Saturday, August 25, 2018


In Western Oregon, U.S.A., where I live, we've finally emerged  from weeks of heat and very smoky atmosphere. Last evening I watched the moon rise over the mountain to the east. Pure white,  nearly-full harvest moon, not the dull red moon we've seen through the smoky haze recently. 

The weeks of smoke raise a question: Can we earthlings maintain a normal climate? On our one and only dear planet Earth?  It's a political issue. Example: a school friend of the American Secretary of the Interior is reported to be responsible for blocking climate research!, the Guardian reports. How can we relax into happy life with such a government in place? 

But fighters for a noble cause must find ways to relax. Muhammad withdrew to the cave. Jesus spent days in the wilderness.

On Thursday, August 23, 2018, I took a bag of glass containers to a recycling bin here in my community, just a short walk away. A neighbor was at the bin when I arrived. She was separating and arranging glass into types. 

In a friendly way I asked, "Who's responsible for the bin being here?" She told me that a neighborhood volunteer committee formed to arrange for the bin and maintain it. Fantastic! Ordinary folks with hopes, dreams of helping the environment, taking action to make it so. That's a way of relaxing into happy life. 

If we recycle trash, then we relax. The activity is simple, physically easy, and available. Anywhere, everywhere. Worldwide. 

I remember Swiss recycling bins. Attractive, functional and beautiful. 


Author: Ludovic Péron
Shared under the Creative Commons Attribution - Share alike 3.0 Unported License. 

Or, relax into a weekend of good works and recreation. The Hood To Coast long distance relay race (200 miles from Mt. Hood to Pacific Ocean in Oregon, U.S.A.) was run this weekend. My daughter participated with 20,000 others. The work for greater good: the raising of funds for cancer research. Fund-raising provided a noble purpose; the race raised millions of dollars. The relaxation of running peaked in a huge beach party at the finish line on August 25, 2018.

Crowds at finish line on Pacific Ocean beach.

Lettering on van window: "agony of da feet"

Very big crowd on the beach near the finish line, town of Seaside, Oregon.

Saturday, 8/24/2018, Lucy and I traveled eighty miles round trip to get some special fruit for canning: wonderful pears from the Wonderly family farm. 

We met her brother and sister-in-law in Monmouth, Oregon, forty miles away from our home in Newberg. We visited and swapped great good stories, then transferred the box of treasured pears to our car and drove back home. The pears are so special partly because their're of high quality and just right for canning. Moreover, they're heirloom pears: the fruit of the three (human) generation old pear tree on Lucy's family's farm. Lucy's herself been canning pears from this very tree for decades. Before that, her mother and grandmother led the way. In all: a relaxing, fulfilling afternoon.

This morning I couldn't find the pears! Where are they?, I asked.

Lucy said, "They're sleeping in the guest bedroom." 😄😄😄

Here's the scene from the guest bedroom.  Ripening, relaxing a bit, back into happy normal life! I'm not a pear but I can learn from them. Ripen, relax.

Another off-the-wall idea: two weeks ago my cell phone quit working. I set it aside. A couple of days ago I removed the battery and reinstalled it. The phone started working again! Meantime, I'd relaxed into a phone-abstinence mode. I "fasted" from the phone and it relaxed me. Take an intentional  vacation from the phone. It'll relax you. You'll come back to the phone with greater gusto.

Saving the earth, savoring the fruits of favorite trees, running a race, temporary abstinence from cell phone news--such can help us keep sane and happy in a world weirdly gone haywire. Hope this spurs you to think of your own relaxation workarounds. Relax to get back to the battle for trumping the threat to democracy in your county, wherever you may live.

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