out of the gray

I feel like I could draft a tourist brochure for Arizona.  The state smells like vitality and adventure.  Everything smiles pleasantly, the vistas and the red rocks, the javelinas and the breeze.  Sedona is supernatural in its beauty, and has a way of making moods soar similarly.

I'm getting in the habit of going someplace sunny in January, and the southwest did not disappoint.  I was astounded by the desert colors, more saturated than I anticipated.  Every shade, sage and emerald and pine and moss, tangerine and salmon and crimson and rose, made the air smell green and the wind feel warm.
I feel like I could compose a rather compelling argument for leaving Ohio mid-winter, for traveling with a dear friend.  Nothing proves quite as therapeutic as poring over life’s minutiae all day long, starting with a strong, hot cup of coffee as the sun emerges and ending with a large glass of wine as light turns to dark.

Without the organizing principle of preparing meals for the kids, of cleaning up crumbs and laundering clothes, there was time to look around, to eat when our bodies were hungry instead of when our brains said it was time.  To sleep the same.  Four days of feeding a friendship, and our souls, of sitting in the sun and of climbing rocks into the sky, is powerful inoculation against grief and the gray to come.
Coffee with cream and sugar and sunshine.
Chasing the sunset.
A desert rainbow.
#cathedral rock / Where heaven might touch earth.

Home again, everything smells rather cold.  And a little bit like boys.  The snow is grimy, frozen traces lingering stained in gutters and lace-edged along lawns.  But inside there's a regular hint of growth, trails through all sorts of imaginings and the sturdy comfort of routine.  And I feel like maybe I ought to just write about that instead.


  1. Keep feeding your friendships and your soul! Sooo glad you like AZ as much as I do.

  2. It might be safer for you to write about that seeing as there is another Winter Storm Watch and those of us left behind while you were soaking in the sun may mutiny! On a happier note - I, too, am glad you've joined the love affair with Arizona, Sedona specifically. Do you think Jodi may be speaking there in the near future?