Along the Ray

Along the Ray

An alien from a different plane wandering the universe in a tiny camper

August 3, 2022 RANDOM THOUGHTS

Cycle of inspiration, new invisibility cloak

I find myself still rattled about my daughter’s situation. I hope she finds some kind of resolution. She’s far too young to be in that kind of place so soon us older people tend to experience.

I feel her pain in my heart still and as her Dad I wish I could just make it go away and all be well.

It’s her path to walk and her choices. As always I honor that because by doing so I honor her. It’s why our bond is so strong — we have an infallible trust and love in each other shaped in part by respecting her agency even as a child. She also knows I’ll be there in a drop of a hat whenever she needs no matter how far away I am.

In the beginning of my wanderings I used to feel guilty for straying so far away from her even as she lives her own life. However, I’ve come to see how much she loves that I’m doing what I love and it inspires her to do what she loves.

As a result she clearly enjoys her life, her work and the things she does. Her life’s truth clearly radiates from her because she lights up with joy talking about these things.

So she inspires me, too.

And the cycle repeats.

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Halfway through this weird life on earth, I’ve noticed the older I get the more unseen I become. 1

Elders used to warn me that day would come when we’d become invisible to most of society and I’m finding they’re right (as usual).

It’s so interesting how we start fade in the eyes of others when hitting the mid-century mark. It’s also a natural occurrence so it’s not something I resist. Go with the flow, as they say, and enjoy because your best years are ahead.

Again they’re right. The wisdom that comes with age is life’s reverse-kryptonite. It’s why when I look back I often wish I had that wisdom with me back then because life would be so much easier, right?

But then I wouldn’t have experienced life in the first place. It’s not just about the learning, it’s the journey to that wisdom that makes all the difference.

Being invisible? I don’t mind it.

In fact, I like it very much because all these years growing up deaf in a hearing world I always stuck out like a sore thumb.

Now I don’t.

I’m loving my invisibility coat of aging.


  1. Astute readers might have noticed I’ve written about aging a few times but it’s not something I’m fixated on - it’s something that fascinates because it is a new experience and with it comes new observations and findings.↩︎

August 1, 2022
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View of Lake Mohave from Telephone cove (2017)
View of Lake Mohave from Telephone cove (2017)

I need space. I need air. I need the empty fields round me; and my legs pounding along roads; and sleep; and animal existence. ~ Virginia Woolf

August 1, 2022 RANDOM THOUGHTS

Time lost, “bookselves”, our tree rings

I recently returned from visiting mom down south and I wanted to go back. I always enjoy our time together, esp. when we swim the ocean at sunset and long talks over the swell of waves.

I only stayed a few days to rush back and get a move on camper renovation stuff only to realize when I got back that it could have waited a bit longer. That time with family is so precious (and short on earth!) it ought to be a priority rather than something stored in-between things to do.

Next time I should remember to stop and ask myself:

*Do I really need to do this thing and put off extra time spent with mom?”

Had I paused my mind and asked this I would have stayed.

Once again this speaks to cultivating awareness and not mindlessly rushing to and fro.

Awareness lost is time lost.

#

I ran into a regular at the local pool I frequent (’tis wonderful relief after those long, hot hikes) and we started talking for the first time. In the past all I knew of her was her friendly smile and wave.

It was fascinating. The more we talked the more I learned about her — her identity was unfolding itself in the eye of my mind. The things we told each other of our adventures and life, etc. all in a span of a few minutes was amazing and a reminder that we all have stories to tell and share.

That those we see across the room and don’t know have untold depths of layers far more than we could ever imagine. That what we see is only a tiny fragment of who they really are.

Books. We’re all unopened books stuffed with chapters of life within. When we open our bookselves to each other we’re forever enriched.

Oh the stories we could tell…

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When I was first walloped by Lyme disease, my beard rapidly turned white.

A few years later when I had COVID (mild, even) white streaks started appearing in what’s left of my red hair.

It’s so strange to witness visible changes like that. And how aging sneaks up on you.

