Decided to play a round of disc golf with a couple friends. Nothing competitive or anything to that nature. We were just getting some indirect exercise, sharing company, enjoying the weather, scenery, and making memories. And memories we did make. I also utilized an urban tumble weed (plastic shopping bag) instead of my usual bag. It was blowing around the parking lot so why not put it tto use? It just needed a ride to the trash can and I heppend to be going that way.
Anyway, we were on hole 12 when an errant shot ended up twenty feet off the fairway in the tall, overgrown honeysuckle. This stuff is dense as a jungle and eats discs with nondiscriminatory judgement. It’s pretty thick. Luckily my buddy found his disc rather quickly and had somewhat of a line to the fairway. After taking his shot he beckoned me over. I thought maybe he had found a flower or was curious about a wild edible, but he wasn’t. He had found an old, empty beer can, picked it up, and asked if he could put it in my bag. Talk about a hearts smile!!!! To see a seed bear fruit, even if only a few, is beyond rewarding. I thanked him with multiple high fives, and a smile that couldn’t disguise itself. We can all make a difference!
I spent this entire spring season looking for morel mushrooms. It was a challenging season to say the least, but it was rewarding and productive. I’m also into flowers, especially spring flowers, so it didn’t take much persuasion to get me out. Even on the days many would consider dismal I found excitement at the thought of going into the woods. I watched as the spring beauties made their debut. I was also around for the venomous abomination we call, tick. I plucked my fair share during my search for the elusive shroom. I recall one time in particular where I found seven on me at once. That one was a little unnerving. I know looking for morels this early in the sason is a little ambitious, but why not. You never know when one might jump up earlier than anticipated; I wanted to be ready. Nonetheless, the spring beauties came and went in a colorful dance and I was no more richer in the fungi category.
As the rest of the spring flowers emerged, e.g., cutleaf toothwart, bluebells, violets, anemone, hepatica, toadshade trillium, and large flower trillium, I found it difficult to stay focused. My sensory perception was locked in overdrive with all the fragrant colors. However, when the mayapples made an appearance I doubled my effort. It’s been my experience that when these shady canopies emerge the shrooms will come. I’ve always found it fascinating that the flower of the may apple is under it’s leaf structure. It also must have two leaves or it will not have a bloom. I spent every free second traveling to places where I might have the opportunity to find them, but I found no success.
Then, one evening I was out throwing a round of disc golf when I ran into a friend from many moons ago. It had been a while since we had talked or seen each other, but our relationship was exactly how it left off. Peaceful, fun, and kind. I know, right! Anyway, he noticed me looking towards the ground more than concentrating on disc golf and asked if I was looking for the elusive. I let out a sigh and informed him of my plight. I had promised myself I would do all I could to make sure my grandmother had some morels. She’s not in the best shape and I’m not sure she’ll be around for another season of them. (She’s currently on chemo and struggling to keep her weight and strength. Not to mention she took a fall recently from her blood pressure dropping. That however, is a tale for another day.) I hadn’t informed my grandmother as I didn’t want to get her hopes up and not deliver. After our chat about it he told me he would keep his eyes out for some.
Three days later I received a message from my friend, Greg Randolph. He simply asked, “you still wanting some mushrooms for your grandmother?” With overwhelming joy I replied, “Yes, please “and provided an address. The next day my grandmother was gifted 11 morels. Wouldn’t you know it, she soaked them in salt water that evening then awoke at 4:30 in the morning to eat them. I would say she was more than excited.
As for my search. I never did give up. I kept looking and looking and looking, but never found a one. Complete goose egg, i.e., zero. I did realize, at times, it requires a group effort to arrive at success. Thank you for the TBM, Greg. You’re truly a beautiful human BEING!
Sometimes the impression we have on others may be unseen to ourselves, but that doesn’t mean we aren’t succeeding.
I recently took a temporary job so I could add some financial security to my lifestyle. Granted this security is only a short term concept and I will, in the future, need to procure employment. Nonetheless this job has been no less than rewarding. On this particular job I was provided an opportunity as a shipping/receiving clerk located in the rural countryside. How beautiful for me, right? Not only is it tucked away from the hustle and bustle of the city, but it’s also small enough that I only worked with a handful of people. I also listened to birds talking to each other on the daily.
