Having the Right Address Helps

Trip Start Jun 18, 2012
Trip End Jun 23, 2012

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Where I stayed
Michelle's House
What I did
Woodlands, Gardens, Tubing on the River, Michele and Chris.

Flag of United States  , New York
Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Wednesday With Michelle: Gardening
 Driving through the Catskills was amazing.  There were rounded mountains that were so green with rivers nourishing everywhere.  I was starting to get excited.  

 Then... all my electronics had no signal.  No cell phone.  No iPad which meant the comforting bouncing blue ball could not find me.  

 Plus it turns out, I had the address wrong.  So, I started a house to house search.  

 Fortunately, Michelle was out working in her garden as I was walking up her driveway to throw myself on the mercy and the kindness of strangers.  There was a slow motion pointing and then recognition and then hugging and non-stop talking.

It finally occurred to us to move the car from the middle of the road so we both got in to ride up to her house,  It was hot so the air conditioning was nice for a moment.  Michelle lives in a beautiful house with three floors.  There is the bedroom level, the living room, guest meeting rooms level and a basement.  

We went outside so Michelle could show me her woods where she plans to put the yurts for workshops someday.  We discussed trees, their health, deer and their demise, plants, water seepage, ferns, Master Gardening, a canoe, chipping cut wood, chippers, seedlings, digging holes for trees, Chris, his shoulder, India, Nepal, Asia, and then we went inside for a little breakfast.

Really.  A    l   i   t   t   l   e  breakfast.  We found tiny plates.  We cracked and fried 4 little quail eggs.  We poured tiny glasses of orange juice.  We had a thimble full of everything bagel with cream cheese that I had brought.  The laughter and tears started.  

The executive council meeting started almost immediately.  We decided that our 45th reunion should be on this scale.  Everyone travel to the nearest classmate and have a slumber party!  For extra credit, contact at least two other classmates while together.  Laugh, cry, heal.  Make the past the present.  Talk about others.  Miss them.  Remember the last conversations you had with everyone.  Discuss.  Compare notes.  

Cover family, death, lives lived, interests, and then get dinner ready for the significant others.  Try to catch them up on the shorthand developed from mutual experience oh so long ago.  Tell tales. Include anything that comes to mind.

We centered on gardening.  How funny that one of my life's identities was Master Gardner in Alameda County.  I specialized in Redwood ecology and started a native plant nursery in Muir Woods where we propagated like mad.  Here Michelle and I had this same interest and we chatted and planted tomatoes until I succumbed to the heat.  I was ok as I sat in my car and hydrated while Michelle finished up.  Then we drove to the farmer's market for tomatoes and pita bread and saw Hassidic Jewish women choosing vegetables.  Then we went out Michelle's garden down the street to weed and water.  There might be an economic development there for Michelle to sell either vegetables or vegetable garden tours to that population.

We decided to contact Margaret Tucker and Janet Moosman.  Margaret because she had recently contacted Michelle, and Janet because it was her birthday and we were older and could answer any questions she might have about 62.  We wanted to earn the extra credit first.  But we got to talking and didn't call on the first night.  We tried to loosen up my ankle with essential oils.  It worked.  Chris is the kind of guy that can get right in the flow with us.  We laughed and joked for the rest of the night.

Thursday With Michelle: Tubing and Wavy Gravy

I woke up early and greeted Chris before he went off to work.  He makes a wonderful cup of coffee.  Michelle and I continued applying essential oils to my ankle and tried to figure out why it was so gnarled.  Turns out there were muscles trying to do bone jobs and everybody trying to do somebody else's job in my ankle.  That realization loosened it so much that my ankle lost what felt like a rusty nail and I could move it in directions that I hadn't been able to move it for years.  Michelle really does have the touch to get things back to balance.

We decided to go tubing on the river.  I had no idea what a long car ride it was away, but I took pictures to try to share with you what beauty New York state has to offer.  Of course, we wisely left the camera in the car so we don't have pictures of the river, but it was beautiful, wild and fast.  A hurricane had really changed the course  of the river and the train tracks that had run parallel to it last September and there were even more dangerous areas than normal.  Harry told us all about how hard it was to get any governmental agency involved in fixing up the river and was discouraged at how his business might be affected.  He gave me a free tie to keep my glasses on and I'm grateful that he did.

Michelle helped me get my tube to the river since I was negotiating the rocks slowly and carefully.  We hung on to each other tube so we could talk.  Then, we were not able to hang on and we were on our own.  I hit a rock backwards and it knocked the wind out of me and I found myself under water with the tube on top of me with no way to catch my breath.  I didn't let go of my tube though and finally struggled enough to catch my breath and get back on the tube.  I felt like I had been reborn!

Then Michelle had a good idea.  Since she was waiting for me at a portage point for quite some time, she had time to chose rocks that volunteered to go home with her to be in her garden.  She chose enough to fill both our tubes and suggested that we would sit on them until the end of the river.  The idea struck me as funny (doesn't everything?).  She said, "We have at least $40.00 worth of rocks here!"  So we got them down river and Michelle carted them up to the bridge.  Meanwhile, Matt wanted to close up shop, so he came down to the river to get our tubes since we seemed to be the last ones back.  Since we were doing hauling of our own, we were glad to let him carry our tubes back for us.

We had a beer and nachos in town before driving home.  We both had a Guinness and Michelle ordered a Long Trail (a Vermont IPA) She let me taste it, but I didn't care for it and stuck with my Guinness.  We shared driving home since it took a long time.  Chris was glad to see us, but I'm not so sure he was glad to meet the rocks.

Michelle and I decided to watch a movie about the guys who did security at Woodstock.   The movie was Saint Misbehaving about Wavy Gravy.  We had trouble getting the movie to play, until it finally stopped.  Michelle wanted me to see it because she wants me to return with Kathleen and go to the Woodstock museum with her.   It is not so far from where she lives.

We forgot to call Janet and Margaret.

Friday Morning with Michelle:  Resonance Repatterning

We got up early and I packed the car.  Then Michelle asked me if I would like to try her new work of resonance repatterning.  I said sure, so we had a wonderfully successful session. 

We called Janet and left a message.  We called Margaret, but kept getting a busy signal.  We figured we had earned the extra credit. 

 Then I got in my car to take off, but I wasn't really ready.  As I fixed my music, Michelle took pictures.  It was really hard to leave, but this was only the scouting trip and I plan to bring Kathleen along next time.  I think I was there to listen and Michelle had some skills to help me get back in balance.  I am sure there won't be 40 years passing for the next visit to happen.

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