In the summer, our home is a guest ranch, with an opening of the mountain and our simple life to some of the most wonderful folks you can imagine. Think of it – who would choose to spend a week away from the pressures of the city, the sounds of phones ringing, messages buzzing, traffic zooming by… and come here, high in the mountains, off grid and off the beaten path, far and away, to do… what, you may ask? Perhaps nothing. Or perhaps nothing more than stare out the big picture window at the clouds floating over the mountain tops, the hillsides turning gold, the morning frost melting off, or the evening light casting longer and longer shadows behind the horses grazing out on pasture? Perhaps alternating time with casting into the Rio or hiking the peaceful trails or joining me for a horse ride. And then a nap.
We call it Alan Mode.
Alan Mode is the state of rest, of unwinding, of letting go, modeled after the good old dog, the master of chilling out, laying low, enjoying the simplest pleasures of companionship, purpose… and slumber.
I imagine Ron didn’t realize what he’d start when he said it, but we’ve latched on to this expression and added it to our standard of speaking: Alan mode. It epitomizes that zone people get into when they visit the ranch. Hey, it epitomizes what we strive for as well when our work is done.
Alan is a fine example and teacher for the art of relaxation. Of course being deaf has its benefits. Napping uninterrupted is one of them.
Oh, and by the way: after eight months, Alan has also finally mastered the use of his dog door. See, you can teach an old dog new tricks…