We hold the turning wheel of nature’s phases as sacred and observe the quarters and solstices with special dinners, little shrines, cultural and spiritual practices. After being to gether for 8 years, the Summer Solstice of 2003 didn’t seem any different from any other. The day before, I bought sun flowers for a shrine decorated with acorns, a basket of fresh strawberries for after dinner, and a yellow candle rubbed with lemon oil. When P. asked if we could go to Pelican Point (a beach park preserve) on Solstice morning it didn’t seem unusual.
Just after sunrise we arrived at the park; a dew wet morning with the smell of the ocean mixing with sage. We walked the paths above the ocean and then made our way down to the beach. When he took me by the arm and sat me down on a rock just out of reach of breaking waves I felt confused. When he took a few steps back facing me with such a serious look I braced myself for bad news. But then his face softened as he reached into his coat pocket and pulled out a folded piece of paper. Unfolding it, he met my eyes with so much love and began to read this to me:
Yes. I cried big gushy tears. He did too. We sat for a long time on the rock together, holding hands, watching the waves and the seagulls that sidestepped toward us to see if we had anything good to eat before they took off to catch an air current over the water.
With my health scare, we hadn’t planned much for Solstice this year. We decided to celebrate the anniversary of his proposal and my new adventures in food. After a little research we found several vegan or vegetarian eateries and picked Native Foods Cafe for lunch that day. It’s mostly organic, all natural, 100% plant-based, homemade seitan and tempeh dishes. We loved it!
Since seeing this at Kari June Young’s blog, I was craving a vegan burger. We ended up with the best tempeh burgers I’ve ever had. Wait. I’ve never had a tempeh burger. Well. Still. GOOD tempeh burgers. I ordered a tasty cup of potato soup with mine and P. had sweet potato oven fries. Oh. My. God. A couple of his fries found their way to my plate and they were the best sweet potato …. ok, never had sweet potato fries either. But the next time I go there those damn things will be my whole dinner.
Right now my sweet man is in the kitchen making us a salad, the cats chase each other around the dining room table. I write, feel the rhythm of my breath, linger on the thought of summer full of play, rest and kindness (Dream Lab with Mondo Beyondo!). I’ll get ready for yoga, a hot shower and then sink into sleep.