The Past Prologue and The Fulfillment Ahead

4

January 1, 2021

The year just passed has given us a few gifts, as well as having taken some treasures from us. Chief among the gifts is the ability to conduct mass meetings online. This will ease active participation in Baha’i activities, regardless of where I happen to be.

It is a poorly-kept secret that, if it be the will of God (and the creek stays within its banks), I will be back on the road, and in the air, for a fair portion of the next four years. Prescott will remain Home Base, at least for this year. There is much for me to do here, and in the Southwest at large, between now and the middle of May. The stage was set, as it were, by callings I received and followed in the 2010s.

So 2021, any larger issues notwithstanding, is looking like this:

January– The agenda set by response to the pandemic will probably find me continuing to help out in the schools on a fair number of days. Involvement with a regional sustainability group will also be a priority. Then, there is a little group that meets each Wednesday at 1 p.m. (MST), and which has my heart’s attention. I will be on the trail, looking at a couple of extensions of Black Canyon Trail, northward from the original trailhead, outside Mayer; finishing Limekiln Trail, with the Sedona segments; and spending time in Scottsdale’s McDowell Mountain Desert Preserve. There is also the homefront downsizing: Paper-shredding and discarding of unnecessary belongings will begin this month and extend into next.

February- It’s likely that COVID-19 will factor into this month as well, in terms of being asked to help out in the schools. I already have agreed to a four-day stint, in mid-month. Hiking will take me to the Hualapai Mountains, of northwest Arizona and to Picketpost Mountain, outside Superior. Ayyam-i-Ha, the Baha’i Intercalary Days, will find me preparing hand-made gifts, for the first time since I made a bird house in Grade 8. These won’t be that elaborate, but will be done carefully, and from the heart.

March- It will have been ten years, since Penny passed on, March 5. I will invite other friends to join me at graveside, on that day. This is also the month of the Baha’i Nineteen Day Fast, and although I am no longer required ot abstain from food and drink during daylight hours, having reached the age of 70, my thoughts and actions will be in support of those who are abstaining. I will also make a road trip to Texas, in the middle of the month. Hiking will include a first visit to Phoenix’s South Mountain Park.

April- The Festival of Ridvan marks the twelve days of Baha’u’llah’s preparation for His second exile-from Baghdad to Istanbul (then called Constantinople) and His Declaration of Mission, during that twelve-day period. It also ends a Five-Year Plan we have been following, and begins a twelve-month celebration of the life of ‘Abdu’l-Baha, as November will mark the Centenary of His Ascension. Much of my activity, this month, will revolve around these events. Hiking will take in the Hermit’s Rest area of the Grand Canyon’s South Rim and parts of Sycamore Canyon, which runs south of Flagstaff and east of Sedona.

May- Preparations for the summer and autumn will occupy much of this month. Hopefully, New Mexico will re-open itself to us Arizonans, and I will spend a few days at Chaco Culture Historical Park. If California is open, and safe, by then, a visit to the coast will be in order,

June- If Bellemont Baha’i School is open for in-person groups, I will devote this month to that endeavour. If not, then I will make an early drive northwest-to my soul families in Nevada and Oregon, as well as to Vancouver Island, Haida Gwai’i (The one place Penny wanted to visit together, that has not happened yet) and British Columbia’s Sunshine Coast-north of the City of Vancouver.

July- The Plan B for June will fall into this month, if Bellemont is open. Otherwise, I will head east through Canada, and visit as many family members and friends, en route to and around Boston, as have time.

August– Atlantic Canada will take up part of this month, then it’s back southward and westward, again visiting family and friends along the way.

September and October– Take care of some necessary business in Arizona, spend quality time with Texas family and then off to Europe, with Iceland a first stop. This journey will also be oriented towards the ancestral home of my mother’s family, in what is now western Poland, with other stops in Germany, Czech Republic, Croatia, Romania, northern Italy and France. A few stops in the British Isles are also possible.

November- This month will be devoted to specific community and regional celebrations, in Arizona, of Abdu’l-Baha’s life.

December- This will be whatever my family wants it to be.

These plans are what my meditations have told me, as of today. Recalling that last January, I was fully intending to do a cross-Canada journey in the summer, I will simply accomplish as much as reality on the ground allows.

May all have a Happier 2021!

The Road to 65, Mile 121: Getting In Tune

5

March 29, 2015, Jerome- After a difficult morning, largely due to my dealing with a few internal conflicts, I headed to this mountainside former mining town-turned-tourist mecca.  Jerome, as a whole, and my chosen lunch spot, Haunted Hamburger ( a bar and grill), are not the sorts of places one goes for emotional support.  Those who live here are a tough breed, so the affirmation I got from the wait staff was- “Yep, tough it out” .  I chose that route, anyway, so I found the meal enjoyable and left right after eating, as the place was way full of tourists- another reason the locals tend to be short, in the listening department.

Driving back up Mingus Mountain, I decided to explore the north peak of the mountain a bit.  A four-mile round trip hike along Woodchute Trail was what really restored my equilibrium.

SAM_4665

A restoration project, Powerline Meadow, is found at the beginning of the trail,just east of the road that makes up the first half-mile of the route.  Livestock and vehicular traffic are banned.

SAM_4666

SAM_4668

About a half-mile further, I met a couple and their two children, with an eight-week-old puppy, who had walked with them to the nearby ridge, from which there are exquisite views of Sycamore Canyon, to the northeast.

SAM_4676

SAM_4685

I wonder how much the little dog saw.  Nature seems to like togetherness, at any rate.

SAM_4670

I know what I always enjoy seeing, besides the greenery.

SAM_4683

I also find, when my chemical imbalance gets in my way, as it did once yesterday and a bit this morning, is taking a few drops of a soothing essential oil, and rub it on my neck or forehead.  The return to equilibrium is almost immediate.  It is a blend of frankincense, patchouli, Roman chamomile, sandalwood and lime oils.  I find that, the more severe the zoning-out or disconnect, the faster the blend works to bring me back to where I need to be.  I don’t mind sharing this here, as anyone else who is autistic, or someone who has OCD, panic attacks, or even mild schizophrenia, can benefit from applying this oil blend. As with our other products, there are no side effects and it does not counteract medication.

Now that day is done, I feel like, between “Haunted Hamburger’s” get-with-the-program tough love, my walk in the woods and the doses of this blend, I am ready for a busy and successful week.