Open Sky

December 29, 2008

I had forgotten.

I had forgotten about the warm breeze that greeted me when I walked out the door at 5.30am.  And about the sound of the gate chain being unlocked in the darkness while sleepy morning swimmers waited.  And the lights being turned on and the pool cover being dragged over the surface of the water.  I had forgotten about the comforting feeling of diving into the pool in the darkness and about the breeze touching my arms as they surfaced with each stroke.  I had forgotten what it was like to swim under a dark, open sky and to watch it turn slowly from black to a deep velvety blue.  I had forgotten about all of this.

And now I remember.

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Wild

December 18, 2008

GB took me to a Minnesota Wild game last night. I have to say, until last night I’m not sure I had heard a single Minnesotan utter an unkind word. In fact, I joked to GB that I was going to put on a workshop entitled “Get what you need: Direct Communication for Minnesotans” since the people I have met so far are so polite that for the most part they won’t even directly ask if they need something.  If you know me at all, you will know that I am not a big fan of beating around the bush, so this will definitely take some getting used to on my part.

But back to the hockey game.  I figured out last night where Minnesotans act out their aggression: in the stands at the hockey arena.  I don’t know much about hockey – I get the part about the puck in the net, I struggle with the part where they beat each other up and everyone cheers while the rest of the team and refs stand there watching.  But it was awesome to go to a live game and I totally got into it in the way that I tend to with sporting events.  Of course they lost, but that’s nothing new for the Wild lately, and I can’t hold myself responsible for that in the way that I would if they had won.  Either way, it was an exciting game that went into overtime and GB and I enjoyed every minute.

The notable thing about the game, however, was not the hockey.  It was the fans.  They were unreal.  When things were going their way, you could feel the outpouring of love for the players.  People were sending out warm fuzzy feelings like you wouldn’t believe.  The whole arena would just feel like 18,000 people in love.  If the feeling had words they would be: “Oh Wild, we love you love you love you.  You are the best hockey players in the world and we love you”.  You could  feel the dream of world peace becoming a reality.  And then in a flash, something would go wrong on the ice and everyone would start screaming at the players with a deep and profound anger that resembled the hatred of a lifelong enemy.  They would yell at the players to “SHOOT!” and then throw up their hands in disbelief when the players didn’t listen to them.  They were yelling from the depths of their angry places.  And then the Wild would do something right and we’d flash back to the loving place.  Totally amazing.  Absolutely wild.  Now I know that the team is named for the fans, not the players.

Winter Play

December 15, 2008

Well we are here in Minnesota with all of our stuff and both dogs at last. We’re staying with GB’s parents (because it’s the cool thing to do right after you get married: move in with your in-laws). They have three dogs of their own so it’s a little like living at our own special dog park.

Yesterday was the most beautiful day and GB and I took advantage of it by going skiing. It has been almost a year since my introduction to skate skiing and I was pleasantly surprised by how much my body had remembered. After weeks of stress and packing and moving and two road trips across the country, I could feel all the stress just falling away while we were skiing. Amazing what a little exercise will do for a person!

Then today it was less lovely out but I went out to the trails with my snowshoes and had an awesome snowshoe run. We had rain this morning so lots of the snow has melted but we’re getting slammed by a storm now so I’m hoping there will be a big dump of snow by morning.

Finn has been enjoying the snow but had a stressful week since today was day four of his invisible fence training. Day four is the introduction of the zapping sensation. It would be safe to say that my dog learns very quickly. He keeps glancing at the edge of the fence boundary with skepticism and disdain. I’m looking forward to him being fully trained so that he can run free with the others.
I’m headed back to the Islands in less than two weeks so GB and I are trying to maximize our time together before we part ways for what promises to be a long winter. I’m trying not to think about it too much and am focusing on all the good things that will come from my extended trip back home.