The Case for Walking

Nowhere can you see the realness and the history of where you live better than by foot. You may drive a place every day but until your feet touch its soil, until your eyes stop looking straight ahead but off to the side where a wide set of steps rise like an upside down waterfall leading to a young man with an old school ‘fro texting his girl on the night before his college graduation- will you begin to know a place.

Until you notice just how many people plant rows and rows of lavender along the strip of land after their yard but before the street on the other side of the sidewalk- you won’t understand the generosity of your neighbors and the glory of bees on a summer day.

I passed the cemetery and for the first time realized that a leafy tree stands as a sentinel at the end of even rows of each line of headstones. The grass is exactly even but not mechanized like a modern place, it is still different shades of green from dark to light with some dried grass, yellow and stiff. The rows are more like paths inviting me to follow them and get to know the people who came before.

I found families, a husband who died twenty years before his wife. I kneeled before three headstones of three brothers who all died in different wars. Those people once also walked these streets.

Rounding through town I was stopped by a gaggle of young and lively guys with long dreadlocks and short little songs they busted out in bursts for me. “We’re the rainbow, join us!” I stayed awhile, talked about the Rainbow Gathering coming to Oregon, we talked about their dog and one guy told me I was beautiful. It was generous given that he was a lovely young guy with eyes as blue as any I’d seen.

Walking can boost your morale substantially.

I walked past bus stops and old homes. I saw some trash left by the steps of a stately old place which bragged of its 1888 lineage and I picked it up thinking, it  must be hard to see everything change around you.

I visited with a guy roughly my age carrying a backpack and sleeping bag. He looked clean and was sorting some food as he tucked it away. “It was a good day,” he said smiling. “I see that and I’m glad,” I tipped my head and smiled back. He was about to offer me some of his food but I walked on waving as I passed.

Strangers can be kind for no reason.

I also fell in love with an assorted group of dogs who ran to greet me like their long lost friend. Tails wagging, some singing sorrowful songs urging me to come back and I walked on and I remembered the joy of a good dog. I saw a woman cradling her little black and white dog coming from the vet and kissing the top of her furry head.

Love is so present in the world if you look.

I exchanged dozens of smiles with strangers, witnessed countless acts of awe among children seeing birds and flowers and I never once wished I was in a car despite the sweat which pooled at the back of my neck.

The best moment was in passing a girl, maybe seven or eight, wearing a crisp blue and white dress, a ribbon in her dark wavy hair and the smile on her innocent illuminated face that made years roll backwards to my second grade year. She stood at the top of the stairs outside her home while her grandmother sat smiling that same way on her porch. The girl began waving at strangers and smiling, for no particular reason. She ate an orange popsicle. As I approached the popsicle slipped off its stick into the grass. She observed but didn’t react choosing to continue her waving campaign.

Everything about her gave me hope. I asked if I could capture her picture and I did. I did not ask her a million questions like I might normally do. Frankly I didn’t want to know more than what I could see–the perfect mixture of light and love, innocence and care, playfulness and childish boredom.

If you walk enough you will get bored. Boredom is such a relief. Boredom doesn’t have technology attached or success or failure. It is expansive and allows you to fill it or feel it just as it is. I love boredom.

The case for walking is great. It is good for every part of you except your oh so busy schedule. So here’s the best case for it beyond all others–walk because you do not have time to do it. Break free of your calendar and make the room for walking and seeing and loving and speaking to strangers, and flirting and being bored.




Ten Ways to Tell if Your Guy(partner) is a Grown Ass Man(person).

Let me be clear I stand on no high ground here. If there’s a way to make a poor choice–I’ve done it. But lately I’ve been hanging around with a grown ass man and despite the fact I’m a slow learner some things are coming into focus.

First: I had the good fortune of grown ass man friends. They were the ones helping me, letting me lean on them from time to time and being reliable while my boy was out playing. I’m so grateful to those grown up guys who showed up and showed me what a grown ass man really looks like. If you find yourself leaning on your friends rather than your partner–chances are he’s not grown.

Second: age has nothing to do with it. I wasted months of my life on an old guy who was damn near seventy still trying to be the captain of his high school football team surrounded by cheerleaders. His self-esteem was so low he couldn’t stop playing games. He was so desperate to be admired. I feel bad for him, but not too bad. If your partner can’t commit to a plan, a phone call and a relationship, no matter what else he says, he’s not a grown ass man.

