Odd, isn’t it, it just occurred to me. Who’s the red menace now? Dr. Oz will have to go back to celebrity medicine. Sad Stacey Abrams lost. I’ve not done a deep look at the results but when a Fox news commentator and Washington Post columnist says: “…the Republican Party has some major soul-searching to do following the 2022 midterm elections,” (Marc Thiessen reported in The Hill.) I’m encouraged.

    Gulled by Republican propaganda and Democratic whining to expect the worst, I opened the news this morning to find a horse race. Yeah, horses. Still could tip to Repub control I know. Yet. The fact that there’s a struggle suggests the Extremes and the Trumplicans have not prevailed. Our democracy may not end up in the political intensive care ward. At least not yet.


    Third. Acting class last night. A lot of memorization ahead of me. A lot. I’m going to devote hours each day until Thanksgiving. I can and will do it. The experienced actors are already off-book for their monologues. I could have been but I vacationed instead. Back to the books now. Literally.


    Fourth. The decision. Yes, I said I’d make it after the trip. That’s now. I’m leaving a small crack in the door but here are a few new reasons for remaining in place. I put in the mini-splits and remodeled the kitchen. I moved furniture and rehung art. This is my place now. And I worked hard to get it here.

    Do what brings you joy, RJ said. Funny how I’d missed that part of the equation in my logical and careful delineation of this and that. It brings me joy to go to acting class. It brings me joy to cook in my kitchen. It brings me joy to live in the Rocky Mountains, in spite of or because of the challenges. It brings me joy to see Hawai’i as the place I choose to live next. It brings me joy to exercise in my own small gym. It brings me joy to host Thanksgiving for my shrinking family here in Colorado. It brings me joy to light up Herme and think of the Hermitage. It even brings me joy to be so much a part of Judy’s life that her shiva minyan is important to me. So. Oh? See where I’m going with this?

    To that end I’ve contacted Vince. He’s coming by today. I may even have him take charge of all the stuff, including my appliances. If I have a need, he would contact the appropriate person and oversee their work. Maybe. Not sure about that. He will handle all the outside work. He’s excited about that and the handyman type work on the inside, too. This property is too much for me to handle. Alone. Might pay him a retainer against which he would bill his services. Then, I can let go of that stuff.

    When someone asked what did I want in a new place, I’d often say oh five years or so peace and calm. No drama. Knowing that wasn’t possible but really wanting some stability without headaches associated with home ownership. Yesterday I thought. Wait a minute. I’m upsetting a chance for peace and calm right here by going through this extended home selling, relocating process. Which will then entail a whole new period of upset and chaos. By definition. I can achieve what I really want most easily by continuing the work I’ve already begun here.

    By peace and calm I don’t mean stasis. The opposite in fact. I want to get back to writing every day. I want my daily life to flow, as I know it can. I want to see how my life unfolds, not keep putting new barriers in front of that unfolding.

    What’s the crack in the door? Health. I’ve got a pulmonology referral. When I meet with them, I’m going to investigate any lung related reasons I should move now. Or, sometime soon. If they exist, and I don’t think they do, I’ll recalibrate.

    Still gonna prune and paint.




  • Closing in

    Fall and the Simchat Torah Moon

    Friday gratefuls: Darkness at 7 am. Sleep. Up before Kep. Acting. Dr. Artov. Monologue. Ground pork. Potatoes. Cheese. Eggs. Breakfast. Rabbi Jamie. Jon, a memory. Kate, always Kate. Honing in on a decision. Ruth and Gabe. Those Foxes. Ode. Tom. Bill. Paul. My Ancient Brothers. Hawai’i. Emily. Michelle. Robin. Diane.

    Sparks of Joy and Awe: See’s Candy


    Forgot to write yesterday. Got up at 10 till 8, fed Kep, talked to Diane, worked out, went to mussar, then talked to Rabbi Jamie. Home. Cooked. Spaced out till bed time. Not often, but yesterday I just plain forgot. Back at it right now as you can tell.


    Wednesday was a very productive day. Robin came with Michelle. Michelle was the muscle, a younger woman with work gloves and a plaid shirt. A kind, caring person. We marked the things in the garage that I want to keep or that can be sold. Everything else will get picked up by Reid and Gone For Good while I’m Hawai’i. Also all the stuff Diane removed from the wood cabinets will be taken by Michelle and Robin for donation. I’ll come back to a spacious garage. Gotta get out that power washer for the floors.

