Archive for April, 2011

Dreaming

April 30, 2011

I was asked this evening what’s keeping me from sending out my book.  And as I hemmed and hawed and twisted my ring around on my finger, I finally looked up at him and breathed and said, “fear”.

I am afraid.  Not of the “no”, but of the “yes”.  I am afraid of success.  Silly as that sounds.  I am also afraid that there aren’t enough words.  Or that I’ll get published and then the next book will bomb.  Or that I need to polish more.  Or that I don’t have what it really takes.  Like what the fuck does that mean anyway?

Bullshit, I don’t have what it takes.  I write every day.  I not only write every day, I write a blog every day and I write three pages long hand in my journal–without using margins–I’m sick like that.  I also work 50 hours a week nannying for two 17 month old girls who are wicked smart and handfuls on a good day.  I bike commute to work.  I cook all my own food.  I care for two cats (ok, that part is fairly simple, but there are some responsibilities that need to be met daily around them).  I do the deal every day.  I have commitments and people that I regularly, like freaking clock work, show up for.

So, yes, I do have what it takes.  I just happen to get in my own way a lot.  Too much, and I set really high expectations for myself, dare I say “perfectionist”?  Which is just another way to spell miserable.

However, as I was telling the gentleman asking said question about what is holding me back, I did come to the startling conclusion that I have not had to be beaten into quite as much humility around my book as I have in the past.  Usually I am in tears in the some remote corner of the Lucky Penny with a cup of bad coffee, breaking down to John about how come I haven’t gotten my shit together yet.  I don’t need to be knee capped by the pain to take some action, nor do I want to be, hmm, this might be called growth.  I have been getting the pain nudge of recent, I was thinking about Baby Girl last night right as I was getting ready for bed, and have realized that it will just get worse before it gets better.

I know from past experience.  Believe me do I know.  I wrote the fucking first draft to this book six years ago.  Six fucking years ago.  Holy shit.  It is time to stop procrastinating.

I do all sorts of crazy ass things trying to get around working on the book too, which makes me laugh–I have worked harder at avoiding the work than doing it, easier softer way, my ass.  Here are some of the things I have done to prolong the agony:

-Applying for the Stegnor Fellowship at Stanford, because then I really will have the chops to write.

Applying to the MFA program at UCSF, because as John Ater has told me, I really need a MFA to get published, I think he was being ironic.

-Buying a new computer, said computer I’m writing on now, with the complete intention of reworking my book to send out to publishers and agents to get really good at down loading pirated movies off the internet.

-Set aside time in my schedule to write, which has actually worked.  Oh, wait, shit, work on my book, not my blog, not an essay, not a list of financial goals, not my spending plan, or my grocery list, or a sonnet.  My book.  Huh?

-Beat myself up, buried the manuscript under a pile on my desk and pretend it’s not there.  I’m looking at it right now.

-Wallowed in self-pity.

-Decided to move to Paris and obsess on that rather than focus my energies on my current situation and do the work necessary to get it published.

-Sent it out to friends, but not asked them for feed back.

-Not send it out to friends that have said they were interested.  They’re just saying that right? Because they’re friends.  They tell me I’m pretty too.

-Not used the ridiculously complimentary letter of recommendation Alan Kaufman wrote for me.  He’s just saying I’m a talented writer, well, because he’s nice or something.  Or he’s got an agenda, or some such bullshit.  I mean the letter was wicked.

-Decided to go to school to be an elementary school teacher.  I mean why not try to launch a career as a public school teacher during a time of education duress in a state that has an enormous inability to educate its children, let alone pay a school teacher what they need to pay the rent on a studio in the city.  There’s something wrong with the idea of having to take out student loans in excess of what I already owe to go to school to make less money than I make now.

-Jesus, fuck.  I could go on.  But let’s not get depressed here, shall we, it’s late.

As I was talking to him with the tawny eyes.  I realized that if I can be open and vulnerable and not run away from the feelings, that they won’t kill me!  How come I have to learn this lesson over and over and over again?  Isn’t once enough, or fifteen times for that matter?

So, I hereby resolve to take one, ONE, action tomorrow around my book.  And further more.  I commit to start posting excerpts of the book here, in my blog.  Maybe that will light some fire under my ass.

Because as I was in tears in K’s room today struggling to fold her laundry, mitigate a toddler fight over the potty training book, juggle the incoming texts from the various parents, and just, I don’t know, breathe, it struck me that I could be using 1/16th of the energy and be getting back a lot more for my efforts.

