Making Your Own Sunshine

On life’s stormiest days, sometimes you have to make your own sunshine. But even in the pouring rain, sometimes the sunshine finds you.

It’s been a wild weather week. Dark and gloomy. Just the way Jeff likes it. You feel no guilt staying inside with a fire in the grate. I’ve been painting a lot lately and I notice I have been channeling the theme of light in the darkness. Perhaps its the season.

Anyone who knows me knows I love books. They transported me to adventures all through childhood. And inspired the life I live today. I owe much of who I am to the words of others. The worlds they painted in my mind, shining a light towards possibility.

Giving up all my books when I left the US nearly four years ago was gut-wrenching. And, while I have made it a priority to buy English language fiction when I see it in Spain, and to fill suitcases with it when visiting an English speaking country, I am nowhere near to having the collection I had amassed over the first 50 years of my life. So I figure if you can’t readily buy books, at least you can paint them.

Since the sun isn’t shining you can’t see the gold shimmering on the bindings. As though from a window in a library. This is Jeff’s favorite part. But it will be framed and hung in the stairway. The walls on the turret get sun for several hours a day and it will sparkle.

The next one is not yet finished, but Jeff’s love of astrophotography and time lapse views of the night sky inspired me. How the light of stars streaks across the expanse of space. Again, light in the darkness. The other colors went down first. Gold, green, blue and grey. Before laying the black, indigo and purple on top. Then removing paint to reveal the light of stars. It will be hung in a sunny place, too. Shimmering on a summer day.

I’ve started another painting. A bit cliché, really. But the last full moon was on a clear night. The light was so intense it had me standing at the window transfixed. I didn’t have to take photos to remember what it looked like. What it felt like standing there. Nowhere close to completed, we will see where it leads.

But before I could get painting today, I needed to head back to Palas. There were more tractors on the roads than cars. This is not hyperbole. Two tractors for every car. Slurry tanks by the dozen. And some ancient machines. I’m pretty sure that when you purchase a tractor here you will have it forever. Your grandchildren will be driving it. I was pleased to see many ladies behind the wheel of these vintage contraptions.

The farmacia in Palas is the friendliest place on earth. Due to Omincron our little community has 19 postitives. That’s a lot for such a small village. The pharmacists came out and served customers lined up on the street in the rain. Lovely, caring people who run the farmacia on the main street in a building that is probably 300 years old if it’s a day. A father and a daughter who are at the heart of our community.

Then I walked up the street to the little Correos. There was my friend behind the counter. She was assisting another customer. In the meanwhile, as I waited, the Correos mochila service (Pilgrim bag transfer service) arrived with a van full of backpacks and luggage. We have noticed the number of Peregrinos has picked up this week. The previous customer had finished up and the woman there asked for the mochila guy’s help. The software is still giving her fits. He got out my box and helped her manually print out something I could sign. Then I paid the fee in cash. I think the lady was happy to see the back of me.

I made my way home in the rain where Jeff eagerly awaited the box. And what was inside?

A lovely card. A bounty of beef jerky and red licorice for Jeff. Coffee and a coffee press for me. And some Slap Ya Mama cajun seasoning. Do I sense some potato fixin’s later? I think I do.

While I love making my own sunshine on a cloudy day, I think the sunshine generated by good friends, both old and new, is even better. And, in this case, a lot more tasty. 😋 The true spice of life.

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