My husband took a motorcycle trip last year along the coast of California. It was a well-planned journey that had been mapped out ahead of time with his longtime riding partner - his son - but just a few days into it they had to re-route, change plans and head in new directions because of bad weather. My conversation with him at the time went like this:
Him: (in a complaining tone of voice) "We had to turn around because of bad weather and change everything we had planned for our routes!"
Me: "Yes, but those are always your favorite stories after your motorcycle trips."
Him: (without hesitation) "Yeah, you're right."
This year is a year of plans unraveled, tossed aside, flipped over and made anew. It is a year of wild ideas bursting forth and sudden, if slightly uncomfortable, open spells of time to pursue them. It is a year of in-between, of moving from one chapter to the next and one home to another. It is a year of embarking upon new adventures with a sturdy pack of well-worn tools, hard-won wisdom and my eighty-year old self saying, "Well why not?"
In the midst of this in-between and in-process, I have been spending very little time online, or on my computer at all for that matter. I don't really know why, but I guess I needed a break after the non-stop online book tour whirlwind that had me glued to my keyboard earlier this year. And I suppose that with all the changes that have transpired this year - my husband's retirement, moving, the birth of our granddaughter - my time, energy and attention have been needed for the stuff of real life. The thought of pulling away from any of what is going on directly in front of me in three dimensions to wade through the endless channels of social media - even for my own promotional purposes - simply hasn't been on my radar of priorities.
When visitors come into our home - which happens a lot - my hope is that they not only feel comfortable and welcome, but that they are surprised and delighted by small objects and compositions of beauty I create around the house. Whether it is a tiny note I leave on their pillow, a big bowl of lemons from the trees in our yard, or a vintage stack of suitcases, the top one open to reveal a treasure trove of old photos and paper ephemera from vintage and antique shops around the world, I love offering something unexpected for our friends and family to experience while they are here. And that is basically what I am doing these days online - offering smaller bits of beauty on a more regular basis and leaving it at that. I have been on the receiving end of so much kindness and generosity - notes, postcards, emails, cards and packages - that if I tried to acknowledge everyone who has sent me something this year I'd be writing this entry for the rest of the week. It is the right and good thing to take this time of limbo and spend my energy online just giving.
Behind the scenes I am happily at work on new projects to be revealed later this summer. I am babysitting my granddaughter, playing with Tilda, and currently making a lot of beds for the impending arrival of our family, coming for what will be a two-week stretch filled with fun and frolic. "Buy Bingo prizes" is one of the items on my current To Do list, and it really doesn't get much better than that.