And frankly, I don’t want to be telling myself in another couple of years that after this next nanny gig I’ll be getting myself out there as a writer.  Making it as a writer, oh, I don’t know, successfully.  Paying the bills with what I love to do.  Write.

I mean, c’mon, Martines, it’s 1:13 a.m. on a Friday night and what are you doing?

Writing.

I could be making out for Pete’s sake.

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Scary and Exhilerating

April 29, 2011

But first really, really freaking scary.  Riding my bike home tonight was nerve-wracking.  The wind was so gusty I nearly got knocked off and almost blown into a fellow bicyclist.  I got used to a certain amount of wind when I moved up to Nob Hill, especially riding up Polk St.  there just seems to be a natural funnel that carries itself from the Bay right smack down on you.

Especially when you just want to get home.

Tonight, though, it was windy everywhere.  It was windy at work, steadily increasing throughout the day from the morning through the afternoon.  I can say this much, I got my work out in today.  K’s mom sent me a text, as I was ironically headed to the park, that she wanted me to keep the girls out of the parks and the library for the rest of the week.

Gah.  She might as well have just sent me a text that said, “resentment now.”  I immediately got into an argument with her in my head.  I literally hushed my brain out loud.  “Stop it!” Then I texted her back, “sure.”

What else could I do?  Some times I really, really, really want to argue, and I know it’s just hopeless.  K’s mom and dad are germ phobes.  I will not future trip, potty training, I will not future trip, white carpet, I will not future trip, gun holster with disinfectant spray, stop future tripping.

I was however, asked to pick up some Yo-Baby yogurt for K. at the store (aka crack). So, I was allowed outside the house.  And though it was windy, it was sunny and I need to be outside, that is truly how I keep my sanity at work.  All day indoors is a way to make nanny go kookoo for cocoa puffs.

I decided that since I wasn’t able to go to the park, but could go to the grocery store, I would do some shopping for myself too.  I walked from China Basin and third to Peasant Pie on the UCSF Mission Bay campus and fueled up on coffee.  Then, ignoring the excited pterodactyl cries from the girls as we passed by the park area, I walked over to Whole Foods on Kansas and DeHaro.  I picked up the few things I can’t get at Rainbow, whilst comparison shopping, every once in a while Whole Paycheck has something cheaper than Rainbow.  Then I headed over to Trader Joes on Division and 9th.  I also popped in and out of Bed, Bath, and Beyond and used the bathroom at Nordestrom’s Off the Rack, then I hit Brannan and walked it back down to 4th.  Where I turned right and went to the SafeWay to buy the yo-crack-baby yogurt.

K. & S. had been lulled into a somnolent haze of Cheddar Bunnies and Sunny Day Snack Bars and apples and tangerines and O’s and some scary “special” kids club treat a cashier had given us (since when are s’mores a snack option?  OR cinnamon rolls, Trader Ho’s).  They were somewhere in between resigned and sugar crashed.

And the wind kept a blowing.  So, I got the walk of a lifetime.  Briefly made me want to get one of those pedometer thingys to see how many steps I take in a day.  I wonder if it accounts for amount of effort used to push a double stroller with two toddlers, a diaper bag, groceries, cat food, water bottles, snacks, sunscreen, sun hats, scarves, sweatshirts, and collapsible shade structure in high winds?

I went out again briefly after naps, but just around campus, mainly to get a coffee.  The wind was stronger.  In fact, K’s mom suggested perhaps I not go outside at all.  Grrrrrr. Already outside.  So back to the house.  Breathing and being thankful for my job, I am grateful for my job, my job is great and my girls rock.

In fact, S. said “rock on” today.  I love my job.  She’s 17 months old.

I was, however ready to leave tonight, regardless of how strong the wind.  Although I did contemplate more than once about just strapping my bike onto the front of a bus and getting along the MUNI way, but after passing not one, but three buses on my bike in a head wind, I changed my mind.

I got to my destination.  Did what needed to be taken care of and was rewarded with walking out to unlock my bike in the midst of a drag bingo event happening at the church where my bike was locked outside of.  I was putting on my bike light and unlocking my stead, when a couple more ladies came trotting across from the SafeWay parking lot in heels and fishnets and thongs.

God I love San Francisco.

