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This post is part of my 2022 Word Project. You can read what that’s about here.

Thursday, July 12, 2023

Today is International Rock Day. In other news, there’s an international rock day. A day nobody knows about, fewer people care about, and for which there is no actual proof that it exists except for a thousand questionable websites that all copy each other’s content.

And then people like me read about it and go oooooooo rocks!

Did rocks need a day?

I told myself I was absolutely not going to write about rocks, not even a little. But then I searched my photos and rocks were surprisingly plentiful.

Rocks also make their way with some frequency into our everyday language. You can be dumb as a rock. Have a head hard as a rock. Be solid as a rock or live under a rock. For something that just sits there, a rock is quite busy.

I do not feel like turning this into a geology lesson. In fact, I don’t want this to be a lesson at all. I am taking a strictly no-lesson approach, with the sole purpose of appreciating some of the beautiful, interesting and amazing rocks I have encountered in my life. Or at least the last digital decade of it.

Like this good old fashioned boulder.

I love pretty much anything about the world, so it’s not really surprising that I appreciate all the unique sizes and shapes and formations of rocks. I have enough of them in my possession to call a collection. From the beach. From parks. From construction sites. From hiking trails.

A couple of years ago, for reasons that only Myself A Couple Of Years Ago could understand, I decided that I was going to collect one rock for each month of the year.

And I did. I didn’t travel far that year but I did pick up a rock from a different place each month, then put it into a little plastic bag with a note stating the date.

I don’t think I put where it came from, which seems like a significant oversight, so maybe it’s a project I’ll have to reinstate next year. Once the word project is over and I don’t know what to do with an extra four hours a day.

Or maybe I should start a collection of rocks from each state. They are quite unique as you traverse the country.

I also have a jar full of rocks that my brother David and I snatched from the jaws of the ocean waves one summer when he stayed with us.

Occasionally, if I am walking somewhere and there is an interesting rock, I will pick it up and hold it for a while. Rocks aren’t as insistent as seashells so I’m usually fine about putting them back where they came from, but a few do want to come home with me, then they sit on my desk and look smooth or jagged or speckled for a while until I wonder why I’m keeping a rock and put it in the garden. Sometimes I just leave them where I found them.

I’m feeling a sudden lack of rock in my life.

Anyway, this is a more-pictures-fewer-words sort of thing, so please enjoy a few delightful rocks on this day of appreciation.

A gravity-defying rock.

A rock doing yoga better than I do.

Rocks balanced on rocks. I love walking through the woods and finding these little secrets. What do you suppose the story is behind that stack?

A bowl of memories, tributes and wishes set in stone.

Sunbathing on a rock.

Playing sentinal on a rock.

Doesn’t it look like this branch is placing the last stone on top?

Some rocks dressed in their summer finery.

Stones as memorial. From dust we came, and to dust we shall return. Including the rocks.

If you’re going to make a wish, it should absolutely be in a stone wishing well.

And if you’re looking for a story, this is a lovely and mysterious place to begin.

Photo: a painted garden rock in front of the house in Brigantine.