Nostalgia {+ Caramel Cake}

Yesterday was a cozy day; if there’d been any fog it might have reached perfection. I had a friend over for tea and browned butter-brown sugar blueberry muffins in the morning; when Sierra finally went for her nap I baked a cake and thought about little things to procure for our summer vacation and listened to some mellow music that always makes me think of Ireland and a grey sea and green green fields stretching across the horizon.

I miss fog and green fields and the ocean.

(And while I’m on the subject, I also miss my apartment in San Francisco, with everything just so; my tiny kitchen; windows that were perpetually open to let in the breeze; hardwood floors; the soft light in my dining room; that feeling of permanence knowing that I’d found my place in the world and was happily settled into it. I miss weather and fog and rain and sun that is not a terribly hot sun and truly fresh air and redwood trees and an overall feeling of lightness in the very atmosphere. I miss coffee shops a few blocks over with good bagels and pastries and I miss tea shops with rooibos tea in pots and vegan BLTs. Just for starters.)

Things change. My city is not my city anymore and is not even the city it was three years ago when I still lived there.

So until we settle into another, better-for-us city — TBD where exactly, but we will leave here in a year and counting — I’ll make tea for friends and wish desperately for cool winds and bake cakes for birthdays and just because. I’ll remember weekend trips to the Headlands because we had a few free hours to spend as we pleased; I’ll remember long runs in the Seashore when no one else was about except bobcats and elk along the path; I’ll remember walking up and down steep streets as a way of life and not for exercise; I’ll remember the sense of wonder and discovery that I felt for years living in that special place. I’ll remember that very little in this life has permanence, and perhaps this is not a negative. How, after all, would we fully appreciate what we have if we have it all of the time?

And I’ll be thankful that we came across a wild(er) section of the trail on a hot Friday late afternoon where there were fish in the pools of water under the palms, where we visited horses who looked at us very calmly from their dark stalls, where I swear I saw a eucalyptus tree amid the abundant foliage and it made us happy. A little touch of our Northern California in the desert. Sometimes the light before sunset is so soft and grey and still it is amazing and I will forever strive to capture it in photographs (not possible).

Cozy days, even when the temperature shoots well upwards of 100 F are not to be taken for granted. Nostalgia, too.

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