I giggled waved hello to the pretty ladies and got on my bike.  Wherein I got the exhilaration of riding down hill being pushed by the wind then cross winded, then back to head wind.  But what made my night, was that this was the fifth week in a row that I have ridden my bike all the way up California Street without stopping or walking.  And I had a load of groceries in my messenger bag, plus cat food!  I remember when I moved here and I had to get off my bike and start walking up California 1/3 of the way between Polk Street and Hyde Street.

Now I can ride all the way to the top.  That is amazing.  I feel skinnier just thinking about it!

Body by bicycle, thank you very much.

And double stroller.

Multi-Tasking

April 28, 2011

Like a mother fucker!  Damn, Gina, I got it happening tonight.  I do not know where the surge of energy came from, but I have done so much in the last hour and a half it’s kind of crazy.

Actually, I think the relief of being done with all the ambiguosness around my health has been really great, that flat grey feeling has left the building.  Plus today was almost story book as far as work went.  Both the girls were absolute angels, only a couple of slight altercations, mostly just one getting jealous of the other, but really a supremely nice day with the two.  And it was the farmer’s market at the UCSF Mission Bay campus.  So I got to get fresh vegetables and fruit.

I picked up the most gorgeous bunch of radishes–$1.00, thank you very much!  I ate them raw with my lunch and dinner, with just a little bit of sea salt, so good.  And I also got at some of the prettiest tangelos ever.  I normally would just go for an apple, but the apple lady was missing in action.  So I switched it up and got the citrus, and wow, so glad I did.  Absolutely divine.  It’s also a  good time to take the girls over to the market.  It is very kid friendly, live music–today was a steel drum player–and lots of samples.

The girls tried tangerines, humus, baba ghanoush, fresh pita bread, and oranges.  I was tempted, but I leave the samples alone or I’d buy the whole market out.  I was also passingly intrigued by the fresh asparagus, but knew better.  I have to be in the exact mood for asparagus, otherwise it sits in my fridge and goes bad.  It looked lovely, but it wasn’t the right day for it.  I like buying locally and it’s a nice diversion for the girls, so the farmers market is a distinct win win situation.

Then, tonight, upon getting home I had two different text conversations, made soup, did a load of laundry, washed the sink, scrubbed the toilet, cleaned the cat box, took out the recycling, and the compost, had my evening snack, and sorted out the mail.  All before 9:15 p.m.  Not bad!

I don’t always have this level of energy, so I like to take advantage of it when it comes.  I also have been listening to my favorite self-made compilation of music on my Ipod player–my “dance your pants off” mix.  Which means I have gotten a little dance party in too.  It’s been a little while since I’ve gotten my groove on.  I should let that happen soon.  I really wanted to go to the Wicked reunion party at Mighty this past weekend, but it just did not come together for me.

I didn’t buy tickets in advance and the show sold out.  I briefly considered going to the club and standing in line, but I knew it would just be craziness.  And I don’t mind craziness sometimes, but I had other more important things to attend to.  None the less, I am feeling the distinct desire to do more than just dance around my studio.  It’s time to break out the sneakers and do some serious grooving.

And look, it’s already Thursday!  Well, not really, but only two days of work left before the weekend.  I get to see good friends this weekend, go to the MOMA with a handsome gentleman, and see a double feature at the Castro theater on Saturday.  Can anyone say Jaws and Close Encounters of the Third Kind?  I am all freaking over it!

And that wraps up my multi-tasking for tonight.  I’ve got a Glee episode downloading and it should be just about ready for watching.

Nighty night.

I am normal!

April 27, 2011

I have never been excited more by that word than today.  “Everything looks normal,” said my G/I doctor.  “Go home sleep, and keep taking iron supplements to deal with the anemia.” Uh, ok.

I am glad that my regular doctor wanted to be thorough, but I will say it was not a fun two weeks in the not knowing zone.  I feel like I can really breathe again.  I have had faith that whatever happens, everything would be alright, I have such a wonderful group of supportive friends, I cannot even begin to believe it.

Pell picked me up today at 6:20 a.m.  and took me to Kaiser.  Matt picked me a little after eleven today and took me home.  I got wonderful calls and messages all day.  My heart is really full.

I slept through most of them.  The Moviprep did not work until 4 a.m. this morning.  I thought I was going to die last night.  I finally went to bed at 11 a.m.  Four hours after having taken the stuff and gone on-line and read a laundry list of horrors and side effects from the stuff.

Note to self, do not read up on something after having taken it.

Hmmmm, note to self, do not read up on anything online and take advice from chat groups with names like “Thunder Bowels”.

