During the months that I travel my worldly possessions shrink to the size of a small carry on bag and an even smaller bag on my shoulder. I have never been one to own a lot of clothing or shoes or jewellery so choosing what I will take is not hard.
I travel I decant everything down even further just to the essentials. I carry the lightest of loads and am always happiest then. I love to travel. I have a tried and true system. Once my checklist is compete and everything is stowed in its smallest form, in the correct position in my bags, in the little bags that fit inside the bigger bag, rolled and tucked, reduced and light, once I am again mobile; then I am strangely content. I can grab anything I need in seconds. I can put everything I own on my back and I can move fast.
I miss people and animals when I travel not things or places. And my family is spread through the world so I am always missing someone. There is always the knowledge of their absence from my hands.
Now I am back on the prairies, at my home address and my bags, for the first time in months, are emptied and stowed away for next year. My husband and the dogs are relieved to see this. They want me to spread out and settle down. But I still feel small and mobile. Nimble. Alert. Honed. It is a flux time for me. My hands still in either world.
I love the inner cities. I love navigating them and moving through them fast. I love the depth and eternal light of the country. I love the smell of planes and dodging through airports. I love the sky and the miracle of flight. I love being able to sink into the folds of my family. I love to dress in layers as I move through time zones. I love the anonymity of crowds, how you can look through a sea of people their eyes downcast as they shuffle through and then meet the eyes of the only other person within hundreds who has his head up and is watching too. I take a million pictures with my eyes and seldom raise my camera. I am alert and quick.
Now I am home within walls, the dogs sit in their accustomed places, watching me waiting for the movement and sound that means we will begin work for the day.
But I am looking into the corners and through the wardrobes throwing things into recycling bags. Lifting and weighing and judging and hiffing and chucking out. This is the time when I sort the chaff from the wheat in cupboards and wardrobes and corners. The junk is obvious to me at this point in my year. All this extra stuff feels so heavy. I need the accumulation of rubbish OUT. I have to lighten my life so I can live back in it for the summer.
It is hard for me to settle back down after travelling. I do not do well with rooves and doors and gates and latches and walls and stuff.
While I was away this time the dog’s water in the heated water bowl ran empty. I found That Cat asleep in there so as not to waste the warmth.
A big chore yesterday was stomping thick ice out of the unheated water bowls and refilling them. It is cold right now as I write, 15F/-9C so I will be doing the ice smashing all over again this morning.
Sheila had a bit of a moan about her North door being shut when it was snowing while I was away. She had managed to push her frozen water bowl right into the door bending it outwards and she took me down to this so I could sort it out for her.
I let the cows out for a wander on the field even though there is no grass out there. My animals are like me – they hate walls and gates and latches too.
Luckily for their minders the pigs did not escape while I was away. But they are used to the parameters of their big field now. They have settled.
I will soon too. It is natural to be unsettled at first. But I will settle down again, as the routine of my life takes hold. I will work hard so I do not have the energy for flight.
This is the coldest day for a while. Maybe the last cold of the season but we cannot be sure. Today our high will be 42F/4C.
Thank you so much to our guest writers. There is a lot of work in creating a page for someone else and I do appreciate it. And I love how you, the readers, all embrace our guests. The Fellowship really is such a wonderful group of people and I thank you for being my constant companions.
OH I ALMOST FORGOT to tell you. I felt Molly’s babies yesterday. She lays down on command, and I was able to sit with her for a while and feel a number of piglets jumping about in her belly. No sign of an udder yet though so she has a way to go. I am guessing three weeks.
I hope you have a lovely day.