The Carmel Valley restaurant that Michael and I frequent for special occasions and occasionally for not so special occasions is where my best friend Gina, who has been my best friend for over 40 years (oh, my!), who is visiting from Michigan, took me for dinner last evening. We ate and drank well. Because the day had been one with too much time spent in various chairs, I suggested we take a walk before getting back in the car.
Up into the residential neighborhood behind the restaurant we went walking into the oncoming darkness. At block’s end we turned right and there on our left a short ways down was a wide-open entryway through which we strolled into an enormous field, wider than a football field and longer than a bunch of them in a row. (How odd that I don’t have a better way to indicate the size of this land other than to compare it to the space of a sport’s field that I really don’t like.)
We didn’t walk far into it—not only had darkness made itself known but Gina’s jetlag had too. We stood there awhile before turning back gazing into the abundance. Hidden in plain sight a swath of land took me by surprise. For years I’d come to this area and had never known of its existence—such a gorgeous open flank of land where the grass was tawny and smelled of that loamy mix of dry and wet that spells out summer. Our imaginations have this quality too. We carry them around in us everyday and there, look, what you’d never seen before, what you never knew was there, suddenly makes itself apparent and the world gets bigger again!