REALLY?

I got pretty worked up over it and was afraid that I wasn’t going to be able to go in and get the procedures done and have to reschedule and my head just went right into overdrive.  I had a nice little chat with the powers that be and gave it up and went to bed.

Turns out I just needed to take more of it, which I did this morning at 4 a.m.  Nothing says good times like waking up at 3:45 a.m. to drink laxative.  Yick.  Glad I won’t be having that experience again.  At least not for the next twelve years.  When the G/I specialist said I would need to go back in and check up on the status of my, say it with me! Normal colon.  Just to be on the safe side since I do have some stuff that runs in the family.

Another nice side effect, I have gotten to have some pretty powerful conversations with my mom and to learn about my family a little more.  We have been redeveloping our relationship over the last four months and it’s been pretty fantastic.  Scary at first, but it seems to be blooming into a really gentle, sweet relationship.  Who knew it would only take until I was 38 years old?

So after I got home all I did was sleep.  I was still pretty chilled from being in the hospital and it turns out that the Moviprep does tend to lower your body temperature.  Which was nice to know, I thought I was coming down with a cold on top of everything else, as I was so cold last night.  I went to bed in layers, socks, yoga pants, and a sweatshirt.  Same thing when I got home.

And I have been eating.  Food is nice, anyone ever let you know that?  And hunger is definitely the best spice.  The first thing I ate today were saltines.  Mana from heaven!  And apple juice, nectar of the gods.  I doubt I will be thinking that anytime soon again!  I have been nice and easy on myself though, no steaks or chops, just toast and oatmeal and bananas and my little coconut pudding “treat” (I don’t know that many people would consider this a treat–it is not “pudding” the way most of us think about pudding, just coconut and coconut cream and a little agave.  But they put it in a little pudding cup and it’s quite cute).

I did have a moment in the store on Sunday when I went on my depressing shopping trip to Rainbow that what I really needed was a “real treat”.  But I did not succumb.  When I found myself looking over the chocolate pudding in the case, I realized I was on thin ice and scooted.  Grateful for that too!

Never liked being normal, always wanted to be special, unique, extraordinary.  Normal rocks, normal is great, I will take normal any day of the week, thank you very much!

PS.  I also liked it quite a bit when the doctor said I was “young and healthy”!

Yes.

Freelapse!

April 26, 2011

Dude.  I am a total space cadet right now.  I’m not really sure how I made it through work, but yes, I did.  However, I did get a ride home, the thought of even trying to get onto MUNI was too much.  Halfway through my day of fasting and I feel like I’m high as a kite.

Stupid too.  My thoughts aren’t making a whole lot of sense.

The bananas in my kitchen smell so good, I’m about to throw them out.  My feet and my hands have been cold all day.  Even after drinking innumerable cups of hot tea.

In fact, I’m a little beveraged out.  Apple juice, coconut juice, grape juice, sparkling water, three different kinds of tea, one cup of coffee–no milk.  Counting down the minutes until the next phase of the evening.  Movi prep time.

No, I will not be sitting in front of a glamorous mirror with lightbulbs getting ready for my close up, I’ll be ingesting the moviprep. What a ridiculous, horrible name.  Who was paid what to name this?  I want in on the action.

Standing up is getting exciting too, let me tell you, head rush central.  Really, do people get used to this?  Fasting, that is, I’m fucking brain-dead.  I don’t even know how much more I can write.  I can barely feel my finger tips typing.  And I’m super sleepy.

Nice thing about work, was able to take a nap when the girls went down.  I made it up to lunch pretty good, but started to lose focus after I fed the girls.  And when they had nap time, so did I.  I fell out.  If I didn’t have a little “movie” time ahead of me, I’d be crawling right into bed and sleeping now.

As it stands, I’ll probably just be crawling to the bathroom.

Pell made the quaint suggestion that I invite the gentleman over whom I hung out with on Friday.

I think not.

Because nothing says sexy like running off to the loo.

Although, I have been assured that I will feel tres svelte afterward and that could translate to sexy.  I can’t actually imagine.  I think I just lost feeling in my left foot.

Maybe I should try standing up really fast.

Hmmm, maybe not.

I just lost my train of thought.

Look how pretty that picture is.

Ahem, where was I?

16 minutes and counting.

Should I warn the neighbors?

