Previously posted elsewhere Februay 28th 2014
It has been said that it is a bit unusual for a woman like me to have ever welded, even with the small level of success that I had years ago. (Tap Tap Tap, Dag Nab it! Bubble!) In fact, another camper suggested that finding any woman who had ever welded had a very low probability even when factoring up. I was contemplating that statement and was reviewing friends I have known and can really neither confirm nor deny this as an actuality. Whether or not any of my lady friends have ever welded has never come up in conversation. Though I must say there are a few I know that it would not surprise me if they have.
However, I will admit that it does seem incongruous, to say the least, that I have finally fulfilled a promise I made myself more years ago than I care to admit. It is not the actual promise so much but the circumstances in which the promise was realized that strike me as odd.
I am currently sitting outside my van at a lovely table that even sports a big umbrella. The gift of a couple who were neighbors for a time and could not take the table with them. I am typing on the first laptop I have ever owned. It is plugged into my own little solar system. Both of which, with a variety of components, are courtesy of the many different friends that I have gained since living on the road. I have just finished a tasty corn chowder that I made on my camp stove and while it was simmering, I was in my van, keeping that promise.
Hanging a Painting. I finally hung, with out string, a painting I received as a gift almost 30 years ago now. It has been tacked up with string and moved from place to place for years and it is finally up on the wall of my van. I had to laugh as I thought of the picture I was painting for my neighbors. I had borrowed a drill from another camper, who left it with me with nary a question about whether I knew how to handle it. I suspect that the knowledge that I had welded in the past, however poorly, may have contributed to the lack of concern on their part.. The fact that strikes me as so funny is that here I am, out in the desert, with my “June Cleaver gone wild” apron on, something I made last year, another promise kept, a really nice DeWalt in my hand, finally mounting a painting exactly where I wanted it to be, while lunch was simmering on my camp stove.
I looked at that crazy string now lying on the van floor that had been on that painting for so many years and I realized that I truly am quite at home out here in my new life. Many times I had opportunities to hang that painting properly, but, as always, a couple of tacks in that string were just good enough. Yet, every time I took that picture down I promised my self, all over again, that some day I really would have my own little home to hang it in. That someday it would be properly hung. That someday is today.
I created a little thing out of bits and pieces I have found or was given out here in Arizona. I am told it would be called a sculpture? It is just mine, a reminder of the beauty I have found in this life. I have also just recently written a song, the first one in years now. “Home is Where the Heart Is”. Perhaps I can record it for you later. But it speaks of the love I have for this desert land, the life I am leading, the friends I have made and the beauty I have seen.
It is funny how and where we mark milestones isn’t it? For me time has always been so elusive. Rarely remembering the dates, but the events in my life stand out so clearly. I have several posts started and the opportunity to finish them is here but this event, hanging an old painting, has usurped them all. So here I am to make note of something so very simple to most people but something so incredibly profound to me personally. I am home.
I am home.