Remember , earlier in this ‘year of ageing dangerously,’ I outlined a series of ‘mostly’ small journeys, each with its own peculiar personal meaning. Well, Trip #2 is about to commence. While the first of this 2019 travel series was the California Black Mountain birthday climb fueled by a promise of borscht and cucumber vodka at the end, this trip is all about Home/Real Home/Me and the Real Home. The old nourish-the-inner-child routine mentally; reboot the dwindling energy supply physically. To accomplish those objectives there are a few challenges: Start sleeping again for example—insomnia having struck for the first time in my life. I am imagining the cure will be breathing the pure green air thick along the birch-crowded Mississippi river banks. Then there’s my difficult relationship with food—what better place to jump-start hunger than the land of white food and, let’s face it, much of my favorite food is white: Mashed potatoes, walleye, marshmallow malts from Dairy Queen. Hard to understand how my children and grandchildren became such dedicated kale and cauliflower eaters. If I get sleeping and eating under control it’s time more than well spent; it’s time turned golden.
What about the mental, emotional, spiritual side of life? That seems a bit lackluster as well. What are the chances Minnesota is the fix for that as well? The question might be whether I can write my way out of the year’s fixation on age (accompanied by mild cases of … fear … despair … confusion)? Two weeks at my undemanding bro’s Minnesota home will surely give me the impetus to begin. To write steadily and smartly, all the while knowing I can write my book…the one over which I’ve been obsessing these last years. It was quite a number of years ago in a small bedroom in my cousin’s house in the far north of Koochiching County, Minnesota that I had my best writing success in terms of concentration and imagination coming together. I was living on California unemployment insurance, sharing the room with a thin bed, books in stacks and piles, drawers of sweatshirts and wool socks, a table-desk and my dog Max. I wrote a third or so of a book called Bitter Sanctuary. But then…life in the form of work and moving on brought those months when I was a ‘real’ writer to a halt. However the finest bits and pages from that book have found their way into my present writing project…nothing writers write is ever in vain…isn’t that the morale of this story.
Tomorrow. Up home we say. Going up home.