Well, that was depressing

April 25, 2011

I just went grocery shopping at Rainbow.  Normally an event I actually rather enjoy.  Which is amazing growth for me.  I used to hate grocery shopping, or anything else that smacked of self-care.  Now, I get into it.  I like to browse the aisles and see what there is to be seen.  I make little lists and get new ideas about cooking.

But today I was on the quest for the clear liquid diet.

Contrary to what you may have heard, this diet is quite illusive. Ha. Clear.  Illusive.  Get it?

Sigh.

It’s just not that funny.  In the basket–bottled water, coconut juice (without the pulp which is what makes drinking coconut juice so much fun), white grape juice, and drumroll please, UNFLAVORED Jel dessert (also unsweetened and vegan, not about to put horse hooves in my body even if the nurse said jello could be included in our clear liquid diet).  There’s a pictures of clear “jel dessert” on the package.  And surprise, surprise when I whipped it up, it was clear.

Yum, can’t wait for breakfast.

I left Rainbow hungry and dejected.  Having just had dinner (organic baked potato with steamed organic broccoli and earth balance, sprinkled with sea salt, and a fruit salad of pink lady apple, banana, and fresh strawberries, dusted with ginger, cinnamon, and pumpkin pie spice, then topped with a little container of coconut pudding–so tasty!) I don’t feel hungry or dejected.  However, I am not looking forward to fasting.

I was just thinking about the crazy fast that was popular a few years back, the cayenne pepper, water, lemon juice and maple syrup “cleanse” and I don’t know how people did that.  I have to fast for 24 hours.  I think most people did like a five-day cleanse. Or some insane thing like that.  Yuck.  To think there are people voluntarily doing a fast is kind of crazy.  Or caffeine colonics.  Or all liquid diets.  I rather like food.  Solid food.  You know, food that can be chewed and has color to it.

Although I do recall a room-mate that would fast periodically as it helped her with her allergies.  And it appeared to work quite well for her; the allergy symptoms subsided almost immediately.  She drank aloe juice mixed with something else.  Something that made her grimace and plug her nose while she drank it down.  I always expected her to vomit after she finished it.  And though I occasionally suffer from allergies, I was not tempted to try her fast.

Fortunately I can have coffee and tea tomorrow.  And clear broth. Let’s not forget the clear broth.  But I didn’t pick up any  broth at Rainbow.  The thought of just having clear broth is depressing and by the time I had sourced my unflavored jel dessert and my pulp less coconut water I was dejected by just looking at the soup stock aisle and I left, wheeling my sad little basket of odds and ends to the register.

I really was tempted to let myself have some sort of splurge, but that doesn’t work for my either.  So, I just got my purchases and hopped on the 12 Folsom and came home.

I am not feeling sorry for myself, just to the other side of it, truth be told.  But I’m not feeling giddy either.  Oh well.

Such is the way the gelatin sets.

Eating Butterflies and Pooping Rainbows

April 24, 2011

I just realized my blog is starting to get a little, ahem, scatological.  I’d apologize for that, but you can blame Pell.

She said to me tonight as we were headed to a late night tea time with Amy, “I thought of you when he said that!”  A gentleman this evening told us a story about how his daughter was such a happy kid, she acknowledged it by saying, “I’m so happy that I’m eating butterflies and pooping rainbows!”

Well, I am flattered.  And I have had a big smile plastered to my face today, I won’t deny that.

It has been an extraordinary day in lovely little ways.  And though I think the taste of butterflies would not be so pleasant, I do understand the sentiment.  I have felt like it all day, without being able to verbalize what “it” was exactly.  Gratitude would probably come close, but it feels and has felt even more expansive.

Mostly because I have been so connected with people today.  Loads of phone calls and texts and face to face interactions.  My life is abundant and prosperous and rich and full.  I have nothing to complain about.

Oh, sure I could complain about that gigantic box of laxative sitting in my kitchen, waiting for me on top of the fridge, but even that seems silly.  Right now, in this moment, nothing, absolutely nothing is wrong.

I could also draw my attention down to the magnet holding a price tag that I just clipped off a coat I bought today as I went over to Noe Valley to meet up with John Ater.  It is the tag from a coat that I saw in Ambiance over six months ago, An Ren, New York, that I fell in love with at first sight.  That at the time I saw it I would not let myself try on as it was too expensive for me to buy and I knew that if I put it on I would have to have it.  Cost of said coat $475.

I said to myself, wait, see if it goes on sale.

