In the last month of 2016 we honored the dead, celebrated the living, watched kids frolic in the leaves, savored several sunsets, and relaxed into a mellow Christmas with our friends.
SUNRISE ON A NEW MONTH
And just like that, we’re into another month. The sun sneaks across Fred and Reda’s bronzed lawn to light up the willow oak in our front yard. Solstice is right around the corner.
NOAH’S 11TH BIRTHDAY PARTY
Let’s face it, children’s birthday parties have a bad reputation. They’re either chaotic or boring. Except when there’s leaf pile involved. Watching kids dive into into the leaves with hilarious delirium rustles up precious memories of your own carefree childhood. And that’s just fun!
THE PEANUT GALLERY
Two of Alisa’s goats found the goings on irresistible, and surely would have joined the kids in the leaves if someone had let them out. But all Camille did was fuss over them a little and take their picture.
Both December 14 and 15 ended with a painted sky.
SANCTUARY IN THE WOODS
It gives us pleasure to visit our friends Chris and Zafer on the Farewell Trail. You can see by their burial plots that they are much loved. Chris’s grave is enveloped in colorful fabric strung with sea shells and crystals. Zafer grave is marked with a carved memorial, and four pieces of stone to mimic the flatirons of Colorado outside of Boulder where he drew his last breath.
We got to talking about flowers and Alisa said that Chris loved the scent of hyacinths and that his favorite color was purple. Camille ordered bulbs and Bob got to work with the pick. Can’t wait ’till Spring!
Meanwhile, Jason and Haruka are having a well dug on their property. The drilling rigs dominated the landscape for most of one day.
Meanwhile, this happened:
HONORING CHRIS ON HIS BIRTHDAY
Chris would have been fifty-five December 23rd. To mark the day, we placed a carved stone heart and winter flowers on his grave from Alisa’s mother, Susan and sister, Gina.
MICHAEL MEETS SPOT
Tami’s brother Michael joined us for snacks and drinks on Christmas Eve. Of course we introduced him to our zebra, Spot.
Our mascot made a lot of new friends this year. See them all at: Spot 2016
Starting things off right Bob poured brave bulls, shooters of tequila and Kahlua.
GOING AWAY PRESENTS
Haruka and Jason are packing up their lives and putting their show on the road. They have so many beautiful things from their previous travels, they decided to give some away rather than put them in storage. Arlo got a spiffy knit hat, and Camille and Bob an enigmatic Indian deity made of bronze. What a great way to remember our friends!
CHILL AS ALL GET OUT
We took turns playing crokinole and lounging in the living room, telling stories. This is the best feeling in the world, when you hang out with people you know so well, you might as well have grown up together.
We’ve been asked how our community came to be, what makes people bond and work towards common goals. We think our situation goes beyond intention and happenstance. First off, there is the land. Second there are shared values. And third, in the epicenter is this charismatic couple, Lyle and Tami, who attract people of like minds to that land. We count ourselves very lucky to be part of their world.
BOB OF THE GREEN THUMB
Bob took time out on Christmas day to tend to these cute little lettuce starts down at The Plant.
CHRISTMAS DINNER WITH HARUKA AND JASON
Perhaps our last Christmas together as Jason and Haruka prepare to embark on a great adventure starting with Guatemala. Their leaving is bittersweet. While we are very happy for them and a little jealous, we’ve been as close as siblings for eight years and will feel like a one-armed man after they are gone.
The timing of their trip reminds us of our hasty exit in 2004. People ask, “Why would you leave Maui?” Well, it was October and we could see the writing on the wall. Against all odds, the country was poised to elect the lowest common denominator for a second term. We didn’t want any part of it and so we decided to leave the country. By mid-December we had relocated to Little Corn Island off the coast of Nicaragua.
LAUGHTER IS THE BEST MEDICINE
Gotta keep smiling, that’s the best way to get through this thing called life. Haruka had a good idea to make us all laugh and it worked!
THIS IS YOUR BRAIN ON CHRISTMAS
Like all good parents, Emily and Tyler provide young Nolan with state-of-the-art developmental tools.
THIS MONTH’S QUOTES:
“Endorsed by the KKK, favored by David Duke, beloved by neo-Nazis and white supremacist publications everywhere, Trump resonated so much with white America that they elected him President of the United States.” – Shaun King, U.S. Daily News
“Them that die will be the lucky ones! – Long John Silver in Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island
“We travel for pleasure, for a door-slamming sense of “I’m outta here” for a change of air, for edification, for the big vulgar boast of being distant, for the possibility of being transformed, for the voyeuristic romance of gawping at the exotic.” – Paul Theroux in “Deep South”
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