Waiting to Pull the Trigger

July 23, 2014

Well.

I am going.

And now comes the waiting.

The hardest part, after making the decision, which really wasn’t that hard to make, is waiting for the final thumbs up from my friend in New York to clear it with his room-mate.

And drumroll please.

I am doing the unthinkable, the impossible, the how is this going to work, but, yes, Virginia, I am going to go right after I get back from Burning Man.

I may, depending on when we get back in, actually have a day of down time in San Francisco before turning around and hopping on a plane.

Hopping on a plane with very little luggage.

I am only going to be there for three days.

I will need my laptop, blogging, duh, my camera, my phone, a change of clothes some decent walking shoes, and some toiletries. I am going to travel light and just go have me a three-day weekend in New York.

“You’re going to shit your pants when you see the Met.”

My friend sent me a text earlier as we were discussing the day and when the room-mate will be getting back, hopefully soon, I found a good ticket price and want to jump on it.

I am ready to shit on New York.

Or in it.

Uh.

Yeah.

I went to work today and found out that we will be returning from Burning Man far sooner than I had originally thought, mom wants to leave the 2nd and drive straight through.

No stopping in Reno for an overnight, just hit it and get out and get home.

Now, it’s Burning Man and stuff happens–like cars breaking down, or things taking longer or dust storms, so instead of thinking, boy howdy, I should book that ticket for the third, I decided to wait until the 4th.

It will give me a day’s down time to unwind and de-dust and shower exhaustively.

Maybe even sneak in a mani/pedi at the nail salon before hopping on a plane and flying cross-country.

I realized my only reservation this morning when I was writing morning pages was inconveniencing one of my families (one of my families is not going to the even this year and will be missing out on three weeks of me working for them).  I would be coming back and then saying right way, hey, I’m going to take a day off from our regular schedule, I’ll be back next week.

So when the mom told me today that we would actually be coming back sooner, I got excited.

Because not only would it be cheaper, not sure how that worked but the following weekend, the rates to fly were significantly higher (usually it’s the other way around, the closer the date to fly the more expensive), but a dear friend of mine will be out there visiting a friend of her’s in Brooklyn.

Like where I will be.

She’s going to be occupied with her friend and I with mine, but it’s going to be nice to know she’s around should anything go wonky, I know I can call her and we can grab a coffee or visit with some fellows.

In fact, I am really looking forward to that bit.

Always good to check things out in another city, see what they have dialed in.

I don’t know what part of Brooklyn the Air BnB my friend has himself in, my other friend will be staying in Highline.

Not that any of this means a thing to me.

My boss rattled off a dozen places, a rhapsodical recalling of cream cheese and dark rye bread and cup cakes from Dean and DeLucca and galleries, and go see Hedwig and the Angry Inch, and what, wait.

“You’ve never been to New York!”

Nope.

I mean, you know, I lived in Paris for six months, have been to London twice, and Rome once, but never you know, taken a bite from the Big Apple.

“You have to go!”

I agree.

It was nice to hear that I will be getting off playa a little sooner than expected, dad will stay to finish out his job there, but me and mom and the little guy will head back to San Francisco on the 2nd and though I am sure to be tired, dusty, dirty, exhausted, who the hell isn’t?

I will also be excited to explore a new place, a new city, to have a new experience, to see the skyline at night, to walk, to smell the smells, and see the people, and hear the noise, and be a part of the hectic frenzy of it all.

“Your ankle better be healed, yo.”

I hope so, my friend, I am icing it down now.  I am taking precautions, I am going slow, I am being all easy does it and shit.

Now that the idea is out of the bag and everybody I know and checked in with and whose opinions, values, and suggestions mean very much to me, said “GO!” I am ready to leap.

I had not thought there would be another journey in my year after Burning Man.

I had Florida in January.

Wisconsin in July.

I will get Burning Man in August.

And New York in September.

That’s a fabulous kind of itinerary.

And then I always get to come home to San Francisco, my favorite city of them all.

At least permanent cities.

In its very special and unique way, Black Rock City is probably my favorite city to live in, it’s a temporary home, but deeply etched into my psyche and when ever I land, I know I am home and it is right in my world.

I may not get the thumbs up for a day or two, but you will hear it, the loud whoop, the happy holler, when I am confirmed and all is a go and I pull out my bank card and get online and buy that ticket.

I am finally going to the Big Apple.

I don’t know what took me so long.

I really like apples.

To New York

July 22, 2014

Or not to New York?

I was just texting back and forth with a good friend who had an amazing night in the Big Apple and was regaling me of the experience and I just felt such a ping of, I really should be there, not jealousy, so much, but I wish I was there.

My friend is there for the next two months.

He’s got an Air BnB in Brooklyn.

I also have friends that live in New York.

Not super close friends, but friends that have always encouraged me to swing on by should I be in New York.

He said, come.

I joked, “New York, the perfect antidote for Burning Man.”

If I were to go I would have to time my trip to be between 9/3 and 9/21.

I don’t know exactly when I am getting back from Burning Man, but it’s going to be either the 3rd or the 4th of September.

I just cannot imagine getting on a plane after two to three weeks of being on playa to fly cross-country for the weekend and kick it in New York.

Sounds like a recipe for no sleep, and knowing my excitement level for being somewhere new, I probably wouldn’t sleep much anyway.

I would be in New York, the city that never sleeps.

I have never been.

Gasp.

Yeah, I know.

Which I find amusing since so many folks have made the assumption that I hail from the East Coast, but nope, I have never set foot in the state of New York, let alone the city.

I would have a place to crash and a tour guide.

I sort of have to do this.

I looked at tickets and balked a bit then thought, go write your blog, you’ll get clarity about it and you’ll know within minutes of setting your fingers to the keyboard.

I know.

I have to go.

When am I going to have this opportunity again?

Friend in New York, not working, not obligated to anything, other than enjoying the city, open invite to stay at his place, someone who knows the city, museums.

Oh snap.

MUSEUMS.

I could probably just choke on the museums.

