Life on the Edge

“I want to stand as close to the edge as I can. Out on the edge you see all the kinds of things you can’t see from the center.”
— Kurt Vonnegut

People who aren’t from here—auslanders, tourists and pretty much everyone from Nebraska—like to laugh at where we put our homes: tucked in canyons, perched on hillsides, astride the water on stilts. What about earthquakes, they ask, or floods or storms or, these days, global warming? Oh, those crazy Northern Californians!

Go ahead, make fun. Worry if you want. But that’s not our style. We prefer, perhaps foolishly, but nonetheless intrepidly, to live as close to the beauty of Marin as we can. We risk suffering the occasional nuisances of nature in order to enjoy the rewards of its daily intimacies.

The shifting earth or the rising sea—potential realities, to be sure—is a small price to pay for the stillness of the redwoods at night, the expansive vista from an upper deck or the perpetual motion of a seascape that flows right to our back door.
It’s true, we live on the edge here in Marin—and most days we can see more. Here, for example, on the edge of Raccoon Strait off the Tiburon shore, we can watch a rolling bank of fog linger ominously in the distance as the morning sun does its best to warm a chill winter day.

The edge. It’s a good place to be.