Grounded!

by

But Mom!

I don’t want to take MUNI to work.

Not that.

Please, never that.

MUNI and a cab this morning to make it on time.

I left the house to discover my bicycle had a flat tire this morning.

Time for a new tire.

Two new tubes in less than two weeks equals new tire.

I did not have the time to dig out my gear and change the flat, I could, I have, I will, but this morning there was not enough wiggle room to change a flat and then get on my bike and get to work on time.

So, I hopped the N-Judah to 9th and Irving and then popped out, MUNI was not going to get me there on time if i took it all the way, I was going to  have to transfer at some point and it would have been another half hour, and caught a cab to work.

Cost me $15 to get to work today.

Could have been worse.

And as I have been writing about these last few weeks, it really does seem that I am to take a little time off my bicycle.

Tomorrow is likely going to be the same.

I probably will take MUNI all the way to work, I am in the Castro and I have a slightly later start.

I could get up, change out the flat and run the route.

But there stands a good chance that I would just blow out another tube.

This front tire is the original tire on the bicycle, which means it’s about two years old.  The tire has been ridden hard and long and well, through the mean streets of San Francisco, Paris, and East Oakland.

Time for a new one.

I will probably go in on Saturday when I have more wiggle room in my schedule.

Drop my bike off at the shop and buy a new tire.

Go to dance with my girl friend in the Mission and pick it up afterward.

I do have some places to get about to tomorrow, but I actually have enough time between when I get off work and when I need to get to 2900 24th Street in the Mission to be able to walk it comfortably.

Which is what I did tonight.

I finished with my nanny gig in the NOPA at 5 p.m. and took myself out to an early dinner at Herbivore, then over to a local nail salon and got a manicure.

I was due in the 7th and Geary neighborhood at 8:30 p.m. and just walked it.

I walked past places I rarely see.

I had memories of long ago and far away.

That one house on Spruce Street and Geary.

How the hell did I end up there?

Late night with the bartender at Hawthorne Lane, a pit stop at the house for some fueling up and then off to the after hours somewhere down the line.

I remember the cracked porcelain sink, the dying spider plant on top of the yellow fridge in the kitchen, the detritus of sloppy room mates all too young and too self involved to clean, the stash of toilet paper some one had stuck behind a ratty towel in the bathroom.

Yuck.

Then there was 4141 Geary, the Kaiser Permanente office I spent a lot of time at when I was going through a really difficult time in my life.

It was basically where I was officially diagnosed with clinical anxiety and clinical depression.  Where they told me that just because I could be so glib about my child hood abuses did not mean I had any healing around them.

The further admonition to find a good therapist to help with the PTSD and the ACA issues.

Jesus.

Then the psychiatrist who prescribed for me and finally the last visit I had over three years later when I went off the meds and was “released” back into my own recognizance.

Just kidding.

Cheap Pete’s Frame shop.

Where I bought the frame that houses my diploma from the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Where it turns out I had not graduate in May of 2002 because a grade on a paper I turned in for missing a final was never reported.

Fiver years later I was directed to make some amends and get my diploma.

Boy was that a shock to find out when I spoke to the woman on the phone that I had actually not graduated.

I was missing one credit.

What?

I found out what class, contacted the department, the department notified the Bursar’s Office, and three weeks later, there she was, my diploma in the mail.

“I am going to suggest you frame it and hang it on your wall,” she said to me over coffee at Muddy Waters on Valencia and 16th.

Ok.

Cheap Pete’s.

Walked by Arguello, remembering my friends old apartment there and many nights hanging out and being stupid.

Drinking coffee way too late at night and then going dancing.

Riding around in his Mercedes-Benz convertible with the top down, the heat blasting, the music loud, the stars splattered over head and the city our oyster.

It is amazing to have a history of my own in this city.

I have lived here longer than I have lived anywhere else.

Now, we could split hairs, technically I lived longer in Wisconsin, but I am thinking the same city, not the same state.

Although it’s not much longer, when I do the math.

I was in Madison for ten years before I came to San Francisco.

Splitting hairs here.

San Francisco feels like home because this is where the most important thing that has ever happened to me happened.

Where I have grown up.

Where I have learned and re-learned and learned some more about myself, my needs, my faith, my spirituality, my sexuality, my friends, my love for myself and for others, where the majority of my closest friends reside, where I am most at home.

Geary is not my favorite stretch of San Francisco and I don’t plan on going and hanging my hat there any time soon, but it was a good re-acquaint with the neighborhood.

Sometimes I need to get grounded, slow down, see the scenery on foot and get really fucking grateful that I have the life I have been given.

Even when I have to take the MUNI it is a blessing.

Especially since I haven’t puked on the bus in over 9 years either.

See you on the train in the morning.

I’ll be the one all bright eyed and bushy tailed.

 

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