I have what has turned out to be quite a ritual for me as my every other day mile walk up Pine Canyon Creek becomes evermore intriguing This creek is dry 360 days out of 365. But in those five days, this creek will cover up some rocks and expose new rocks with different colors and shapes. Then there are all the different birds that pass me by and the tracks that identify the nocturnal critters that use the same trail I use during the day giving me, always something new and interesting to look at. Once several years ago I discovered a whale vertebrae encased in a sandstone rock. According to a friend a few million years ago all this part of California was under ocean water. Today it’s covered with murky California political water. My halfway destination is a boulder that is about two feet in diameter and is pushed up tight to a concrete watering trough. Its shape allows all the critters that need a drink, can climb up this rock like a Ground Squirrel or a Racoon or for horses, cattle, and a few blacktail deer who don’t need my rock can belly up to the trough and get a drink of cool, clear water. This boulder is just the right size for my bony butt to use as a seat and the water trough is a bathtub for my three dogs that have probably run several miles chasing after ground squirrels to cool off in. I walk with ski poles, a leftover from my skiing days. They sure make walking a lot easier and I can reach out and tap one or more of my dogs, as a signal to shake their wet bodies someplace other than on me.
My rock is just the right height for thinking and not thinking, which by the way is much harder to do than thinking. Well, today while I was sitting on my rock which I can only use as long as my fanny is seated on it. When I start to leave then the pecking order takes over as to who drinks next. It's a test as to who is the toughest critter on the rock drinks first and courtesy is of little use. And that’s when a thought popped into my head from where I know not. But it was asking the question does love have a scent? So I thought anything that is as all-encompassing and necessary as love, must have a scent. So the question becomes where do I find love’s scent?
It happened several hours later as I was doing an earthworm count in my pistachio orchard. Before you go any further Jack, how do you count something you can’t see? Well if you take two heaping shovel fulls of soil about one half a cubic foot per shovel full and count the worms in the two shovel fulls and do this about eight or tens times at random locations then average them together, now take your average number and multiply it by 43560 cubic feet in an acre and you will have a rough count as to how many worms per acre your soil might have. Some of my most fertile soils can have as many as 300,000 worms per acre, that’s 7 worms per cubic foot and if my worm count keeps increasing, I know I’m doing something right. But as I was counting I felt compelled to take a handful of the soil and hold it to my nose and as I inhaled a musky scent that was pure and alive with sensual overtones engulfed my being, saying to me that love has to have its own dimension other than the standard three dimensions of length, width, height and you can add in the fourth dimension time. These dimensions are much too boring and mundane to ask love to reside there only. Each of us, in our own way, experiences love daily. But if you want to go to the next dimension and if you're feeling a little less than chipper and need more joy and laughter in your life, go find a shovel and dig up a shovel full of damp dark brown soil, now take a handful and bring it to your nose and as you inhale something happens that you don’t expect the scent of love arrives filling the air and wonderful things begin to happen to your outlook on life.