What follows works for any gender and any pairing. I’ve just selected my own experience so I’m using man to fit the role since I’m a cisgender, heterosexual female. You can substitute woman or they and it still works.

So here are the ways you can tell if your guy is a grown ass man:

  1. He is not ambiguous. Having been successful in his life he knows what he wants and how to achieve it. He will be clear with you what his intentions are and check in early and often to see if you share those intentions.
  2. He budgets accordingly. There is no worse feeling than being with a guy who acts like you’ve taken him to the vet for neutering every time the check comes. A grown ass man sets his cash aside to accommodate his plans. That doesn’t mean he has to be rich to be grown but he does have to plan a date he can manage. If it needs to be a split check he tells you in advance so you can act like a grown ass woman and bring your money.
  3. He likes you. Grown ass men don’t treat their partners like a chore or some add-on to their fabulous lives. He will enjoy your company, like talking to you, share your interests and care about your people. He will be interested in you even when you have a headache.
  4. He will do what he says he’s going to do. A grown ass man has no trouble telling you when he will call and then call at that time. The same holds true for getting together, making plans and ultimately creating a life.
  5. Grown ass men don’t need to lie. He will tell the truth because he has nothing to hide. He’s made mistakes and moved on. He’ll tell you about the good and the bad without hesitation because he is confident in his ability to persevere. He does not do things he is ashamed of as a rule, but if he makes a mistake, he’ll tell you.
  6. He will listen to advice and seek counsel. Grown ass men are smart enough to trust collective wisdom. They don’t have all the answers nor do they have the need to know everything. They have learned that’s not realistic.
  7. Grown ass men are emotionally available. He will cry when it hurts, he will laugh when it tickles him and he will draw pictures of little hearts and flowers on a card if he is so moved. A grown ass man has no need to prove who he is and no need for credentials that make him seem more like a robot. He will respect your emotions as well, knowing that our emotions actually drive our actions, not just yours, but his too.
  8. Grown ass men enjoy sex–with you. They also enjoy talking, cuddling, going to movies and doing other things. Grown ass men are people who have many interests and enjoy exploring them. They are not out for a conquest and they don’t think it’s your job to worry about their sex drive.
  9. He will support you for who you are. Because he knows himself, he knows what sort of  characteristics he values. If you hold those characteristics and he’s decided to be with you then he won’t be out to change you or your priorities. In fact, a grown ass man is more likely to help you achieve your goals and deepen your other relationships.
  10. Finally, a grown ass man is seeking a grown ass partner. He is looking for someone who has done the work to be clear on what is important, who is not insecure, needy, clings or otherwise hoping to find a partner to complete them. A grown ass man wants a partner who is respectful to him and to themselves and does not look to see anyone subjugated or treated as a lesser partner.

I can’t speak for anyone else but I was enculturated to think the nice guy wasn’t as cool as the guy who thought he was too good for me and also to believe that the guy who made me feel insecure was exciting. When I finally moved past that, I couldn’t believe I ever thought that way.

Being loved by a grown ass man makes life better, easier and more meaningful. Being kept off balance makes life more difficult. Achieving your goals is like pushing that rock up a hill everyday and getting nowhere when you’re dealing with a boy who sucks your mental and emotional bank dry. We all need support. If your partner isn’t grown then chances are he’s throwing barriers in your path.

It’s better to be single than trying to make it work with someone who is not grown enough to know how or simply doesn’t want to. Be good to you. Cut them loose. Be who you are and your grown ass man will show up, or not. But either way you don’t have someone pulling you down. Either way you’re better off.

Oh and one final thought–a grown ass man is sexier and more attractive in every way. He has no need to prove anything so he is confident and loving. He is fun and also thoughtful.

Maybe, just maybe, if nice guys finish first and grown ass men are the ones in relationships these boys will figure out it’s time to grow up. It won’t help you, but it might help the next person who comes along.




The Angry Onion: Last Edition

When I take out my food scraps to the compost pile I think of alchemy. What was once a part of a tomato growing on a vine becomes part salad and part compost. Even that was once something different; a seed.

Soon that tomato heart will melt into the compost pile and become a part of fertilizer which may grow another tomato or an onion. But whatever happens to it one thing is certain-it will not be the tomato it once was.

It did not merely change but through alchemy went from being one thing to something else.

I am just now seeing the same process in me.

Through this long progression of going from being a wife and a mother to young children to a single woman with adult children, I see my own transformation.

I began as that tomato. I was cut up in so many ways and bore witness to pieces being tossed. Then the painful process of breaking down, so that even those pieces melted away.

