Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Earthquakes, guitar and hiking, oh my!

Hey everyone, I have some tidbits to share on this cold morning. First off I am wearing cranky pants this morning. I only wanted to share that so you know that even Buddhists living the dream get cranky. It will pass.

The last week or so has really been a delight. Work is getting more comfortable. I am settling in with the residents here and feeling loved. And I am hearing some really great teachings. Last Sunday the central Abbot of San Francisco Zen Center, Steve Stucky, gave the dharma talk at Green Gulch for the kids program. This usually involves some sort of brief kid-appropriate "dharma talk" (a children's story or in this case a song) then they leave and do fun stuff while we adults get serious ;-) The song he sang was about the young Buddha under the bodhi tree and how nothing could distract him. Steve asked kids for suggestions of what could be a distraction and their responses included babies, mosquitos and earthquakes. I couldn’t even recount what he talked about except that it was simple, loving and true and it ended with a song on guitar about the Lotus Sutra that almost made me cry. (I’ll include a link for the talk when it’s is posted)

Monday morning I had the day off and while I lay in my bed cozy and aware that everyone was sitting zazen, an earthquake rolled through the valley! I smiled and thought, “from the mouths of babes.” My next thoughts though, were if it was bigger my best option would be to run out of the building as fast as possible. Cloud Hall feels like it is made of toothpicks. Everyone in California knows that seismologists predict “the big one” within the next 30 years. Comparable to the quake in Japan. Being on the coast here I guess tsunamis are also a concern....

Oh well. On my day off I took a lovely hike with Austin and two friends. We had lofty goals of making it to the top of Mt. Tam but realized we were very behind schedule for that endeavor and settled on a lovely stroll through the Dipsea and Ben Johnson trails ending in Muir Woods. Amazing views and tree, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, hard boiled egg, chocolate and good conversation. Perfect.

New garden knowledge: Tulips continue to grow in the vase so within days they may be taller and falling over; quails like to eat newly planted sweet peas; bob cats like to sit on warm compost piles


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