Just do that all day long, go to museums then go to music at night.

Eat some food in between and walk everywhere.

I think September would be a lovely time to be there too, summer’s ending, kids back in school after Labor Day, fall starting to creep into the air.

I am talking myself into it more and more.

My window is small, I would still need to negotiate time off from work.

But what if I just took a Friday off, flew out after work on Thursday and flew back on Sunday?  I bet I could.

My thought at first was fly out on Friday and fly back Sunday, but I want an extra day if I can get it and the Friday would be easier for me to get out of work than the Monday.

Monday I have two boys.

Friday I have one boy.

I’ll need a vacation after Burning Man.

I will.

Burning Man is not a vacation for me, though it often looks like one in the photographs I post and the social media that I contribute to.

No, it is work.

Long, hot, dusty, emotionally draining work.

What better way to wind down than a new city with a friend who I love and adore and knows the town?

It’s stupid to not say yes to this.

In fact, he said, via text, just back track to the yes.

Say yes, then figure it out.

Don’t try to figure it out then decide.

And he’s right.

This is about taking an action, not about sitting and thinking about it.

Because, too, the longer I wait, the more expensive the ticket will be and the less likely I am to nab one.

I am going to check in with one or two people tomorrow and ask for some thoughts and if I get the thumbs up, which I don’t know why I wouldn’t, I will come home tomorrow night and book a ticket.

I think the best bet is the weekend of the 12th.

Fly out Thursday the 11th after work, which may mean arriving in New York at like 1 a.m., but whatever.  Then fly back the morning or early afternoon of the 14th, that Sunday.

My friend will be leaving the Air BnB the weekend of the 21st and it doesn’t seem like the right time to fly in for a trip as he’s preparing to get back on his motorcycle and continue the cross-country road trip, the radical sabbatical, I think is the term.

And the weekend before, though working for him, just seems crazy to get back from playa and then fly right out of here to New York.

I would be one dusty bunny.

That’s for sure.

Wow.

I cannot believe I am contemplating this.

But.

You only live once, so they say.

I have been taught to say yes.

“You can live with me in Paris,” he said to me on the corner of 18th and Linda, between Valencia and Guerrero.

Ok.

“You can stay with me in New York.”

Yes.

Ok.

Let’s do this.

Holy crow Batman.

I’m gonna go to New York.

My ankle better be all healed by then, or at least significantly better, I envision so much walking.

Jesus.

The Statue of Liberty.

The Empire State Building.

The Museum of Modern Art.

Mostly just that last one, I don’t care about going out to the real touristy stuff and I could give a fuck about Times Square, or even Broadway, although Hedwig and the Angry Inch might be fun to check out.

Central Park.

Concerts in the Park.

Yes.

St. Marks.

Yes.

The Strand Bookstore.

Gah.

What am I waiting for?

I got to go get a ticket for this.

The ferry-boat to Staten Island.

House Parties.

Music.

Oh sweet Jesus.

I really am going to do this.

I will keep you posted.

New York.

New York.

These vagabond shoes are longing to stray.

 

 

 

It’s A Date

July 21, 2014

Well, it took some negotiating.

But, I hear that’s what adults do, adults with full busy schedules, commitments, service, jobs, gigs, this, that, and the other.

However, we managed to nail down a date.

Thank God.

It’s that time of the month.

And no, I don’t mean, that time of the month.

I mean, the other one.

I know my cycle very well and I am entering the “oh my god I need to have sex” part of the month.

My body has rythms, they say all bodies do, women’s especially, the pull of blood, chemicals, hormones, the singing in the veins of lust and stars and mating, the proclivity of bodies to signal now, the time is now.

I know that a large part of that is the hormones signalling to my brain, hey, it’s time to have a baby, let’s get it on, send some little charges through the blood, make her notice that everything is a go.

And boy, do I notice.

And boy do I not want to make a baby.

But I do want to have sex.

Yes, please.

So.

Thursday evening, at last, the scheduling will coincide and though it is still a school night for me, Friday is my easiest day.  I only have one charge and my start time is just a tiny bit later in the day.

As I only have that one charge on Friday I can also negotiate my morning routine a bit.

Right now I am on track to get up at 6:30 a.m.

I will hop up, take a shower, dry my hair, get dressed, make my bed, kneel down and ask to be guided through my day, take a moment to get right with God, than, onto breakfast, packing lunch and dinner (which is cooking as I blog-yellow and green split pea soup with chicken, garlic, onions, broccoli, and carrots, plus the stead fast pot of brown rice to accompany it), and coffee and three pages of long hand writing, then make up, then breakfast dishes, then out the door to MUNI by 8:10 a.m. so that I can make it to work by 8:45 a.m. in Cole Valley.

Whew.

We had discussed confabbing this evening, but he wouldn’t be able to make it until 11/11:30 p.m.

That puts a crimp on the fooling around.

A serious crimp.

We want to be able to play where I will be able to get more than three hours of sleep before I have to be up for work.

It was a bit of a relief to get that out-of-the-way and to also acknowledge that though we both want to see each other, it’s just not as much fun when you have that kind of schedule restraint hanging over your head.

And fun is what it’s all about.

But balance makes the fun better.

I used to go to great extremes to get some fun in my life and the fact that I feel better and have a better time with my life, my experiences, everything from eating my breakfast to work to having sex to going to Burning Man, is better when I have balance.

It would have been fun to get a little nookie tonight, but not at the expensive of my morning practice or my job or my self-care.

Hell.

I am better in the sack when I have had enough time in the sack.

If you catch my drift.

It also feels like I just got a day off, which is true, and I am already headed back into work, which is true too.

So.

Sunday, a bit of rest, a bit of going to bed a reasonable hour and a bit of assuaging my libido.

It’s ok, lady pants, you will get yours soon.

Just take care of the rest of you and quiet that impervious urge.

I got to laugh at myself too, as soon as I got a little action I am all about getting action all the time.

Don’t poke the sleeping dragon.

Oops.

The dragon has been poked.

And poked good.

Ahem.

