Here Versus the Orange Grove

I am sitting here in my den in LA.  Cordie has gotten her clean bill of health.  Ray went for his CT scan and will have his needle biopsy on Friday. Rachael is taking her sheets out of the dryer.  I can hear the television upstairs and know that Ray is watching John Oliver’s show, Last Week Tonight.

I can hear cars driving by outside and can see the light from the parking garage across the street that is the ground floor of the 14-floor condominium highrise that I look at every day.  I sometimes feel like Jimmy Stewart in the movie Rear Window since I can sit in my den and watch the goings-on of the inhabitants of several of the lower condos. I see them cooking dinner or chatting with one another, or watching television. One fellow (for some reason I’m certain it’s a guy) has such a big screen on his tv that I could watch movies from my upstairs window if I just had access to the sound. I don’t think the people are aware that I can see them. Of course, they probably can see right into my den window as well, which means we’re watching each other. That’s okay. Nice to have a sense of community even though we don’t actually know each other. We chat if something brings us all out onto the street, like an accident or an earthquake. These events prompt an outpouring and since we’re all neighbors, we pose all those questions that come with major problems: Did you see what happened? Are you okay? Neighbors helping neighbors. No different anywhere.

This is a far cry from the orange grove where the only car sound might come from far off Highway 33, which winds up the mountain to the national forest beyond; the only light, besides our Airstream lights, comes from the moon or the stars. Yes, I prefer it there for its simplicity and closeness to nature.  I feel comfortable here, feel at home here, but love the freedom of the orange grove where the doors can stay open and I am one step from outside. I have a thing about being outside, I feel better when I can walk in the open air, feel the breeze coming in from the ocean and hear the hum of bees at work.  I am, and have always been, an outdoor girl.

So, we are walking through these medical issues as one does. One foot in front of the other. But we enjoy every chance we get to slip up to the orange grove and stay in our Airstream. That’s when life feels relaxed and easy and we can hear the bees buzzing, see the birds soaring and smell the freshness of the air.

I’ll be checking back in with you again tomorrow.

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