Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Nature Calls

I work on the second floor of a building that is nestled in the midst of buildings on all sides. It is a gallery of concrete in downtown Asheville. The room that I work in is wall to wall cubicles--so many, in fact, that they don't have room for another. And so, the little place I call my own in this huge room is a desk that is sprawled across two walls and looks directly out...a window. It definitely has its own disadvantages: a large post is smack-dab behind the desk which makes things a bit awkward and limits freedom in rolling my chair around; and directly outside the window is a parking garage. But regardless, I have a glimpse of grass and flitting birds, people laughing, sunshine. It is a bit more than four walls of a cubicle.

Jace is gone to summer camp this week and so Roy and I have the week to ourselves. Of course, this is also my first week of "work" so that impedes a lot of true time together but...that's okay. We made plans for each evening that so far have been obliterated as when I get home, one of us doesn't feel like  doing whatever it was we'd planned for that particular day.

Yesterday, my sweet friend Joy told me about this Mexican restaurant that she and her family love. Unfortunately, I have this unnatural obsession for Mexican food. When Mom and Dad split up back in the day, Dad would always take me to Mexican food when I would stay with him on Wednesdays. And then when Roy and I started dating, there was this little Mexican restaurant by our school that we visited on a regular basis--and it's gone from there. No matter where we've lived, we've found a Mexican fiesta nearby. Here in Asheville our claim to fame is Papa's and Beer, but we're always up for something new. And so I called Roy around noon when I was on break to say: Hey! Joy told me about a Mexican restaurant that is her family's favorite. We should give it a try.

Of course, the underlying meaning was: Let's go this evening! But he didn't bite. He simply said, That sounds good! We'll try it on Friday evening (as that's our traditional eat-out day to celebrate the end of the work-week). I did one of those inward groans that I do when I hate being responsible...and resigned myself to making dinner at home. And that lasted until....well, until I got stuck in traffic one mile before the exit. Dead stop traffic. Eating the rear-end of the car in front of me. Heavy sighing.

And so, I pulled out my phone and sent a text (no worries--I never do this unless it's a dead-stop): Be ready when I get home.

When I finally pulled into the driveway, Drew and Ryan met me at the door as Drew is in a desperate search for a motorcycle and wants Roy's help. He found one a couple of days ago that Roy didn't approve of and he'd come over to bargain with Roy as to why it was a good deal after-all. It's beautiful actually--looks sharp and sounds tough as it's loud and obnoxious. But Roy spied too much rust covered up by fresh paint and a host of other problems and told Drew that it was going to cost him far too much money in the end to get it working. And so Roy has been searching the Internet, looking for a deal for Drew. And of course...he found one. And so,  as I walked in the door, Roy said, Here's the deal, Drew. You go look at this motorcycle with me this evening and if you don't like it, you can buy the other one you like and I'll help you fix it up.

And then Roy said...Ready?...looking at me. And off we went for Mexican food. It was, of course, delicious. Afterwards, we met Ryan at Drew at a nearby CVS where they parked their vehicle and joined us for a thirty mile drive to look at another motorcycle for Drew.

The drive was breathtaking. We wound up and down, in and out and around through mountainous terrain that left me staring in wonder. I want to live here someday, I said to Roy. He nodded in agreement.

We finally found the address. It took us awhile as it was up a steep incline--a narrow drive that wound up up up to a little plateau that housed a garage and house nestled there in the midst of the mountain.

Drew purchased the motorcycle.

And then? We headed home at sunset.

It always cracks me up when new moms, talking about their toddlers, say, "He/She just loves nature," as though it's so surprising. Their child is so unique! But the reality is, all little kids love nature. They love throwing rocks and jumping in puddles and playing outdoors. There is something about nature that brings serenity, quietude, God.

And living here in North Carolina? It's a little piece of God every day when I look out my living room window. When I am feeling stressed or experiencing too many thoughts all at once, I love to hang out on my swing and watch the cardinal who claims ownership of our bird feeder. Walking down Holcombe Cove Road--my attempt at exercise--keeps me grounded as I shake my head at looming trees and towering mountains just ahead.

The other people in my office where I work feel secretly sorry for me. I can't hide behind the walls of a cubicle but, rather, am at a desk for all to see as it is right by the door that one must use to exit the room. But in my opinion, it's the best place in the house.

It's a little piece of serenity any time I need a quick break: I can just look outside a window at a little patch of grass, a little splash of sunshine.


  1. Vonda, Thanks for sharing your view. Such an awesome perspective on attitude and life. I love reading your blogs.

  2. I know this will probably make you mad, but I literally check your blog every single day to see if you posted, and when you did I get so incredibly excited and can't wait to read it. I just happen to be a very awful commenter. But I will try to do better, being that I just blogged tonight and if you don't comment I just might die. :) Anyways, I am so glad you are liking your new job and that you get a nice window! I would want that, too! Also, I miss random trips to Papas and Beer. I could really eat an avocado burrito right now. And I could also use a face to face chat :) I MISS YOU.


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