Now I am becoming part of something larger. I am enriched and enriching the soil of the soul and of life.

This can only come from pain; a sort of death from which new life springs.

I get it. I could not stay that which I was. Change is not a choice. My only choice is acceptance.

Not a grim and sad acceptance but more an understanding and patience. That comes about through this process we’ve talked so much about.

I see that “looking for love” is so much more about seeing the love that exists–in me.

Honestly, I don’t care any more about being in a relationship of the romantic kind. I’m questioning if I ever did. It seems to me that I’m interested in being in a relationship of the full spectrum available: Mom, friend,grandmother,teacher,co-worker, helper and fellow adventurer in life.

It’s true that we get what we truly seek.

I sought truth, peace, love and belonging and I got that. I sought to perform the alchemy of turning heart ache to happiness, or maybe contentment. I thought it meant finding someone new to love. But it didn’t

It meant loving all that’s in me and around me better.

Thus concludes The Angry Onion. There is no anger, no searching for love, no onions nor guys who cook with them.

Finally solitude has brought me precisely where I need to be. Nothing like a cold and lonely winter to tune up the wisdom and tune out the need to fix something.

Tonight I composted that tomato and half an onion. I wish them patience and detachment through their break down and alchemy. When I compost I think of change and the fact that the biggest transitions are often the least dramatic.

One day walking down the little steps, past the neighbors house under a silent sky I wanted nothing I didn’t already have.






The Angry Onion: Jesus Take the Wheel

He said, handing me a bag of little bits of Indian spices as he shuffles nervously outside his tidy old Toyota with it’s bottled water and remnants left from the last time his son was in the car, “I bought these for you. It’s a gift!” Explaining each little packet of spices and its uses he shuffled from his good leg to his other one damaged by childhood polio.

Later over my coffee, “I don’t take coffee or tea” he shrugs without much explanation as he  dives into his belief in a God to whom he prays. His God does not appear to have a particular name but the belief moves him along when he can’t move another way.

We are on a date. It appears I have a secret. I know it’s not going in any particular direction except meeting a stranger and learning something about them. He appears more hopeful. “Poor guy”, I think.

I suspect he really does know there’s not much to this, no real attraction, no possible future but he’s in recent free fall heart ache and wants to grab a branch on the way down. I’ve been there.

Being a religious person has a certain convenience. When it all becomes too hard to figure out or there is too much pain to manage, a person with a God can fall back on faith.

Jesus take the wheel, drive this car for awhile, I can’t figure out where to go.

I don’t know if I’m religious. I don’t know if there is a God, many gods, or a collective understanding tied together by whatever animates all this life, death and wonder. But I can see where having a God can be better than not having one.

He has his wavy, salt and pepper hair very short. His Hawaiian shirt an Americanized variation to allow him color. He misses India. He wants me to understand his god.

Whatever it is–sometimes I trust it. When that trust swallows me into its great belly of joy, life is a hammock hanging in the stars with the moon warming and breeze blowing the planets around. I’m a child in love with life and totally trusting. I’m holding hands with the Universe in full faith.

Other times, I don’t trust it. I climb out of that belly, fall off the hammock and decide I’ve rested enough. I strike out, walking stick in hand for defense and direction and I chart a course toward some goal. The striking out almost always feels strong and sure, there is certainty that of course success is one correct turn away, and if not, there is strength to take whatever comes, but the goal will be reached.

Both approaches eventually yield to one consistent understanding: I do not understand. I do not know if the goal I hoped to reach is really in my highest good or that of others. Failure cannot be defined. Perhaps not hitting the mark is the best thing that can happen.

The fact is, this foray into seeking love after 50 has made me transparently confused. Not hitting the mark of finding “love” may be the Universe doing me a solid.

In today’s internet ordering, “everything can be found on line” culture, we reduce each other down to products. It’s shame inducing.

Still, there is nothing all good or all bad. There is no need to change the world or maybe even me. 

I will find the good in this, damn it. Somehow I will.

Here’s one thing I’ve learned or really re-learned: There is a clear and present need to show the world and me compassion and understanding. I say this looking at this once little girl’s face now aging with her wrinkles and smiles buried under an avalanche of criticism and misunderstandings on these “dates” which are really more like job interviews. I see this looking at this also aging man. He is kind. Nervous. Making it worse.

“I came here with 500 dollars in my pocket and undergraduate degree. There were 50 seats and thousands who wanted it. But I got it. Then I got my Master’s.”

