It’s been a while since I shared a photo or story here but my absence has been the best thing for both of us. No I have not been in rehab, hospitalized or incarcerated for the good of society, I just went back to school to learn how to write. Starting with such an empty slate and having a wonderful instructor, Laura Kalpakian, author of “American Cookery”, I couldn’t help but learn something. After eight months of instruction my classmates and I read our favorite work at Village Books and received our certificates of completion. It’s nice to receive some form of acknowledgment for your efforts but over time I’ve come to realize degrees and certificates have little to do with how well a person can actually do the job. The prose certificate is sharing space in the drawer with my bartending certificate, real estate license and medical degree. All are programs I am happy to have completed but they all illustrate the beginning of an education not the finish. I have much more to learn about writing but there is no question when I read and write now I see and hear differently. Instead of just words and stories I see structure, dialogue and arc. With the help of a writer’s group and further oversight by LK, I look forward to continuing my education.
In addition to writing and reading, the past months have included changing wall and floor coverings, insulating and sealing the house, installing a heat pump, painting, roofing and like my writing education there’s more to do. But unlike the writing, the remodeling can be hired out. Sue has spent her time studying landscape design, tearing out grass, mulching, planting and volunteering at the animal shelter. Periodically we took breaks to taste the local microbrews, listen to live music, see the tulips bloom in Skagit County and take the ferry to Friday Harbor. I will attach a slide show illustrating our corner of NW Washington accompanied by a Jimmy Buffett tune.
But as much as I love our energy efficient home the urge to pack a bag and leave the familiar sights and soft bed is strong. Occasional bouts of discomfort, hunger and being “a foreigner” keep me humble and appreciative. Also when I travel my senses are heightened which opens my eyes and ears to more stories and hopefully now, to better-written posts for this blog. Time will tell if I live up to those expectations but please stay tuned to find out. As always thank you for reading and following and I hope you enjoy the photos.