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Old 04-01-2011, 01:40 AM   #1
Mary Eastland
 
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thoughts of spring

Two Canada geese rose up together from the rippling, slate gray, green pond. Their flight separated by inches. I could feel the blending and connection as their wings beat in unison to gain height. They rose first then turned in unison. All wings moving together… so close…never touching except in energy and movement. Barren wheat fields lay beneath the geese. The air smelled of snow and the promise of green beneath the brown and yellow shafts.
Winter is ending, yet here in the Berkshires each sign of spring must be mentioned and relished. I saw crocuses today and now it is snowing. I bought some daffodils to remind me of summer's sunshine.
I have been really sick with flu. The yellow blossoms and the geese remind me that soon I will be back on the mat…spring will really be here and all is well right now.
Mary
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Old 04-01-2011, 09:40 AM   #2
crbateman
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Re: thoughts of spring

Spring happens a little sooner around here... My Homeowners' Association has already sent me 3 letters asking me to mow my lawn...
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Old 04-01-2011, 04:02 PM   #3
guest1234567
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Re: thoughts of spring

I hope you'll recover soon to keep on training. And thanks you for sharing each sign of spring you notice.It is very interesting for me, we have almost summer temperatures since a few days, but I hope it will refresh again, so we can do our last walk in the mountain for this season, it is too early for such a warmth.
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Old 04-01-2011, 09:50 PM   #4
Walter Martindale
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Re: thoughts of spring

Get well soon. The snow here has almost gone (Cambridge, Ontario, Canada). wonder where there's a dojo nearby.
W
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Old 04-02-2011, 06:52 AM   #5
Mary Eastland
 
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Re: thoughts of spring

Clark..I would be happy to mow your lawn. It is one of my favorite summer jobs. ;o)
Thank you, Walter and Carina. Today is a new day.
Mary
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Old 04-02-2011, 07:17 AM   #6
RonRagusa
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Re: thoughts of spring

Quote:
Walter Martindale wrote: View Post
Get well soon. The snow here has almost gone (Cambridge, Ontario, Canada). wonder where there's a dojo nearby.
W
Hi Walter -

You're only 426 miles from western Mass. Come on down anytime.

Best,

Ron
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Old 04-02-2011, 07:21 AM   #7
Walter Martindale
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Re: thoughts of spring

Quote:
Ron Ragusa wrote: View Post
Hi Walter -

You're only 426 miles from western Mass. Come on down anytime.

Best,

Ron
Thanks Ron.
There are dojo in Toronto and it's only 90 km... (56 miles)

There's a dojo here, too, but the training sessions coincide with my working hours. One of the things about being a sport coach in amateur sport is that my work takes place when others are taking their 'play.'

Spring - it's actually getting warm today.
Cheers
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Old 04-02-2011, 03:57 PM   #8
crbateman
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Re: thoughts of spring

Quote:
Mary Eastland wrote: View Post
Clark..I would be happy to mow your lawn. It is one of my favorite summer jobs. ;o)
Probably would be one of mine, too, 'cept I've gotta do it spring, fall and winter, too! (Not to mention every 4 days in the summer...)

But the job's yours if you want it, along with all the sangria you can drink!
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Old 04-02-2011, 05:45 PM   #9
Janet Rosen
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Re: thoughts of spring

Quote:
Mary Eastland wrote: View Post
Clark..I would be happy to mow your lawn. It is one of my favorite summer jobs. ;o)
Thank you, Walter and Carina. Today is a new day.
Mary
Mowing? Lawn?...we killed our's and put in low mainenance native plants ... With mulched areas around them that are seeded with native wildflower annuals so right now there is a dense emerald jungle out front, ready to erupt any day now into a four month show of yellows, blues, oranges and purples!

The hummingbirds and mockingbirds are noisily defending territory, the ravens are bill-clacking, the red shouldered hawks screaming their heads off. Our wintering golden crowned sparrows have disappeared from their daily foraging through the compost so it's just a matter of time before a fresh group of tiny blue-bellies (fence lizards) start running around the yard.

