In Motion: Bellingham, Poetry, San Juan Islands, Ted Talks

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Saturday, June 15, 2013

Seagulls- 1, Crows- 0

Bellingham is an interesting place to live.  If you do not agree, I recommend an early walk around the neighborhood.  Remnants of our lively nightlife are evident in the early hours.  Left overs like a cigarette butt nest of empty beer bottles near the last step of an apartment building, and used rubbers, hint to a friendly exchange.  As a writer I wonder about a scene like that.  I mean HOW does THAT happen?  Was the cheap beer and loose conversation so titillating that it climaxed into a midnight, sidewalk escapade?  Hmmmm.... how many licks does it take to get to the center of it?  We may never know.



The Walk: Part 1
This morning I noticed some clouds were sleepy, clinging to the Earth like a warm blanket.  Ground fog rests silently in the hills around my neighborhood.  

A van full of everything someone owns, even the owner.  Slumped over, fast asleep, no blanket for him, two coats of insulation.

Dew still on the grass, and the crows and seagulls are talking to each other.  Caws versus shrieks; calls of our hilltops wrestle with the sound of the sea.  Turning the corner a large black garbage bag from the baseball stadium rips open; guts of popcorn and half eaten hot dogs spill out.  Five seagulls watch guard over it.  With those regal heads and crisp beaks, like soldiers guarding a fort.

On the next corner, a cherry tree shows off its early fruit.  Yellow, blending to orange, by fall cherry red will be visually defined.

Next block over, I tip toe by another man asleep in his car.  Blue Ford Escort Wagon is his address.  Two in one morning, and just a rock toss from a homeless tent camp a few evergreens over.

Signs For Rent.  For Rent.  For Rent.

The morning birds tweet it up above me, reminding me of the proverb to be more like them.


The Walk: Part II
At the trail head two police cars mark the entrance.  What's happened, I wonder...  but continue on.

Is this trail closed?  
Well, we believe there to be a group of people held up in one of these warehouses.  We're bringing in the dogs here in a bit.  Might be better for you to walk someplace else.
Yep-

Turning around up towards the stadium.  Trekking over a silent creek.  Full of water, the surface so still you could dance on it.  More birds tweeting, reminding me again to be happy and content.



The Walk: Part III
I continue my walk. Up hill towards home, my legs appreciate the work out, blood moves, waking me up.  There's a Bike Ride for Cancer event happening this weekend.  Arrow signs point the route, matches my own, although I suppose I am walking only for myself this morning.   

As I cross the final stretch an empty box of tomatoes is sitting in the middle of a large parking lot.  It's contents smashed up around it.  Not the first time I saw this.  It takes weeks for tomatoes to disappear from blacktop.  I imagine that a troupe of Midnight Tomato Fighters meets here for a monthly la Tomatina smashing!  Do they wear team colors or is it one for all?  So many questions.  So many issues.  
Towns are complex, fun, strange, quiet, loud and beautiful.

What a walk.  What a town.













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