Posted tagged ‘imagination’

“I think that travel comes from some deep urge to see the world, like the urge that brings up a worm in an Irish bog to see the moon when it is full. “

June 1, 2015

I apologize for the lateness of the hour. Every Monday my neighbor and I chat. It is her way of improving her English. She is Brazilian and does speak English but is hoping to learn better pronunciation. Today her son, who is graduating from high school on Saturday, joined us, and the three of us chatted about everything including corn ice cream, a favorite in Brazil. I couldn’t imagine ice cream and vegetables being a good pairing. Her son agreed.

The day is damp and cold. My house is only 65˚ so we’re back to sweatshirt weather. It has started raining, and it is a welcomed rain. My garden needs the moisture as does my grass. My pollen-covered car could use a good cleaning and a heavy rain will do the trick.

When I was a kid, I dreamed of going to faraway places. My geography book was a wish book filled with pictures of where I would travel. I was in Rio on the top of the hill standing below the giant statue of Christ the Redeemer. I went up the Amazon on one of those long wooden boats while two tribesmen paddled. Each tribesman had a bone through his nose. I wandered down the rows of banana and cocoa trees growing on plantations. I saw the sphinx in Egypt from atop a camel. Riding in an airplane was part of my dream. Though no one I knew traveled just for pleasure, I knew for certain I would.

I once walked from my grandmother’s house in East Boston to Logan Airport. My uncle, only two years older than I, was the guide. It was a long walk, miles, but I didn’t care. We wandered the terminals, the old wooden terminals. I stood on the observation deck of one of those old terminals and watched the planes coming and going. From displays scattered around the gates I took brochures describing airline routes, sights and hotels. I watched people with their suitcases getting in lines to board planes. I was both wistful and jealous.

When I got back to my grandmother’s, my parents were livid, but I thought their anger a small price to pay for what had been a grand adventure. A few days later, I started reading the brochures and cutting out pictures. I began an album of my trip. I described the plane ride and flying into and being surrounded by clouds. The pictures of my hotel rooms had arrows pointing to my bed. All the wonderful sights we saw in the different cities were pasted on the pages and described by me in a first person account. I was traveling the world.

I filled the whole album with wishes and dreams.

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“Let us step into the night and pursue that flighty temptress, adventure.”

September 20, 2014

Being under the covers did no good. They were too skimpy and the house was too cold. I jumped out of bed, put on my slippers, my sweatshirt and my around the house pants then ran downstairs and turned on the heat. It was 62˚. I got my coffee and warmed my hands around the cup. Soon enough the house was cozy.

When I was a kid, I could make something out of nothing. Life was an adventure. A walk became a trek or a safari. The train tracks were a trip into the unknown. The woods were deep and harbored creatures which shied from humans, but we knew they were there. The old fallen tree trunk was a spaceship or even a pirate ship. A tree branch was a sword. We followed paths we’d never been on before. They were narrow and overhung with branches you had to hold and push aside. If you let go of the branch, the person behind you got whacked. That was never a good idea.

My life is still an adventure. I’ve been lucky in that way. I don’t see spaceships any more, but I have seen parts of the world I could never have imagined. I remember the house in Ecuador where Guinea pigs were running around then I found out they were a popular dish called cuy. The bus stopped in the Sierra Nevada mountains for lunch, and I had the best trout I have ever eaten. The other passengers pointed to it on the menu to make sure we ordered it. Sunsets give me pause everywhere. A starry sky is one of the most beautiful of all sights. I saw the Andes covered with snow. I saw bananas and pineapples growing. I have been to Africa.

When I was eleven, I vowed I’d see the world. I still have places to go, but I’m working on it. I love adventures.

“The world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper.”

December 8, 2012

Today is a rainy day but it’s a warm rainy day. I figure I’ll start decorating the house with Christmas. It was going to be tree day but now that’s postponed due to rain. The TV is on, unusual during the day, but Saturday is my science fiction channel movie day. The theme for today is ice and snow disasters. Right now it’s the possibility of a new ice age. All of the polar storms and snowmaggedons are leading to tonight’s wonderful new holiday movie called The 12 Disasters of Christmas, an earlier prediction than the Mayas about the end of the world. I can hardly wait for the festivities.

