Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Sense of Wonder

I was talking with a pollock boat crew member today who reads my blog regularly and he mentioned - somewhat reprovingly - that I didn't post as often as I used to in the beginning. I emailed my brother this morning, asking how he was, and he said he wondered if I was okay, he hadn't seen me post in a couple days.

I feel bad when I don't blog, like I've let my family down, but as this little spot on the internet evolves I find myself more likely to reflect on how this place makes me feel than what I have seen or done that day. The raw data for today: I worked 11 hours, I walked with Chico along the beach for 45 minutes after work, we saw 3 sea otters 50 feet away, 10 sea lions 40 feet away, a few bald eagles, some ravens, a few other species of birds. I didn't bring my camera because it was raining. Goldfish and I talked about our days while she cooked, we ate then watched the news from the local television station. I tore apart our recumbent bike to check the hub, blogged, worked out, read some, walked the dog along the river.

A normal sounding day but the sense of wonder for me is in the details - the sea otters were eating sea urchins, cracking them open on their bellies; the sea lions periscope out of the water to get a better look at Chico while I stand on the shore and talk to them and they talk back. A pair of ravens are either trying to kill each other or very much in love - like any species, it is hard to tell the difference - as they put on an unrivaled show of fancy flying over head. Goldfish's face lights up when Chico and I walk in the door, we know we are home and loved, the air is heavy with the scent of cooking, she is preparing Bon Appetit magazine's Recipe of the Year for 2008. The meal is excellent, and she knows it, and I glance out the window at a passing crab boat in the East Channel and back at my beautiful wife, lit from within, and I forget to breathe, for far away the markets crash and the jobless march and a new President sitting on the edge of his bed puts his face in his hands and weeps for the job at hand . . . . but on this day, on this island, I take a breath and a bite of pasta, my eyes soften and I smile.

19 comments:

Frieda said...

Grand post Steve. You not only bring alive the fauna of the island, but also the love in your heart for Goldfish and Chico. Reading this blog is good for the soul. Thank you.

Loveanewidea said...

Your last paragraph is like a poem...lovely.

verybadcat said...

Beautiful post. :)I love it when I'm overwhelmed with gratitude for my daily life, just being in a place I love with people I love. You captured that feeling brilliantly.

Lori said...

Again, I am inspired and touched this morning. The way you write, tells me you are confident, loved and in a place where you are totally happy. I wish to have that happy place inside me someday. Have a wonderful day Steve and I hope it stops raining.

Bren said...

Little bro,
As always, this is a beautiful post. Now that you have Goldfish, I don't worry about you as much. I know that she will take care of you as much as you will let her. Thank you for letting us in your world when ever you find the time.
Love ya

purrduedvm said...

It is the simple things....and learning to really appreciate them. Glad you do Steve.

Elizabeth Douglas said...

Steve, that last paragraph is one reason why I love reading your blog so much. Yes, the pictures are great, the writing is clever, but the introspection, reflection, and how much you obviously value what you have is just touching.

Bloviating Zeppelin said...

In Monterey, the otters are right beneath the various wharves. I too have watched and photographed those wonderful dervishes laying on their backs, cracking shells or eating fish or octopus on their tummies. Amazing as hell to watch.

There's nothing, I repeat, nothing like living next to the ocean. I'll take that over where I live in the mountains every day. The ocean is positively mesmerizing.

BZ

Polar Bear said...

Hi,

I wanted to come out of lurking for a moment to let you know that you have awed so many people with your pictures and posts. Today's post was so good I had take a moment to say thanks.

I am a teacher from Kentucky. I stumbled across your blog a little over a year ago when looking for information about the Iditarod. (We do a big unit every year in my class.) I have enjoyed your posts, and I especially enjoy your pictures. I hope you don't mind, but I use them all of the time for my desktop wallpaper at home and at school. My students love to see them when I change, which is quite often because you have so many good pictures. My nephew has asked for some of your eagle pictures, his favorite animal. :o)

Thanks for sharing a little bit of your world with us.

Stacy

Lothian said...

That made me cry. Beautiful

Kim said...

This blog is like a balm for your soul. Steve...you take incredible pics...but you give us things to think about that we tend to forget about. Thank you.

Kelly said...

Hands down, I win "Luckiest Wife 2009". I probably hold the title for 2008 as well. You are inspiring, loving and clearly very, very talented. Chico and I are so proud of you and your blog!
Love,
Goldfish

BunnyC said...

Wonderful post today Steve! It made me tear up. It's great to read that someone is so happy in their life and is willing to share it with the world. My wish is that everyone has the happiness and love that you and Goldfish do.

pat said...

Great post Steve! ...I think you may be inspiring readers to start their own personal blogs. As always your pictures tell a story and Unalaska citizens should be proud to have someone write about their 'place' like you do. And thanks much for the gift. I now have a better 'sense of time' :)

cary said...

Sheer poetry.

Your writing is so illustrative, and this post is amazing in its transition from raw data to pure information - if you see what I mean.

This truly is a peaceful stop on the tour. Thank you for sharing.

Gigi said...

Steve, you have a beautiful way with words. Thanks for letting us see more than just your daily "raw data."

Alaska Steve said...

Thanks everyone for your kind words . . . I never really know what I'm going to post until I sit down and look at pictures I've taken in the last few days and stare at the screen for awhile. Thank you all for allowing me an outlet to post my thoughts and feelings, and thanks to those of you who blog as well, for sharing your lives with me in return. The world is a very cool place . . . .

Kym said...

Steve, I swear I posted on this but I did it with tears welling up so maybe I didn't submit it.

I can't recap what I said but your writing moved me.

mamawas said...

Awesome peak into a blessed life

Thank you
Donna