"Life can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards."
-Soren KierkegaardBarrels of rain fell yesterday. The long needles of golden Pine mounded like sand on a incoming tide. Pine dunes.
My friend called me just before the heaviest rains started. "Hey Moki, I have your milk in the frig. I'll be here all day. You might have to back down the driveway, I've got people at my house."
"Okay, I'm writing but I'll be down to get it." This is my goat lady friend, and it's a pint of fresh milk she saves me every few days. Her driveway is a steep winding gravel and dirt road. When it rains hard it's a trip to navigate even in a Subaru. But. The milk and her company is always worth it.
Between the phone call and eventual pickup the rains she came in down pours. I wrote, and then ate lunch and drank tea. My husband came home soaking wet after a morning work party at the food bank garden. He and I chatted and I got the latest news and tattle from the local young farmer society into which Pete gets to meddle and partake. Always an interesting chapter. We're lucky to have opportunities to invest in this generation of food growers who truly commit to hard, smart and hands-on living. One of the young woman who is the luna (straw boss) for the food bank garden lives in a sweet little studio on the land with my goat lady friend. In exchange for tending the goats, including milking them at least once if not twice a day, the young luna has a great place to live and a community of very interesting people to share a kitchen and a life with.
The squall that dumped on us just after lunchtime finally shouted, "RAIN OUT!" Pete was home when I woke from a mid-day nap. I was still drowsy from dreams and muttering to myself about getting dressed and out to get the milk.
"Hey, I didn't hear you come home. I've gotta go get my milk." Pete was in the Quonset munching something while he rode the internet.
"I wanna come along."
"Okay then. That sounds good." Pete's a lot better at navigating that old gravel road. I could do it, but, he's better at it. So in the end he drove, waited while I retrieved my pint of milk. I knock on the door of my friend's house. Through the glass in the door I saw unfamiliar faces. The friends. Turns out it was a day of Craft Group. Tea cups, large and colorful lined the center of the long wooden table in the dining space. Everywhere else there was evidence of activity. A blanket, a quilt in the making maybe. A sewing machine. A cozy jumble of this and that's on a low table to the side.
A friendly woman tall and bespeckled greeted me, "You must be Moki."
"I am," I said.
"We saw your milk labeled. It was a good thing. We didn't drink it by mistake." There were two friends in the kitchen making food. The rest of the group including my friend were out for a walk between the qualls. The tall bespeckled one told me what was happening here. It was all very friendly and fun. A new something I didn't know about our goat lady's community.
Pete was content to wait, and when I told him of the goings on in the house, it was just as well. He maneuvered the Subaru around cars and trucks and pot holes as we chatted making our way into town from there. There was food for dinner to buy, movies to return to the library, and general living to enjoy. The pint of goat milk tucked into the front of the seat, and in town the rain seemed to refresh both the sidewalks and the folks on two legs.
And as a bonus to the day, my cellphone rang just as we neared the stop sign at the end of Craw Road. An 808 number. Hmmmm. That's Hawaii.
"Hello," I answered still not anticipating such a treat.
It was my son. Freshly arrived on O'ahu. I cheered, glad to know the transworld travel got them there from France.
"Are you at the Northshore?" I asked.
"No, not yet. We're at the cemetery." He was calling from his tutu lady's and tutu man's grave in Kaneohe. Ahh.... I felt my body embraced with that inimitable sense of home. The one I don't allow myself too often. It hurts to be separated, even as I live here with goat's milk, lovely friends, and a Subaru.
"Did you bring a bottle of beer, and some pie?"
"No. I'm just gonna sing a song." My heart was melting. I heard my son strum the ukulele, tuning it up.
"E kolu mea nui." He began, and I joined him. "Ma ka honua..." We sang two verses of "E Kolu Mea Nui" together and then we both sank into the silence of the meaning of that mele. The three most important things in life. But. The most important being love. I could see the Koolau mountains of my familiar. Oh boy. Breathing in, Pete said, "Feels good, ha." My son said, "Yeah." Thank you akua.
Wow, and wow.
A sample day in the life. Living it forward.