I know science fiction and fantasy films don’t entertain some people. I figure they, somewhere along the line, outgrew imagination and wonder. They just can’t suspend adulthood long enough to believe. Dragons aren’t real and neither are hobbits or heroes with super powers, but for some of us they are if only for a while, for the length of a book. No one will convince me that Toad doesn’t live in grand Toad Hall or that Bilbo never went on his adventure. I was with both of them. When I was really little, I was with Henny Penny when she thought the sky was falling.

I hope I never outgrow my imagination. I hope the world stays filled with wonder. The starry night sky, a clap of thunder, jagged lightning, fireflies blinking in the yard, falling snow and the sound of the wind still stop me in my tracks. I have to watch or listen, and I always smile. I just can’t help it. Each one is a gift, like some present, some treasure, opened for the first time. The other night it was the moon so bright against the dark sky. Last night it was the sound of the rain on the roof. I even like seeing my breath on a cold morning.

“Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere.”

October 14, 2011

The day is still, one of those damp days which seems to smother movement. It’s warm, not even a sweatshirt day. I heard the rain earlier this morning, but I just nestled and went back to sleep. I swear it got light for a bit, but I think the sun felt overwhelmed by all the clouds and went back inside to mull over its future.

You know I love the rain, but a succession of rainy days tends to get dreary, to make me a bit lethargic. Yesterday we did errands, including Gracie’s favorite spot, the dump, but today only the laundry awaits. Nothing exciting there. Maybe I should add dusting. Nope, that doesn’t do it either. I do have a book, but that seems too easy: lying on the couch and reading. I guess Gracie and I will venture out to see what awaits us in the world today. You never know what you’ll find.

If I were a character in a Stephen King novel, I’d find something during the venture which I, in retrospect, would wish I’d never found. It might be the store with the strange man behind the counter, a man dressed in a black suit and wearing a fedora who might even have an unlit cigar hanging out of the side of his mouth. His store is filled with what looks commonplace, but he’s really offering time or place or a wish he’d grant which I’d come to rue later, too late I might add. Festivals are common on the Cape this time of year. This weekend  I can attend a scallop festival, an apple festival or harvest day at Bray Farm. It’s that last one which has the potential of Stephen King about it. A hay ride is always part of the day, and I’m thinking of scarecrows with hellish grins who move when you’re not looking or a trail leading to a place none of us recognize. There are chickens on the farm. I mean, really, what farm doesn’t have chickens. Chickens have beaks, and when a brood of hens join forces and attacks, none of us are safe. Oops, now I’m straying into Alfred Hitchcock territory. It’s the rain. It has my brain astir. My imagination is running amok. Where is my book? Gracie, the couch is mine!

“Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life’s coming attractions.”

June 24, 2011

Chilly and damp again this morning, a gift from yesterday’s rain. It’s only 61°. I have a growing list of errands because the last two days of torrential rain dampened my energy and enthusiasm so I stayed home, both days, but at least I did get dressed yesterday. I’ll be out and about today finishing and crossing the items off my list.

Earlier I was on the deck clearing debris off the chairs, emptying water from the candles hanging from the trees and sweeping the leaves and pine needles the wind left. Later I’ll refill the oriole feeders as the rain has dissolved the grape jelly. My outside decoration lights didn’t come on last night so I went down the cellar and reset the circuit breaker. The lights came right back on but a few minutes later went right back off. I did it again. So did the lights. I left them dark. Today I’ll reset the breaker and the timer.

We saw our first firefly. I think he’s really early as they don’t usually appear until the warm nights of August, but he was quite welcomed. We watched him as he moved about the yard. Fireflys are summer magic.

My imagination is one of my favorite places. When I was little, I was so many different people: a pirate, an explorer, a cowboy riding a horse disguised as the bottom banister of the cellar stairs, an Olympic athlete racing down the hill on my bike to win a medal and different characters from some of my favorite books. As I grew older and more cynical, I lived in a real world with real problems and being an imaginary anything seemed childish. Unbeknown to me, my imagination, hanging around in the background, was fighting for its life. Luckily it survived, and I found it again. It still thrives.