A friend of mine who used to blog and who has now started blogging again made an open post saying that she wasn't going to guarantee any certain flavor of content or stick to a theme. In ten years my blog has always been multifaceted, and though I tried to keep this particular blog entirely for writing, featuring less ukulele posts and a once a month clusterfuck of photographs, my blog sort of lives and breathes and changes and therefore if I want to go back to the Davids-Dollish random photo at the beginning of every post or do a few photographic posts per week, I'll just do it.
The intention of keeping this particular blog mostly text was because at one point I was going to make it into a book or a series or some kind of something you can hold in your hand. I'm not likely to ever actually do that, not for many years at least, and even if I do decades from now there's nothing saying that photos can't be in it or that I can't just pick them out when they're pointless and showy. Who knows. Maybe I will outgrow the tongue-in-cheekness of We're All Friends Here and close it down to start a new chapter. Like, We're All Done Here.
I think I've sort of laid out this explanation over the last few weeks that I have done the garden posts and such. I'm finding joy in using my camera again and there's no reason not to tie it in with the other thing that makes me happy, which is writing, and because this blog is the landing spot for 85% of my writing outside of school, the pictures will end up here.
Yesterday evening I had a meeting to go to at the charter school. I brought my camera because I've opened my eyes to what a gorgeous neighborhood I live in, and though I do not have a total settling peace in my life, I do have my eyes open to the more beautiful things that are going on around me. My blinders are off and I'm not all anxietal from moving or fought up from a divorce or grossed out by gypsies.
I drove down my tiny hill of six houses. There are two houses on the street at the bottom of the hill and I can go one of two ways. One way is more conventional with 70's houses that leads to the Blvd. eventually. The other way is winding that can lead to the mountains or the orchards. But just past the two houses on the cross street below, it all pretty much looks like this.
Yucaipa is small, but not geographically. It's probably bigger than Redlands but people are dicks in Redlands. Just keeping it real.
Granted, it doesn't all look like this, and we do have a Ross and a Staples. There's a "historic uptown" area with a statue of Willie sitting on a crate of apples. I've gotta get a picture of it, it's totally him.
But this is why I like where I am. It looks like this. In the summer, just imagine it all dry and brushy. But right now it looks like this.
I liked the backdrop of the flowers and blossoming fruit trees and pulled the kids from the car. I appreciated that the red truck offset some of the girlyness of the flowery kingdom. And really, I should strive to photograph my kids more, especially since I practically stopped doing so for a year (with a few exceptions.)
Behold, my boys spring 2013.
They kept getting their clothes caught on the barbs. On purpose, mostly.
This is the proper portrait I was gunning for.
I grew up here a little bit too. I had some time in 8th and 9th grade to walk two miles to and from school through a ditch that was overgrown with irises. And these fiddleneck were probably here all this time without my knowing. I know I used to keep big fuzzy black caterpillars in jars, and that I don't see many of those little guys anymore. There was probably a lot of stuff I missed because I was wrapped up with grief that I was too damaged to handle. Kids shouldn't have so much grief.
It is awesome that they got their sleeves caught on barbed wire. That's a moment, right there.
Things change. We get tattoos. Willie has fish bones on his arm that matches one David got, and I'm pretty sure his is gone now, but I asked him what the fish bones mean to him now. "Eternal," he said.
"Well what do you mean by eternal?"
"Like living forever?"
"Well, I want my soul to live forever. Or if not that I'd at least like to be remembered forever."
There is something super eternal about a field of golden flowers under a gunmetal grey sky and I think it's just that it evokes nostalgia I didn't know existed. I would like to be remembered forever. I do not want to get any tattoos. I'd like to not have to remember it forever.
That's what I want my kids to comprehend though. There's a lot of really cool stuff to look at and you can learn a lot of things from the flowers. You have all of this now, it's right down the street, so go observe a bumblebee or get stuck on a fence. Keep a rock collection. Live forever.
If I get a moment tomorrow I should press some flowers in Victor's Grimm Fairytales book. It seems appropriate.