And The Journey Continues…

As many of you know, a few years ago I got tired of being a home owner. I had had enough of property taxes and a worn out septic system and other things about that house. One day, I said to myself, “I’m done. I’m selling this place.” My first goal was to get rid of all the things I had accumulated. A few garage sales took care of that problem and I didn’t mind getting rid of the stuff because the it was just that, stuff. I felt so liberated not being tied down with all those collected items.

I then called the real estate lady who had sold my father the house and got things underway. A few short months later, I was turning the keys over to the new owners. I wished them as much happiness as I had in the house. They had made it difficult for me when it came to the price and terms but little did they know the evil ghost that owned the house was now their problem. 

I remember the day I last walked thru the house, I called out to the ghost, “Behave yourself and don’t start up right away.” The new owner called out to me as I got into my RV, “Where ya heading Juan?” I replied, “I actually don’t know.”The truth was, I hadn’t a clue where I was going. The first night I parked the RV on the side of Petaluma Hill Road and said to myself, “What have you done?” I don’t even remember how I landed here at The Firewood Temple but here I am. When it’s time to move on, I will. This too will pass

A Real Hero…

I look up to Rob’s cousin Greg, for many years he’s been working the fire lines for Cal-Fire during the hot summer months. He’s not afraid of 100 foot high flames and tornados of wind whipped fire surrounding him. Today he came up to The Firewood Temple to do some grading for Rob and we talked about the recent fires he’s been working.

He just left the massive Sobrantes Fire outside of Big Sur after working up at the equally big Lake County Fire thirty miles north of here. Twelve hours a day he cuts fire breaks and the only time he rests is when his bulldozer is being serviced. Greg rolls down his asbestos blankets and points his machine directly into the blaze… This too will pass

18 Billion Years Away…

I got home at the usual time last night. Toonce approached me and meowed, “You’re home. I’m hungry.” I picked him up and said, “I’ll feed you but let me check out the stars.” I tried to have him look up but his tummy was growling and he couldn’t care less about the beauty of the night sky. 

Having made a special point of looking up after hearing Sandy Wood of Star Date fame tell her radio audience that the Milky Way would be visable in the night sky, I stood in awe of a faint ribbon directly above me. Toonce meowed, “Ok that’s the night. Now where is my food? Enough of this stuff.” I tried to tell him that another massive galaxy was 18 billion light years away from our Milky Way but he didn’t care. 

As soon as he was finished eating he made his way for the door. He meowed, “Open the door please. I want to enjoy the darkness and those points of light help me see better.” I replied, “I’ll join you for a few minutes.” He quickly jumped up on the hood of the car and watched me as I looked up in the night. I asked him, “Is this all Maya the grand illusion?” He meowed, “Go get some sleep. I’ll come in a bit.” This too will pass

Batten Down The Hatches…

The weather people had been saying for the past few days, “This first front of the season will bring us much needed rain and it will help put out that pesky wildfire down in Santa Cruz County.” With that being said, I quickly started to put tarps over the wood we had split and stored things that would be damaged by a heavy downpour. 

I then took off for work yesterday just as the storm clouds started to grow. As I was driving down the hill I said to myself, “That was great timing.” The first mist cleaned off the windshield and as I headed south I didn’t look forward to being forced to putting on my dirty green neon weather gear… I crossed the Richmond-San Rafeal Bridge and looked north, it looked like a summer day.  “Where were all the clouds I had come thru?” I asked myself. 

I turned on the radio just as the weather person said, “I guess it was a case of wishful thinking. The front dissolved and it has become a non-event.” Hopefully California isn’t in for another year of drought. Last year’s rain was so welcome and the overtime for once in a long time became plentiful… Oh well, this too will pass

A Fall Day…

This is truly the best time of year to be living in Sonoma County. The  white grapes have mostly all been harvested and soon the Cabernet and dark grapes will start to be picked. The previously picked fields are suddenly turning yellow and soon the tourists will head back to where they journeyed from to be here.

The bright blue morning sky of an autumn day is glorious. The heat of the day will only later kick in. Mr. Toonce enjoys laying in the tall dry grass on warm days. Maybe just maybe in his cat brain, he thinks he’s a tiger watching over his territory. Arriving home at 10pm, I look up into the sky and say, “Wow Boo,check out the stars. I know less star looking for cat food can opening!” Autumn is simply beautiful here in Sonoma Valley… This too will pass 

Wind on The Mountain 

As Rob and I drove back home last night, it seemed a bit harder to steer. Flurries of brown grape leafs would cross the road like snow. Rob was involved with his video game, so I didn’t mention to him how windy it was. At our usual car pooling point we said our good night’s and we’ll do it again tomorrow’s as we always do.