He is bringing his merits to the discussion to pass the interview. When I discuss my work he brings me back to him or his travels or oddly, my appearance.

What. The. Hell?

Apparently the way I look has become my resume.

He wants to hold hands. I feel like a drug dealer. 

I’ll leave meanness to the world. I’ll just go ahead and love this face and in this moment hold his hand. It’s probably the wrong decision but what does one actually do when another is standing, slightly broken, with his hand out?

Sometimes I am a mom. Sometimes I know how broken I am too.

This process has left me hurt, weakened, but not shattered, not yet. There are some cracks, but they let the light through.

Look, life can be hard. I want someone to smile at me, walk through it with me, tell me when I’m okay and help me when I’m not. I want that. But it is not worth any price.

Some things may just be too expensive.

I don’t think the dating game brings out the best there is in humans. In the goal to find or create the “perfect mate” we dehumanize each other, reduce us down to the individual parts rather than a sum total-a full person, an entire book that adds up to the truly miraculous story we each carry.

Today I am in the hammock, a harder bound copy of me, but no pages are ripped out and the words matter more than the pictures. I have not broken. Bent some, a few dog ears (thanks to those who cared enough to fold back a page or two) and there are some wine stains and faded ink passages but that goes with it.

One day maybe this old book will make it to the backseat of a car with Jesus driving and he’ll know where we’re going. Maybe it’ll fluff itself and start a passage unknown.

Either way, there is love. There is a mother, a god or gods, a universe with its hand out and the very soul of compassion. The Universe loves itself and so do I as a part of all her majesty.

I hope the bright man with his spices finds the mom, the drug, the care taker, the woman who wants his resume but won’t leave him battered.

But once again I am more Bob Dylan than any of those things, “….it aint me babe. I aint the one you’re lookin’ for.”










The Angry Onion Gets Cooked

I am made of colored glass, heated and blown into life, stretched thin and ready to crack.

Somewhere in the last week I’ve seen fissures and fractures brought about by a personals ad. It scared me to be so exposed, then I was flattered and now I’m frightened-again. It’s one thing to suspect your frailty-it’s another to see it for all it really is.

To the person, everyone I’ve spoken to who has done this has had this experience. It is a vulnerable position in an unsafe container.

Many men who responded were nice, kind and complimentary. It’s not that, it’s me. It’s wondering what made me do it, that has me so rattled.

I’ve been getting notes from Columbia, Dubai, Eastern Europe, Canada and a smattering of remote spots across the US. They speak often of longing and loss. Some are angry, many are sad. A few are working hard to be happy.

Any one of the people behind the notes could be me–are me–in so many ways.

I started this “Angry Onion” to release heart break. But I see now it’s something less grand, but more real: fear.  Two things happened in quick succession.

I think that’s how any form of wisdom comes, some kind of back to back experience that gets our attention.

In my case I took a horrible fall. I smashed my face up, bruised my knees and ribs to the bone and broke out a front tooth.

It happened on Christmas Eve.

I laid on the cold pavement as it got dark unable to move for some time. When I crawled my way to a mirror I saw my face, my tooth cracked off, a knot already forming on my chin and felt deep physical pain but more acute even, this whole body and mind ache, “Oh God. Look at my face. I am not okay”.

The knowledge that it is very possible I could be hurt, even die, totally alone kept sinking in with new depth through the long, painful night.

Christmas day was a dull ache. The days that followed left me rattled and afraid.

Then the Onion Guy was gone-again. I waited a year to be re-united with him. At night before sleep I would picture lighting a lantern in the dark for him to find his way back to me. It’s fair to say I loved him. I supported him. I believed he would return.

He did return. He brought poems and joy. We made it to two dates and that was it. Yes, I adored him. No it was not meant to be. But the one two combo is what I see now.

I was a glass vase knocked to the floor. The pieces scattered. I’ve been trying to pick them up ever since.

Since this combination of events I’ve been playing at this matchmaker scenario asking my daughter to find me a match. I became impatient, went against the advice of my love agent and took out a personals ad. She, the matchmaker, advised me to first know myself. She could not be more correct.

I have learned a lot. But sadly, much of it has been the hard way.

The responses to my ad most often start out breezy and kind with humor thrown in the mix. But if I correspond back it takes two or three e-mails in to see the frailty of being human. The mask comes off and I see deep scars, loneliness, fear and even anger.

