Friday, May 19, 2017

Open Spaces

I have been spending a lot of time walking on the beach this week. With everyone still gone the house gets too quiet for me and the walls start closing in. When I am barefoot on the beach, feeling the sand between my toes, hearing the sound of crashing waves, and seeing the expansive view out over the horizon, that closed in feeling totally goes away.

My options of living become as numerous as the grains of sand under my feet; the strength I possess to create the life I want is echoed in the crash of the ocean tide; and the who, what, and where of my potential life impact extends to the far horizon. This is what happens to me when I walk on the beach, not every time, but often. It is the best high I know. (Of course maybe I’m just completely nuts…I can’t in good conscience rule out that possibility). ;-p

At the end of one these kind of days I sat on the beach and just marveled at it all.


Beach Combing

I love being outside, walking along the beach and just enjoying whatever I come across. Sometimes it’s curious, sometimes it’s gross, but it is always interesting.

beach pottery

Washed Ashore Pottery

Pottery washes up on different parts of the beach in Ecuador from time to time. It is a complete mystery to me how these ancient artifacts, although just pieces, can exist at all after being battered by the currents and rocks of the ocean floor. Here are a few pieces I found this week on only one walk I took.

The beaches in Ecuador have some of the warmest waters, and longest stretches of wide open sand I have ever experienced. Many of the beaches are still so unspoiled by development, and have so few people on them, they have become a source of amazement and gratitude for me.

Of course the sunsets here cannot be beat either. I’ve thought about putting together a picture book of just Ecuadorian sunsets. The real challenge is capturing the actual beauty, intensity, and scope of any sunset. I wonder if it is one of those things that “you just have to be there”? What do you think?

Change Is In The Air

The weather is beginning to change on the coast. Although I’ve lived in Ecuador over a year now, we had moved to Cuenca after the earthquake and I missed experiencing the “cool” season of the coast. When we arrived back here in March the afternoons were so incredibly hot it was hard to do much of anything. The sun was blistering outside and the inside of the house had a couple of hours of intense heat. The solution was to go for a swim in the ocean. That seemed to cool me off and help me manage the heat, so it wasn’t a problem.

Now, there is more cloud cover during the day than sun. Lately it has been raining at some point during the day as well. The breeze off the ocean has a coolness it didn’t have before. The temperature however is so pleasant! Even when it’s raining, with all the windows open in the house, I am shirtless and perfectly comfortable. I thought I had an issue with rain but my real problem is with cold. I do enjoy the sunshine though, so it will be interesting to see what happens to my mood with long stretches of cloudy days.

Travel Updates

Korean BBQ Is In My Future

My oldest son Chase is on his way to South Korea today. Atlanta to Toronto, then Toronto to Seoul. Easy-peazy 16 hours of flight time. 😉

He had a great visit with family and friends in the States, and was able to buy some clothes he would need teaching in Seoul. After 2+ years in the Peace Corps, and then 10 months in Ecuador his wardrobe was down to a few t-shirts, shorts, flip-flops, and all of them very worn. He even got a haircut while in the States…which by the way turned out way better than the one I got here.  I think he tapped into his inner Keith Urban. 😉

Easton has been enjoying Alaska. He is staying at our friend Michelle’s until he heads out to sea. The pics he is sending of the Pacific Ocean there is beautiful. As beautiful as it is, I still prefer to see the pacific at zero degrees latitude. 🙂

life is a beach

Easton in Kodiak

pacific beach coast

Kodiak Alaska

Home Is What You Make It

Since Easton has been in Alaska he and another crewman have been doing prep work for the boat. They are due to go out fishing for salmon around the first of June and not come back in until late August or early September. He and the other crewman are still mending that 1/4 mile net. The boat is 38 feet long and they will all basically live on it for 3+ months. Easton sent some pics…oh my is all I can say.

Salmon Fishing Boat

Heidi has another week visiting her family before she comes south again. She tells me she is enjoying it a lot there; things are easy. I’m sure that is true, and some days I miss “easy” as well. Here in Ecuador, especially in these small villages along the coast, it takes longer and requires more effort to do most of the basic things…shopping, cooking, cleaning. The trade-off is the greater tranquility of a simple life, free from the bombardment of talking head news, pressured consumerism, and misplaced satisfaction. At least it is for me.

On that note, I leave you with another little South American vibe from Wine Wednesday at the Road House in Olon, Ecuador.