I continued up the hill towards the Firewood Temple. The same little family of deer bounded across the road at their usual spot yet something seemed different and ahead the two rabbits that had nearly met their maker under my tires darted once again across my path, a little more fluffier. A few minutes later I pulled on the property’s dirt road but there were no golden headlights to greet me! “Where is Toonce?” I parked and opened the door, that’s when I realized we were in a serious wind storm.
From under the RV, Toonce meowed out, “Private Toonce requesting to be relieved. A meal would be much appreciated.” I picked up my little guard and said, “You should have stayed inside Tooncie where it’s a bit warmer!” That’s when I noticed that I had closed the side door and he had been out with no where to hide! All night it’s been gusting and every once in a while I hear a tree snap followed by a thud… Kind of scary if you ask me. This too will pass

A Bird Calls Out…

Toonce wanted out at exactly 3am which for him is nothing unusual… He began to scratch at what’s left of the shredded screen door. I called out, “Okay Toonce. Please give me a second!” His scratching became more insistent. I called out, “Okay I’m getting up for goodness sakes!” I unlatched the door and he bounded out. He meowed his thanks. A bird in a far away tree began to squak out. 

The bird took it to the next level by really squawking. I said to Toonce, “The crickets have all gone silent and that bird is awake three hours before the sun rises, do your business and get back in here.” Toonce listened to my warning and within a few minutes he was signaling he wanted in. He jumped back in and kept looking into the darkness as if he’s waiting for something to happen.

For a moment I let my imagination run wild, the lone bird warning system was alerting everyone in the forest that a visiting mountain lion was in the area and all deer needed to be on the look out and be prepared to run. The next level was, a massive earthquake was about to take place and once again he was warning us of the impending quake. Then I brought myself back to reality, “Maybe it just a bird being a bird and that’s it, no story and no drama.” It’s 4:26 and he’s still calling out… This too will pass

Mind Games…

It was a non-eventful ride back up to The Firewood Temple last night and there to meet me was my loyal roommate. He meowed, “Feed me now please.” I quickly did what he asked because there’s nothing worse than hearing a meowing hungry cat. As soon as he had eaten he went to the door and meowed, “The crickets are out and it’s warm. I’ll be back later. I’ll scratch at the door, you let me in.”

At 4am I woke up and said to myself, “Where’s my cat. He’s usually scratching by now.” I got up and opened the door and called out softly, “Toonce! Toonce where are you?” The orchestra of crickets hadn’t missed a beat thoughout the night yet the stillness of the night was deafening. I again called out, “Toonce! Get in here please.” Foolishly for a moment thought, “A mountain lion had happened on Toonce and I’d never see him again.”

I left the door open and my mind began to come with scenarios as to Toonce’s demise. “He came up on a sleeping rattlesnake and well, he meowed out softly as the venom coursed thru his body.” I plopped a can of food in his bowl and went to lay back down thinking, “He was a good cat. What am I going to do with all those cans of cat food?” Suddenly I heard a meow and then him gulping down his food. “Where have you been Mr. Toonce?” I asked. He replied, “Out… Stop it with the games that your pain body ego has you playing. Practice what Eckhardt Tolle teaches you.” This too will pass 


After doing some intense firewood yoga this morning, I took a breather by watching a movie named “Side Effects.” It’s a Jude Law movie about a woman who suffers from depression and starts taking various anti-depression medicines prescribed by her psychiatrist. Let’s see what it she was taking,  Ablixa or was it Happidol but whatever she took got her into serious trouble when she stabs her husband to death in her sleep. 

The movie is actually quite good and it’s a real statement on drug companies always trying to market the greatest anti-depressive. As with most fictional plots, this one has a pretty good twist. In the end it all works out as does everything. Okay, maybe it doesn’t end the way we would like it to but it ends. 

One thing before I end this post: This blog should be taken with a grain of salt. Do not stop reading this blog suddenly. It may cause dry mouth, headaches, disgust, palpitations of the heart, high blood pressure. Ask your doctor whether this blog is right for you… This too will pass

My New Friend…

As I moved a small rock this morning, there he was, an elusive black scorpion Rob has warned me about. There he was napping or minding his business, I wasn’t about to get close enough to find out what he was doing. The truth is, I’m sure he thought I was a bird so he lay completely still as not draw my attention.  

My friend had a pretty impressive arched stinger. I’m sure he wanted nothing to do with me and his only defense would be to use it. Toonce walked up near where we were having our close encounter. He meowed, “I don’t go near them. Not that I’ve ever been stung but us cats just let them do their thing.”

Gently, I replaced the rock back over him and we went our ways. I turned to Toonce and said, “Well that was kind of too close.” He meowed, “Don’t worry about those black things. They’re just living their lives as we are. You need to live in the now.” This too will pass