Walkabout: Day 7, Taking notice of the little things

October 26, 2016 ~ Wednesday

9:30a Morning Pages ~ Mendocino, CA

This walkabout/road trip is more difficult than I imagined. Trying to organize my day to accomplish what must be done leaves little time for extras. I thought I would do more hiking and exploring. I thought I would do more reading and writing. I even thought I would work through The Artist’s Way over these twelve weeks.

But by the time I figure out where I am going, drive there, and figure out where I will overnight, the day is spent. It does not help matters that the days are getting shorter. Unless I am in a legitimate campsite, I try not to draw attention to myself. That means no reading or writing after the sun goes down. Plus, with sunrise coming so late, I am getting a later start into my day.

I don’t say all of this with a complaining heart, though. I just need to reframe what this trip is about. I want to keep commitment to my morning pages, and I want to share my journey with my friends on social media. I want to be kind, to talk to people, and to be a blessing to everyone I meet. I want to enjoy the little things, like a hot cup of coffee in a ceramic mug.

I ordered said coffee this morning from Good Life Cafe, at the patio window. The server was a little short with me. I wanted to be irritated, but I caught myself. This is not about what I need or feel. Practice patience and extend kindness to all people in all situations.

The coffee was wonderful! I used a little milk this time, more for the extra calories than for the flavor. I sat in their cute outdoor nook and shared the beverage toast with Edward before he left for the airport. Justice was in my lap.

I adored Mendocino so much that I wanted to return this morning before heading to San Francisco. I met a travel writer yesterday named Robert W. Warner, who writes the site northofsf.com Gracious, older gentleman with kind eyes and a camera hanging around his neck. He features Mom and Pop shops on his site, a concept that is near and dear to my own heart.

He said hello to Justice, and she did not bark at him. He asked where I was from, and he told me I could download his travel guide for free. He covers California – north of San Francisco.

I wandered through town, teaming with local artists and hikers. There was a man painting the ocean at one of the picnic tables. Several galleries and artisan shops. I meandered through a network of trails and discovered a secluded beach. I really wanted to go walk that beach, but it was getting dark, and I needed to find my campsite. I stood on a tiny cliff in Tadasana. I felt a real sense of peace and renewal. I love this place. Thank you to Page Woodward for recommending it.

I thought I had a good campsite selected, but when I brought up the directions it was over an hour away. The road in was described as unpaved and nothing I would want to navigate in the dark. Plan B?

I searched my freecampsites.net to no avail. Then I just typed “boondocking near Mendocino, CA” into Google and found a blog that gave me exact GPS coordinates to a pullout not far from me, right on the coast with an ocean view.

I plugged the numbers into my phone and headed that way. Thirty-five minutes later, I was squared off in front on an amazing view! There was another vehicle and an RV parked in the same area, so I had company and felt safe. The description allowed eight hours again, but I parked around 6:30p and did not pull away until 8a. The other two campers were still there, and we had been joined by another RV. I had internet and cell service, and I stayed warm all night.

There was a downside, but not with the location. I was curled up in the back, snuggled down against the sleeping bags for a couple of hours. I positioned myself so I could enjoy the view as the sun disappeared. When I decided it was time to get my “bed” ready, I realized I had gotten my back out of whack.

I had significant pain as I tried to move around. I had to take every motion very slowly to avoid making it worse. Turning myself overnight was necessary but painful. Re-organizing the car this morning was the same. This really cramps my style! lol But slow is the name of the game right now, and I suppose this is just a little insurance policy from the Universe.

Time to move on, headed south.

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