So that’s the story and as I prepare for the week it’s nice to have a little something to look forward too.

And if I have my druthers we will reconvene the next time on a weekend.

At least that’s the hope.

I have become a regular Monday through Friday type of gal.

In fact, I spoke with one of my mom’s as we were winding up the week and just asked what her needs were once I returned from the playa and she and the family want me full-time Monday through Friday.

Yes.

I asked that we also look to do a share on Thursdays and Fridays.

I have Monday through Wednesday covered, but to have an additional two days with a share, that is what is optimal for me.  That is what I want.  A full-time share.

Full time money.

I want to pay off the scooter and I want to get a new laptop.

Those are my financial goals for the rest of the year.

And perhaps buying a new bike.

I have two girlfriends very serious about doing the AidsLifeCycle Ride next year, one of whom has already registered, and I am not going to do it on my one speed.

No way.

Of course, that’s putting the bicycle before the horse, er cart, um.

Yeah.

I am not on the bike yet.

I figure one more week of MUNI and then I will be able to do some bicycle riding to work.

I went today without the ankle wrapped and it seems to be holding up alright.

It is still tender, but it’s getting better, it really is.

I don’t want to push it and there, that’s another reason why not getting any tonight is going to be a great idea for me.

I need to rest well to continue the healing.

Not that sex isn’t healing, it is, but so is sleep and in the best of both worlds, I will get both.

Just not until this Thursday.

 

And That’s A Wrap

July 20, 2014

And an unwrap as well.

Just finished up the work week and look its already Sunday.

Sigh.

However, I can’t complain, I can’t, I was taken care of nicely this week and I will be paying my August rent a little early.

Why?

Because, like, it’s almost Burning Man, dude.

“Hey my camp is looking for an extra ticket if you can spare any.”

The message said.

Puhlease.

I don’t even know you.

Yes, I “liked” your photo on my feed, it’s hard not too when it was some awesome art by some friends of friends that I know from the event, it was a great photo.

But I don’t know you.

I am not likely to find you a spare ticket.

But thanks for telling me I’m attractive and we should meet out on playa.

Yeah, I’ll be getting right on that.

And in other news.

Oh, yeah, that’s my news.  Burning Man.  Burning Man on the brain, I leave in three weeks, so, you know, it’s timing for me, getting things done, in between living my regular life and working my regular job.

Getting ready for the event can feel like a job itself, exhausting before you’ve even made it out the door to the car to drive to the burn to sit in line to get in to work an enormous amount to set up your camp then go have some fun.

No wonder folks get so fucked up out there.

Not all folks.

Not this folk.

My biggest prep is usually getting underwear.

That’s my “burninform” so to speak.

I always jest that I wear the same thing at Burning Man as I wear in San Francisco, just without pants.  So my biggest spend is underpants and bras.  Because I am out there longer than the average bear, or unicorn, or dragon, I mean, it’s Burning Man, it could be a bunny, or an alien too, I go through my clothes differently.

Last year I realized that I had just enough socks, but not enough underpants and bras.

I had fresh underpants for everyday of the week, but I alas, had many a day where it was hot and gross and dusty and when I had the opportunity to take a shower the last thing I wanted to do was put on dusty, sweaty, crusty underpants.

So I had a few days where I went through more than one set of panties.

Cue Nordstrom’s Off the Rack.

Where you can get all of your Burning Man needs met.

Or at least mine.

Because where else are there going to be a plethora of odd colored flashy panties on sale?

No one else wants those fuchsia underpants with the purple and yellow polka dots?  And they’re only $2.93?  Hand them over.

This is also where I get most of my outfits.

My uniform consists of colored tights, colorful underpants, and tank tops.

Throw in a pair of boots and something to stick in my hair and I am set.

That and some makeup.

Boom.

Burniform.

I add my utility belt, a Sigg bottle on a carabiner, and some lip balm, a bandana tied around my right wrist, I wear a watch on my left (it may be playa time for most folks, but I am working and I am on a schedule, I must have a watch on pretty much all the time.  It’s the last thing I take off and the first thing I put on, that or my glasses, but if it’s not first, it’s a close second), my goggles on my left thigh–I use them as a garter belt, and some sunblock.

I picked up three bras, four tank tops, one nightshirt (a girl can’t live on Hello Kitty alone), and three more pairs of underwear, some bath gel, and a cheap tube of mascara–waterproof, and I am pretty much done.

Aside from that, I have all the baby wipes I need, my hair stuff is set, I have boots, I have socks and tights, I have scarves and bandanas, and the majority of my toiletries.  I only lack for a container of hand salve and I will pick that up when I see the kind I like.

My make up kit is set too, although the mom I worked for tonight offered to get me anything I wanted from MAC at her costs.  Aside from working for the Burning Man organization she also is a free-lance make up artist and as such gets huge discounts at MAC.

Oh god.

I don’t know that I needed to know that.

I began formulating things in my head.

Slow your roll, I said to myself.

On more than one occasion today.

I also got unwrapped today.

As in I took off the last Ace bandage and for the first time since the accident walked without the aid of a cast or crutches or walking boot or ankle brace.

Just a sensible pair of Saucony’s and a pair of socks.

I felt naked.

And delicious.

And scared enough when the occasional twinge came, then throb, then shooting pain, to slow it the fuck down.

I left the house feeling pretty good about it and really strong.

That lasted for a few hours, then the inevitable, the ankle got sore, I got tired, I had to slow down.  I used the escalators in the train stations, I slowed down in the store.  I sat down and rested.

I only went a few places today–my house to Tart to Tart on 7th and Irving, Nordstrom’s Rack downtown, then to my job in the Castro.

In a way, the most I walked was around the store at Nordstrom’s from the underwear department to the dressing room.

It wore me out though.

I was not limping by the time I got up to my gig in the Castro, but I was walking very slowly.

I took it as an opportunity to be really present.

I felt that I saw everything.

Things that are normal and invisible because I am moving to fast most of the time to see them.  The color of the MUNI uniform, the smell of the air as the fog moved through, the sun when it sprayed through the trees at sunset, the view.

