Sunday, October 31, 2021

Attitude Adjustment

The western view from Park Point, the height of land in Mesa Verde

8,500 feet, 30 degrees and blowing a gale

I've learned a lot about myself the last five days. I am, in short, a quivering vessel of nerves. What I've attributed to being disciplined and results oriented may be something more. On the journey from anxiousness to anxiety I’m speeding north at 90mph.

I’m so anxious to get to point B that my pulse soars to 11 on scale of 1 to 10 before I hit the road. I pack my gear so quickly that I regularly forget something. I could stock a haberdashery with the garments I’ve left in hotel rooms the last fifty years. On Thursday evening when I unpacked at our guest house in Oak Creek Canyon I didn't have the power supply for my laptop. I'd left it in my hotel room in Flagstaff. Thankfully, housekeeping turned it in to the front desk and I was able to pick it up Friday morning. But it was nerve wracking and cost me two hours I can't afford to lose

Manifestations of my impatience are many. I could publish a coffee table book of the photographs I could have taken if I’d found the brake pedal. Even more times I haven’t stopped at the store that’s on my way to the buy the milk or AAA batteries that I know we need. Apparently, I’d prefer to make a special trip. The milk and battery thing actually happened Friday morning after my self-inflicted jaunt to Flagstaff. I’m not sure I’m trainable.

If recognizing your demons is half the battle, I recognize my demons.

There’s always something eating at me. I gnashed teeth for three months before I pulled the trigger on my new mirrorless camera kit, didn’t I? Would I have deserved it less if I’d bought it in the first place?

Today’s matter o the moment is getting TSA Pre-checks on our Santa Fe to LaGuardia tickets. Since I can’t see it in print I’m not confident that we’ll be in the short line that dark Wednesday morning in December. The United agent in Bangalore, don't get me started, who took our Global Entry info assures me we’re all set. I’m doubtful. And, I’ll agonize till I know.

All of this leads to an attitude adjustment that I embraced on Thursday. My life change includes the willingness to go with flow, to say yes more readily and to be less rigid with the obligatory components of my life, namely a daily Instagram post, a weekly blog and bi-monthly contribution to Shadow and Light magazine. Oh, and four hours of cardio and three of upper body work every week.

Already the new more submissive paradigm had me having a beer with lunch on the patio of the Indian Garden Store in Oak Creek Canyon on Friday. I haven’t had a midday libation since 2014. And I extended my visit to Sedona for another day simply because folks wanted me to stay till Sunday. Those adjustments were pleasurable and I felt good about them.

But the flip side is that I’m writing this stupid blog at 10:45 Sunday night. So, I didn't have Sunday in Taos to write my blog, process photographs from Mesa Verde, Hovenweep and the Navajo Nation or workout. And I didn't post to Instagram for two days, the first such failure in 15 years.

This more fluid lifestyle is going to take some getting used to. I don’t know where and how discipline and commitment will coexist with flexibility and pleasure. I haven't found the balance so far.

This stream of consciousness is brought to you by the images within, images that have nothing whatsoever to so with the text.

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