Son Colin Cudmore and I spent the afternoon together, starting at 11:30 AM. We drove 18 miles to McCormick Creek State Park, and walked for two hours before dinner at the Canyon Inn there.
Here’s the beautiful little falls, on a day with icicles. The creek full, and muddy, due to last night’s rain.
After a while we stopped to take a selfie of the two of us. Actually, three pics, cuz in one of them only he “looked good,” and in a second one only I “looked good.” By the time we took that third shot, where we both “look” sort of okay, we were laughing like crazy.
At the end of one of the trails we were on (we had two full hours prior to our 2 p.m. dinner slot), we happened upon the fire tower which, on my 70th birthday four years ago, I had decided to climb as a way of symbolically seeing my life “from above.” I had thought about this climb for a few weeks before my December 19th birthday, knowing that 70 would be an important milestone, and that climbing the tower was a great way to celebrate it — both the arduousness of the climb that got me to 70, and the glorious view once on top.
Well, that day, and that moment when I began that climb . . . I will simply never forget it. Because when I started up, I discovered that all the steps were iced over, and that therefore to climb the tower would be exceedingly hazardous. But I determined to do it anyway. . . for about three more steps . . when I suddenly stopped, and realized that I was being extremely foolish.
I date my new caution when assessing risks to that moment when I gave up my grand plan, and carefully stepped backwards to the ground. The experience left me shaking. Not because it was scary, but because what if I hadn’t listened to my own advice? There have been many times in the past when I did not — often with consequences that I regretted. So it’s about time I did listen to what my gut was telling me, especially in life-threatening circumstances
So, today, on our walk, I told Colin the story of that memorable day, and decided to climb the tower now, this time to the top, since there was no ice. Colin elected to sit on a bench nearby, and watch.
And take a pic of me when about 3/4 of the way up.
Afterwards, I said to him:
“This would be a great place to call in UFOs.”
“Yes it would. I have a new laser, so all we have to do is learn the protocol.”
He and I track mentally very much the same way, on many matters.
After our scrumptuous traditional dinner at the Canyon Inn, we called his brother Sean in Massachusetts, who was driving with the kids, Drew and Kiera, to a dog park with their pup Lily. Then Colin drove me home, dropped me off, and went back to his new, single digs. In honor of his changed status, I lent him Robert Bly’s potent book, “A Little Book on the Human Shadow,” which I had unearthed yesterday while continuing this year’s birthday project of thoroughly cleaning, not just my altar, but my entire room.
Tonight, I’m going to let myself be captured once again, by the new original Netflix series, “The OA.” I’ve watched the first two (of six) the last two evenings, and they are so beautifully and intensely rendered that I can’t watch more than one at a time. Highly recommended, even though I have no idea where this series is heading. Unlike, say, “House of Cards,” where you figure out pretty soon that the entire series is created from a bleakly cynical point of view. Or say, “24,” which rendered up such cruelty time after time that I realized the audience was being desensitized to torture. Once I figure something out, I’m no longer interested. So I’m glad this one still has me guessing.
Merry Christmas to all!