I was honored when Jacquelyn asked me to be guest blogger today. I hope moving day for her will go smoothly. Having been a career military wife, I moved thirty-two times in twenty years so I know how stressful moving can be!
While I was sitting here in my office trying to decide what to blog about, I kinda spaced out watching the huge soybean field behind our rural house as the hot wind blows across the two feet tall plants. It is mesmerizing to watch the bushes swaying back and forth and you can really get lost in your own thoughts.
As I watch the effects of the wind blowing, I am listening to my collection of wind chimes on the screen porch behind my office and those hanging on the eaves of my little building. I have twenty-three chimes of various sizes and pipe lengths. Some are made from wood, some from copper, tin, aluminum, bamboo, and one is made from stainless steel bars. The pipes are suspended from all kinds of heads: A grim reaper with a scythe, gargoyles, stars/moons/suns, cows, kitty cats, rainbows, bells. The most expensive one I have cost me $80.00 but I am saving a percentage of each royalty check to buy one that runs $500.00. It is an 8' long cathedral-tone chime made of black alloy and it has such a delightful tone.
To me the chimes are soothing and in the sixteen years I've lived on my little dead-end street, all my neighbors have told me how much they enjoy listening to them. Not a single one has ever complained.
This is a quiet little subdivision out in the country where deer come right up to look in your windows, raccoons waddle across your backyard from east to west as jackrabbits hop west to east, and squirrels scamper up the black walnut trees. Every now and then a fox will meander by and possums come to eat the cat food you leave out for all the poor strays inconsiderate people are always dropping off out here. I see bald eagles, Canada geese, hummingbirds, goldfinches, red-tail hawks, peregrine falcons...all manner of flying beauties every single day (as well as the butt-ugly turkey buzzards who flock to roadkill out on the highway).
Living in rural Iowa is like living back in the 1950s. You can leave your car doors unlocked with the engine running, go into the post office or grocery store for half-an-hour and when you come back, know your car will still be there. Most people never lock the doors of their houses during the day and it's not unusual for neighbors to wander in without knocking...just assuming they are welcome. This is the country and it is neighborly and it is peaceful.
I don't think I could live in the city after living out here for so long. At night, there are no bright lights and you can see shooting stars, the Northern Lights, and fireflies galore. The air smells nice out here. It's just a little piece of sweetness in a world slowly coming apart at the seams.
I was raised in the Deep South in a little town of less than 500 people so I learned early in life to value a slower time. The hustle and bustle of the big cities depress me. The gentleness of the country life refreshes.
So I sit here trying to decide what to tell you and I think it is: Slow down and experience the quiet. Sit calmly and listen to the wind. Watch an ant crawl through the grass. Smile at a kitten chasing a butterfly. Be still and let the Greater Good speak to you. If for only a few moments.
Renew your spirit in the arms of peace.
Charlotte "Charlee" Boyett-Compo
Where badass men win the ladies every time