Monday, May 19, 2014
When I rose, shortly after 5 this morning, I arose with a story to tell. I may tell that story yet, it is vivid still in my imagination. But no matter how early the morning, one task must always be attended to before any other. My four-legged charge was afoot and scampering before I could even utter, "Maxxi, do you want to go pee?".
Wonderfully disciplined about such things, Maxxi descended the steps, took care of business, ascended and dashed between my legs in the general direction of her still-warm bed before I even had my eyes fully-opened. As I secured the door behind her, I turned and took one fateful step into an icy-cold "what the hell is that?" puddle. The splatter felt on the weeks-old flooring of one's new home instills an instant air of foreboding. "WHAT THE HELL?" Did the brand-new washer, installed just hours earlier, leak on the 1st or second load? Did Maxxi have a mistake in the middle of the night (unprecedented). No, it was icy-cold.
The air conditioning unit!
I opened the door to the HVAC closet and quickly found the source. I woke Philip (not easily done at 0500) and asked that he come have a look. A moment or two later, we located and removed an air filter laden with enough ice to sink the TITANIC. I snapped a few iphotos, zapped them to our contractor and by 7am had a commitment from the unit's installer that he would be by today. All things considered, it sounded a reasonable and fortuitous resolution. If we hadn't been here, who knows what calamity would have ultimately resulted?
The day meandered on in pretty much the same vein: issue arises, issue is addressed, issue is resolved. Settling in to a new home is labor-intensive. Since I'd exhausted myself in previous days with the heavy lifting, I committed to make today about "clean up" and turned to washing dishes, linens and clothing, long in storage.
Midway through the mindlessness that is folding laundry (load #5 or 6), I happened to glance out the window. Anew, the sheer beauty of my surroundings registered. "How could I make THIS about drudgery?" But, I had. Crisis, cleaning, sorting, putting away had taken precedence over everything, even this incredibly gorgeous day and place.
Just then, I noticed a shimmering on the water's surface near our shore, bait fish were teeming near the surface. Suddenly, a glistening shape moving as fluidly as the water itself broke the surface in its unhurried turn at the buffet. One, two, three dolphins, then a fourth, no doubt the cause of the bait fish frenzy, took their lazy turn devouring their prey. They were soon joined by bown pelicans and seaguls, all drawn by the telltale disturbance. Water glistened and sprayed, the dolphins rolled and feasted, the pelicans dove and exploited the opportunity, the seagulls noisily played their role as "clean up crew".
It was a wondrous episode of NATURE, lacking only the jaunty commentary of one or other of the brothers Attenborough, viewed in magnificent real-life resolution. Spectacular! Horrific and beautiful, at the same time. Life.
Now, shortly before bed, I reflect on the walk that Philip, Maxxi and I shared by the same water, now placid in twilight. There was no sign, no evidence of the events that I witnessed earlier today. Only peace. Only calm. Only a memory, resulting from a detour.