Fall makes me think of travel, of road trips. It would seem more seasonal to think of apples and soup and warm sweaters? But such is the deep groove of habit, carved like a grinning pumpkin face into the soft flesh of memory. We have traveled often in the fall, before the winter rains set in and the inward tug of winter gathers us in front of the fire. So it was the tantalizing call of warm breezes and restless feet that urged us to pack a little bag, fill the car with gas and head off; Pema dispensing Dharma talks on "The Way of the Bodhisattva"from the CD player, interrupted occasionally by a little shakuhachi flute or some David Whyte poetry as we covered the miles. The windows brimmed with wild ocean in Oregon and parched hills in California. We stopped to walk beaches and explore towns, sampling local kombucha and freshly roasted coffee. Fine weather followed us all the way.
We took on the practice of the open road, just going where it seemed good to go, chatting with who seemed to appear, marvelling at the variety of sentient beings and beautiful vistas that fill this amazing planet. In this post I will impersonate one of those little gnomes that poses in various locations.
|Here I am at Cannon Beach on the Oregon Coast. The wind has blown my gnome hat off!|
|More Cannon Beach sans gnomes|
|open road, gnomes busy navigating and driving|
|large footed gnomes have wandered off into the fog|
|Many gnomes cross The Golden Gate every day, but quiet on Sunday mornings as gnomes sleep in|
|Gnomes are allowed out after dark, but must be careful not to roll down hill, after long day of walking across the city.|
|Lovely Buddha in the Japanese Garden. Gnomes (and escorts) are allowed in for free from 9 am-10 am!|
|Gnomes checking for trolls under bridge|
|Great find, Diego Rivera fresco at old mission, now an art school. Gnomes can buy water here before descending into North Beach where pizza is the food of choice.|
|Gnomes report that Jack Kerouc & Allan Ginsberg are probably hiding in the basement. Gnome rule: must purchase at least one book of poetry before leaving the book store.|
|Musicians put on impromptu concert to honour gnome passing by|