<$BlogRSDUrl$>

HiDeeHo

"Some calls it madness...I calls it HiDeeHo." - Cab Calloway
Permalink to my photo albums

Monday, April 05, 2004

UNSTRICKEN

I knew this GI bug wouldn't last long. It wasn't even 12 hours long. Take that, gastroenteritis!


PLEASANT FICTIONS

I forgot my membership card to check in to the upper level of the Y today, so I ended up getting my cardio outside. I went down into Vernon Marsh and entertained thoughts some might call delusional, but since I am aware they are fiction, aren't so crazy. Just entertaining.

It was a bit chilly, not even 50 degrees, but bright and sunny. The weeping willows were greening, red-flowered silver maples and silvery-gray pussy willows were abundant, and the redwing blackbirds were kang-ka-reeeee-ing their little heads off. I crossed the dry longstem grass field that slopes down to the wetlands in a kind of slippery amble, just looking and listening. The closer I got to the fens, the louder and more varied the sounds got - small bird songs, waterfowl wing beats, crane calls, and something that sounded like a duck gangbang. The water on these fens is not deep, but it stays cold for quite a long while into spring. Today it was so, and it looked like it, with that particularly frigid-looking deep blue color. A slight breeze rippled an acre of water at a time. The bleached remains of trees long since drowned stuck out at jaunty angles from the water, usually near higher points covered with reed and cattail sprouts that broke the surface. Visibility was excellent - I'd say a good 20 miles where the flatness of the ground allowed.

So I'm walking. I find myself walking very carefully, lest I disturb someone or something. Turns out the cranes, ducks, geese, mergansers, swallows, and swans weren't perturbed in the least by my presence. They went about their business, which at this time of year is still settling in to newly-claimed territory and making as much noise to each other as they possibly can. I was reveling in it.

Now those of you who know me well know I am absolutely an outside kind of person. I'd rather be be out wandering and exploring in crappy weather than inside, even doing something I enjoy. My outdoorsiness, as Josh put it, is not really exclusive to any one habitat. I can consider myself a denizen of deciduous or coniferous woods, plains or hills, boreal, temperate, subtropical, coastal or inland - it doesn't matter much. Or so I thought.

Standing attentively on the edge of a large marsh pool covered in waterfowl, watching the odd crane flap by, listening to the twittering and clanging of song birds, blinking at the sudden plop of a chill-tolerant frog, feeling the breeze off the cold water, scanning the horizon for yet more cranes or something less expected, hoping not to aggravate the notoriously territorial and aggressive swans...I realized I am absolutely bound to wetlands. Nowhere else I've ever been - not even my beloved prairies and northwoods - calls to what I may presumptuously call my soul as do marshes, bogs, swamps, deltas, lakes and rivers. This is where I started creating my fiction.

I imagine that I must be a shapechanger of some sort; some aquatic mammal like an otter, a migratory water bird like a duck, or maybe even an amphibian like a frog, who has somehow lost her ability to change back into her animal form. What did I do to deserve having that gift taken away? I'm always going to gravitate to wetlands, feel that pull to just stay, abandon my human life and go back, to strip down and enter the water or flap up, up and away from my human family and obligations...but I can't. I've forgotten how. I've even had the memory of what kind of animal I'd be erased. My parents found me somewhere in the extensive marshes of Waukesha County and that was that. It'd explain why I'm nothing like them at all deep down. I don't want to leave. I can't leave. This is where I belong...and so on.

At noon, I heard a church bell ring. That shook me out of my stasis on the bank of the pond, brought me back to fully human, no delusions, common sense, and glad I had kept my clothes on. I ran the mile back to my car, scaring up what looked and sounded like hundreds of those birds I'm so fond of, moving silently no longer. I reached my car, drove home and got back to work.

That feeling of belonging somewhere is powerful, even if it's in a place you can't realistically live. I take that with me everywhere I go. I'm driven to distraction when passing marshes and lakes by car. I want to get out and look around. I want to stop and maybe stay. I want to put my fur or feathers back on, or grow oxygen exchange skin, and settle in for a season.

But I know this is just a fiction. It's a pleasant, poignant way to district myself from the mundane business of work and real life.

Now Josh comes into play in these thoughts, too. My other boyfriends have belonged strictly in the real world - all about finding places to work, finding places to live, attempts at coparenting animals and eventually a child, social lives or lack thereof - and not at all in my fiction. Josh belongs in both worlds. He belongs in the folktale of my inner life as well as the grind of my outer life. That's something worth having.


posted by Julie Neff  # 4/05/2004 02:03:00 PM

Sunday, April 04, 2004

STRICKEN

Recall how Josh and Morgan were down with a tummy bug last weekend? Well, now a week later, I have one. It took a whole week. I don't know whether to be proud of my immune system for fighting it for a week, or demoralized because it gave in. Sadly, I haven't had close contact with anyone but those two for the duration (I don't get out around people much), so I'm fairly sure it's the same thing. I am susceptible to tummy bugs - always have been, probably always will be. But I'm tough. I can handle it. I shrug off most bugs, GI and otherwise, within a day or two, so I should be back to myself by tomorrow or Tuesday at the latest.

Heh. If there's one thing I know how to handle with aplomb, it's throwing up. Ooh, the bleak humor.

posted by Julie Neff  # 4/04/2004 09:14:00 PM

Archives

July 14, 2002   July 21, 2002   July 28, 2002   August 04, 2002   August 11, 2002   August 18, 2002   August 25, 2002   September 01, 2002   September 08, 2002   September 22, 2002   September 29, 2002   October 06, 2002   October 13, 2002   October 20, 2002   October 27, 2002   November 03, 2002   November 10, 2002   November 17, 2002   November 24, 2002   December 01, 2002   December 08, 2002   December 15, 2002   December 22, 2002   January 05, 2003   January 12, 2003   January 19, 2003   January 26, 2003   February 02, 2003   February 09, 2003   February 16, 2003   February 23, 2003   March 02, 2003   March 09, 2003   March 16, 2003   March 23, 2003   March 30, 2003   April 06, 2003   April 13, 2003   April 20, 2003   April 27, 2003   May 04, 2003   May 11, 2003   May 18, 2003   May 25, 2003   June 01, 2003   June 15, 2003   June 22, 2003   June 29, 2003   July 06, 2003   July 13, 2003   July 20, 2003   July 27, 2003   August 03, 2003   August 10, 2003   August 17, 2003   August 24, 2003   August 31, 2003   September 07, 2003   September 14, 2003   September 21, 2003   September 28, 2003   October 05, 2003   October 12, 2003   October 19, 2003   October 26, 2003   November 02, 2003   November 09, 2003   November 16, 2003   November 23, 2003   November 30, 2003   December 21, 2003   January 18, 2004   February 08, 2004   February 22, 2004   February 29, 2004   March 07, 2004   March 14, 2004   March 21, 2004   March 28, 2004   April 04, 2004   April 11, 2004   April 25, 2004   May 02, 2004   May 09, 2004   May 16, 2004   May 23, 2004   May 30, 2004   June 06, 2004   June 13, 2004   June 20, 2004   June 27, 2004   July 04, 2004   July 11, 2004   July 18, 2004   July 25, 2004   August 01, 2004   August 08, 2004   August 15, 2004   August 22, 2004   August 14, 2005   September 24, 2006  

This page is powered by Blogger. BFD.

Weblog Commenting by HaloScan.com