I experience the results of not saying what’s wanted or expected and being struck with a verbal lashing. One person asked me why I’m asking questions and suggested I’m paranoid. Others still, angrily chastised me for not answering sooner, for not sending more pictures, you name it. I suppose once you step on that stage you are owned in a way. I exited left and kept walking. That seems to be my path right now.

Humans are fragile and frightened and terribly anxious. I am human. I am those things too.

I am starting to think finally this onion is getting peeled down to something meaningful. This searching for love may be more about seeking belonging and safety. It may be that I don’t want to take a horrible fall and have someone find my body because my apartment smells bad from the front door. It may be that life is more like hiking than I realized, a buddy system is advised.

I see.

But where does that leave me? Where does it leave anyone who is single?

Life still calls us, does it not?

So if I don’t have a hiking partner I am still getting out there. Up in the mountains with no one but all of life is not negotiable. I go to live. Having a full life without a partner is also not negotiable. If that’s how it plays out. I’m still all in.

I’d rather have hard truth than pretty lies any day. 

Besides, who am I kidding? I could never truly die alone. Because I am never really alone. I hear the heartbeat of the Earth, I feel the breeze as its breath and I am covered in the love of friends and family who are always gathered within me.

I am letting go of the Onion Guy and dreams of a new Onion Guy for now. I am taking my matchmaker daughter’s advice and getting to know myself better. I am to make pros and cons lists, gather up what I like about me and others and report back.

Meantime, I am cooking for one and it’s not so bad. I think tomorrow I’ll make a stir fry–and yes–I’ll start by sauteing an onion. Why not?



The Angry Onion Goes Personal

“Attractive, fit, petite, professional woman seeking a person to cook with. I teach journalism at University, write for my local newspaper and also edit manuscripts as well as other professional work of this nature. I am a Zen practitioner, plant based diet environmentalist who comes from a place of compassion. I basically live my life in a thoughtful way because I want to mitigate the damage I do on this planet. I value kindness, honesty and decency. I adore the arts, however they come to me, music, hiking, museums and probably many things I haven’t learned yet. I love learning, growing and stretching myself. But, because I live in a tiny town I have struggled to find a like minded man. I’m not judging this but recognizing it. If you’re also a person who is environmentally aware, are vegan/vegetarian or willing to consider giving up meat, kind, educated and fit–I would love to hear from you. “

This is the ad I took out on Craigslist. I included a head shot with no Photoshop wearing a suit jacket. It’s the same picture I use for work bios and LinkedIn, available on line already.

The ad seems a little snooty and not humble enough. I don’t go around describing myself that way–but it’s sort of like advertising. I wouldn’t sell a couch by saying, “It’s okay. I think my dog lifted his leg once and it’s ripped underneath, but you can get by.” Still, as I read it again it kind of drips with privilege. That wasn’t my goal, but it never is for any of us when we come off that way.

The intention of the ad was to cast a line into a pond of hopefulness and see if, I don’t know, a unicorn would pop out.

This was against the advice of my matchmaker/daughter who later said, “You need to learn yourself. What is important to you? What are your own pros and cons and what does a relationship need to look like for you? You’re jumping ahead and getting attached to some image before you’ve done the right foundation work for yourself.”

Of course, she’s right.

I knew it rather quickly when I got 300 responses in 24 hours. Something is not right about that. Now, many respondents were holding dead fish and a fishing pole, some discussed some things that even made me blush which is a big statement because I was raised by an actual sailor and have been in the back room with the boys smoking cigars and drinking single malt Scotch and heard them talk, but I suspect the intention was to be shocking.

I even had one from Dubai. Dubai? How? He was actually quite nice and I learned about his culture and beliefs, so that’s a win. But becoming a couple is not going to happen.

Here is what did happen: I had a shocking number of nice men who wrote to say they liked what I wrote, thought I had a pretty smile and wanted to wish me well. Actually that was the majority. It doesn’t matter right now if any of them would become a relationship. I may never find out because of three factors:

  1. The matchmaker has informed me I am outside of our agreement and it stops now.
  2. Who can possibly read through that many e-mails, sort them and be coherent in a response?
  3. While finding love after 50 can be some work, it cannot be a full time job. I have a job and I need to do it, like every day. I can’t go so far down the looking for love tunnel that I don’t show up in my existing life. Here. Now.

But, I have to say the experience has shown me a few things. I realize there are plenty of nice guys out there, who like me, kind of wish to wash someone else’s socks in the load they are already doing and they wouldn’t mind investing in a day to day relationship. It also shows that human beings seek partnership. I am not alone in being alone.