Wow.

Sometimes I forget how amazing the view is from the top of the Castro.

And now back home.

Home.

My little spot by the sea.

I lit some candles, I made some tea, I sat down with my ever-present bag of frozen peas and I got really grateful for the experience of the week and how doing the work and showing up has made it possible for me to be doing the work and showing up.

That is the sentiment I meant to express, not a typo, the latter.

Tomorrow I will show up again, pay my rent a little early, break out a Burning Man bra for fun, go see a lady friend for reading and recovery, and then show up for my lunch date with the brother of my friend who passed.

All without my ankle wrapped.

So I can be sure and go slow and be present.

The best gift.

Living in the moment.

You May Have Noticed

July 19, 2014

There was no blog last night.

This does not necessarily denote a night of getting laid.

More like a day of getting laid out.

I worked a twelve-hour day and did not get home until close to midnight.  I was just tuckered out and had to be up by 6:30 a.m. to do another full day of nanny share today.

Plus, I am helping out tomorrow night as well, with my family in the Castro.

And again next Thursday.

I am not trying to kill myself, I promise.

I am, however, making some hay while the sun shines, even in the fog, it does break through again, here and there.

I was supposed to be getting the good kind of laid tonight and I was about to drink a big old cup of coffee, when intuition nipped at me and said, wait, just wait.

I had a feeling he was going to cancel.

Tonight was not his first choice, the first choice being Sunday, this Sunday, after 11 p.m.

Um.

Yeah.

When I am in bed already, getting ready to rest up for the week.

I had shot that idea down and he said he might be able to make it work tonight, but the gig is out-of-town, he won’t be getting back until late and he has a commitment to be up for tomorrow at, yes, 6a.m.

Well.

No sex for me tonight.

Truth be told, I am ok with that.

I worked a long week, I am tired, I would need to throw myself into the shower and scrub, shave, primp, and lotion up.

Not that I mind any of these things, but right now, I wouldn’t mind just hanging out chill with my tea and the end of the week thoughts coming and some iced peas on my ankle and a video.

Of course, my choice of video watching of late has been Masters of Sex, so not certain that bodes well for my hormonal drive, which is revved up despite being a bit on the tired side.

All things good for those who wait, however, and he’s going to try to get out of his stuff earlier on Sunday and swing by and possibly next Thursday too.

Right on.

I only have a few more weeks before I head out to Burning Man and want to be as juiced up as possible.

Heh.

I usually catch some action on playa, I did last year, might have been one of my best date nights out there, top three for sure, after just doing a quick flip through the Rolodex of sexual experiences I have had out there.

I play when I can.

Every year there has been a connection, or, um a few (I will never, ever forget the hashtags that my boss, the father of my charge that year, put on my trailer door.  It was funny and ridiculous, he knew all my paramours that year–three–yeah hush, my friend said, it’s like you suddenly realized you had a body.  In a way, true, I had just finished losing around a hundred pounds over the past year and a half and did feel a new-found sense of myself, or lack there of.), with the exception of the year that I decided I needed to “Call in the One” and didn’t hook up with a soul.

I gave that book away.

Baha.

And I did find the one.

I am the one.

I just hadn’t a clue before then how really meaningful that relationship with myself really is.

That trope that you are the person you will be in the longest relationship with sort of thing.

Now that I love myself and forgive myself, you know, I am a bit better off asking for what I want.

And also being flexible enough to know that others have their agenda and needs that must be met.

I had a super sweet conclusion to the week with my mom who I will be working with at the event and really expressed how much I want to help and be of service and what could I do to make the experience for her one in which she wouldn’t have to be worried about whether or not I would flake during the event.

We had an amazing conversation and concluded that the raise was fair and that I would also be there for some nights and that I would work some longer days since her job is going to be crazy out there this year.

The event has been given permission by the Bureau of Land Management to open the gates to the event the Sunday before it “starts”.

The event typically starts the Monday prior to Labor Day, when it ends.

In the past the event opened up at midnight on the Sunday/Monday morning of the event.

I remember very well the year that the gates were opened a few hours early.

It was a huge deal.

The Bureau of Land Management asked the event to open the gates early to relieve the congestion of traffic heading in to the playa.

It was opened to the participants at 10 p.m.

Then the next year, a little earlier, the next a tiny bit earlier yet.

Last year the event opened the gates at 6p.m. on Sunday.

This year.

The gates are going to open at 10a.m. Sunday.

This is great for everybody, except the team my mom manages–Placement.

Her team will be going nuts getting it all set up.

I remember very well last year the chaotic radio calls and the many fires being put out, proverbially, all over the playa as the clock ticked its way down to the gates opening.

The work will be much the same for me as last year, but I vouched for the mom that I could handle going longer hours with less break time so that the week prior she could do her gig without having to worry about getting back and breaking me.

It sounds like more work, but it is also less in a sense, less preparing myself, less anxiety about what and when and how I will be working out there.  I am basically going to be a live in nanny (well, my trailer is my own, but there’s is right next to mine) for the duration of the event.

And I am ok with that.

We made our peace and it felt really good to settle into what will happen out there.

And I get great perks, I do.

Access to air conditioning being a huge one, the one, really, that makes the longer days tolerable.  Plus showers, food, transport there and back, a nice trailer to stay in, and my day rate, which though less than I would make nannying here, is not insubstantial.

I will be taken care of and I will do my job well.

I will also be prepared for the longer days, more books, more writing, more editing.

And there will be time, time to go play, to go let the desert seduce me and abandon myself to the spirit as it should so move me to do so.

I will dance.

I will be love.

I will have love.

I will be of service.

I will.

That’s always the best part for me anyhow.

Sharing my experience with others and building more intimate relationships.

And I bet there will be romance, titillation, flirtation, sex, healing, stars, fire, poetry, dance, communion.

There always is.

And I will have more of that before I go as well.

Not a bad way to be heading into my 8th burn.

Not bad at all.

