Found on the Coast

I know it’s silly, but I admit to buying Kinfolk Magazine solely for the pretty pictures. Each photograph takes me to that instant, that moment where I can smell the steaming coffee or feel the brush of drying herbs against my palms. The current issue, Volume 5, was no different in picture quality but felt immeasurably improved as far as written content. For the first time, the words captured my attention alongside the beautiful photos.

I connected deeply to one story in particular ” The Lost Coast”, written by Nicholas Koch (photos by Alex Farnum) about a surf trip (with beautiful surfing men) taken along Northern California shores.  It was a small, simple piece but a concise reminder that if we must take time for ourselves and not rush through life. After living on the Northern Coast for 5 years, Koch had focused so much on his career that he lost sight of who, or where, he was. So much time had been wasted on repetitive tasks that he hadn’t taken advantage of all that was around him.

“And just like that, five frenetic years somehow blurred by me, my initial reveries of outdoor exploration lost in the chaotic shuffle of an unforgiving work life… I found myself disheartened, repeating old resolutions to work less and frolic more, resolutions that I only half believed I would uphold.”

Since moving to Seattle, I’ve worked very hard to maintain constant state of exploration. As the year comes to a close, I’m truly realizing how much I have explored the city. With only a handful of exceptions, I feel as if I’ve managed to sniff out every corner of Seattle and find some amazing places and activities along the way. There are still a few more things that I’d like to try (and many, many places that I would like to eat) but for the most part I’ve kept that adventurous spirit about me.

On the other hand, I’ve been so actively hunting around the city and working that I’ve stopped taking much time to rest and relax my pace (probably why I got so terribly ill). Long gone are the quiet, warm mornings enjoying a cup of coffee or the long afternoons reading and soaking up sun in the park. My world has quickly become one of convenience and the easiest shortcut. I also loved these words about the morning ritual of coffee “A Slower Cup” written by Sarah Lang:

“Many people only have time for coffee as they rush out the door. It’s not thoughtfully enjoyed, but merely consumed. For them, it’s a necessary evil, an abused drug, and it’s only job is to awaken, to dilate, to encourage us out of our slumber so we can face the feverish pace of the workplace.”

I’d like to find a good balance of that adventurous spirit with some calm and quiet for my life.

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