Learning is something I enjoy. I don’t shy away from learning to stuff new things into my gray matter, no way. But! Yes, a cram packed “but.” I mean come on, by this time in my life you’d think I’d know all I need to know to get me through to the end of my times. Then something fun to learn will come up and my eyes get all glazed over, my ears perk up and my mouth leads the way by saying something crazy like, “Oh, I’m all in. Let’s go.” That usually starts the ball rolling to be part of something. Then out of left field a huge basketball will roll over the top of me. Leaving me squished in the middle of the road of life with “Wilson” embedded on my backside. If you sit for just a few moments and think about all the things you’ve learned, what, I wonder, will you pick out as the best thing you learned in the wonderfulness of your lifetime. For me? Well, that how to breathe thingy comes to mind. HAHA. That’s really just a natural thing though. Something that I learned, that was actually taught to me? Panning for gold leaps to the front. What other things can one do while playing in the dirt, something I have always loved to do anyway, and if luck is on your shoulder, you get a few flakes of shiny things. After all I’m a girl and I like shiny things. Especially free shiny things. Next might be when I learned to change oil in my car. It is pretty straight forward, but very satisfying. I wonder if guys who have done this task over and over again ever just stop and are as impressed with themselves as I am when I change oil in my car. I’ll have to put it on my list to ask a guy I know. Pretty sure he will just guffaw at me like I am a girl. Some things I wish I hadn’t learned. I took a class and became a certified nurse assistant some time ago. Pretty cool to have a nursing card in my wallet I must say. During that class, of all the things I remember learning, this one really stuck with me. In learning to chart we learned some of the shorthanded things we might encounter. The one that still sticks out in my mind and heart is “C” yes, a capital “C.” That one letter stands for cancer. Not all the things we learn are good, but they will all be a part of you forever. Back to the magic of learning something new. In the here and now. YIKES I am starting a new book. Well writing one. A work of fiction. A novel. I guess a novel. I have not really thought of myself as a novelist. A friend of mine said something to me that I cannot get out of my head. That’s how things happen. You just tra-la along and then, bang-o. Your plate, that you think is quite full enough, is tilted and you find just a squish of room to add something new to learn or do. I know all the ins and outs, but I bet as I travel this new fiction writing road there will be new things to learn. Like how to pull out my hair without it hurting. Some will tell you as they try to teach you something new that it is just as easy as falling off a log. I don’t know about you, but I am not akin to liking to learn to fall off a log. I want to learn how to stay upright on that silly log. Sailing clear to the ocean. I have a friend who keeps adding new life skills to his arsenal that will scoot him along his path to do great things in his life. Another grand friend is fighting to just keep a nose above the water line of life. Both of those things I have done and felt during my years. Both are well seated in the learning process. Kind of like when I learned not to leave rice cooking on high. PU what a mess. But I learned how to NOT cook rice. It’s sort of true that the next new thing is just around the corner or the bend of the river. Finding the magic of learning does not stop when you get that diploma from school. No matter what school. Taking all the magic and practicing what you learn? Oh, then you will have moved from being the assistant of your life and magically you will be your very own main event. Poof! Trina Machacek lives in Eureka. Her books are available online or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org for a signed copy.