Lake Zacca

Lake Zaca

This is really a continuation of the posts, part 1 and part 2, that I did in March before the A to Z Blogging Challenge.

https://athursdayschild.wordpress.com/2011/03/25/serious-trouble-will-bypass-you-part-1/

https://athursdayschild.wordpress.com/2011/03/26/serious-trouble-will-bypass-you-part-2/

Lake Zaca in California was our destination point, where we would meet with other volunteers of our group for a retreat type meeting.  Lake Zaca is located in Los Olivos, California.  It is a beautiful San Rafael mountain top retreat with a rich history:  http://www.zacalakeretreat.com/

Apart from being pristinely natural and a serene departure from the hustle and bustle of normal everyday life, its claim to fame is also for location shoots for some quite famous movies such as “Creature from the Black Lagoon,” and “Friday the Thirteenth, Part 3.”

The Chumash Native American Tribe consider the lake a sacred place, and according to their legends, it is bottomless, with a passageway existing through the lake to Santa Cruz Island where the Chumash lived before coming to the mainland, with underwater caves containing oxygen and home to a civilization of “little people.” The lake does possess a strong energy current.

On our opening night get together we were told that we would be experiencing some after effects of the recent Japanese tsunami.  Considering it was a nice sunshiny day I kind of shrugged off that warning.  My husband and I hiked our next day there – a mild hike.  On the next day we were planning a more strenuous hike, but the rains came and came.  By the following day the rain became much stronger with gusting winds.

Let me interject here that the cabins were rustic to say the least, especially the one I was assigned to.  I took the top bunk partly out of kindness, but mostly because I was the last one to check in.  There were five women to a cabin in our case.  Upon seeing some of the other cabins we were rather disappointed in ours, but we were assured that we had the best cabin.  Ours was up on a hill, and had older plumbing.  Others closest to the lake had been updated with large bathrooms and walk in whirlpool showers.

Okay, at first I had shrugged off the tsunami aftermath warning and was now dubious about our accommodations.  You could put me in the category of “Oh, ye of little faith.”

The next morning we awoke to no electricity.  The temperatures had dropped, and being very cold natured I was freezing.  Due to our older plumbing we had enough hot water in our water heater for all five of us to have hot showers.  In the wee hours of the morning we drove in our rented van to pick up others for breakfast and found a tree limb had fell on someone else’s rental car.  No one was hurt.  We found that others were not so fortunate.  Many had stepped out of their bed onto wet carpet where water had seeped in the cabins, and there were no hot showers to be had due to the newer water on demand water heaters.

The wind got stronger.  Creeks rose, and new ones were created.  Two vehicles drifted away with luckily the drivers and passengers swimming out safely.  By the next day heavy equipment came to get everyone out, and everyone was able to make his or her planes on time.

I’m thankful that serious trouble was averted.  On the way to the airport, my husband and I stopped to eat at our favorite Chinese restaurant, and we both opened our fortune cookies to find the same fortune:  Serious trouble will bypass you.

Yoga · Yogananda

Yoga & Yogananda

“God Talks With Arjuna – The Bhagavad Gita”  Paramahansa Yogananda

Chapter IV The Supreme Science of Knowing God, The Historical Basis and Esoteric Essence of Yoga

Verse 3 – I have this day informed thee about that same ancient yoga, for thou art My devotee and friend.  This sacred mystery (of yoga) is, indeed, the producer of supreme benefit (to manhood).

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I wrote this in February of 2010:  Today has been a dream realized.  We visited SRF – Self Realization Fellowship, the international headquarters in Los Angeles.  I can’t describe the emotions.  There was an aura of love permeating the grounds.  We sat in the meditation room awaiting a guide.  Over the altar were pictures of Babajii, Lahiri Mahasaya, Sri Yukteshwar, Jesus, Krishna, and Paramahamsa Yogananda.

A nun greeted us and gave us a personal tour, telling us a little about the history of the building and pointing out some of Yogananda’s personal possessions.  She took us to the meditation areas on the grounds.  The view was breathtaking.

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Life

X-Files

Sometimes I feel like my life is one big x-file – that even our planet, maybe our universe is one gigantic x-file, of course with witty long scripted dialogue thrown in my Mulder.

Last night I was thinking how strange everything is, even my husband, not that he is strange in the sense you may be thinking.  Don’t get me wrong.  I’m thankful we are together.

There are times when people in general to me seem strange, even those who are closest.  I think that is the seer or observer coming out in me, the one that sort of pops out making a suction cup sound and hovers above looking down seeing the absurdness of everything in general.  Or, in x-file fashion it just floats like a mist.  That really sounds more like a Star Trek episode.

The program X-Files was about the strange.  The older I get the more I see strange as the norm.

Do you ever look at your spouse and say who is this person?  Do you ever say who am I, and how did it get here?  And, the news, and the world of politics – won’t even go there – the strangest of the strange.

Talking Heads

Once in a Lifetime (1984)

Once In A Lifetime

And You May Find Yourself Living In A Shotgun Shack

And You May Find Yourself In Another Part Of The World

And You May Find Yourself Behind The Wheel Of A Large Automobile

And You May Find Yourself In A Beautiful House, With A Beautiful

Wife

And You May Ask Yourself-Well…How Did I Get Here?

Nature

W Through Pictures

Blogging

The Versatile Blogger Award

I saved this for my “V” word in the A to Z Blogging Challenge.  Also, it gave me added time to find more bloggers out there for me to present the award to.  The limit is 15.  I’m sure I’ve yet to find many more fabulous bloggers.

