Difficult or Extreme?

“That was the thing about the world:
It wasn’t that things were harder
Than you thought they
Were going to be,
It was that they were hard
In ways that you didn’t expect.”
Lev Grossman, The Magician King

The weather could not be more perfect in the Verde Valley, so we are out the door this weekend to explore one of the many ‘new to us’ trails in the Sedona area. While we were living somewhere else, mountain biking got really popular in Sedona, as well as an increase in  people hiking at all levels of ability.

We were surprised to share Mescal Trail  with lots of fellow hikers and bikers, many of which are in the midst of their metaphysical  Red Rock Sedona Weekend Transformational  Experience, and want/need  to chat about it. This hike really does have some spectacular views and vistas and catching a dose of Red Rock Fever while out and about on Mescal  is understandable. I envision USFS ‘Social Engagement in Progress’ signage soon.It was fun for awhile  to pause and chat, and oh the young people  mountain biking are just delightful, full of vitality, good manners,  and optimism.What could be better for mountain bikers than the Sedona Mountain Bike Festival,  currently in full swing!

All the pauses for conversation left us not covering the distance we desired, we hadn’t brought provisions for the party, and  concerned for how many folks are hiking without water, barefoot, or watching their phone screens and not their next step.

The high desert world can be a harsh and unforgiving environment, while simultaneously providing you an afternoon of gorgeousness and delight. Turned ankles, cactus spines, and  Dehydration surprise,  disrupt,  and can certainly make a Holiday or Saturday Afternoon difficult in unexpected ways, deadly at the extreme.  The Red Rocks can be tricksters, and as the above quote so clearly says:  ‘ hard in ways that you did not expect.’ .., though I would never be able to convince the two barefoot men grinning ear to ear and having ‘The best day of our lives!’

Some of my favorite photos  of the days outing:

Todays Music: Carlos Santana – Smooth

Peace and Blessings To You This Day.

To Be Able To Answer Promptly

“I was gratified
To be able to answer promptly,
And I did.
I said I didn’t know.”
Mark Twain

Oh the joy  of perusing the seed catalogs,  windowsills full of just emerging seed experiments, and the promise of the Spring Equinox for the Northern Hemisphere, just a few weeks away, while those in the Southern await their Autumn. And while I have a firm grasp on the shape and tilt  of the earth, I  inhabit a place of realization that there is so much I do not know about so many things.

It’s a good space to be in. ‘To be able to answer promptly’  as Mr Twain said in the above quote is to be clear to myself about how much knowledge, information, and experience I bring to answering a question or in the midst of any given days activities. I can avoid many a miss-steps, mischief, and misunderstanding with knowing and accepting what I do not know.

My knowledge of how my own US Government works/functions within the   the United States and Globally is fairly shoddy. That lack has been a very real liability smack down lately. Whether in conversation, activism, or clear contemplation of the events, I often find myself clueless. These are Full Tilt Boogie times in the United States and Globally right now and I want to have those conversations, be part of the increasing civil activism, and think deeply and long with factual information on what is unfolding and the impact it will have.

Come April 24, 2017 I am going to get some basic facts about how my Government is suppose to function.  Harvard X is offering a class on American Government through Ed X, one of platforms for MOOC (Massive Online Open Classrooms).  Taught by Professor Thomas E. Patterson of Harvard University ,who I am confident knows more than I do, and generously offers to share what he knows free of charge through this just miracle of technology.

Meanwhile, Taking a class through Coursera called Understanding Plants: What A Plant Knows. Offered by the University of Tel Aviv and taught by Professor Daniel Chamovitz, Ph.D., Dean, George S. Wise Faculty of Life Sciences. Filling the windowsills as I dabble with experiments.  A perfect class for the spring.

Can’t say enough good things about (Massive Online Open Classrooms.) They really have been a joy for me, enabling me to have access to areas of study, offered  by excellent schools around the world, by smart Professors, and shared with a global classroom, where the perspectives and ideas are as varied as the demographics, cultures, and current events taking place in individual student lives. It’s a real hoot, and I am so grateful. It really did change how I do old.

Today’s Music: Leeshore -Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young.

Peace and blessings to you this fine day.

The Bamboozle Has Captured Us

“One of the saddest lessons of history is this:
If we’ve been bamboozled long enough,
We tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle.
We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth.
The bamboozle has captured us.
It’s simply too painful to acknowledge,
Even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken
Once you give a charlatan power over you,
You almost never get it back.”
Carl Sagan, The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark

Some bamboozles are more innocent than others. If you chose to believe from  seeing my  photos and reading my words  that the Oracle Ravens in the streets of Sedona Arizona are quoting Carl Sagan and channeling Sam Irvin before transcending, illuminating, levitating and then bi-locating to Washington to form an Independent, Bi-Partisan  Investigative Committee to sort out the 2016 Election.  Well, That’s a fairly innocent bamboozle. The bamboozle behind the need for the investigation, not so much.

Peace and blessings to each and everyone this new day before us.

Today’s Music: Ohio Neil Young at Massey Hall

Amid The Noise And Haste

Go placidly amid
The noise and haste,
And remember what peace
There may be in silence.”
Max Ehrman- ‘Desiderata’

 

Peace and Blessings to each and every one.

Today’s Music: Further To Fly – Almaz Yebio Group from the Alblum

“Down To Earth”

Snow Day In Sedona

Corruption is like a ball of snow,
Once it’s set a rolling
It must increase.
Charles Caleb Colton

 

 

 

Todays Reads:

Executive Order Protecting Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry To United States

Number Of People Affected by Trumps Travel Ban

Resistance To Trump Travel Ban

Madeleine Albright (former US Secretary of State) :  On Trump Executive Travel Ban

Todays Music:  Pete Seegar- If I Had A Hammer

 

Walking With The Universe

“She made broken look beautiful
and strong look invincible.
She walked with the Universe
on her shoulders and made it
look like a pair of wings.”
Ariana Danc

Surprised, thrilled, and optimism restored  in response to The January 21, 2017 Global Women’s March. The strength, beauty, and gracefulness of this beloved  statute in Sorrento Italy speaks to me and for me.

Today’s Ideas for Activism are focused on Literacy.

Local: Literacy Volunteers

US: Reading is Fundamental

Global: International Library Association – Book Donations

Todays Read:  1984 -George Orwell (free online full text edition)

Today’s Music: Aretha Franklin & the Eurythmics -Sisters  Are Doin It For Themselves

Today’s, Just Say No To: Alternative Facts

In response to WordPress Photo Challenges: Graceful

A safe, peaceful,  and most excellent week to everyone.