I always thought it’d be more gradual and maybe it is but when your body undergoes major shocks everything is thrown out of whack.

So when I see my hair I’m reminded of those fallen trees whose rings share tales of moments of trauma over their long years.1


  1. In my case my tree rings” will probably disappear over time given my family’s genetic penchant for baldness ; )↩︎

August 1, 2022
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View out camper door of the Salton Sea (2017)
View out camper door of the Salton Sea (2017)
July 30, 2022
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View from today’s hike - not every day I see a trail of grass in the woods!
View from today’s hike - not every day I see a trail of grass in the woods!

What is life? It is the flash of a firefly in the night. It is the breach of a buffalo in the wintertime. It is in the little shadow which runs across the grass and loses itself at sunset. — Crowfoot Blackfeet

July 29, 2022
View from campsite at Valley of Fires in New Mexico (2017)
View from campsite at Valley of Fires in New Mexico (2017)
July 28, 2022 RANDOM THOUGHTS

Torture test passed, Substacking Dad, newsletter gentrification

The last couple of days I’ve taken longer hikes in the middle of the day’s heat as a bit of a torture test to see if my body could handle it like it used to in those good ole pre-Lyme days.

To my somewhat surprise, it did just fine other than my knees being a bit sorer than usual from not being used to that pace.

I’m cautiously encouraged by this. It’s my goal to get back to being able to hike around ten miles in a day. That’s where the best, secret places are to enjoy!

I’ve found protein has a big impact on how far I can go. In the past it didn’t matter but post-Lyme it makes all the difference for some reason. My internal battery has changed — it runs out faster if I don’t store up some energy (protein!) in advance before a long hike.

It’s change I can live with as long as I remember to chow down a bit before doing anything physically rigorous.1

#

I’ve been working on setting up a Substack newsletter for my dad. He’s retired but his financial analyst mind is as sharp as ever and he has that itch to keep sharing his knowledge so I’m going to help him scratch it.

Through a brilliant computer program friend of his, he’s built several sophisticated computer models that track the economy, markets, etc. It’s deep shit — enough so that the Federal Reserve tried to hire him at one point (he choose to stay independent).2

While I have issues with Substack, it’s perfect for folks like my Dad who are not computer experts. It’s simple and easy to use with everything baked in.

When it goes live I’ll shout it out here for those of you who might be interested. It’s gonna be an interesting ride.

#

Speaking of Substack, my issue is how they are gentrifying the newsletter industry. Newsletters are all starting to look the same… and read the same.

It’s almost robotic — as if writers are churning stuff out by following some sort of Substack formula and forced writing by schedule (“oh it’s Tuesday I gotta shove something out so my readers don’t forget me!”).

By the time I’ve read several newsletters in the e-mail they’ve all bled together as if written by the same voice with no stand-out or personality. And with the same graphics, styles, etc. it’s even harder to stick out like a sore thumb.

So it’s gotten boring.

I wonder if it’s a catch-22 when they all have the same look and feel does it make them think and write the same via some sort of path to success” conformity?

Don’t get me wrong - there’s quite a few excellent newsletters and writers I subscribe to there but these days it’s the exception rather than the rule. 3

BTW I’ve noticed those who blog (esp. for a good while) are the better newsletter writers. Probably because they’re treating them like blogs!


  1. I have yet to find a protein bar that doesn’t taste like artificial plastic-y sugar. Why are they so sweet anyway?↩︎

  2. Dad’s had his own clients for a long time - he’s where I got my entrepreneurial spirit from.↩︎

  3. I’m aware I’m probably coming across as a hypocrite by putting my dad on Substack lol.↩︎

July 27, 2022
(click date for larger photo)
Getitng darker earlier - am enjoying a hot tea under a glowing tree
Getitng darker earlier - am enjoying a hot tea under a glowing tree
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https://alongtheray.com Along the Ray

An alien from a different plane wandering the universe in a tiny camper

Along the Ray

Somewhere on a river...

North American continent usually

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