And it did, but it was still out of my range, and then it did again, but I had just paid rent, and so on and so forth.  I had completely forgotten about the coat when I walked into Ambiance this evening, I was just killing time until I met with Mr. Ater at the coffee shop.  And there it was, one left, in my size, on sale again.  Dare I look?

Oh my yes.  It had been marked down again!  And this time I could afford it.  The coat had been marked down six times from the original price of $475.  The coat’s price now, $49. And, it was on the 20% off rack!  So it was marked down further at the register to $39.  With tax I paid $42.50 for the coat.  Less than what the tax would have been at the original price.

I am shitting rainbows.

This is not my first An Ren coat that I have gotten in some sort of fairy tale manner.  My other An Ren I found when I was out window shopping in the Mission with Joan at Bianca Starr last summer.  I got that one for $28.

I can’t wait to call Joanie in the morning and tell her my story.

Along with other details from my weekend.

Butterflies and rainbows, indeed.

Ouch! A Very Short, But Sweet, Post

April 23, 2011

My cat, Uni, is currently kneading the hell out of my lap.  I just got home.  It’s a little after 1 a.m.  technically this is not a true post a day post; however, I have not gone to bed so, it’s still Friday for me.

I love that about her, she likes to knead, it’s painful, but comforting.  It wouldn’t be so bad if I hadn’t just slipped into my yoga pants and a cup of tea.  The yoga pants are thin sweatshirt material and the tea is hot.   A cat kneading your lap while you are trying to get in your daily blog while drinking hot tea and being giddy, because, well, fuck, now I’m blushing and, never mind.

Anyway, this could get dangerous here real quick.

And it does not matter that I have dumped her out of my lap three times now, she just gets right back in.  She has a knack for waiting until I’ve put down the mug of tea and then she makes her stealthy approach.

It was a kiss.  A very nice kiss.  Thank you very much.

So flustered, in a nice way, and cat, and hot tea, and ouch, damn, ok, that one hurt.

Uni’s my girl though and I can’t not let her do her thing.  Frankie’s a punk and thank god he doesn’t knead in my lap, I’d have eviscerated thighs.  He’s wicked with his claws.

I did not know this was going to be a blog about my cats.  Sigh.  I am that person, that woman, living alone in her studio with her two cats.  Single.  BAh hahahahahahahaha. I should just go get a cat calendar. And put some cartoons of Cathy up on my fridge.

Sorry folks, this blog is rapidly devolving from anything interesting to read about as I am distracted.  I am going to wrap it up fairly quickly and finish the tea before it gets knocked over by the enthusiastic ministrations of my feline friend.  It has been a full week.  Life is pretty delicious.

It started with a trampoline and ended with a kiss.

Bath Time

April 19, 2011

Oof.  I am sore.  I am not an eleven year old girl.  Although I tried my best to keep up with her, Daniella, at House of Air yesterday.  I met her in the middle of the trampoline park where she was repeatedly throwing herself into the air, little back flips and hops and twists.  Not accomplished, gymnastic style, but just enthusiastic I’m a kid and look at what my body can do.  She showed me how to do a back flip/somersault on the trampolines.

And of course, my internal eleven year old was way into it.  However, she forgot she lives in a 38-year-old woman’s body.  Oops.

I need to take a bath.  Actually I need to soak.  I’m about to load up the bathtub with epsom salts and for the sake of treating myself, bubbles.  Because, why the hell not?  I cannot remember the last time I took a bath.  I’m a shower sort of girl.  And I have a nice bathtub, big, deep, claw foot.  I’m going to pile in the bath gel and blow it up with bubbles and stick my sore body in it.

And I’m sure it could be worse, I was getting pretty crazy on the trampolines,but Joanie intervened and told me a few times to ease up.  She was totally right. My shoulders and neck are sore today.  Not my legs at all, which is way cool–all that bike riding pays off. I wasn’t thinking about how impactful the trampoline would be on my upper body (although I could have figured it out as I got a bit of a trampoline burn on my right elbow).  But I definitely was doing a lot of throwing myself up into the air and landing on my back and my bum and then flipping wildly around like some overgrown salmon struggling upstream to spawn.

A couple of kids actually gave me tips on how to jump.  It was pretty awesome.  I’m really glad I can still relate to kids on their level and have fun and be silly.  Now, this could be construed as immaturity, but I prefer to look at it like I still have a zest and positivity for life.  I want to try things.  I want to jump off the walls and get stupid.

