As I write this post, I am sitting on the deck looking out at Lake Tahoe and waiting for Charlie to return with the truck and its newly installed camper shell. After we pack our boxes into the back, we are ready to hit the road and begin our 38-hour drive to our new home in Red Lake, Ontario.
I've been thinking a lot recently about an article from the NY Times by Perry Garfinkel in which he describes the exercise he has opened every travel writing workshop with for the last three decades. For 5 minutes, he asks his students to write as many sentences as they can beginning with "Here and now I am." Garfinkel says that not only does this exercise get people over the hump of simply putting pen to paper, but it also "forces them to observe and then report on the meanderings of their minds." As most writers know, focus does not always come easy.
Garfinkel goes on to describe how "here and now I am" is the mantra that keeps him grounded as a writer; It keeps him tapped into where he is and how he feels, so as to better experience and ultimately better write about what he has encountered.
Here and now I am. Since reading that article, I can't get it out of my head, especially as I think about my feelings concerning this big move.
Here and now I am in paradise.
Here and now I am sad to think that I won't wake up to the sounds of Lake Tahoe, to the water in my backyard.
Here and now I am worried about leaving my friends. About making new ones.
Here and now I am excited and anxious to think that we are committed to living for three years in a place I have never been--in a place that is covered in snow 8 months out of the year.
Here and now I am grateful that I get to have these life experiences with the man and dog I love so dearly.
Here and now I am clinging to what's familiar, but know deep down I'm ready for what's next.
Here and now I am being summoned to put away my laptop and Tetris-style pack our life into the back of our truck. Wish me luck.