Wednesday Wonders… 5 Ways We Are Changing For The Better From The Coronavirus…

My past few posts have been a bit depressing so I thought for this one I’d write about the ways I am seeing the world change for the better, due to the pandemic at hand.

Sure, we could argue till we’re blue in the face about how this all started, how governments are responding, how people are acting, but seriously, what good would arguing do?

“Love is saying ‘I feel differently’ instead of ‘You’re wrong.’” – Unknown

And as someone who loves difference of opinions because it’s the best way to learn, I am going to ignore that noise and focus instead on some good things I’ve noticed come out of the #coronavirus and well, that’s something to shine a spotlight on, isn’t it?

5 Ways we are changing for the better

We’re so damn clean.
Anyone else notice how sanitized people and things are getting? I mean, how can that be a bad thing? Hand washing and covering your mouth when you sneeze and not breathing on top of people… all wonderful traits that are getting instilled in people as they become routine.

The pause leads to thought.
In a weird way, the world is pausing. The wheels have largely stopped and because of that, what was once the norm is now anything but. We’ve been forced to find a new norm with stay-at-home orders and loss of employment among other things. But with these new limitations, we are led right to an important aspect of our life. Our HOME. If it’s your temple, you’ll take comfort in your design. But if on the flip side, you don’t like what you find, well… isn’t that in itself a gift because now, you see it as it is and can do something about it? When one is busy, it’s way too easy to ignore important things.

We’re learning what’s essential.
By definition, essential means what is absolutely necessary. And we are learning what that is! In a world filled of an abundance of distraction, eye candy and material goods, this lesson is not one to be taken for granted. It’s a gift to be able to stop, see what one really needs, and then progress from there to form a healthier state of being. And isn’t it interesting to find out what you do really need, when all bling and glitz and distraction is removed?

Gaining awareness of what teacher’s do and how grossly underpaid they are.
Full disclosure, I have no children by choice. But I am seeing those who do have children, are getting a big taste of what teachers actually do and how incredibly challenging it is to teach children. Perhaps now people will think about where state money should go (not with words, but with actual action and legislation) as the importance of this position has been elevated and revealed for all to witness. Education does not have pharmaceutical lobbyists but imagine if it did….

Letting nature breathe.
Sadly, it had to be forced upon us by a global virus, but a ray of light through this storm is the fact nature has been allowed to do as she would without our massive intervention. The environment is not infinite, despite what the 1980s/90s thought. And allowing it a chance to reset, enjoy itself without our intrusion and just breathe a sigh of relief to be allowed to do so, is perhaps the very best gift this pandemic has given us. Has given the world. And well, that’s pretty damn good.

What positive observations have you observed? #coronavirus

 

Road Tripping Day 10

Leaving D.C. & Maryland behind, we headed back on the road with a destination of Buffalo, New York – the place of my birth and early years. I will always have a special spot for this city but what’s really the best, is I still have a ton of family here and I couldn’t be more excited to spend the weekend with them all.

We arrived at the home of my aunt a little later than planned because we opted to take the scenic route through the back streets of Pennsylvania and upstate New York.

The view was utterly amazing. Green foliage was everywhere and the trees were as plentiful as they come. The weather turned a little colder as we drove through what was called the Pennsylvania Wilds. Driving through the Allegheny National Forest was a real treat and provided us with stunning landscapes and views.

And along with this beautiful scenery came some observations…

  • Southern hospitality does not extend beyond the Virginias and damn, I missed it. D.C. was were I found most people to be down right rude and impatient. One local told me tourist pedestrians are known to be “speed bumps” – and I witnessed  the truth of that. Pedestrians are moderately tolerated but word of advice, do not cross when you see an oncoming car. (I thought my Lyft driver was going to seriously run over a clueless jaywalker right there in front of the Capitol Building.
  • Gas prices jumped drastically between Maryland to Pennsylvania.
  • Dollar stores are everywhere. Literally, everywhere.
  • Road kill is sad, no matter how you look at it.
  • It’s often worth it to take the long way.
  • The leaves are just starting to change colors and the beauty of this event is magical. I wish we had it more in Southern California…
  • Taxidermy is a big business in the Pennsylvania forests.

Till tomorrow….

#roadtripping

Road Tripping Day 7

Today we left the Carolinas and made our way north to the Maryland/Washington DC area. My husband was born and raised in Baltimore and I have always wanted to see our nation’s capital so lucky for us, they’re very close to one another.

But getting there from the North/South Carolina border took us a good eight hours, with only a few stops. Traffic near the D.C. area can rival what one sees in L.A., though their freeways are not seven lanes, on both sides…

Thankfully, my love let me be the passenger so I could soak it all up without having to keep my eyes on the road (though I did try to be a second pair for him when the rain came down.)

