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Both Sides of the Fence

A Tosa resident since 1991, Christine walks the dog, cooks but avoids housework, writes and reads, and enjoys the company of friends and strangers. Her job takes her around the state, learning about people's health. A Quaker (no, they don't wear blue hats or sell oatmeal or motor oil), she has been known to stand on both sides of the political and philosophic fence at the same time, which is very uncomfortable when you think about it. She writes about pretty much whatever stops in to visit her busy mind at the moment. One reader described her as "incredibly opinionated but not judgmental." That sounds like a good thing to strive for!

Simple gifts

Christmas, Gratitude, Underwood Parkway, Cranky Al's, Stone Creek

Yesterday the Christmas spirit finally came home to roost.

It started early in the day. I'd stopped for coffee and a guilt-inducing but delicious cinnamon roll at Cranky Al's. At the next table a man and woman engaged in animated discussion about Tosa, what a wonderful place it was, how many opportunities are here.

I eavesdropped shamelessly, especially when I heard "ATC" (American Transmission Company) and "greenspace."

So I barged in, introducing myself to alder Jeff Roznowski and Meg Miller of the East Tosa Alliance, inviting them to a small Solstice celebration in our neighborhood. The strip of greenspace along the Underwood Creek is in danger of being overrun by transmission lines, and the neighbors and others who want to preserve the County's "green necklace" are coming together to try to protect it.

That night, we drank hot cider, had a bonfire, made pine-coney peanut-butter-and-seed birdfeeders, sang, and walked the parkway to the giant oak that's been standing sentinel there since the Civil War. Candles in hand, we told stories about experiences each of us has had there, while two sweet tiny boys made light-sabers of the battery-operated candles they held. My own children were about that age when we started going there.

Roznowski and Miller didn't make it but I'm sure they were with us in spirit, along with many others who care about nature and this very special place in the very special community in which we live, work, play, and now and then experience wonder.

When I got home, cold but happy, two of my three "babies" were there. We talked, made popcorn the old fashioned way, and watched a Criminal Minds rerun.

I slept well, as I only do when the nest is full.

And now it's my birthday and Festivus. I stopped at Stone Creek to buy their superior coffee for my sister: it was her only Christmas request. The place was humming with people ordering whipped cream drinks with crushed peppermint stick topping. I ran into and had the chance to thank Nancy Welch for her good service to our town.

At home, a dear friend stopped by with a basket of goodies. And yes, I got the  Retro POP Handset  for my cell phone.

There's some last minute running to be done, but as far as I'm concerned, Christmas is here. It will stay about us like a snowglobe for the next couple days.

May your heart be filled with love and gratitude. And my deep thanks for sharing this time and space with me.

Even you, Townie!

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