I went into Northampton today for an errand. Northampton almost always has a conspicuous number of lesbians, primarily because Smith College, a, uh, powerfully feminist women's college, is right downtown; as far as I've been able to tell, that attracts and/or awakens lesbians (whether or not they went to school there), and then because this is a nice, friendly place to live, they stay. There's also Mount Holyoke College down the street here, piling on the female energy, except that they seem to like men more, or at least in general treat us with palpably less hostility.
What's not to love about living here? An endless supply of apple cider and apple cider donuts, hills, valleys, trees, nice bookstores, good cafes. There's a field down the street here, and I stopped to try and get a better view of the sunset. The field is dead brown grass most of the year, part of a horse-jumping course, a bit over half a mile square. There are woods on either side, and it slopes gently down to a big red barn and an older white farmhouse, with a creek and bridge at the bottom of the hill on the right. The sun had gone about halfway below the ridge, and the whole hill and valley were full of this amber golden light that we get here, like being immersed in an impossible painting, except it's real and simple and present. Something about that field tonight was New England, but I'm no closer to defining it now than I was when I lived here.
Slow day today, as I sat and screwed around on the computer and watched TV and ate and...that was it. Which is fine. One of the things I want here is just to be away from my life and let my mind settle. I've kinda lost my perspective, that element of centeredness that actually puts me in a better mood...I've been responding to the past couple of weeks with varying degrees of vacant apathy, since, the majority of the time, there's nothing I really need to care about. Aikido, my friends and family...and that's about all I can manage to have an emotional stake in these days. If I'm feeling particularly gone I have to make myself eat. I don't like those days. As a friend said, even though we tell other people that things change, we suspect that we'll be the statistical outlier, the exception, and the world will keep degenerating, just for us. (Things change when they're going well, too, but when life is good we don't want to hear about it.)
Breath comes in, breath goes out. Breath comes in, breath goes out. Just this.
The family dog, Lucky, is now 11, getting on in years for a dog, and suitably pudgy. He doesn't bark for things, he only ever just looks at you; for added communication he may sit somewhere specific, like near the door, while he stares at you, waiting for you to catch up. He's looking at me right now, at 0110 at night. Or he was. He lay down slightly behind a box, where our eyes don't meet, but if I look around the box he's still looking at me. He may be expecting a walk. This time, he will be disappointed.
Really politically incorrect, but still kinda funny.
Things will not always be as they are now.
This dog is really, really not going for the walk he thinks he's going to get by staring at me.