As much as I love to travel, it’s pretty cool when things come to me!
We live right across the road from the Austin Country Club. For the last few months we’ve been seeing lots of work going on over there, and we’ve even spied on them with binoculars from our balcony. Turns out, they were getting ready to host a PGA golf tournament!
I don’t play, but my darlin’ used too. The closest I’ve been to a nice golf course is driving along the 17 Mile Drive past Pebble Beach in CA. I admire the beauty of the courses, the skill of the players, and have a lot of respect for the game. We just recently watched “The Legend of Bagger Vance.”
The closer it got to the day of the tournament, the crazier the traffic got around our place, and with all of that buzz, we wished we could go see just a little bit of it. After all, we can walk there!
Opening day. 7:22 a.m. My phone rings. It’s a dear friend, “Hey, could you two use two tickets to the golf tournament across the street from your house? They’re for today and we can’t go. I thought of you.”
We attended a PGA golf match! I got to see the bridge I look at every day from my 3rd floor, from down on the water. We walked the path along the beautifully updated greens. And we have some souvenir glasses and some great photos, even though we were chastised for taking them.
Later on the news, we saw Tom Kite being interviewed. He welcomed everyone who’d come to visit Austin and attended the tournament. He told them to have fun, but NOT to move here because our traffic is already so bad.
We had a good laugh over that. Good thing we live close enough walk!
My Mom used to say it lovingly, perhaps even with a touch of envy. Every time I’d say I wanted to go somewhere, she’d say, “You’re just like your grandfather…a damned gypsy!”
I didn’t know him very well, since we lived in New York and he lived in St. Louis, but I still remember what he smelled like – sweat from hard work, Borax soap, and fresh tobacco.
Grandpa would sit beside me on the porch swing while he’d roll a cigarette and smoke. This was the early 1950’s. My skinny little legs stuck straight out in front of me, his long skinny legs, stretched out before him, barely moved as he rocked us. He’d talk to me, rather than at me, and he listened intently. I always felt important around him.
On one visit, Grandpa took me to the Five & Dime and bought me a toy gun and holster set just like my hero, Roy Rogers. And perhaps as an afterthought, a fancy pair of suede gloves with fringe just like Dale Evans.
He worked on the railroad, so he traveled a lot and told me stories of the places he’d been. Between my Dad buying me a Lionel train set for my first birthday, and my galavanting Grandpa, is it any surprise that I grew up to be a gypsy ?
I think not.
If my mother were still here, she’d be pleased. She always complained that I was never at home, and never alone. When I was young I never saw the attraction of either. . .of course I was busy, there were so many places to go, things to see, and people to meet.
I was a human, doing.
I have since learned the pleasure of my own company, time spent with a few close friends, and that of staying at home. And I must admit, I like this slower pace.
Part of it is the pleasure of being on my own schedule and getting to do things at My leisure. The other part is since there’s so much traffic here, I must seriously consider whether I want to go somewhere, or do something if I don’t have to.
After all, there’s always mañana.
I’ve become a human, being.
I can’t tell you how many beautiful things I have let go of, passing them on to young friends hoping they will enjoy them for as many years as I did. I often need to remind myself that I am doing this – downsizing – in order to follow my wanderlust.
Occasionally there are items I miss, but mostly it’s been great. I saved the things I use that are right-sized for a gypsy life. Especially those that have a story, like this old Crown Ware muffin tin.
Years ago, I went to stay with a dear friend outside of Santa Fe as I sorted out my life. We took long walks in the arroyo. We took that delightful trip to Ojo Caliente. And one morning I awoke to a blanket of snow enveloping everything. It seemed to be a sign to make a fresh start. I came home renewed.
While I was there, I found this tin in a thrift store and it reminded me of a cast-iron cornbread pan my maternal-grandmother had. Now this tin reminds me of my friend, and how much more enduring our friendships and memories are, than things.