jenn farrell

Writer. Editor. Teacher. Public speaker and professional cheerleader to writers of all stripes.


Solitary (Wo)man

Posted on September 23, 2011 at 12:40 PM

It will probably surprise exactly none of you to hear that I’m not much known as a “rugged adventurer.” I’m the kind of gal who loves NOT camping, and whose idea of roughing it is staying in a hotel where the ice machine is on a different floor. So just being out at Landfall is a big deal. Being alone is, as goofy as it might sound, a huge act of bravery for me. As Ron, the cottage caretaker and all-around swell guy, said to me when he dropped me off, “If you’re gonna be out here, you’d better like yourself.”



Well, I guess that’s the problem, isn’t it? I’m not sure if I like myself enough to spend this much time on my own. My idea of relaxation is being surrounded by people. When I feel lonely in the city and have no one to talk to, I like to walk through a crowded mall. How can a person feel isolated with so many other strangers, so many bright and shiny distractions?



But as I near the end of the first of my two weeks here, I feel like I might be (kind of, sort of) getting the hang of this. The thing about being left alone with one’s own thoughts is that they won’t be ignored. Can’t drown them out with television or the internet or the sounds of the city, or shopping malls. And as uncomfortable as some of those thoughts might be, every once in a while a good idea floats through there. And my life is quiet enough now that I can actually hear it, and hold on to it. I didn’t start any brand-new material (other than a personal daily journal) until yesterday, but I think I needed all that time to just be able to hear what was going on inside my head. Once I got past the “Oh god, why are you here you can’t do this you’re not cut out for this you’re obviously a crazy woman who needs to be on drugs”, then it was time for an idea. And it’s a good one.




I started this entry to tell you about a brave little hike I did all by myself, with amazing high-up pictures and everything, but it turned into this instead. I guess I needed to get it out. So here are some more shots of “my yard”, including the walkway up to the cottage and the lovely little dell right out front.



One picture I wish I could share with you is the image of three very smart-looking blue jays who pal around outside my kitchen window every morning. I see them as I come downstairs, but they’re awfully camera shy. Once they spot me, they’re usually gone for the day. Until tomorrow.




Categories: Jenn Farrell, Events

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Reply Patric Earle
1:37 AM on September 25, 2011 
Thank you for your lovely pictures of Landfall Jenn. I have seen many pictures of Landfall before (many by your spiritual host there, Brad Folensbee, my mentor and teacher at West Seattle HS all those years ago) but these really are taken from a fresh perspective.

I hope you get those solitary thoughts stirring in your mind sorted so that they begin to pour out for the rest of us.

Take care,

Patric (Seattle, Wa., USA)
Reply BrianK
2:42 AM on September 25, 2011 
Oh, my god, it looks amazing there. Jeez, sign me up! And there are FOXES!!! I can't believe lucky to see (and photo) the fox! Must have been posing for you.
Reply ElvaJli
9:34 AM on November 20, 2017