The people who love you have lit the house for your arrival. Anxious dogs watch and wag from the windowed door, ready to pounce. Tasty food is prepared to serve for a welcome meal. There are cheerful stories to exchange of time spent apart. There is a gift: you share the fragrant, drying stems of wild sage you picked on your hike in Ojai to be used as smudge. For the first time in months, you will not have your daily walk on this day spent flying dawn to dusk between coasts. What you savor is the redolent fragrance of sage wafting up from your fingertips as you press your hands to your heart, bowing in thanks for the freedom of going, the gladness of return.
All text and photos by Kelly DuMar 2017