SWORDFERN
Rooted, I used to think.

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Wednesday, May. 23, 2007 @ 10:43 am
Cape Scott



Prof's office. Yellow walls. Messy bookshelves, cartoons on wall, ancient furniture. I can see into the lab, and it looks normal. Students crammed in, iodine-stained benchtops, ultracentrifuge the size of a washing machine.

He sits in a chair and he talks. He asks nothing about me. Not one direct question. I don't like you. I glaze over when he starts talking about his research. I think your research is mundane. Talks about funding and salaries, and I want to leave. He knows it. The grad student I met before pretends I don't exist.

I shrug my shoulders and thank him for his time. Half smile. He knows.

I can't do it. I can't pretend to want to work there. More of the same. Going nowhere.

I wake early, trying to figure things out. Dawn is at 5:30, and I wait from then, watching the dusky light turn bright, and the sparrows start to call.

In my head, I try to figure how to afford the four weddings that I have to participate in this summer. The ferries, the gifts. My $8 Salvation Army dress. How to attend a mid-week dress fitting on the mainland. If I take a part-time job I won't get the time off. Your wedding is annoying me. I wish I'd never said yes.

I talk to her on the phone. Wedding this, wedding that. She asks nothing about me. I talk to my mother on the phone. Job this, job that. I always hang up angry and upset.

We need to get away.

We drive up-island. Up as far as we can. Bears grazing along the sides of the roads. I'm pointing out the names of the snowy peaks from the map. Finally I can breathe.

With weight on my back, I feel like I am able. Able to do this. Able to do anything. The ebb and flood of the tides, eagles wheeling and the rain sheeting down the tent. Down my face, and the kilometers count away on the treads of my boots.

In the end I feel OK. Better.

I went into science because I loved this. Nature. But all I found in science was numbers and things in bottles, and repetition more mindless than the ever-crashing ocean waves. My science is the way the wind picks up before the rains come, the smell of Labrador Tea growing in the bogs, the search for a perfect whole sand dollar.

I think I will keep my science private and find a completely topic for my career.


Blow Down from Wind Storms



Remnants from Danish Settlers



Camp at Nel's Bight



Sand Dollar at Nel's Bight



No mud?!



Ground Cone



Rainbow at Experiment Bight



Rainy Sea Stacks



Sunset from Nel's Bight



At Guise Bay

Cape Scott Lighthouse



Hiking Boardwalks near Eric Lake



Me at San Josef Bay



Camp at San Josef Bay



Roots | Shoots