Monday, October 16, 2006

A Visit to Boston & Our 1st 5k Race

Colleen, Ambiana and I all travelled to Boston on Friday to visit Debbie and Aaron, my sister and her family , my Mom who is recovering from having her "knubbie" trimmed and to run our first 5k as a family. We were planning on running a 5k in Sommerville where Debbie and Aaron live but we had the wrong date. It just so happenned though that BU was holding a 5k fun run as part of Parent's Weekend so we ran it instead. The race started at 8am behind the student union and we jumped in at the back of the pack. The race went down bay State Road for a bit before crossing over Storrow Drive and continuing along as a loop on the Esplanade. Ambiana and I did okay, we finshed just under 26 minutes and unofficially came in 20th out of about 50 runners. Colleen broke 30 minutes. BU has changed so much in the 19 years since I graduated that it is hardley the same school. They have built maybe 20 big new brick buildings, re-modeled almost all the other ones and hiked tuition from $16,000 a year to over $60,000.

We spent Friday with Debbie and Aaron and Dudley their new puppy. Ambiana loved him and he was a bit intimidated by her. We took a long walk down to the North End for some subs, canoli and pizza slices. It was a beautiful day, clear and sunny and warm and we followed the Freedom Trail part of the way.

Join us in Boston!

On saturday after the 5k we spent the afternoon visitng with Katie, Bob and Maya at their home. They have re-arranged the living room so it is more spacious and are renovating and repainting their kitchen as well.

We then went to the nursing home where my mom is recovering and spent an hour or so with her. She is doing fine, her "knubbie" looks swell and we are looking forward to celebrating "Halloween" with her when she gets out. Colleen is re-imagining our Halloween celebration. Check our website next week for what that entails :)

It was a busy weekend and my girls fell asleep on the drive back to South Hadley Falls on Saturday afternoon. I just had to take their picture as they are so cute when asleep and Ambiana has her mom's sleepface :)

Gaelen and I spent the morning hiking across the Housatonic River in a hollow called the Ice Glen. We climbed on rocks, sat on logs, climped up a wooded slope to inspect some caves. Then back on the river more climbing on rocks, throwing of sticks and watching a train go by. It was my first camera free visit so this week I have a picture of Gaelen when he was about Ambiana's age and a drawing of Gaelen at our house last week playing his favorite game with me! :)

Ambiana and I spent some quality sunset time together on Sunday evening.

John Roggenkamp 1979-2006

On a tragic note I found out this week that my friend and fellow Bake Shop employee Johnny Rock was killed 3 weeks ago when he slipped while hiking on Byron Glacier in Portage Alaska and fell into a crevasse. I was stunned to say the least. I always liked John as he appreciated the beauty and mystery that is life and we had many interesting and insightful conversations over the years we worked together as well as some memorable hikes and fun times in and around Girdwood. We saw him briefly outside the Bake Shop when we were in AK last month and little did I imagine that it would be my last encounter in this plane of reality with Johnny Rock. Our world is a lonlier place without him in it.

Being the Moch I have been ruminating the past couple of days about his death, death in particular and about just what it IS to make that transition. Brought up Catholic the notions of heaven and hell still come to mind but the course my life has taken me inclines me to believe these are merely constructs aligned more with this worldly life to give validity to our system of justice with its judge who is able to sentence one to prison or death or to grant freedom.

I can't help but think about what it was like for John to die, I so wish I could hear about it first hand from him in one of his patented passionate raps. If anyone could appreciate the experience and relate the extraordinariness of it John could. My initial thoughts were about how horrible it must have been: hurt, cold, alone at the bottom of a crevasse. I soon realized these thoughts were my projections, my fears. John's experience must have been different.

Again being the Moch I looked at John's birthchart and compared it with a chart drawn for the afternoon of his death. What I found may only be solace for my grieving heart but as our belief in what transpires upon our death ultimately relies upon our faith I offer it up to you all to make of it what you will. I believe that our life experience in our bodies is much like the chrysalis phase of a butterfly. While in our body we are preparing our light-body (soul, ka, spirit, double, astral body call it what you will) for its emergence and operation on a different level of reality upon our death.

John's birthchart contained an energetic configuration called a Finger of God (FoG). There are 5 planets in the FoG configuration in John's chart: Moon Trine Neptune Trine Mercury and Mars forming the bow [Grand Trine] with Pluto [Sextile Moon and Neptune] Opposite Mars and Mercury as the arrow) On the afternoon of his death Saturn, the Lord of Form and Time was Conjunct his Natal Moon, Transiting Pluto was Conjunct his Natal Neptune [the bow] and Transiting Mercury was Conjunct Natal Pluto and Opposite Natal Mercury [the arrow] These transits triggered the Natal FoG which was active energetically within John.

All of which goes to say that this did NOT cause John's death but rather afforded him an opportunity to embrace and embark on change at this moment in his life experience. John, who loved being outdoors doing just what he was doing that afternoon, (climbing, exploring, experiencing this wonderful thing called "living") I'm sure would have accepted what had happened to him and then greeted his death as the next stage in the adventure of being.

Little does this help us who are left behind except to remind us to cherish those we love and even those we DON'T love while we and they are still here. It urges us to open our hearts and embrace life and love so that when our moment of transition comes we can take it knowing we have not leaving behind a life unlived and unloved.