A dark, damp day

The alcove

The alcove

The lotus is the most beautiful flower, who petals open one by one.  But it will only grow in the mud.  In order to grow and gain wisdom, first you must have the mud — the obstacles of life and its suffering. …  The mud speaks of a common ground that humans share, no matter what our stations in life.  …  Whether we have it all or we have nothing, we are all faced with the same obstacles:  sadness, loss, illness, dying and death.  If we are to strive as human beings to gain more wisdom, more kindness and more compassion, we must have the intention to grow as a lotus and open each petal one by one.

~ Goldie Hawn

Raindrops in the white pine

Raindrops in the white pine

I tried.  Honestly.  I did.  I spent most of the day yesterday in my jammies, wrapped in a blanket by the fireplace, spaced out with illness.  I let the television ramble on in the background for a while until I couldn’t stand the noise of it anymore.  I tried to read, but couldn’t focus.  I napped.  And slept.  And appreciated the attempts by the cats and M to make me feel better.  I sipped on soup and tea.  I took a long soak in the disco tub, reveling in the steam, the warmth, and the sinus-clearing scent of the bath salts.  I went to bed early and slept late.

December 2012 003a

I’m not sure how people manage it, lying about all day.  My body doesn’t seem to like it.  Not at all.  My back and hips and legs become stiff, and begin to hurt from the lack of movement.  I couldn’t do it another day.  I had to get up and move.

December 2012 005a

I took a slow walk around the pond.  We had rain overnight and it’s overcast today.  Dark and moist.  The fresh, humid air and the exercise helped, although I don’t think I’ll be up and about for much longer.  It’s still morning as I put this post together.  I bet I’m back in bed or lounging by the fireplace within the hour, if not sooner.

December 2012 006a

I can’t remember the last time I felt this awful.  Everything hurts, even the hair on my head.  My throat feels raw, my head is stuffed up, and well, I’m just plain miserable.

December 2012 007a

Still, I’m glad I went out for a short walk if for no other reason than to admire the raindrops on the pine needles and to listen to the birds who appear to be enjoying this dark, damp, warm day.  Perhaps they’ve heard the news, that winter is coming, and they decided to get out and enjoy the warmth before the storm.

The elusive male cardinal decides to pose

The elusive male cardinal decides to pose

The birds were quite sociable, flying around just a tree or two ahead of me throughout my walk.  I saw at least three woodpeckers.  The male cardinal pretended not to notice me.  Or maybe he was busy watching his mate who wasn’t too far off.

December 2012 040a

Now that I look at that last photo again, I can see he has a twig in his mouth.  Maybe he’s shoring up the homestead for the winter storm that’s been predicted for this weekend.



Illness is the night side of life, a more onerous citizenship.  Everyone who is born holds dual citizenship, in the kingdom of the well and in the kingdom of the sick.  Although we all prefer to use the good passport, sooner or later each of us is obliged, at least for a spell, to identify ourselves as citizens of that other place.

~ Susan Sontag

December 2012 025a

I think that’s about all I have in me for today.  Thank you all so much for your well-wishes which I am positive are making me better even if I don’t quite feel it yet.  I promise to spend the afternoon resting and recuperating.

December 2012 026a

Severe isn’t a word normally associated with a cold.  Severe is for weather or third-degree burns… No one responds ‘severe’ when someone ask how her cold is.

In fact, nine out of ten Americans respond to ‘How’s your cold’ with ‘It sucks.”  So there should be an It Sucks cold formula.

~ Celia Rivenbark


32 Comments on “A dark, damp day”

  1. Gracie says:

    I’m sorry to hear that you’re still sick, Robin. Hope you feel better very soon.
    Your photos are still amazing!

  2. hannekekoop says:

    Your photos are wonderful. I hope you’ll be feeling better soon.

  3. In the midst of your illness you still find beauty and reason. 🙂 I hope you feel much better, very soon. Absolutely love these pictures.

  4. Deborah Lee says:

    I’m not feeling so great myself this holiday season – with a leg infection – but I’m finding all kinds of good things to focus on. I’m learning a lot more about alternative treatments. And the most gratifying thing was that when I called for help, everyone responded.

    • Robin says:

      Sorry to hear you haven’t been feeling well, Deborah. I hope the infection clears up soon. We don’t often think about the positives of illness, but they are there. 🙂

  5. seeker says:

    Like you, I appreciate where the Lotus blooms. The pictures are exquisite especially the drops of water on each pine.

  6. I agree with you…it’s good to get up and outside for a bit of time…and goodness…what lovely photos you took…now that has to be healing for the spirit and hopefully for the body too.

  7. Sorry you are feeling so bad, Robin. It’s good that you’re pampering yourself, and that M is also taking good care of you! Hope you feel better soon. Only 5 days till Christmas!

  8. Mimo.ň says:

    Amazing, how beatiful photographs you can take in such a dark day… absolutely love them….

  9. aFrankAngle says:

    Ah ha … you were well enough to take a walk, thus a good sign. Keep taking care of yourself and thanks for capturing droplets.

  10. Some lovely shots there, get well soon x

  11. Phil Lanoue says:

    Super mood, lighting, color, and feeling to these. Well done!

  12. The last one is my favorite of those beautiful photos. Just lovely.

  13. Feel better; I would never have guessed you were sick from seeing your lovely photos 🙂

  14. Amazing imagery to go with your feelings. Our bodies seem to know more than our minds what we really need. For you it was a walk in woods to clear yourself before heeding a much need rest. Hope you are feeling better as the first lash of winter descends on your area heading to mine.

  15. As always, your photos tell a great story. Shoring up for the storm yesterday, a flock of geese passed overhead, honking, honking, honking…”Fly for your lives. A storm is coming.” We only got about an inch. HOw about you?

    Sorry to hear you are so sick. It is otherworldly, isn’t it?

    • Robin says:

      Thank you, Adela. 🙂 We’ve had about a foot of snow so far with more coming tomorrow. I hear there is a warm-up in the works next week so it may not last.

  16. Sallyann says:

    Beautiful raindrops on the pine needles, the damp wasn’t so dark after all. 🙂

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