Even with a stiff neck and some sore shoulders, I want to go back.  I want to do the Olympic training trampolines.  They are super strong and you can catch a lot of air and do tricks.  I figure part of the problem was that I did not know what my body was going to do.  It is not eleven and does not react that way.  But, I think it would be a total blast to get rigged up in a harness and take some lessons on trampolining.  I reserve the right to play like a child.

And next time I’ll make sure and take ibuprofen before setting out on the adventure.  I know I will be going back, if only to recapture that weightless pleasure of leaping into the air and drifting back down.  Just being able to jump up and down on the trampoline and spin in the air and feeling the joy of pure play, oh, yeah, I’m about to go online and book myself an hour for next weekend!

Who do you think you are, Queen of the Trampoline?

Maybe.

Where Do I Even Start?

April 18, 2011

This weekend has been crazy good.  Full of friends and travel, little sleep, much coffee, walking, bicycling, swimming, thrift store looting, brisket eating, trampolining.  Good lord, how do I even begin to write it all up?

Yesterday I got up to a clear sunny Austin brimming over with bird song and possibility around 8:30 a.m.  I put on my new sundress that I had bought on South Congress the afternoon before at some store next to Jo’s Coffee.  I can’t remember the name, there’s a lot of little stores down there.  But I can tell you, it is super cute–red ruffled and white polka-dotted, topped off with a white belt I got at the Good Will.  I will be wearing it as often as I can, or as often as San Francisco weather permits–I might get lucky and get two wears out of it in the next year.  Chuckle.

And may I just inject that it was just a bit surreal to go from 95 F yesterday with bright sunny skies to 54 F overcast, grey, and foggy today.  But I adjusted pretty quick to the change.  Especially after Joanie and I hiked the Presidio this afternoon through Crissy Field out to the Warming House for late afternoon coffees, but I am getting ahead of myself.  Back to Austin, which was yesterday, although it sort of feels all of a piece as I did not, for as I predicted, I did not get a lot of sleep.  I have been basically up since 4:15 a.m. this morning, and that’s Austin time, which means, I have been up since 2:15 a.m. San Francisco time.

My how that time does fly.

So, back to Austin.  After putting on my sassy new sundress Ell dropped me and Liz pants off at Lizzy’s old place where her bike has been stored.  I met her old room-mate, her cat Dodge, and her chicken, yes I said chicken, Lady Bug.  We did some quick bike maintenance then headed into down town Austin.  We stopped at the Farmer’s Market to grab breakfast before heading over to meet some ladies at the Little Pink House to do the deal.

Breakfast was mighty, mighty, mighty delicious.  Two corn tortilla soft tacos, one with shredded bison, one with scrambled eggs and peppers, both topped with some sort of spicy avocado dreaminess.  Accompanied by a big tall iced organic coffee.  We sat in the park nibbling, ahem, I mean, inhaling, our tacos and enjoying the weather and the dogs and the little kids running around.  Then back on the bikes and over to the pink house.

Afterward we headed to Thom’s Market to pick up a bottle of water and a picnic lunch to take with us to Barton Springs.

Now, I have to say, in all honesty that there are very few places that I have had the moment of being completely and totally at home as soon as I was in the city.  Where I knew in my heart that I was home, in my bones, in my soul–Austin was not one of those places.  San Francisco, Paris, Black Rock City, yup.  Austin is really cool, but I knew pretty much from the plane touching down that I would enjoy my visit, but I would not be tempted into moving there.

Then Lizz took me to Barton Springs, and I had some serious reconsidering to do.  It is the most beautiful outdoor swimming hole I have ever seen.  It is a natural spring fed reservoir, surrounded by grassy hills, clover, oak trees, ranging anywhere from two feet deep to ten feet.  It is not man-made, although there are man made touches that enhance the pools–lifeguard stands, ladders and steps leading into the springs, a dammed area with a walkway over it to allow you to cross from one set of gently sloping banks to the other, sidewalks, picnic tables, a concession stand, locker rooms and shower areas.

I was blown away.

I love to swim and I had not been swimming in some time.  On top of which, I had not been swimming outdoors in over ten years. Actually, probably longer, I may have to ponder this.  There is nothing quite like getting into the water, even though it was really cold at first, really cold! And paddling around.  Swimming to me is like flying, there is this beautiful weightlessness that I imagine birds feel while they swoop through the air.  I pretend I am a mermaid and stay under as long as I can.