Lover, Why Don’t You Come Over

July 17, 2014

Just not that night.

It’s a school night.

Or that night, that’s too late.

Or.

Well fuck me.

And yes, that’s the direction this blog is going, so if your shy, or my mom, stop reading.

Ok.

So, I have sort of kept this under my hat since I have been pretty focused on healing and finances and Burning Man and being out of work and getting back into work, but yes, I have taken on a lover.

One who I have not written about until tonight because it felt like have a special secret sauce weapon.

You got to love a man who will take care of business while you recline on the bed with a leg propped up on a heap of pillows and your ankle covered in frozen peas.

The first time it happened I must have giggled madly at one point as he admonished me to hold still, trying! trying! While inveigling the perfect position to not disturb the peas, the leg, the ankle.

I will be the first to admit there were a few uncomfortable moments and one that was flat-out painful and the first time was cut short for a while, before the hormones and the ibuprofen took over and we tried again.

Success.

We had plans for our first date to be the Saturday evening after my ankle injury.

Of course I had to cancel.

I called him up and said, hey you remember that thing that we all were discussing about taking pain medication in early sobriety?  That night that you gave me your business card.

“Hey girl with the purple hair!”

He hollered at me as I was about to get on my bike and ride off into the sunset.

Literally.

That’s where I live, in the Sunset.

Aside–I miss riding my bike!  I miss it so much. I miss not having to rely on MUNI, which was so packed tonight it was unbearable and was running late and ugh.

I miss not having to budget forty-five minutes to an hour to my morning commute when it took me fifteen to twenty minutes to ride my bike to work.

That being said, I am beyond grateful that I have a relatively easy commute to MUNI, I walk a block and there’s the stop.  I get off in Cole Valley and then walk a block and I am at work.  Granted, tomorrow’s commute rather sucks, N-Judah to Cole and Carl, 43 to Masonic and Fulton, the 5 to McCallister and Divisadero.

Commute last week took full hour.

Bike ride?

25 minutes.

Sigh.

Soon, soon, I shall be back again upon my trusty whip.

So, having just thrown my leg over my sparkly steed, I paused and turned, and there he was, the guy I had thought earlier, you know, maybe you should give him your number, you have a lot of the same views on things and I liked what I was hearing.

He has a big God and I am a size queen.

“My name’s Carmen,” I said, as he approached and we exchanged pleasantries.

“What are you doing next Monday?” He asked and I was about to say hanging out with you when I recalled a date to go on a motorcycle ride with a close friend who would soon be leaving town on said motorcycle.

“I’m not available,” I smiled, the pause just hanging in the air.

“Well, call me if you ever are,” he said and handed me his business card.

I texted him when I got home.

I said let’s grab coffee.

He said yes.

We made a date.

Date fell through.

Ankle got hurt.

No more date.

Or so I thought.

“How are you doing mija?”

I got a text.

We bantered back and forth and it was cute and flirty and he asked if I needed some frozen peas and I said yes.

He didn’t bring me any frozen peas.

But I did get served.

Ahem.

May I just say that it’s so nice when a guy takes the reins.  It really is, it just clears things right up, there’s not questioning, is he attracted, how can I tell, how should I act, I’m attracted, what do I do next.

I offered him a beverage, “standing” in my kitchen on my crutches with my foot resting lightly in the walking boot, tea, water, bubbly water?

He strode toward me, took my face in his hands and kissed the daylights out of me.

Oh.

My.

How nice.

I mean, nice.

Right to the point.

“Water.”

Ok.

“And let me get it, sit down, ice your ankle, prop it up,” he kissed me again and I just about swooned.

“I’m just going to sit on the bed,” I waived at the bed, the stack of pillows already waiting, the bag of frozen peas sitting on top (just like the princess and the pea except the other way around, I am getting vast comfort from the peas, even now as I blog, there’s a bag on my ankle.  It was a long day at work.), I nestled down and took off the walking boot, pulled my leg up, placed it gingerly atop the three high stack, and dropped the peas into place.

They fell off a few times, but that’s probably more details then you need to know.

My friend joked, “pulling the old damsel in distress move, eh?”

Apparently.

I had no idea that worked, fuck I might have been doing it long ago.

What I heard better though, was something that was said to a neighboring friend that very same evening, just before I had gotten home.

“Be the rock and the let the butterflies settle on you,” he said to my friend.

Oh.

I am usually a moving target, and a fast one at that, on my bicycle, on my scooter, on the run, run, run.

It’s hard to be intimate with someone going 90 mph all the time.

I got real still.

I am trying to connect with that again.

As now, being back to work, it’s hard to co-ordinate a musician/waiter nighttime schedule to my day time nanny hours.

I have you on my brain, I texted earlier today, do you have anytime this weekend that we can get together and be noisy?

He likes that I am noisy.

I am no librarian in the sack.

He shot back a time and night.

Shoot.

I told him my schedule.

Fuck.

How’s this going to work out?

I don’t know, but I am willing to go a night or two with little sleep, we haven’t negotiated that yet.

It’s a challenge dating a musician, I have never done this before, or for that matter, one this much younger than I, but as a friend said, “you would rock a twenty year old’s world.”

And he’s not twenty.

He’s twenty-eight, so there.

Giggle.

It’s fun and I don’t have any attachments to it and it’s nice to have good sex and sex is healing as far as I am concerned and it’s nice to have had the experience of going slow in the beginning when I could not really, um, perform, to the best of my abilities.

The abilities are coming back.

There’s time.

I just wish it was earlier in the day.

I am getting older.

But I am not dead yet.

 

 

 

 

 

And Back To Our Regular Programming

July 16, 2014

Sponsored by:

Sack o’ Peas!

Frozen sack of peas, mind you, but a bag of peas none the less.

You know it’s been a day when you are actively fantasizing about getting home to put the leg up in the air and throw down some frozen vegetables on it.

Not sure what was up but it was a sore one today.

I went slow.

I swear I did.

I took the boys to the Golden Gate Community Gardens and we just wandered around the boxes looking at the plants and literally stopping to smell the roses.

