Exactly one week ago, Glenn and I were busy as bees, preparing to leave for this extended trip at first light the next morning. Since then we drove 2,000 miles over four days, explored three cities, hiked the wilds of Killington and ascended its highest peak. On this seventh day, we rested.
Honestly, how hard can simplicity be?
Planning for this trip took some work. Every possible vacation scenario was considered, formally submitted, and debated among our committee of two. Provided the case for each scenario passed muster, it was then deconstructed into its component parts, conceptualized, categorized, characterized, columnized, and finally crystallized into lists. Glorious color-coded, check-ready lists.
Those lists were indeed checked, then double-checked, and finally cross-checked. Bags and totes were packed and repacked as we culled and minimized the supplies for our journey.
“It’s so easy to overpack,” we said. How often have you returned from a trip and noticed you wore only half (or less) of what you packed? “Not this time,” we said.
To help keep the carted bulk from betraying our goal of simplification, we made little rules about how many sweaters and jacket-like coverings we were allowed (one of each). This prompted questions like, “Does this knitted hoodie qualify as a sweater or a jacket?” or “How many types of shoes should we bring?” Sigh.
In the end, we think we succeeded in bringing just the bare essentials. We’ll check again next month when we get home before we claim victory.
Simplicity is hard.
The birds and the bees
Resting, unlike simplicity, is dead easy.
It’s even easier when all the hollering children and hollering parents leave for the hollers they came from. The July Fourth holiday-goers have gone. Thank all the gods.
Today, we had the entire pool to ourselves. No music playing. No loud laughing. No gates clanking. No chairs scraping. No children splashing. No babies shrieking.
Whilst enjoying my life-long-overdue dose of just quiet, enveloped in my cozy blanket of sunshine, and reading a too-long book about simplifying one’s life, I noticed a honeybee flying from clover to clover right under my nose. She seemed quite satisfied with her little life, so I cast aside my book as I decided I could learn more from her than I would from the busybody who wrote about getting rid of things even as she asked me to buy her book.
A song sparrow weighed in, warbling his opinion from the top of a nearby gate post.
I must now interrupt this Snow White moment to confess to trolling that sweet fluffy sparrow. Yes, this is a thing one can do when one has a bird identification app that offers samples of their songs. And, yes, it is most definitely something I would do.
He’d belt out a round, then I’d push play on my digital version. The exchange went on for some time. Glenn noticed and acknowledged amusement.
If Sir David Attenborough were to create a nature rap-off, this would be the format for the bouts.
Seems male song sparrows can get downright feisty when they think there’s another dude muscling in on their turf. Tail upright, hopping and fluttering around, searching in vain for his new invisible nemesis, this sparrow was itching for a fight.
In the end my apparently bad-ass virtual interloper scared off this incensed little fellow, but only for a while. You will be comforted to know, he returned soon after mine was silenced and cheerfully continued his story.
Meanwhile, my friend the bee, flying flower to flower, unhurriedly attended to summer’s business of finding nectar and taking it home to help prepare for the eventuality of winter.
Turns out, simplicity is easy.