Welcome to where the seeds of dreams are planted--where one can sip from the charmed chalice of life & meet interesting folk through (hopefully) intelligent conversation.

One never knows nor can expect who will sail into the fray--what we do know is that no soul here is perfect no matter how we try. So let us celebrate & raise our mugs to the idiosyncratic nature of life--to the Kramer's & Norm's of the world, the Roseanne's & Allan Poe's. Some old, some lost, some tortured, some blessed, all souls sharing a drink at the same time in the same place. The ensuing tales are authentic with names trending towards monikers. The flag waving on our doorstep means we're open, so come perk your curiosity in Le Harbor Bungalow Cafe.

Bonjour! Mesherfin! Hasta la vista! Your barista.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Re-creating Paradise

“Well I haven’t seen you in a while.”

Andrea is the sushi chef at a quaint little Scotch bar three doors down from le Harbor Bungalow Café.  The hangout does not serve food every night of the week, but every Wednesday Andrea starts rolling at 6 o’clock.  Before she punches the clock, Andrea stops by for a large coffee—dark roast.

“I kinda miss working Wednesday nights,” the barista said as the coffee carafe he was pumping coughed in his face. “That writing class I took last fall set me on a routine where I get hump day off.”

“No class this year?”

“I’m doing an independent study,” he said with a grin as he grinded more coffee beans. “Reviewing my creative nonfiction notes from Towson, continuing the blog and reading required texts for students at Naropa.”

“Ahhh…Colorado.” Andrea said as she paid for her coffee.

“Yeah, wonderful country,” responded the barista. “A couple of my college buddies have settled that way over the past decade. If they had it their way I would move there, find a band and contribute to their debauchery.”

“Why don’t you?”

“Well, it’s so far from where I grew up. And I should be around for such transitory events: weddings, funerals, parents becoming grandparents, brothers becoming fathers and lawyers…and myself acquiring a sister and a nephew.”

“Of course.”

“Remember, I lived out in California for ten years. Didn't get back much.”

“That’s right.”

“I’m in a different phase now—which is not to say I’m not tempted!”

Andrea laughed.  “Well, it’s about time to put on the rice. You should come by for sushi.”

The barista rates Andrea’s sushi the best in the neighborhood.  He also agrees that scotch is a superior pairing over sake.  And with the warm fireplace in the back…

“You know, tonight might be the night.”

Andrea closed the café door behind her and a burst of cold air invaded the warm café.  The wind smacked the barista in the face. He began to daydream as he tended to the espresso machine.  He thought of the creative nonfiction writing class he aced last fall.  He thought about hiking downtown with his Splaff backpack tight around his shoulders.  He remembered how he would hop the public bus north of the city and finish his assignments on the stop-and-go drive up York Road to Towson.  He remembered how without that class le Harbor Bungalow Café would not exist.  And then he thought of the topic of his first major assignment. The topic in many ways paralleled the Colorado lifestyle his friends were living. What was so important that he needed to write about?  What did he feel the need to record so that he would never forget?  More importantly, can he ever re-create it within a closer proximity to his family? 

Excerpt from The Dolphin & the Mountain:

Many people think of San Francisco as Northern California.  But five-and-a-half automobile-hours beyond the Golden Gate Bridge is a town…a region…an expanse of country in that very same state of the Union that pushes San Francisco further south with each wind along the mountainous interstate pass.
The region is home to the kind of real estate to make a Monopoly game board envious: Lake Shasta, Lake Siskiyou, Castle Lake, Castle Crags, the Pacific Crest Trail, the headwaters of the Sacramento River, the McCloud River (and falls…all three of them), the Eddys, Black Butte, Mt. Lassen, Glass Mountain, the Righteous Hole, Panther Meadows, Thumb Rock, dozens of pristine, isolated, see clear to your toes alpine lakes, five glaciers and enough trees and rivers to make logging and bottled water companies filthy rich.  Skiers and snowboarders breed in the hills and compete in national championships and EuroCups.  Black bear and cougar not only reign at the top of the wildlife food chain, they serve the local, rival high schools as mascots.  In the center of it all, geographically and emotionally, is a revered and worshiped snow-covered mass of volcanic rock visible over 50 miles away in every direction, Mt. Shasta.
Inherently, Mt. Shasta moves. The Mountain’s sheer mass stands heavy and accountable, guilty as an accomplice in shifting the earth’s plates at speeds beyond human perception.  Boiling springs curiously adventure deep within the volcano’s caverns, carving the Mountain from within.  Water bubbles emerge from dark to light, grow and pop.  Evidence.  Steam meets the brisk outdoor air.  More evidence. 
Yet Mt. Shasta has no need to move.  Glaciers meditate in the Mountain’s saddles, ebbing and flowing inordinately slow.  Adorning Ponderosas, pines and firs stretch their green needles in the high wind, tightening their grip into the soil and rock.  Clouds and shadows and snow gravitate—float, creep and fall.  Human perception awakens, as the Mountain offers a different face.  In fact, the Mountain’s face changes as often as the human face changes.  Like the moon to the earth and like many beings before me, I also gravitated toward the Mountain.  I needed to climb it—to the top.  I needed the Mountain to move me.


  1. Very nice Reg.
    Hope you don't mind me sharing this on Facebook. There's an icon to do so!
    Recently made a bunch of virtual friends from the past so they know you but maybe not your writing.
    Also put up some songs on an app called soundcloud. Got some Moonshot and Gnoli's on there and credited you of course.
    Hope all is well. Gotta read the whole the story..sweet title.

  2. Not at all, buddy. Share away! That's what this is for...Moonshot, baby! I can hear Guarded Door in my head about now.