A foulweather friend


A typical day in the Northwest consisting of spells of drizzling rain to outright downpours.  I”m walking my dog at Mt. Tabor, and I want to get  extra exercise by climbing stairs. There are some old, narrow cement stairs that lead up the hillside to the reservoir station outlook.  They are built the old-fashioned way with bits of big pebbles sticking out of the craggy sides. Thus, one would think I would be the only person interested in scaling them repeatedly, especially on a dreary, wet day.

Well, think again. I encountered a variety of  stair-stepping zealots, but one girl left an impression on me all evening. She reminded me of a cross between Pippi Longstocking and  Duchess Kate Middleton. She had a  an electric blue umbrella that had seen better days, and was wearing dark wine-colored velvet baggy trousers that only accentuated her waif-like body.  I continued to go up and down the stairs with my dog, and to my amazement, she kept up with me. I could see she was actually quite a strong climber. I asked her questions thinking she might be lonely, and after long silences, she would say just a few words. Something about her was very enigmatic and mysterious. The only thing she did say emphatically, but in a wispy Scarlett O’Hara way, is that “I have to walk every day”.

Later, when I climbed to the top for the last time, I was surprised to see her in the distance under her blue umbrella  with her dog sitting calmly at her side. She had waited for me to summit. Her body and dog were completely still as only her hand waved good-bye for just a moment. I waved back.





Where have I been all my life?


Are we on yet, Frank? Yes? Okay, here we go.

I am a few years into my lifetime, yet I feel that I am only recently having my own private Renaissance. The ‘critical mind’ has been most decidedly sequestered into the confines of a corner of my mind. Oh, baby, let freedom RAINE.

So many reasons to blog such as intellectual and emotional stimulation by others, but primarily to freely express myself while I watch from the bleachers what manifests from my long-buried psyche.

I’m a quiet person that has had very little ‘air time’ in this world of chatty people. Too shy and unsure. In grade school I had a crush on the teacher, Mr. Snyder (yes, I still remember his name and what he looked like 44 years later). The class would be talking and laughing, and I would think of something to add. Since I was too afraid to pipe up, I whispered my thoughts to my girlfriend. She would squeal with delight and, being the boisterous person that she was, repeat my comments loudly to the teacher and class. Everyone would laugh at ‘Sonja’s’ remarks! OMG. It drove me nuts, but I NEVER spoke up.

My repressed verbal self occasionally found an outlet through the written word. I used to write letters (with a pen on paper and sent through the USPS) to friends that were far away. The letters were in the form of stories with funny anecdotes. I was surprised and very pleased at the enjoyment they brought to the recipient. I also used to write skits to my boyfriend that were funny, yet revealing of my deeper feelings re the relationship. He treasured those letters. I asked him to give them back to me for safekeeping, but he would not!

So, all that to say, I am very excited to have an outlet that feels better than a journal with no pressure to be anything in particular. Even if no one ever reads my blog, it ‘feels’ like I’m finally getting some air time. I believe the process will be very cathartic as I explore many things: discover my authentic self that I have neglected for so long, track my progress with my new photography hobby, and engage in dialog with others re this crazy world we call home.

I feel like a kid again — I’m so excited about the myriad possibilities that might evolve from this venture. I am hereby officially released from critical mind and on a mission to enjoy the  “Renaissance Raine”.