i’m high on strawberries, the biggest strawberries i’ve ever seen. i bought pounds and pounds of strawberries at the farmer’s market last night in my happy place of many years past. this morning as i hiked along the coastline in the fog, i thought about the man and the reason i know this place, thought of who we were then, who we are now. i was in excruciating chronic physical pain during the years i spent here with him. i didn’t complain. he didn’t know. even if i had complained and he had known, he wouldn’t have understood, because at that time he was a young healthy man who had never experienced chronic pain. this many years later, my body feels better and his body has humbled him with pain.
the mexican food shack with giant burritos to feed hungry surfers is still here, along with the coffee shop with a magical hidden garden behind it. i ate a burrito. i sat in the magic garden. the bookstore next door to the coffee shop is new to me, but already several years old. i ate a free cookie and bought incense and counted the titles of books i have read. i almost bought gifts for people just because i wanted to spend money to support this independent bookstore’s business, but instead i left dollar bills hidden in used books marking specific pages for random strangers to find.
i wandered along the marina, watching seals climb onto buoys. i touched every other large succulent in the front yards closest to the beach. i felt the breeze blow the sun’s heat from my face. i asked the pair of geese fishing at the edge of the ocean why they stopped at the central coast of california instead of flying farther south.
i asked myself why i came, why i’m here, besides the obvious reasons of hiking and surfing at the pacific ocean, and i waited for an answer patiently searching for precise words. i’m here to reclaim a knowing i had once and lost. i’m here to find what has been missing, the simplicity of loving easily and passionately and fearlessly.