If nothing more ever came of this experiment of posting an ad, that would be plenty. It’s also nice to hear that my values are not so weird no one can relate and that I look okay, maybe even good enough. As an aging woman, do you know how hard it is to even get there? Good enough-has a nice ring to it.

This process has been enlightening in every bump, every hope and every failure. I’ve learned that I value honesty and humility a whole lot, probably more than any other qualities, and that there is plenty of love, respect and caring to go around.

It makes me wonder why we haven’t come together and ended hunger and homelessness by now. It makes me think one day we will.

I’m delighted that there is no chance now that I will die alone and bitter. I may be alone but I will not be bitter. How could I be bitter in the face of so many people all wishing on stars, all looking on Craigslist for that off chance that maybe… and all, just like me, supposing that love of all kinds is great but a person who’s socks you can launder, who’s sneeze is cute and who may not like your spinach but will enjoy your potatoes, would be a great thing?

I know I could have been loved even if I choose to take a particular sort of pass. Wow.

I titled my ad, “Cooking for Two”. I think that I’m serious about that. Maybe one day I’ll spring for a dining table so we can enjoy that meal together and we can invite our children and grand children. Because family is love stitched together by good intention–not perfection nor even history. Whoever shows up at that table is family. I’m looking forward to see how it all turns out.

Family is a decision. So I’ll do the assignment for my matchmaker which is over due and know this life is pretty good and this world is filled with wonder and simplicity all so powerful even a simple ad on Craigslist can become a novel experience.

The Angry Onion & the Sensible Shoes

The road to love is paved with rocks. I can’t speak to intentions..just those heavy leaden formations of various shapes and sizes that cause me to stub my romance toe every single time.

Part of the problem for me and my daughter/matchmaker is that I’m kind of a weird girl. Okay, maybe, a really weird girl. I cannot play the game or even watch it anymore.

I mean this literally and figuratively. When the Super Bowl was on I was sitting in total ignorance enjoying a plant based meal and sipping a Mimosa,(this one had blueberries-delicious) and had no earthly idea there was anything else happening in households and bars across the US. (that’s lower 48 to my friends up north or the states to the crew in Europe). I was thanking the parking fairies and car karma for allowing me an awesome spot. Clueless.


So here’s where I’m going, who is going to want to hang out with a twig eater who won’t go to football or even watch it on television, who also won’t go to violent movies, laugh at jokes about people of color or gay people, doesn’t think non human animals are inferior in any way and is also, by the way, not rich but works a lot? I mean how gorgeous would I have to be?

I walked out of “Apocalypse Now”. I really did. That was in 1978. I haven’t changed. That guy never asked me out again. Worst part: I had no idea what went wrong.

As to football–I’m a lot like my friend who said he just couldn’t take it and “left after the first inning.”

All forms of manliness commit suicide in my presence. I met a guy who told me how well trained his big dogs were, “..maybe we could go out, I could bring them by and you could meet them?” My response, “I have a rabbit.” Yea, never heard from him again either.

I’m crushing this thing. If being undatable was a thing I’d be on Oprah and have a book deal. Adoring crowds would clap. Instead I’m in my plush pink robe and flannels writing to you. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

I’m picking out my sensible shoes and preparing for what my mother and her sisters whispered about behind the back of the organist at church with the peaceful face and sneakers with her cotton dress, “spinster” .

Still, there is a faint hope or two. My matchmaker/daughter says I haven’t made a strong enough list of pros and cons. My Dharma sister, Canada Carmen says enjoy the ride and practice detachment, which is great advice just all around, and my dear old Brit says, ‘Don’t worry darling, I love you. ‘

Yet candidate #1, turned candidate #0 is gone and no one else has come around. The damned Onion Guy, may he have to peel them for eternity with no cool water or mushrooms, garlic or wine and accidentally wipe his face, has been entirely dead air, total radio silence. Still, I kind of like those guys in the way that they are real. We didn’t work out but it’s because we didn’t lie to each other. So in a way, that’s a win.

Things don’t always work out. Sometimes you stub your toe. Sometimes you do it over and over and buy shoes with stronger support, get a pedicure and hit the road again.

The road to romance is paved with rocks. But if it is also paved with good intentions then the trip is worth the trip.

And, come to think of it, the woman who played the organ had a peaceful face and her sneakers were really comfortable with that cotton dress. Maybe she went hiking after church. Maybe she was happy.