I stood on the sidelines watching my daughter play soccer in the driving rain – there was a joy in the players’ running through the wet grass as they slid, as if on a summer slip-n-slide. Out of breath they went, high fiving their teammates; their friends. When a player from the other team fell hard to the ground, the player on my daughter’s team who contributed to this fall, stood there and asked if she was OK. At age nine empathy builds and play temporarily stops. We need more of this, I think.
Personally I was grateful for the rain as I always am at this time of year. After a few weeks of no-rain and some warmth I am ready for the shift to cooler days and nights and warmer clothes. Eugene is at the end of the Willamette Valley and can have long hot days with the heat hitting its peak at about 5:00 pm. When Fall does arrive, it’s a welcome relief.
This summer was filled with travel north to help my ailing father and my stepmother as they downsize their house. They had an estate sale to try to get rid of many items that were stored in their house for decades. It was quite an eye-opening process for me, filled with both sadness and the warmth of nostalgia. Nostalgia – that’s an interesting word: at one time defined as a disease with the objective of helping people afflicted with it some healing. In the 17th century, people with nostalgia might have leeches placed on them, or perhaps bully them. The term was coined by a Swiss physician, Johannes Hofer and it comes from the greek “nostos,” (homecoming) and “algos” (pain). Symptoms were said to be melancholy, loss of appetite, along with hallucinations. Now (I think anyways) we feel a measure of sadness and tend to have a frame of looking backwards. As I looked through so many items of my childhood I can say that I had a kind of hallucinatory experience of memory. At times cascading and overwhelming; often just present.
Now we move into Fall. At work students have returned, computers are being configured and classes have resumed. It’s a very lively time to be here. There’s so much growth that’s visible to me during these days.
Other brief notes of late are that my left foot and heel are injured. It is significant enough that I have had to stop running for a bit. I think I have a case of plantar fasciitis or perhaps a stress fracture. I see my doctor soon and hope to have some answers and some treatment options. I’m not too bummed out about it as it has been a very good year for me of running and I know that I will heal up and get back to it in time. Update: I saw my doctor today and had an x-ray taken. I’m awaiting results. I also have set up appointment(s) with a physical therapist.
My daily bicycle ride turns cool now, sometime the spittle of rain hitting my cheeks and others the fog in the park near my house just so far off of the ground. There are some new bike paths that were created over the summer and recently repaved roads that make this commute just that much better.
Until next time – ~ Sean
Update October 4, 2019