Janet Rosen
http://www.zanshinart.com
"peace will enter when hate is gone"--percy mayfield
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Old 05-10-2011, 07:45 AM   #10
Mary Eastland
 
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Re: thoughts of spring

Giving birth to one’s self is painful. How much easier it is to watch others and comment or criticize their development. The real pain in aikido is not nikkyo. The real pain is seeing me as I really am at 53 after 23 years of training. The real joy of aikido is not a nikkyo done crisply and correctly. The real joy of aikido is seeing who I am at 53 after 23 years of training.
Yes, I know that nikkyo hurts and nikkyo feels good. Sunday standing on the mat with my open heart exposed for the world to see was really hard, I wanted to run or deny or accuse…anything to make that moment feel different. Yet I stayed…I listened and I committed to change. Training in Aikido has helped me to stay and feel and change. I think I understand better some of O’Sensei’s message about self being the real enemy. Not all of it...there still is some rationalization in me, some ego screaming silently…yet I know when I show for class tonight…the mat will be there and the other students and Ron. We will bow in and train and another change will begin.
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Old 05-10-2011, 09:00 AM   #11
graham christian
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Re: thoughts of spring

Hi Mary.
Thought I'd just add something with regards to what you asked me on Ron's blog. On an occasion such as flu there is a perfect example of when the body says no more, I need rest and recouperation. Time for you to let me get on with my job and get these white blood cells working.

Thus rest and any nutritional or medicinal backup needed.

Thereafter, back we return indeed with the thoughts of spring and we step on to the mat restored and ready.

Ready to embrace the process, the good techniques and the bad, the right and the wrong, the easy and the painful. Like the grass embracing the the wind and the rain, the night and the day, the growth and the mowing. Embraced with enjoyment is truly non resistance.(poetic licence)

Good health.G.
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Old 05-11-2011, 09:26 AM   #12
Mary Eastland
 
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Re: thoughts of spring

Thanks for your thought filled replies. I realized i was trying to change myself because of someone else and then resenting them for it. I can change if i need to. I need to have good motives.
M
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Old 06-02-2011, 01:24 PM   #13
Mary Eastland
 
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Re: thoughts of spring

Aikido in the spring in New England.

Last night when the second tornado went over Springfield, MA my 31 year old daughter was standing outside a convenience store talking to me as the air was turning yellow and getting very still. She kept saying “I think there is another one coming”…I kept reassuring her that there were no warnings on the TV…then I knew to say “trust your gut, get out of your car, go in the store, and find a closet.” So she was there in the bathroom and I was here in the Berkshires and we sat out the tornado breathing and crying and praying.
Ron was downstairs teaching class. When my phone died Dora lent me hers so I could stay on the phone with Emily as she drove from street to street trying to get home.
She finally did at 11:10 P.M. The drive usually takes 10 minutes. Last night it took 6 hours.
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Old 06-03-2011, 06:49 AM   #14
Diana Frese
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Re: thoughts of spring

Hi Mary,
I was on the phone with an old friend from summer camp 73 (ages ago LOL) who lives near Boston and she mentioned tornadoes in Mass. and I'm thinking the Midwest.... what? Massachusetts??
Then my husband came home from carpentry and he had heard about it on the radio and was very concerned. He attended Hampshire College for a couple of years and knows the area (western Mass.)

This morning he saw a picture on aol or facebook of a whole forest area that was almost gone except for a few trunks...

What a scary experience, glad your daughter finally made it home okay... and of course that Dora was there to lend you her phone.

Everyone in Western Mass are in our thoughts and prayers ...
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Old 06-03-2011, 07:17 AM   #15
jester
 
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Re: thoughts of spring

We only get about a week of Spring and that week has already passed. It's now close to 100° and humid.

I used to live in Jersey and it was very pretty. Oh how I miss the 4 seasons.

-
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Old 06-09-2011, 08:36 PM   #16
Mary Eastland
 
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Re: thoughts of spring

Each uke feels different. Each moment is different. I see what is meant with the saying fiddling with this or that technique will result in nothing. Each uke at each moment can be met from nage’s center. At that moment or better said string of moments, aikido is. I perceive the way to go and how to get there by paying close attention, seeing my uke…really seeing my uke so that I can blend with my uke from my center and my mind can rest.
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Old 06-16-2011, 08:08 AM   #17
Mary Eastland
 
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Re: thoughts of spring

The green cathedral that is my yard is awash with early morning light. The barrenness of winter is gone, replaced with subtle shades of green accented by filmy streaming yellow light. Birdsong blends with the slight rustle of leaves as Mr. Chip scurries to his haven in the gnarly apple tree. The splendor of late spring is more apparent than winter’s beauty yet every season holds its own wonder when I take time to look and listen.

Last night in class Ron changed a technique ever so slightly and corrected me every time I did it my way. I wanted to argue and rebel. Then I saw and heard myself. I quieted. I did my best to do the technique the way he was teaching. My mind was not as open as it is sometimes. I did some inner grumbling and outward explaining. Then I shut up and focused on class.

Every moment in class doesn’t feel fun yet every moment is important to my development. I don’t have to comfortable to learn. I brought some of the outer world onto the mat last night… a lucrative business deal that fell through, my daughter’s broken foot and a still sore knee. By the time class was over perspective was regained. My ego was right sized, my mind relaxed and my body tired from a good class with good people.
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