Every day I would come to work with a smile and good cheer as there was truly nothing I could find discontent with. I was always treated equitably, kind, and with patient understanding. Who wouldn’t enjoy those gifts? The department only had two bay doors (these are doors trucks load and unload), one for vans and one for the larger, 18 wheelers; rarely where they occupied simultaneously. I should mention that I am working in the power sports section of the facility, i.e., side by sides, four wheelers, and motorcycles. With that being said, I was fortunate to see some pretty neat concepts come through the doors. I cannot talk or discuss them, but I can say they were revolutionary, packed with options, and catchy to the eye. As I was watching one of these vehicles roam freely around the lot I caught myself thinking, “I bet that would be fun to ride in”. At that moment I made the choice to try and bring this thought to fruition. So I did what most in my position would do, I asked. It wasn’t difficult to pose or structure the question and at worst they would say no. I wouldn’t be out anything and I would have tried. I also find more peace when I try rather than dismiss or assume something can’t be done. I was given the response of, “I’ll see what we can do” upon my initial inquiry, I accepted it with grace. After about a week of not hearing anything I asked a follow up question. Not exactly my initial question, but one similar to show I was still interested and sincere in my request. At this the delightful human BEING I was associating with said, “I was talking to so and so last night about that but he seemed eager to leave and we didn’t get far”. I smiled and replied, “perhaps you should catch him in the morning?”. The chuckle that ensued was both sincere and delightful for me to hear and witness. It was also the end of our conversation as he left, laughing as he went. Fast forward a week.
I’m checking in some parts when two individuals walk into the dock. Both I know and have grown rather fond of. They are also the two who would make a ride along possible for me. As they approached I smiled and welcomed them with the warmth of a sunshine hug and asked what I could do for them. They immediately grinned and said, “We would like to get you fitted for a helmet, goggles and some gloves if you have time”. If my boots hadn’t been tied I would have left them right on the dock where I had been standing. In no time at all I had the appropriate PPE and was now waiting for my ride. I was informed it may be a while, but it would definitely happen. Thanking them both with childlike enthusiasm, one I’m sure would have made the most apoplectic individual reconsider his position, I returned to work eager for what was to come. Shortly after lunch a machine drives up the ramp and honks. As soon as I turn around I’m greeted with, “Are you ready for your ride?”. Am I ever, was my initial thought. I donned my gear and as I approached noticed two things. One: this particular machine wasn’t a “family” machine. It had the look of speed and the cautious design of potentially dangerous. I must confess the nerves came up a bit at this point. Two: the driver was one who was known for speed and pushing boundaries. As soon as my mind correlated the cohesion I became aware of the gift. Not only was I getting a ride along, but I was getting one that I probably wouldn’t forget. I’m sitting in the fastest machine they make with the most aggressive test driver. Good thing they have these handle bars conveniently located for passengers to hold onto. Think of bicycle handlebars protruding from the passenger dash. I cannot tell you how long I was in the machine as it all blurred together in a vision of speed, the effects of gravity, and giggling excitement. I believe this may also be referred to as adrenaline. I was stepping out of the vehicle on cloud nine, grateful for the gift and reward I had just received. What a reward. The next day would be my last day working with the facility and I arrived at another beautiful gift on my desk. All I could say was; Thank You, Coach.
Welcome and thanks for checking out my blog. This is where I share my life experiences, creativity, and struggles. A wise man said, “When we talk about our feelings they become less overwhelming, less upsetting, and less scary” (Fred Rogers). That is my main objective here. Find peace and solace for myself. It’s also a place for everyone to enjoy, provide corrective criticism, or give a little encouragement. And perhaps, if I do things correctly, share a little courageous inspiration along the way.
My name is Alan Dilts and I’m just an average guy. Yup, pretty much somes it up.
I’ve noticed a surprising trend. People have become accustomed to dismissing reality, avoiding what is unpleasant, and comfortably ignoring anything that isn’t related directly to them. I call it a trend because it happens everywhere and by almost everyone. I watch as children, young adults, elders, police officers, coaches, educators, etc. etc., walk directly over a piece of trash and fail to pick it up. I don’t know if it’s the “I didn’t do it, it’s not my reasonability” mentality, if it’s just being oblivious to their surroundings, or if they truly just don’t care. Regardless it still shows a lack of respect, and consideration for our environment and planet. I will be so bold to say: “we can’t pack up and move away from this planet. It’s our ONLY HOME. Therefore, it’s everyone’s responsibility to help keep it clean”. We have to stop passively allowing this destruction to continue. Let me ask you this: If there were pieces of trash strewn about your house and lawn would you let them lie where they lay? You didn’t put them there and it’s not your trash, right? If you do pick it up; why do you pick up unsightly waste from your dwelling, i.e., lawn or house, but not your home, i.e., Earth? There are some who do both, but the vast majority do not.
The unpleasant reality is our planet is filled with filth. Garbage is everywhere. It’s in our parks, our wild places, our green spaces, our yards, our shopping centers, even our oceans; waste is everywhere man has ventured. Luckily we do have a solution. If we together steward in a new era of environmental responsibility we may yet achieve great works. We don’t all need to go out with giant, 55 gallon bags collecting trash. We can do it by each contributing a little of our time, effort, and support. Perhaps the next time you go out for your hike or to throw a round of disc golf you can take a small bag, backpack, sack, pouch, whatever you want, with you and collect some trash? Try it once and see how it makes you feel. Constant dripping can hollow a stone.