    They’re also going to move all the banker’s boxes in from the garage so I can sort through them. With Diane’s help last week and the work on Wednesday we’ve made real progress. It feels great. That large sack I’ve been pulling behind me since I lived in Irvine Park has begun to decrease in size. Significantly. Where ever I decide to go, whenever I decide to do it, I’ll have a move that’s both cheaper and easier. A new home setup that will go faster.


    About that. In mussar we talk about a balance. A midpoint between say pride and meekness. Humility. A midpoint between anger and passivity, assertiveness. A midpoint between apathy and co-dependence, loving-kindness. A mid-point for this move it turns out is staying in Colorado. In particular the Golden area.

    Advantages: Cheaper. Quicker. Easier. New place, yet familiar. Gabe and Ruth seen through high school. Easy access to Evergreen and CBE. A college town. My oncologist and Kristie. Personal growth. A chance to see Colorado, which I still haven’t done. Utah. Taos. Santa Fe. Four Corners.

    Neither the all out adventure of a move to Hawai’i or a return to the forty years familiar Twin Cities metro. In some sense Colorado is like both. There’s still a lot of Colorado (most) that I haven’t seen. Like Hawai’i and California Colorado is a place people from all over the world travel to see. Like Minnesota I have good friends here.

    Definite top of my list right now. We’ll see after Hawai’i. I’ll make a decision then. A major factor in where and when I go, too, is Kep. A lot of places won’t take Akitas, Minnesota, Hawai’i, Colorado. With his recent blindness and deafness I may choose to stay in place until his death, an earlier plan I scuttled when I learned about the tax consequences of selling the house after April 12th. Money is far from everything.


    Have delayed thinking about the trip to Hawai’i with all the stuff going on. Gotta check my meds, pack, get ready. Every thing is set up. Dog/house sitter. Parking spot. Airline tickets. Should be straight forward. Still needs to get done.



  • Jerseys. Drug Holidays. Golden.

    Fall and the Simchat Torah Moon

    Tuesday gratefuls: Memories. Friability. Dreams. The same. Mini-splits. Warm when and where I want it. Cool, too. That back I never had mowed. Beautiful and dangerous if a Fire came through. Sigh. New options for the move. An obvious one, missed until now. Diane. Robin. Tal. His turn at the Creativity Class. Acting class tonight. Chekhov. The Seagull. Uncle Vanya. Ivanov. Will read the Cherry Orchard today. Growing. Right here in Colorado. Change. Stability. One inevitable, the other pleasant while it lasts.

    Sparks of Joy and Awe: Lead time yields multiple options


    Whether a correction is in order or not about yesterday’s post, let me be clear: my cousin Diane prefers Jerseys. Always has. Always will. In fact she wore a t-shirt while here that read: Zike Jerseys. Morristown. Higher butterfat than those run of the mill Holsteins. At first she thought my memory might have been wrong, but then she remembered Uncle Riley often bought Holstein bull calves to feed out and sell for slaughter. Could have been some of them. Or, my memory could be faulty.

    Still eating through the collection of See’s chocolates Diane brought. A real treat. Ramping up my yogurt and fruit game, too. Told you she was a good influence. Bean and cheese burrito plus yogurt and raspberries for breakfast.


    Televisit with Kristie. So. Once a month urology oncologists, radiologists, and other specialists and their physicians assistants have a round table dicussion. Each one who wants gets up to two cases to present, then the gathered group provides advice and thoughts. Since Dr. Eigner. my oncologist, and Dr. Simpson, radiation oncologist, differ on their view of the bony sclerosis on my thoracic spine, Kristie will present next Wednesday.

    A presentation consists of an overview of treatment from diagnosis through procedures and lab work up to the present day. In my case it will span the time from May 2015 to October 2022. The particular issue in my instance is whether I have metastases causing the swelling on my spine. Dr. Simpson wants to radiate it; Dr. Eigner wants to ignore it.

    The most likely result of the conference will be some earlier scans and if felt necessary an MRI to determine the exact nature of those sclerosis. This is good for me because my case is getting reviewed by many docs. Sorta like a fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth opinion.

    Kristie gave me some other news, too. If my numbers continue the same PSA undetectable and testosterone low for the next 10 months, I’ll go on a drug holiday. Not sure how long. The reason? These drugs lose their effectiveness over time and a holiday from them reserves some of their capacity so I can still use them. I forgot to ask what the cancer does during the holiday. Lives it up I suppose.

    Kristie is a caring doc. I like her and she likes me, a good deal for both of us. We discussed the fatigue I have in the early afternoon. She suggested I check myself while in Hawai’i. If I don’t have it there, it could be psychosomatic. Which was one of my thoughts, too. Good idea.