The springs also had a diving platform over the deeper end of it.  I actually did some diving.  And I know that I haven’t been on a diving board in, well, I think thirteen, fourteen years.  My goodness.  But the body is an amazing mechanism and mine remembered how to do it.  I don’t know what I looked like, but it felt so good to dive.  I never really learned any true diving tricks, but I had a great time trying to mimic the approach and bounce that divers do.  I think the kind of dive I do is called a swan dive.

And that’s what I felt like, a swan.

Then after I was good and tuckered out from the swim, Lizz and I just laid out on the banks and let the sun dry us off and I contemplated what it would be like to live in Austin just so that I could go for a swim every morning.  Then it got pretty hot, and the bees got a little enamoured with me.  I don’t know what it is, but I attract them.  We cut the sunbathing short and headed into town to do a little vintage shopping before Ell came to pick us up and haul us back to the house to get ready for the wedding.

Uh, yup, I also went to a wedding yesterday.  In Texas Hill Country, at the Barr Mansion.  It was a gorgeous ceremony, small, romantic, everything you see in a magazine layout for perfect weddings.  It was like being on a movie set.  I kept expecting Sandra Bullock or Reese Witherspoon to come waltzing out of the mansion.

And since I’m a curious monkey, I did a little investigating on my own after the wedding and went wandering around the mansion, which was not technically open to the wedding guests, but they were all busy with the free bar and the wedding party were busy getting their photos taken.  So Lizz and I and Ell, took the liberty of exploring the mansion.  The parlors and the library, and dining room, and the upstairs with the wrap around veranda, and the fancy pants bathroom with the most beautiful old clawfoot tub, and the library, with its zebra skin, a real zebra skin, rug and antler chandelier.  Oh my.

The reception was in a gorgeous new building built back behind the mansion and gardens.  Glossy cement floors with oak leaves embedded into it, fresh cedar everywhere, flowers cascading all over, candles, lanterns on the grounds leading you into the dining area and hanging from the rafters, the ceiling was over twenty feet.  It was astounding.

Actually, what was astounding was the food.  I was blown away.  I have never had such amazing wedding food.  All organic as well.  The mansion prides itself on providing a very eco-friendly event space.  There where mini bbq chicken sliders with dill pickles and roast beef, glorious fresh steamed vegetables, artisanal breads and whipped butter, gnocchi dripping in butter and cheese, a mashed potato bar.  It was astoundingly good.

But the best part was the hibiscus iced tea.  Mostly because it was not sweet tea.  I had to send back my tea a few times this weekend.  No sweet tea for me, please!

And the topper, the moon, full, rising golden and benevolent over the oak trees.  It was like a fairy garden.  Well, until the dj started spinning 90s pop tunes.  Lizz and Ell and I fled.

We headed back into Austin, stopping momentarily at the house to grab Velvet, Lizzy’s sweet baby blue pit bull, then on to Halcyon in the Warehouse District downtown.  It is a combined coffee bar, lounge, humidor, people watching palace of iniquity.  We scored an awesome table right on the main drag and watched Saturday night happen right in front of us.  And Velvet ate a lot of cookies and charmed all who passed by.

Even with a large latte at 11 pm at night, I could not manage the energy up to go on longer, so we mustered up after our coffee was finished and hit the sack.  I got a little shut-eye and then got up to catch my 6 a.m. flight back to SFO.

And since this entry is getting long and I’m tired, no way!  I’m going to summarize today in one paragraph, here goes–

Arrive in San Francisco at 7:45 am (time change), grab a coffee and a croissant at Petes, catch the BART back into the city, then a bus from downtown to Nob Hill.  Unpack, feed the cats, sort the mail, pay a bill, fix a to go lunch, smack a little make up on my face, down load pictures onto computer, tidy up, do the dishes, sweep the floor, head back out the door, catch a cable car down town, back onto BART, over to 16th and Mission to take care of a commitment, meet up at Four Barrel after that to do the deal for an hour, get picked up by Joan at 2:40 p.m. drive over to the Presidio, hike through Crissy Field, go to the Warming Hut for coffees, walk past the House of Air, get a crazy wild hair up my ass and make reservations to go back and bounce during their next session, head back to Joan’s car, grab a light dinner in the Marina, hit the Dry Dock to see some friends real quick, then back to the House of Air where we jumped around on trampolines for an hour.

Whew!  Did I really do all that in 24 hours?  I have one hell of a cruise director.  And I still have one day of my five-day weekend left.

Maybe I’ll take it easy tomorrow.  Sleep in, take a long bath, nap, relax….

Maybe.


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