My father always told me, “time speeds up as you get older,” and as a little girl I certainly doubted this strange idea of time and space. It seemed time was always against me as it dragged on and on, especially on hot summer days when I would beg my mother to take me swimming. “Pretty soon,” was the answer, and what does “pretty soon” mean anyway? What did pretty have to do with soon? They didn’t seem related at all.
Fun time always went so fast, and it felt like the wind was at my back pushing me quickly ahead and my feet were racing forward running, jumping, climbing, swimming or dancing in the latest recital. I loved anything with a motor or wheels, and at 11 years old got into a lot of trouble when I drove my daddy’s two-ton, five-gear, flatbed truck through his new ranch-style pine fence. I failed to understand his stern reaction about the “accident” to my face, but he laughed like crazy when he told his friends.
A few weeks later I was learning to shift gears in my brother’s 1948 Chevy. I backed the jalopy to the end of the driveway slowly, hoping my father’s nap would continue, then slid forward in the car seat as far as possible, stretching my left foot and placing it on the clutch, then placing my right toe on the gas and with a rhythm only known to those who have driven stick-shift vehicles, I lunged forward in a shaky manner and the car zoomed forward. So energized by the thrill of driving the 200-yard race course, I didn’t notice my father at the front door in, God forbid, his boxer shorts underwear. When my Dad was really angry, proper attire wasn’t an issue and living out in the pre-suburbs (before we had neighbors) was to his advantage.
During my early youth, if I wasn’t to be found on the roof, I was setting up a tea party in my brother’s tree house or hanging upside down in the neighbor’s backyard swing set. Setting still wasn’t an option, and I’m sure I’m now getting a payback from my early antics via my grandchildren, as both of my little ones have now acquired riding lawn mowers to “play on,” thanks to my husband!
Every time I leave home for a Feng Shui event, they plot against Grandma, with Grandpa at the helm. The two innocent lawn mowers had no motors when I left for the International Feng Shui Conference, and I assumed that is the way they would stay for a couple of years. The little demon motorless things were only “for play,” I assumed, and as I always advise my clients NEVER ASSUME, as I have learned with TIME, I ignored my own advice. Other people have other agendas and can exert free will when other people are out of sight. Other people (my husband) got on eBay and found motors for the old, but fun, shells of lawn mowers and installed then into the motionless toys. Now my six-year-old is driving all over our four lots. Payback is sweet. Leave home and control leaves with you.
Learning the energies of your family can be enlightening and life changing. Attending the recent Conference in San Luis Obispo for 6 days was a delight. Presented by Roger Green, internationally known for his seven schools of Wind and Water or Feng Shui throughout the world, he is one of the top authorities on the Art of Placement. His teaching abilities and experience into the world of Compass School mysteries is extensive. Translating the Chinese Lo P`an Compass into English over 20 years ago has been the catalyst of transformation for the Western world in understanding Chi or unseen energies which flow into every space.
I had made contact with Roger several months ago to ask him if I could present my new Feng Shui art series called The Five Elements. He was intrigued by the idea, and I promised I wouldn’t embarrass him with the quality of my paintings. I figured I would have six months of leisure time to produce the work. And then life moved rapidly forward as I went to China with Master Lin Yun’s group for three weeks, to see where Feng Shui began. Consultations and speaking engagements greeted my return and all of a sudden, TIME was flying by quickly and I could see myself “in a world of hurt,” as my husband likes to say.
I warned everyone in the family to not talk to me or ask me for food for two weeks, but I had forgotten my daughter from the Bay Area was coming for a birthday invitation the coming week, oops! My daughter and I played for another week, sailing on a charter boat with a garden group to Friday Harbor to Pelindaba Lavender Farm (www.pelindaba.com), a beautiful trip on my friend’s charter boats called the Paracletes (www.paracletecharters.com) with Barbara Blossom Ashmun, weekly columnist for The Better Homes and Garden magazine. What fun! Barbara is a delight, very approachable and was very interested about Feng Shui and the shapes of gardens which enhance the outdoor living spaces. We talked the afternoon away as the chartered boat sailed through the San Juan Islands and home to the Mainland of Washington State.
The last week was approaching, and I began to go a little wild looking at the blank canvas and the deadline one week away. My daughter, who had turned into a lovely woman many years ago, when TIME still seemed forever, reassured me that I would pull “it” off as always, which gave me new confidence, then turned and waved a goodbye she boarded the shuttle back to the airport. As a child and a teenager, she spent many hours waiting for me to finish teaching art classes and was usually bored and mad as my classes dragged on, according to her analysis.
The countdown was now at five days, and I became totally serious as I positioned the first 48 x 48 canvas on the art easel. I put a new CD into the player and listened as my new music tape from Gaia filled the house with balancing music and I began to visualize the Element of Wood. I looked out my west window at the 200-foot cypress trees and put the brush to the canvas. Five Elements in five days, may the Gods be with me. (Continued next week – Time, the five Elements, and purpose).