We saw, in no particular order, giant Fava beans, sugar snap peas, snow peas, Echinacea, chamomile blooms, dill, rosemary, mint, teeny tiny cherry tomatoes, zucchini, squash blossoms, lavender, red lettuce, curly-headed lettuce, golden chard, regular chard, red chard, broccoli just beginning to bloom, radishes, gigantic leeks, strawberries, kale, lot of kale actually, every plot seemed to have some.

There were also wild flowers and nasturtiums, and Queen Anne’s Lace, and geraniums, petunia’s, violet, wood violets and African violets, lots of roses, and last but not least, especially in the boys minds, pinwheels.

They had a merry old-time just blowing pinwheels.

It was the perfect kind of morning to meander through the gardens.

They just recently opened and there was only a solo worker there who waved us right in when I asked if we could walk through and enjoy the plants.

I rather wanted to pick some of the plants, one strawberry plot was so rich and heavily laden with berries it seemed wrong to not pluck any off the plants, but I discouraged the boys, and myself, from touching anything with our hands.

Instead we practiced, “touching with our eyes,” and though I will admit I did take a little tiny leaf of mint from a peppermint bush, we left without disturbing any of the plants.

It was a sweet, serene, walk to the park, the evergreens along Kezar stadium flagrant with fragrance, my eldest boy scooped up fistfuls of evergreen needles and pine cones as we strolled, and then we came over to the Kezar Triangle park that was newly renovated a few months back and the entire thing was empty.

I fed the boys snacks on the bench carved out of a gigantic piece of redwood and then let them run amok in the grass while I hobbled behind.

The fields were fragrant and still damp from the morning dew, the fresh-cut grass sticking to all of our shoes, but the smell.

Oh so good.

And I don’t know what plant or pairing of plants that were planted in the border gardens but it smelled heavenly, like thick just harvested honeycomb in the sun rich and sweet.

I could taste it on my tongue and I just wanted to sit there all day.

San Francisco is a lush, sweet, intoxicating smelling place (not always because people are walking around openly smoking pot either), jasmine and sweet grass, honeysuckle, buckets of lavender growing in so many yards and porches and stoops.

The Charles Grimaldi trees, the little trees that have the gigantic golden bell blooms that look like faerie hats, all the citrus trees–lime, Meyer lemon, oranges, tangerines, then the plum trees–that for many years I mistook for cherry trees-and the Eucalyptus (which though not a native species is still such a fragrant and deeply intoxicating smell to me that I never fail to indulge with deep breath when I am in the Pan Handle Park and the leaves are dropping from the trees in showers of scent) proliferating in the parks.

It was a good smells kind of day.

I always think that good smells presage good fortune.

Today I felt fortunate.

To have a good job with little boys who I love and I can say pretty truthfully, love me.

Same goes for my little girl Thursday who we ran into yesterday at the carousel in the Koret Children’s Playground in Golden Gate Park, such a peach, I love hearing her say my name.

I love whenever they get to that point.

The littlest monkey doesn’t have my name down yet, but I get the love, the snuggles, the laughter, the silly faces and the goofy boy antics that crack me up.

He has recently taken to walking around with his eyes squinched shut until he bumps into something.

It is the goofiest little game.  It’s rather as though he’s time travelling or something.

He walks in a relatively straight line, for an 18 month old boy who just recently mastered walk (God, I remember when I was swaddling him for naps and he couldn’t crawl yet!), hands slightly out in front, eyes shut, until he can’t help but open his eyes to see what amazing surprise awaits him.

He usually gasps in glee.

It’s quite a sight.

Poor thing bonked into a door though, an hour before pick up, smack, with his head.

It was almost like watching a stand up comedian slapstick hit himself, except, he really did bonk his head a good one.

I tried to not laugh, but a giggle might have escaped me.

On our way back from the park I swung into American Cyclery to talk with Tyson about my playa cruiser and where we stand with it.

He’s had it for a while, but knowing that I was going to Burning Man, and knowing when Burning Man is (oh my god I leave in a month–leaving San Francisco the morning of August 15th, a Friday to Reno, overnight in Reno, then landing on playa early to mid afternoon on the 16th, eep!) he’s not gotten about to it.

And he wasn’t in the shop, having taken his first vacation in 3 years.

But the guy at the register assured me my bike was safe and Tyson was on it.

Although he admitted he didn’t think he’d touched it much since I had dropped it off.

Tyson will be back next week and I will use that as an excuse to walk over to Kezar and smell the grand smells of this beautiful city I am blessed to get to live in.

Today felt really good for that.

Grace.

Love.

Gratitude.

Being taken care of.

Despite myself.

Getting to be a conduit for the good stuff.

All the things.

She told me.

You deserve all the things.

Especially if they smell good.

Big Week

July 15, 2014

Go slow.

Icing ankle.

Go slow.

Take ibuprofen.

Go slower.

Sigh.

Oh well.  So it goes, the going slow, has to go slow, ride the MUNI, slow your roll, bring it down, the temptation to go faster, get more in on the day, move, any kind of real movement.

Not this cautious, tepid, shuffle that has been propelling me forward through the hours of the day.

I have a nanny share everyday this week.

Which is my optimal goal always, having a consistent five-day a week share would alleviate all financial woe, not that there are that many at the moment, I am holding steady, all the help that my friends and family and anonymous folks out there (who did put that folded twenty-dollar bill in my purse?) who have helped me through the four weeks of no work has, well helped.

At this point, the help has to be coming from me.

So I find that I have to sit when I want to stand.

That I have to walk slower when I would like to stride.

That I have to take the steps one two, one two, instead of one after the other, on and off the train, up and down the stairs at work.

With the extra work, comes extra work.

Mostly in my brain, slow down kiddo, I told myself as I pushed the stroller up a slight incline in Golden Gate Park.   There is no race to be won, there is nowhere to go, and so, well, go slow.

It is almost a constant iteration of stay in the present moment.