    Seeing Kristie brought to the fore a third option for the move, one I’d neglected to consider. Move down the hill. I’ve neglected it because I thought of it as moving to Denver, a place I don’t want to live. But I’ve begun looking seriously into Golden. Once I get to down to 5 600-5 800 feet my O2 sats return to normal.

    I’d thought about moving to a college town if Hawai’i didn’t work out, then Minnesota got on my list. Golden has the Colorado School of Mines. That means cultural opportunities. It’s also closer to Boulder with its cultural opportunities and restaurants. Also, it’s right at the base of the Foothills and abuts Interstate 70, a quick shot up to Evergreen and CBE.

    Seeing Kristie brought this to mind. I really appreciate her attention to my situation and I wouldn’t have to change oncologists. Medical care in Hawai’i and Minnesota is excellent, so I don’t imagine there would be any degradation of care, but I know Kristie and Dr. Eigner. Eigner since May of 2015. And Kate thought him a good doc.

    Not to mention that it would save some money on the move. Quite a bit probably. And retain that link to Gabe and Ruth. All three have strong arguments. Now we’ll see where the different factors begin to move my  heart as we get closer to a pruned house and and a sold house.

    Oh. And one more thing. Over the last year especially I’ve found my personal growth accelerating with CBE and mussar, with the Kabbalah Experience classes, and with my CBE friends. A move to Golden would preserve those. Not an insignificant consideration.


  • A good influence

    Fall and the Sukkot Moon (the Jewish Harvest Moon)

    Thursday gratefuls: Diane. Cleaning out the truly hard part. Her doggedness. She says OCD, I say perseverance. The Yahrzeit plaques, Kate in the middle and reserved ones for myself and Jon above and below her. Hugs at CBE. Bread Lounge breakfast with the cuz. Sourdough bread. Marilyn. The discussion on humility last night. Jackie. Luke. Ellen. Jamie Bernstein. Leslie.

    Sparks of Joy and Awe: Having Diane here


    Over to Evergreen early, but not before Diane had taken a 45 minute jog around the neighborhood. She came upon a Mule Deer Buck standing so still and so close to her at one point that she asked, “Are you alive?” His ears twitched, his head moved, then he went on about his day. Mountain spirits. Ready to welcome us or turn us away.

    The Evergreen Medical Center had closed for the day so we went on over to the Bread Lounge. We both had Chinook Toast. The servers and the cashier are so friendly. A lot fewer people than on the weekend or Friday when Alan and I usually go.

    Tried to go to the Evergreen Market for easy meals, but it didn’t open until 11. Back home I looked at my calendar and, Oh, $%#&! I had a hair appointment at 11:15. Had to reschedule for 12:15. Always good to see Jackie and her colleague.

    When I got back Diane was hands deep in mouse turds, had all the items from under the sink and on the lazy susan neatly organized on paper towel sections along the wall. It was after one and I needed my nap.

    When I got up, she was still at it! She’d had lunch she said. A nut bar and an apple. Diane has a minimalist approach to eating that I admire. She’s taken most of the choice points out of daily meals by having regular breakfasts and lunches, veggies of some kind, like a salad or something else, plus some protein for supper. She’s a good influence on me.

    I had blueberries and raspberries and yogurt for lunch. Tasted good. By then, however, I had to go to Safeway to pick up some food for the MVP mussar group.

    In the end I’d had breakfast, had my haircut, napped, and gone to Safeway, only to leave a bit later for MVP. Diane did all the work.

    Today we work in the loft.


    The power of the lit up Aspens captured Diane. As they do me. And, probably everybody that’s up here during our monochrome Fall. If you’ve watched the Lord of the  Rings movies or the Rings of Power, they look like the trees around the Elven castles. Magical and amazing. Flaming Trees that do not burn. Moses and that bush have nothing on a golden Aspen Grove with the sun behind it.


    The MVP mussar group discussed humility. We didn’t get to Jacob and the Angel, but we hit all the other passages on the reading list. The conversation was strong, thoughtful, heart felt, honest.

    We affirmed an understanding of humility that challenges the meek and mild posture often associated with it. No. Humility is knowing who you are and bringing that person, with all his/her/them talents and gifts to every encounter. Not hiding your light under a bushel, neither letting it blaze out like a movie premier spotlight. Authenticity, each and every encounter, including those with your inner self.

    My practice this month will be elemental again. I did water as my practice for the middot of cleanliness last month. This month being down to earth is my practice. This practice honors the link among the words humus, humility, and humanity. It also honors the metaphor of each us created from the same elements, from the dust of the soil, with the breath of life breathed into us through the wonder of birth and evolution. I will remember from whence I came and to which I return. In each encounter.