Thanks so much to my new blogger friend, Marissa Colleen Mullins – http://marissamullins.com/ – for the Versatile Blogger Award!

I gladly accept! And according to the rules – here are 7 Random facts about me plus my 15 nominations:

Seven Random Facts:

1. My most favorite time of the day is whenever my husband is home. (He just pulled into the driveway, so finish this later.)

2. I’m too addicted to chai lattes.

3. I like hanging out either in nature or at Starbucks, or at bookstores, or on the front porch swing.

4. I love finding great vegetarian or vegan restaurants.

5. I’m really a homebody.  After a couple of days of traveling I’m ready to come back home.

6.  I love eating our meals on the deck, and reading there.

7. I love porch swings.

Now, for my 15 nominees:

http://www.ThoughtTavern.com/

http://vasthayogi.wordpress.com/

http://indianknowledgesystemacademy.blogspot.com/

http://christainnewyork.com/

http://veganepicurean.blogspot.com/

http://vegandad.blogspot.com/

http://www.exploreyourspirit.com/blog/

http://julesandben.wordpress.com/

http://taochild.wordpress.com

http://lkramer14.wordpress.com/

http://tonishealthblog.wordpress.com/

http://mygratitudelife.wordpress.com/

http://braincaviar.wordpress.com/

Spirituality

Unity

We are all one.  We create divisions, but ultimately we are all one.  Every thought, every action is a ripple in the universe.

Humans expend a great deal of energy in setting up divisions between each other.  Nature works in harmony.  I truly believe nature is one of our biggest teachers.  We have been unconsciously and sometimes consciously destroying nature for the longest time.  Nature is made up of opposites that depend on each other as well as compliment each other.  Humans are opposites.  It is the unification of opposites that make up the world.

From Las Tzo:

When everyone in the world sees beauty, then ugly exists.

When everyone sees good, then bad exists.

Therefore:

What is and what is not create each other.

Difficult and easy complement each other.

Tall and short shape each other.

High and low rest on each other.

Voice and tone blend with each other.

First and last follow each other.

So, the sapient walks around doing nothing, and teaches without speaking.

All things appear, but he makes no claim on them.

He works for them without making them dependent.

He claims no honor for his deed.

Because he claims no honor, he will never be dishonored.

Buddha:  “He who experiences the unity of life sees his own Self in all beings, and all beings in his own Self, and looks on everything with an impartial eye.”

“Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!”
Psalm 133:1

I’m thankful that even as much as we destroy nature, nature ultimately prevails.  Its unity gives it the advantage.

Hiking

Trails

In January of 2008, Chris and I hiked two trails at Carter Caves State Park in Kentucky.  A friend and I were supposed to hike Carter Caves today, but we got rained out. We hiked the Raven Bridge Trail, which is 0.7 miles in length, and the Three Bridges Trail which is 3.5 miles in length. We hiked the Three Bridges Trail over nine years ago on our first date.

The Raven Bridge Trail leaves from the vicinity of the lodge and golf course and connects to the Three Bridges Trail giving us an approximate hike of five miles. The Raven Bridge Trail is named after the Raven Bridge which is also adjacent to the Three Bridges Trail connection point. At this point we crossed paths with other hikers. Noticing our camera one of them offered to take our picture.

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Being a chilly day, plus the fact I’m cold natured, I’m heavily layered. Below is a picture of this bridge approaching it from the The Bridges Trail, on our return trip back towards the lodge.  I made my hat, but lost it one day while out running errands.  Still have the scarf.  I never could find any yarn to match to make another hat.

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You will notice the blue marks on the trees. I have to give Carter Caves an excellent rating on marking their trails – not the case on other hiking trails we’ve been on. The Raven Trail is marked in blue. The Three Bridges Trail is marked in red, and is often simply called the red trail. The trail is named after the three natural rock bridges which lay along the path. Attractions along the trail include Smokey Bridge (the park’s largest), Raven Bridge, Fern Bridge and numerous vistas of the lake. This trail can be accessed at several points including the lodge, the welcome center, the cabins and the campgrounds.

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The park’s largest natural bridge is the Smokey Bridge. Chris explored the underneath side while I hiked above.

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This picture doesn’t do justice to the steepness of the steps winding down between these two rock formations. At the bottom you hike beneath another natural bridge – Fern Bridge. Here we met other hikers who where from Cleveland, OH. They were warning us about the ice covered bridge.

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We made it across by stepping on the moss-covered rock on the other side.

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This is another part of Three Bridges Trail.

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Some of the trail overlooks the lake. This is a popular stop for many hikers.

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The above picture is what we call our spot. On that first date, Chris and I stopped here to rest and must have sit on this rock overlook (he closer to the edge than me) for over an hour and just talked. While he kept talking I just thought, he’s the one. I’m going to marry this man. The oven cleaning (another story – Why I Can’t Look at Oreos) came the following week.

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The last time I hiked here this tree was fully intact.

The image

This is one of the seven wooden footbridges along the trail.

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A doe peeks through the trees at us.

I would recommend this trail for all you hiking enthusiasts. The Three Bridges Trail, inspite of some hilly spots it’s really not hard, and can be done at a liesurely pace in about two hours. Or take a picnic lunch and spend more time out in nature. Add another thirty minutes for the Raven Trail.

I’m thankful we have gotten to hike so much during our nine years together.

Happy Trails,

Chris and Jerri