Shameful to say that I haven’t been present much over the weekend and coming into today at work, rehashing last year’s event, trying to figure out what I needed, what the family needed, how to make it work, how to take care of myself.

Which is why I apologized today.

That was not what I was expecting and I saw that I had hurt my employer without even realizing, wrapped up in my own agenda and my own fears.

Sometimes I forget that the entire world doesn’t speak my language.

Literally.

Just because we are going to the same place doesn’t mean that we won’t get there having utterly and completely different experiences.

I had no idea.

But we worked it out.

What came to light is that my employer feared a sudden departure, a change of plans, by me, that I would up and decided that nope, it’s too much and bounce.

That happened last year.

A nanny working for someone in the upper echelon’s of the organization had her nanny split without warning.

There you are in the middle of the desert with no nanny and a huge job to complete, one which you have spent all year working on, and your child care is gone.

Poof.

I remember it well as I helped find a replacement.

I don’t even know if the woman who I suggested help was able to help, but I remember being aghast that someone would do that.

My employer fears this from me.

That I will split too.

Because I did something I vowed I would not do, I brought up last year and said I was not happy with how it went.

I had not brought up last year ever with her as I felt that I had made my bed and I needed to lie in it.  To then bring it up a year later, felt like an attack, and left her panicked that this year I would pull some shenanigans and leave my duties.

It turns out we both needed clarity.

I will be working a lot this year.

More than I worked last year, but I will be compensated for it.

And the knowing for me is the biggest thing.

And the knowing what my needs are and stating them at the time rather than alluding to another time.

I have more practice to do, more room to grow, more to learn.

In an odd way, I feel like I have to regain her trust, this was not something that I was even thinking about, giving the impression that I am flaky.

It shocked me that she would think that I would quit.

Whatever I am doing or not doing, this has to change.

I am a person who lives by their word and I don’t want to live a dishonorable life.

I have already done that.

Moving forward all I can do is communicate better.

I think we worked it out.

I think its going to be fine.

Losing someone’s trust because I failed to communicate my needs is a painful lesson and not just for me.

I am not going to beat myself up for this, I learned and I can only hope that I can regain that trust.

In the end, as brash as this may sound, I may never know if that’s the truth, if she’s ever really going to trust me to not bail.

I know I won’t.

How do you assuage another’s fears?

I do my best to care for myself and let the other person have their experience.

I am human and made a mistake.

My amends was to promptly apologize, then and there.  And to listen and I did.  It was uncomfortable, admitting wrong is not a comfortable thing to do, but it is the thing I needed to do and the only way to move forward with honesty and integrity.

The lines of communication are open and I will continue to work on keeping it that way.

And showing up.

Slowly.

Painfully.

My ankle is not the only thing that needs healing.

My brain does too.

Thank God I have a solution.

Show up and be of service and let go of the results.

I do the best I can and grow from here.

 

“I wish you a long, slow recovery,” he said with a dry chuckle.

Seems that wish has been granted.

You Could Sell Those On Etsy

July 14, 2014

“They are amazing.”

I felt quite tickled to hear that.

Especially coming from the lady who had only moment prior described herself as liking being dark.

I used to like being dark too.

I still can get my black on like nobody’s business.

But as of the last few years, Burning Man, I have continued to follow my glitter heart, beribboned festooned soul, and sparkle pony self into further ideations of what it means to be me.

I picked up a packet of glitter glue at the store yesterday and decided I was going to make some more hair pieces for la playa.

“It’s like a craft bomb has gone off in here,” I said with a laugh.

There were heaps of flowers in various stages of drying from being appliqued with glitter and curls of ribbon, some pink feathers and tiny glittery birds that I got as a magnet set a long time ago and some of the magnets popped off, so I decided I would incorporate them into a fancy piece, embroidery floss in a variety of colors, plain barrettes waiting to be decorated, loops of thread, and a big pile of buttons.

I thought I would perhaps make a bunch of them.

But I got two done.

And that’s ok.

I sort of got over it after awhile.

The one I made in the beginning, the one my friend gushed over, really is the stand out though.  I took some burlap and frayed it then bunched it up into a circle and overlayed it with a sea foam green netting, then I pinned a green flower with glitter on the petals into the middle of it, added a couple of different kinds of ribbons–one that looked like little green truffula trees–and a tiny blue bird with pink tail feathers that I had added into the teeny rump of the magnet.

Then I sewed it to a green barrette.

The girl at Mendel’s who helped me, last year (I had gotten the majority of the stuff last year between Mendel’s in the Haight and the discount sewing center in the Mission, but had no wherewithal to go through with making the pieces I envisioned) actually shoo shooed me away from using glue to afix the pieces to the barrettes.

“Sew them on, they’ll be more sturdy and if you are going to Burning Man you won’t be worried about the pieces breaking off or flying off the barrette if the glue loosens.”

Good advice.

For I am planning on wearing them to the event.

If I go to the event.

My brain, the malicious monkey part of it, is half convinced that upon arriving to work tomorrow due to my inclement asking for a raise at the event, that I will be fired or I will be uninvited to work the event.

I know that is a big old lie the brain pan is telling me, but I can admit that it’s there, those thoughts.

Most of the time those thoughts are just not good for me so I leave them lie.

I have wrote out what I need, figured out my ask, which is what I asked for last week, broke down the numbers, and am prepared for whatever outcome is to happen.

I am also prepared to not go if the family decides to change their mind.

I don’t think they will and I don’t think they will fire me either, but if so, then, hey, I know I am imminently hireable and something will happen.

For the moment, I act as if I am going.

I know I will be paid what I need and I can leave it alone.

My biggest concern is continuing to stay slowed down so that I can be of optimal service when I get there.

I know the estimated heal time for the ankle is 6 months and it’s been five and a half weeks since I injured it, so it’s still got time to heal.

And when I showered today I could feel it swelling up and getting stiff, so I am icing with peas and took some ibuprofen and I am being easy in my body.

My brain may be a mental mongoose of monstrosity, but at least I can be easy in my being.

And the mind wasn’t that bad today.

