Celebrating Abundance

I was asked by a cruise ship passenger about two weeks ago how they could sign up for a life like mine. I laughed before I answered with the truncated, “Give away your crap. Start with the television. Go from there.” He laughed and nodded.

“I guess it really COULD be that simple, huh,” he responded thoughtfully.

“Yup!”

Ultimately, that’s how it all began for me: a simple realization that I hadn’t used nor seen any of my crap for over 3 years between downgrading houses, moving from CA to TX, TX to CA, CA to NY, then deploying with a few duffel bags to Afghanistan.

Our front yard with the incoming tide

I woke up last week in the protecting arms of my soulmate. I stretched. He likes it when I do that.

We made love.  I like it when we do that.

I walked outside, and sat down on the logs that make up our porch in the warm sun.  I noted that for the past three summers I’ve lived across from a beautiful waterfall, and every morning I’ve woken up to the sound of water, the calls of hungry eagles, the screams of seagulls, and the thumping of curious humming birds.  I looked out at the tidal flats quickly disappearing beneath the incoming tide, and couldn’t help smiling.

High tide often comes right up to our front door.

We are in Heaven for $400 rent a…..

Month?

No.

A Summer!

We don’t have cable.

We don’t have satellite.

We don’t have video games.

We don’t have flashy rims or Jordans to worry about scuffing or china to worry about dropping.

We don’t have electricity.

We don’t have hot water.

We don’t have plumbing.

What we have is peace, love, happiness, a camp stove, some kerosene lamps, books, creativity, an abundance of natural entertainment at our front door, and a heavenly community 10 miles away.

John posted an ad in the Haines Classifieds requesting kayaks, and in typical Lovely, Trusting Haines fashion, by the end of the week, we had been loaned one indefinitely and had bought another.  That morning John Hirsch had even left a message offered us his double to keep at the cabin!

We set out that afternoon by kayak at high tide. We didn’t need a vehicle. We just grabbed our kayaks, skirts, paddles, and walked them to the rising water. We pushed off, and began paddling towards the waterfall. We spent the day tooling around, taking pictures, making jokes, and watching fishermen.  I stopped for a while to lean back in my kayak, turn my face towards the sun, and allow the warmth to infiltrate my being.

“We choose to live this way, isn’t it incredible?” I turned to the man of my reality, no longer only the man of my dreams.

He turned towards me and flashed a smile, “Yup!!”

The thought thrills me that we have taken our lives into our own hands in a conscious decision to simplify and enjoy. In our systemic poverty, we’ve found a richness in freedom unparalleled. I chuckled to myself as I thought of the many times I’d been questioned about my choices to remove myself from the rat race; challenged and doubted.  Funny thing, I never for a second doubted that I was making the right decisions for my happiness.

We worked our kayaks over towards one another and almost tipped each other over trying to kiss. After the third time we landed the smooch, dead on, and managed to stay in the boats.

“We should practice this more,” I half quipped.

“Yup!” he was laughing now.

We practiced. We kissed. I screamed like a girl a few times, thinking we’d tip.

I think we’ve got it now. At least good enough that I won’t scream before and after the kiss. 😀

A sea lion poked his head from the placid water. I watched him fish for a while, appreciating the moment with nature.  I smiled at the Universe and watched John investigating a crab. I sat for a long time unmoving, admiring the shape of his jaw, the strength in his neck, remembering the feeling of his lips on mine.

As we paddled back to the cabin, we recognized John Hirsch on the water with Leslie and Rio, the ladies of his life.  We called out to them and met up on the water. He asked us if we had gotten his message about the double kayak he’d left us that morning. We laughed at the irony of having just bought the second single kayak that very morning, about an hour before hearing the message. After a few entertaining stories, he offered, “I just got four fish, let’s celebrate the abundance of the season! Want a fillet?

Of course I responded with an immediately enthusiastic, “HELL YEAH WE DO!!”

John and I began paddling back to the cabin while they started up the zodiak and drove to the ramp where their truck was parked. By the time we had our kayaks on the porch again, Leslie was walking down the boards to the cabin with a bright red sockeye fillet in her hands.

“Got something to put this in?” she called out with a smile while holding the large slab of fish away from her body.

“HELL YEAH!” I brought her a red plastic container.

John Hirsch pulled up a moment later, and we all walked towards the truck.  We had a gift for him as well.

As I approached, he said, “Rio’s got something for you, Rita!” and a tiny white fist sprung out from behind his headrest. I offered my open palm, and a beautiful orange rock fell into my hand.

We offered up some gluten free chocolate covered graham crackers, good pakalolo, and ended up taste testing yummy dried pineapple and mango in return.

Everyone was grinning, laughing, and sharing. It was the absolute perfect way to celebrate the abundance of love and blessings in our lives in that moment.

“Well,” he concluded, “It was great to see your hair again! We were admiring it from all the way out THERE!” John Hirsh gestured towards the middle of the inlet.

We all laughed, gave half hugs through the truck windows, and said our goodbyes.

They drove off towards town and we returned to our Heaven, our home, feeling alive and incredibly lucky in our abundance, as those who truly live in each moment tend to do.

Share.

It builds love.

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10 Responses to Celebrating Abundance

  1. cathy b wilson July 9, 2012 at 10:58 PM #

    This is great! I love the simple life you are living. I enjoy all your stories but this one make me want to head out and make life simpler too..

  2. Sue arnold July 14, 2012 at 4:26 AM #

    Beautiful. Thanks for your inspiring life and words.

    • Hurricane Rita July 14, 2012 at 4:58 AM #

      Thanks for taking the time to read and comment! I’m glad you dug it! 😀 Hope all is well in CO! Maybe we’ll be swinging through sometime after we’re finished in AK! 😉

  3. Michael Bordner July 14, 2012 at 2:45 PM #

    Rita… you’re the shit! I’m happy when I see a friend and family member living life! Proud and happy for you!

    • Hurricane Rita July 20, 2012 at 4:58 PM #

      Thanks brother! Anytime you guys are free, feel welcome to come visit! 😀

  4. Pat Corcoran July 18, 2012 at 3:20 PM #

    I read all your writing over and over. You are remarkably talented. You really ought to take it to the next level and do a book. I think you will find it quite successful.

    PS. Love this one, but the elevator is a blast…

    Peace,
    SGM Pat Corcoran

  5. Hurricane Rita July 20, 2012 at 5:00 PM #

    🙂 Wow, thanks, SGM! That means A LOT! I’m glad you’ve enjoyed my musings! I’m working on a book called Call Me Stupid. 😀 About my life before and after…the decisions, and the people who tried to talk me out of them. I’ll send you some snippets to enjoy, if you’re into it! 😀

  6. Paula Lowrie July 24, 2012 at 2:41 PM #

    I loved this….I am so glad I got to meet you last week on our river raft tour. I told you I would check out your website. I also got a couple of really good pictures I would love to share with you, if you would like, you can let me know how to send them to you

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