So I promised thoughtful posts. I actually have a few different ones in draft form, begun at earlier times during the week and added to in odd moments of calm. I planned to spend a little time reading, writing, commenting … the usual bloggy things to do when one is being bloggy.

Then the Dow dropped 678.91 points in an afternoon.

-678.91 points. 7.33%
(Just in case you missed every media outlet on the planet and needed to see the news in clear print.)

It’s funny, I’m actually less worried right now than I was three weeks ago.

First, I know how to grow my own food. If it comes to a repeat of the Great Depression, I won’t starve — and neither will the people I love. (Amazing how much less dire the world looks when imminent starvation isn’t a card in the proverbial deck.)

Second, I have exceptional job security, as do the overwhelming majority of my family and friends. Those of us who have will be able to assist those who have not — should a repeat of the dire GD come to pass.

On the lighter and more immediate side (since I really *don’t* think we’re going to see anything like a horrifying depression in this land of plenty), rents in New York City are wildly fluctuating. Roomy, gorgeous flats in a neighborhood I couldn’t dream of three months ago are now at the low end of my seeking price range. (Seriously, from $4,000 per month to $1,700? For a comparable listing at the same address? That really *is* insane.) For the first time since I charted this course, I’m not at all worried about “where I’m going to live next.”

But most importantly, I have learned over the last five years to live in the moment. Life is short. Opportunities knock when they’re unexpected, provided we’re prepared to snag them. Being terrified and curled into a miserable ball of agonized worry is so not the way to prepare. In the northeast, the air is crisp and cool, the leaves are turning to brilliant bursts of crimson and scarlet and vermilion, orchards and fields are thick with the energy of harvest, and markets are bursting with bounty. Children and adults hungry to learn pack their ways into schools and universities and seminars and libraries, gathering information, creating knowledge, and enriching their lives. We are a resourceful people. We are inextinguishably creative, filled with love and compassion and fierce determination, and the natural, glorious world is a tremendously wonderful place to be just now. And times of great flux, times of change, are times of hope and promise and challenge and opportunity.

I’m going to start running – or try again – which terrifies me, but which I know will be good for me some time from now. I’m going to plant a tree this weekend, and seek joy in scrapbooking old photographs, and visit new stories. I’m going to arrange time for a conversation filled with laughter, and call my best friend. I’m going to make cold-weather soup and bake fresh bread and feed my family. Enjoy a respite from my job, where I’ve happily worked myself to exhaustion for too many days running. I’m going to studiously ignore the fact that I have a 403b account, let alone that it might have money in it, and further still that it might be losing that money. Or perhaps, I might check the markets tomorrow morning and transfer more shares into a higher risk part of my portfolio – stocks are “on sale” after all.

What are you going to do – tonight, or tomorrow – with your one, glorious life?