I have done a lot of writing over the last few days, loads of inventory, and I know that whatever the outcome, I show up tomorrow for my job and I do my job and I do my job well.

I will be taking MUNI to work.

I have decided to give the ankle another week off the bicycle.

I did not ride it anywhere today.

Rather I just walked up to Other Avenues and bought what I needed to finish out the ingredients for my soup for the week.

I made yellow and green split pea soup with carrots, cauliflower, onions, garlic, chicken, and brown rice.  Pair that with some raw carrots and some homemade lemon humus and I am set for the week.

Or at least seven meals.

That’s about what I socked away in the freezer.

It’s going to be a longer week for me as well, so the extra rest is a good thing.

I am covering two nights shifts in addition to my normal five-day shifts.

I will be doing a nanny share again four days this week, possibly five, although I am not 100% on that, and working Thursday evening and Saturday night.

My plan, God laughs, is to have enough set aside so that I can pay rent for September before I leave for Burning Man.

I just want to have it covered.

So no matter what I make it will be enough.

And it will be fancy hat time when I get there.

Aside from that I feel like this week will be similar to last.

Working and thinking about Burning Man.

And going slow, slow, slow with the ankle.

Slow and steady wins the race.

Not like I even know where I am racing to.

But it will be slow and steady.

I Still Need Help

July 13, 2014

I think I am all self-contained again.

That I have it all figured out, I can go there, get this, do that.

Not so fast, hotshot.

It took me all day long to get to Noe Valley, it seems, and I just did not go that far.

I really didn’t.

I took the N-Judah to 7th and Irving and met a lady for coffee for an hour and tooled around after, like to go across the street and have lunch at Crepevine, and then over to the Haight to run into Mendel’s to get stickers.

I like me some stickers.

I had some fancy ideas about making something crafty too while I was window shopping in Mendel’s, but I could already feel the energy lagging and just the walk back to the train, which I wouldn’t have thought about before, seemed a grueling thing.

I almost took the bus to the train.

I checked my NextBus app and the bus to the train would have been 23 minutes.

I figured I could actually walk the few blocks back to Cole Valley to catch the N-Judah before that happened.

And I did.

But I started to really limp.

That was it.

A few hours out, a few tiny errands run, and you’re done kid.

I caught up on the phone with dear friend of mine and admitted that I had made plans to ride my bike to work this upcoming week, but I decided, right then and there, to take it easy and still use MUNI for another week.

I don’t want to take the bus or the train.

I want to be on my bike.

But I don’t want to re-injure the ankle.

Which is not even healed enough for me to say that it would be a re-injury if I hurt it again.  I have to let it heal.  I have to go slower.

I have to keep taking the humility pill and continue asking for help.

Help carrying my groceries.

Help getting a ride home from Noe Valley tonight.

There was no way I was going to take MUNI back.

I thought if I was unable to secure a ride, I would bite the bullet and call Uber or flag a cab.

Fortunate for me I ran into a friend who I knew I could get a lift back with and asked and of course the answer was yes, sweet dear friends, how I can’t wait to have my own vehicle (that is not a kick starter) to give other people rides to and fro.

Until then.

I get to accept that I am allowing others to get esteem from helping me.

I love helping people and I can forget that its nice to let other help me too.

Give people the same enjoyable experience that I have when I am of service.

It’s all about love and service.

And maybe short bike rides.

Not long ones where I am compelled to commute back and forth to work.

“Why don’t you just go for a little ride around the block,” my friend suggested on the phone.

Yeah.

Start small.

Not just jump straight into doing my ten-mile round trip commuter bicycle ride after just having returned to work.  That might be a good idea. I even have the perfect ride–to and from Noriega Produce.

The market is five flat blocks away from my house on a straight shot.

No hills.

No turns.

Short and sweet.

I can put on my sensible Saucony shoes (in my not so sensible pink and lime green) and wrap my ankle in the Ace bandage and pedal slow and see how it feels.

It feels bad or weird or wonky, I will stop and turn around and walk the bike back.

I may not even take it out tomorrow.

I may opt instead to just walk up to Other Avenues and do my shopping there.  Although it’s more expensive, it’s more convenient, and I have made the walk to and from the market without too much trouble.

Then maybe I will walk down to the beach in the afternoon.

I haven’t been for a stroll on the beach in over a month.

I miss the ocean.

I can still hear it from my studio, in fact, I am tempted to turn down the jazz on my stereo, Coleman Hawkins, and open it up to the soothing smash of the ocean in the dark of the night.

Which if it weren’t foggy would be showing off the super moon tonight, but I don’t believe I will be able to catch a glimpse of it out here this evening.  The pull of it on the waves may increase the sound of the surf though and I will be opening up the back door tonight after I finish the blog to let the sound sink into my bones.

Speaking of sink into, time for the old bag of peas to do its magic.

I just realized that I could use the ice down.

Who knows if it is still helpful to the healing process, but I have to say, it does feel good and as long as I am stationary and the ankle is elevated and I’m writing, why not do something that feels good.

It can’t hurt.

I found myself getting frustrated a few time today when I could not go as fast as I wanted and had to laugh, there is no need to go Speedy Gonzalez anywhere.  I don’t have to adhere to this manic pace that I have gotten so used to.

I am allowed down time.

I am allowed days off.

I am allowed rest.

It facilitates a better way of life, I know it does.

So, I must continue to be vigilant, to be humble, and to graciously and warmly accept the help that comes and when I can realize that by receiving I am giving and vice versa.

I have always longed for intimate relationships in my life, what better way to foster them then to let others see me as a vulnerable human being.

Not a super hero.

I can’t find my cape anyhow, I have it hidden behind my gold crutches in my closet.

I can stay there as far as I am concerned.

I am just a mortal.

Flawed, imperfect, and perfect in that realization.

Thank god for this beautiful body  I have been given to hobble about in.

Really.

It could be so much worse.

My life is blessed.

It is.

Flaws and all, it’s pretty damn scrumptious.

I’m not interested in trading it in for a better model, the one I have is doing just fine.


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