I haven’t referred to a place as ‘home’ in years. It’s a misnomer to me; being ‘home’ implies being settled, and I’m not. If my home exists anywhere, it’s in my blood — a pulsing amalgamation of all experiences and loves –a warm security that leaves me free to roam, and still be “home”.
For the second time, Cambria is my residence. In an previous post, I expressed apprehension with living in a repeat zone. But this time around is different; I’m choosing to turn on and tune in to town. I’ve already tasted more flavors of the local scene in the last two weeks, than when previously living here for two years…
End June: At Painted Sky Studios, a local recording studio, there’s a CD release party for the band, Burning, Bad, and Cool. They sound kind of gospel-rock, and most of us on our feet dancin’ praises.
Tuesday, June 23: The intimate Harmony Cafe hosts a Jazz Artist Series. This evening, New York talents captivate the room.
Friday, June 28: ‘Lunch with the ladies’ from the gym. Something I haven’t done before. Not once. I accept and it’s delightful. Voracious readers all, we talk books. Turns out the author of one of those books, Timber Hawkeye, is speaking at the community center on Sunday. We’ll meet there.
Saturday, June 29: Every Saturday in summer, Stolo Vineyards has Music in the Meadow. Today Will Brennan plays the crowd. His melodies are easy like a day at the beach. His Santa Barbara Soul Music CD is for sale for five bucks. I buy one. It’s good. I’m listening to it now.
Sunday, June 30:
11:00 a.m. – Timber Hawkeye leads a discussion group of about twenty. I’m smitten with his words. An easy manner and a ready smile, he reminds us to stay present, be kind, and live in gratitude. We know these things, but practicing them is a process. And work. I buy both his books.
6:30 p.m. – Tasty Robin’s restaurant hosts a Summer in the Garden series with live music. I know Jill Knight from my last ‘residency’ here. The sound of her voice feels like velvet ribbon brushing your skin. I go. I eat. I sway.
8:30 p.m. – Cambria Pines Lodge: I read that musician, Bob Benjamin, is supposed to sound like a cross between Cat Stevens and Neil Diamond. I have to go. And I’ll be what I am, a Solitary Man. I twirl.
Thursday, July 4: Shamel Park, located at the bottom of my hill, has all-day festivities. In the late afternoon, I go to support the ladies dance group. I mingle. I bop. I lay in the sand and look up. Fireworks! Go boom.
Saturday, July 7:
5:00 – 6:30 p.m. – Timber Hawkeye speaks again, this time at a local “church”. Can’t get enough of him yet. This time, he talks about the concept of time, “Even if someone gives you a bad time, it’s still Time! Be grateful you are in the here and now and alive to experience this time on earth.” Similarly, he suggests, “No matter if the glass is half-empty or half-full, be grateful you have a glass at all!” I leave feeling tingly all over and remember that a band from Scotland, the Old Blind Dogs, are scheduled to perform in thirty minutes at a winery twenty-five miles away. I sit in my car as a decision-making process plays tug-o-war in my mind. There is the voice of excuses: “It’s too far.” “What if the band is too folksy?” “Go enjoy dinner in town and write.” On the other hand, I hear the voice of motivations: “It’s live music!” “It’s an Experience!” “Eat later.” “Just get uo and go-go!”
In our decision-making process, do we make excuses….or reason affirmations?
Old Blind Dogs VIDEO 7:00 p.m. – I stay the course of living in active-engagement mode. As I arrive to the winery, dusk is settling on endless rows of vines and the garden twinkles in de-lights. I stand in the back, toe-tapping to traditional song and melodies crafted by guitar, fiddle, pipes, and drums. The drone of the pipes takes me to days of yore and Scottish dancing; instinctively I feel a jig in my step. And giggle.
Sunday, July 7:
Chris Pelonis and Tim Hosman softly rock in the garden at Robins. My friends sitting at a table said they came to hear Tim and tell me that he is well-respected as a composer. During a break, Chris tells me he plays with Jeff Bridges and the Abiders and also works with Michael McDonald, who recently bought a house in Cambria. Have mercy, I’ll be on the lookout.
Yes, I’m spinning in a whirlwind of discovery. I am more interested in living than writing, but I reflect on these experiences, then write about them. With each outing, I learn – from others and about myself. I’m sure they’ll be an event where I might say, “Jumpin’ Jehosaphats, I wish I would have stayed away!” But so far, after each of these happenings I have said to myself, “I’m so glad I went.” And to the Universe, “Thank you.” I still appreciate (need) solo time. I’m tip-toeing to Balance.
(In “The Same but Different” post, I tell Joanna that I couldn’t yet answer her question of how it felt to be back in Cambria. Now I can answer you, Jo…. in this moment, it feels pretty good.)
“Should I stay or should I go now? If I go there will be trouble And if I stay there will be double…” – The Clash