I stared out the car window for many hours today, and with the help of some Apple music streaming, I thoroughly enjoyed the greenery that sped past as I made some more observations along the way, which I thought I’d share with you now, along with some lessons learned as well:

  • found out what a beltway is today (we don’t have them in California, right?) For those who don’t know, like yours truly, it’s a circular highway in an urban area.
  • Virginia means business when it comes to speeding. There are cops right along the freeway and every few miles, one will see a sign detailing the state’s strict speeding rules (and yet, their typical speed limit is 70mph… Catch up Los Angeles!)
  • Apple maps is hands down superior over Google Maps (though my husband would argue otherwise, hehe…)
  • Humidity can make a day of 65* feel twenty degrees warmer, no joke.
  • Rest stops aren’t as scary as I’ve made them out to be in my head. Or is that just the ones on the east coast?
  • I pee quite a bit more than I did as twenty-something, and what better time to realize that when in a car for eight hours. (TMI?)
  • Bug bites come in all shapes and sizes and they suck. Period. And I can’t stop SCRATCHING!!
  • As strange as it is, I literally cannot pronounce the word “Potomac”, not for the life of me.

 

Till tomorrow…

#roadtripping

Road Tripping Day 5

For day 5, we decided to head out to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, for a fun day in the Atlantic Ocean. We’re staying in North Carolina with my husband’s biological mother (he was adopted but has since found his birth mother and she is one of the coolest women I’ve ever met!) and the drive to Myrtle isn’t too long.

Once there, I couldn’t believe how different the Atlantic and the Pacific coastlines are from each other. Truly different.

The big difference was how WARM the water was. Anyone who has been to the Pacific Ocean can tell you that on a good day, you don’t freeze your ass off when putting your feet in. The Atlantic felt like a natural spa.

Then, the lifeguard stands. The one’s along the Pacific are towers complete with direct lines to the Coast Guard. The Atlantic. Well… look above for the picture. It’s a chair, that looks like it should be at a pool.

There is no roar of the waves since they are small and little and make you want to jump right in. Unfortunately, the rip tide was in full swing so we couldn’t go too far out (or the lifeguard would blow his whistle!)

And then the seashells! They’re everywhere and I collect them so I was a bit in heaven. Scooping some up for my own collection and the one my nephew keeps, I ended with nearly a bag of interesting looking shells and rocks that one doesn’t find easily on the west coast.

The wind offered a warm breeze as my husband and I strolled along the little boardwalk there and at that moment, I couldn’t imagine being anywhere else. It was a little slice of heaven.

In the end, I found the Atlantic coast to be more like a kitty cat compared to the lion that is the Pacific coast.

Till tomorrow….

 

#roadtripping

Road Tripping Day 2

Today, we spent the entire day with my husband’s mother and it was such a pleasure to sit and just be, present in the moment with the woman who raised the man I ended up marrying.

She is a gem and I couldn’t be any luckier to have this woman in my life. Seriously. She’s not online so this isn’t being written to score any points :)

Tonight, my husband and I stepped outside at ten at night to take a walk in the backwoods of central florida. I mean, straight up backwoods where a mile away there’s a sign to leave the bears alone.

Yeeeeeaaah.

Probably not the best idea to take a stroll under the pitch-black sky. After maybe twenty steps and we couldn’t see our hands in front of our faces, we turned back around.

But before stepping inside the house, we paused. And thank the heavens we did. I discovered something tonight…

Nature has an orchestra.

And it is unbelievable. From crickets to frogs to owls to sounds belonging to who knows what. There was a melody that sounded like music to my ears. Unbelievable.

Surreal.

Ethereal.

But before we could ponder it all, a very loud noise sounded too close for comfort, so in we went. Quickly.

But man, was that something. I always believed nature speaks if you listen but tonight I learned it sings too.

Till tomorrow…

 

#roadtripping

 

 

Spirituality

I went camping in Yosemite for three nights, four days and had a spiritual experience.

When I’m asked what religion I am, I say I’m agnostic. I don’t know if a God exists one way or another as I don’t have tangible proof of either. And I don’t presume to know what others should or should not believe in, but I do find that my religion is found in nature.

Spirituality is the state of being spiritual, and being spiritual mostly relates to religious matters of the spirit. (At least for purposes of this blog, these are the definitions I’ll be using…)

I’ve struggled all my life with how organized religions often preached love yet they’re in fact some of the most intolerant and evil-minded organizations out there, and they often believe that others must believe as they do.

I couldn’t imagine this was religion. So I shunned it. For many years. But as I got older, I began to truly question it and my search through theology and philosophy and experience led me to finding a religion that made sense to me. That I could see in front of me. That I could experience the truth of.

Nature.

Natural forces don’t care about your feelings and sorry to say, but they don’t care about your religious beliefs either. They are Cause and Effect. They are life.

Answers can be found in nature. Causality. The Food Chain. Life. Death. Family.

“The world is emblematic. Parts of speech are metaphors, because the whole of nature is a metaphor of the human mind.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson