Posts Tagged ‘artist date’

A Day Off

June 11, 2018

I think that’s what I actually had.

Oh sure.

I had some commitments, back to back ladies this afternoon and this evening doing my Sunday thing up at Most Holy Redeemer in the Castro.

But.

I actually had down time.

I also had a hankering for art.

I have a membership to the MOMA and it’s been on my mind to go and see the Magritte show.

I haven’t been to a museum in months and months and months.

In fact.

I realized today that the last time I had been to a museum was in February when I was in D.C. and I went to the Phillips House Collection, which is actually the oldest Modern Art museum in the United States.

Prior to that I couldn’t remember the last time I had been at the MOMA.

I have a fleeting idea that it was a pretty summer’ish day and I remember an installation or two.

Yes.

As a matter of fact, I remember texting my best friend about a show I had seen and saying that we should check it out together.

That did not happen.

Grad school happened.

But there’s no grad school right now.

And the MOMA was calling my name pretty hard.

I figured even if I just went in for an hour it would scratch the itch.

I have seen the permanent collection quite a few times so I just wanted to get my eyes on the Magritte and I figured if I couldn’t find parking, well, I’d take off and go do something else, but I was going to try.

I found parking!

I zipped into the MOMA with 50 minutes til closing time.

It was perfect.

The majority of people were leaving and the galleries were emptied out.

I got a ticket for the show and I didn’t have to pay extra for it.

Membership has its perks.

Aside from the fact that the ticket alone for the museum is $25 the show would have been an additional $12 I think.

I share a membership with a friend for $150, we both chip in $75 and I go three times it pays for itself.

I think I’ve gone twice this year, this year as in this year of my membership.

I do plan on hitting it up a few more times as I have time off upcoming.

But today, yeah, I just wanted a quick art snack.

And it was tasty.

I’m not a huge Magritte fan, but enough of one that I figured it was worth perusing.

I was right.

There were some fantastic pieces.

I got my art high on for sure.

2018-06-10 16.18.59-1

I really found this one compelling.

Something about the light and the layers of color in the sky.

I just stood and drank it right on up.

It’s called La fin du monde.

The End of the World.

It was fantastic.

2018-06-10 16.16.29

And Magritte wouldn’t be Magritte without the apple.

Of course, the painting that I most associate with Magritte I don’t like as much as I thought I would when I got a closer look.

I found this one more compelling.

La Chambre d’ecoute.

(I wish I could figure out how to put the accents on my French words! D’ecoute is missing an accent)

“The Listening Room”

I rather find the idea of listening to an apple quite appealing.

I wonder what stories it would tell.

About the bees and pollination and birds roosting in tree branches.

About the multiplicity of sunsets in its plush ripe skin.

About the honey of love and the secrets of the heart.

I bet an apple would have many stories to tell.

However.

My favorite was this:

2018-06-10 16.20.07-1

My God this was so pretty.

My photograph does not do it justice.

But even as I type this I could see myself becoming lost in the reflections of the light on the water.

Such pretty light.

L’empire des lumieres.

(again the apologies for the missing accents here)

“The Dominion of Light.”

Glorious.

Full blown art high.

I was so happy to see this piece.

I love when I get lost in art.

I want to go back again and see it.

Maybe one of the days in between New York and Paris when I won’t be working except seeing clients in the evenings, and I can take a lazy mid-week stroll around the show again and really soak it up.

There was also something about the sky and the color of the sky, bright blue with those white clouds contrasted against the shadows of the house and the water, I could see that it was sunset, that time when there is still light, bright light, but the shadows of dusk are swallowing the houses up and then that light reflected from the lamp-post.

My God.

It was dreamy.

I had my happy art high and I wandered around a few other galleries and took in some photographs and did a little people watching and had some great gratitude for my life that I could just pop on down to the museum on a whim.

It was perfect.

I did errands after, grocery shopping at Rainbow and a little personal grooming-snuck in for a manicure right before my shop closed.

Then on to the Castro and the fellowship there.

It was such a sweet Sunday.

It started out so nice and just blossomed into a restful, artful, true day off.

I actually feel ready for the week!

 

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Get It

May 31, 2017

Up early.

Out the door.

Off to meet with the supervisor.

Tired.

Caffeinated.

But still a bit tired.

Although by the time I left my supervisor I was jazzed up.

I’ll soon be seeing my first client.

We talked a lot about the frame and how it is held and how it is broken and all the communications, both verbal and physical, that are spoken in a session.

I’m nervous, I’d be stupid if I wasn’t, but I’m also excited and ultimately.

I’m ready.

I am at the “let’s get this party started” phase.

Tomorrow morning I have phone interview/orientation to do with the assistant director of my internship, go over all the paperwork and make sure all the ‘t’s are crossed and all the ‘i’s dotted.

I am a little over how it’s eating into my schedule, but that’s only going to get bigger, the schedule that is.

I’ll be going up to 41 hours a week at my job once school lets out.

I sat down today and figured out my schedule with the mom for the summer.

11-6 p.m. Mondays and Tuesdays.

9-6p.m. Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays.

The extra hours I will get paid in cash.

Which I hella appreciate.

And it will be a struggle and I will be tired and I will lean on the coffee and I’ll be ok.

I will have days off and time to play and get my ya ya’s out.

I have to.

I can’t be a therapist and always be grinding.

There has to be fun in the mix.

I am balancing things alright at the moment and not living in the future.

There is no God there, only fear and anxiety and a loud voice telling me in doomed tones that it will all go to shit and how dare you strive like this.

But fuck that.

I am showing up.

Right here.

Right now.

For whatever shows up.

As long as I treat myself well and I am accountable, transparent and honest with all the people in my life than I’m ok, I have to continue practicing spiritual principles at all times.

Now is not the time to let up on my practice.

It’s time to lean into it.

I have a new lady I get to work with starting tomorrow, I’m re-committing to a Saturday meeting I haven’t been to in a month–school and travel–and making sure my foundation is firm as fuck.

That’s the way to do it, throw myself into the deep end and swim.

I’ve always been a good swimmer and if I just remember to take the next stroke instead of worrying about swimming the last leg of the Medley 500 I’ll be fine.

Not that I ever swam the last leg, I was always the butterflyer.

I miss swimming a bit.

I have been gently wondering about getting back into the pool.

How much more can I smash into my schedule?

And perhaps it’s not smashing another thing in, but seeing if I can make room for another activity.

I seem to find out as the moments unfurl, bright and clean and shining like sun light flashing off the waves at noon.

Not that the sun has been much out.

Hello San Francisco summer.

Cold and foggy and having me consider buying another sweatshirt.

I really don’t need another, but I feel like I need a more professional coat.

I got some great new shoes yesterday.

I neglected to mention that in last nights blog.

I decided to really girl up my solo artist girl date by hitting the John Fluevog store on Grant Avenue and blowing my entire wardrobe allowance for the month of June on a pair of shoes.

But damn.

They are both sexy and fucking comfortable.

And.

Not too sexy.

Funky.

Cool.

Good therapist shoes, you know for a therapist who might be throwing some I’ve got tattoos action.

It’s a platform Mary Jane.

It’s superb.

I wore them yesterday out of the shop.

They are perfect and I’m happy to use my new career as an excuse to buy myself some shoes.

Hell.

I will use just about anything as an excuse to buy some shoes.

If they fit and look sexy I usually buy them, even if it means that they sit and languish in my closet for months, if not years.

I have a pair of leopard print platforms, Michael Kors, that I bought right after my ex-boyfriend broke up with me.

I was in Macy’s and there they were and they were on sale and they looked hella sexy and well, shit.

I had to.

I have never worn them out of the house.

Ha.

But they are in my closet and I have hopes to wear them.

I do.

I love me some shoes.

I love dressing up.

I haven’t always had the money to dress the way I want, but I am hella creative and I have some really nice compliments on my style, which can be very street, but I have been trying to tone it down a little as I approach having clients in therapy and what that looks like.

To be my fully authentic self, but also not too out there that I can’t be related to.

I believe being myself is important, but I have many sides to myself and not all of them need to be on display for my clients.

That being said.

I do have aspirations to upscale the wardrobe over some time.

I like to be a little edgy, a little funky, but I want to be refined and classy too.

I am not stupid or blind and I know I can pull sexy off quite easily, its my body shape, I’m curvy, it’s my hair, I have a lot it’s big and curly, maybe it’s my mouth.

“Carmen, you know, you’re mouth just screams blowjob,” my best friend in Wisconsin told me one night after having a few pints after hours at work.

I smacked her.

But she wasn’t wrong.

I want to tamp that down a touch and have some nice refined pieces in my closet.

I’ll find my way.

I am not worried.

And.

I suspect.

I will have a lot of fun doing it.

Oh yeah.

Ooh La La

May 19, 2017

Je suis fatigue.

I am tired.

I was up at 6 a.m.

I couldn’t sleep.

Oh.

I tried.

But gave up the goose around 6:20 a.m.

I popped up and decided to head out to a spot over by the Arc de Triomphe to see some fellows this morning at 8 a.m.

I arrived with plenty of time and was able to grab a quick cafe creme at Comptoir de L’Arc, a little cafe I got turned on to by a friend when I lived here four and a half years ago.

And!

I got a message from that friend today, she’s going to be in town for a quick visit and we are going to meet up at a spot tomorrow with a few other fellows, hang out, do the deal, and go to some French fellowship after.

I am super excited.

I may be super exhausted, but I’m going to sleep when I’m dead.

Or.

Perhaps after I write my blog.

I really did make a big run on the day.

Up so early I felt like I got a scandalous amount of things done today.

One of which has been on my list of things to do in Paris that I never quite got to the last few times I was here.

I went to Marche Aux Enfants Rouge this morning after doing the deal.

I bought cherries and Belle Pomme de Boskop!

My favorite apples in Paris, I believe that they come from Belgium, but they are the apples I used to buy at the market at Square D’Anvers when I lived next to it.

I took my booty to the park nearby, Parc du Temple, sat on a bench and watched the children play in the playground and the ducks paddle about in the pond.

It was spectacular.

Quiet.

Serene.

I had a moment, a Paris moment, and I almost laughed out loud, this, this sitting still on a park bench in a quiet park, off the beaten tourist track, in a sweet neighborhood in the 3rd Arrondisement, may have been one of the highlights of my trip.

It was so serene.

Sometimes a girl has to fly around the world to sit still.

I’m sure I’ll have other opportunities to sit still, although perhaps not tomorrow, as a friend and I are heading to Clingancourt early, but I will give it a shot.

Speaking of friends.

There is nothing, and I mean, nothing quite like bumping into a friend at random in the Marais.

It was amazingly serendipitous.

We walked all over the Marais, chatted, caught up, window shopped.

And.

Ha!

I got my Paris sweatshirt!

Except.

Heh.

It’s not exactly a sweatshirt.

It’s so much better.

And.

It’s so damn me.

It’s a pink satin bomber jacket that I got to have custom patches put on it.

There’s one on the right arm that says Rue Cambon, 1st Arr.

Rue Cambon is where all the fashion house are.

And.

The patch on the back.

Rue de Mauvais Garçon, 3rd Arr.

Literal translation:

Street of the Bad Boys.

Yeah.

I will run with that.

I haven’t had an impulse buy like that in some time and with that I am pretty tapped to with my spending.

I have gotten all my booty and then some.

In fact.

I am a shopped out, museum’ed out, and just about walked out.

My ankle is holding up and I am super glad I go the walking shoes, and I have been careful to not push too hard.

I can easily go too hard too fast.

Which is why I am very happy that I took time today to sit down and watch ducks for a while.

And despite being tired, which frankly makes it harder for me to speak French when my brain isn’t running on a full nights sleep, I got wonderful compliments about my French several times today, and many times over the course of my time here.

I was told by one person that my French was so pretty and where was I from.

He was shocked when I told him that I was from the states.

“But you have no American accent!”

Thank God.

Not that I’m not happy I’m where I’m from, but it does help tremendously to not have the American accent, there is much that is disparaged here about America and sometimes, well, it’s just nice to slide under the radar.

Not that I slide very far under the radar.

I am still quite noticeable in Paris.

I have tattoos you know.

But.

It’s also nice to be recognized.

I had dinner again at a little place by the Musee D’Orsay on Rue de Bac called Cocorico.

The waiter waved me to the table I had last night, the owner came over and chatted with me and we talked about where I was from, again, surprised that I was from America, with my lack of accent, about me being on vacation, that today I was tired, but happy to be eating in her lovely restaurant.

She asked me what I had been doing and I told her, walking and museums and then I told her about the show at the Orangerie and the amazing installation there and she got excited and said she was going to go.

It was a super treat to be chatted with in such a manner, I’m not a local, but I wasn’t treated like a tourist.

She bought my cafe creme for me and when I went to leave she asked my name, “Carmen,” I said, “comme l’Opera.”

Carmen, like the opera.

“Enchante,” she replied, ” je m’appelle Odette.”

I told her it was such a pleasure to meet her and that I was so happy to enjoy her delicious food and I wished her a good night and a good weekend.

I floated out the door.

It’s the little things.

I felt very special.

Thank you Paris for dressing me up in pink satin jackets and making me feel noticed and loved.

It means the world.

It really does.

I Made It

April 10, 2017

To my weekend!

Thank freaking God.

I have tomorrow and Tuesday off.

Eleven days in a row at work.

Three days in a row of school.

First day off tomorrow.

Who’s not setting an alarm?

Yes.

That’s right.

I am not setting an alarm.

Which makes two days in a row.

I woke up late this morning.

For the first time in forever, I forget to set my alarm.

I really can’t remember the last time I missed setting my alarm, I am a little compulsive about it, I usually set my alarm while I am eating breakfast in the morning and checking my e-mails.

Then I don’t think about it the rest of the day.

I spaced it.

I also typically check it before I go to bed, you know, just in case.

Obviously.

I did not check it and I woke up 45 minutes past my alarm.

Oops.

Fortunately the rain had cleared and I had more time in my morning for the commute in because I could take my scooter.

That and the morning commute is really pretty easy on a Sunday.

I didn’t get a chance to write my morning pages, but I figured, I really just needed that extra 45 minutes of sleep.

Yesterday was a hard day.

Today was easier, shorter, but I still had some frustrations.

Like thinking I had recorded the therapy dyad session I did in Couples Therapy, a half hour recording that I don’t know how, but I somehow deleted.

It was the weirdest thing and I was so over it, the weekend, the classes, the processing, not that any of it was bad, there was a lot of great stuff that happened, it’s just that I’m staring down a lot of work.

Three papers.

Three pretty big projects.

And needing to deal with setting up a new dyad, a fake couple, to practice on and record a new session so that I can write a paper for Couples Therapy, which is also due the week before the last weekend of classes, which I find to be bullshit, but there it is.

The last weekend of classes I have a Trauma paper and presentation due and my Community Mental Health paper due.

Both of them require me to listen to recordings as well.

I did an interview for Community Mental Health and I will need to sit and listen to it, a half hour of interview, and then I will have to listen over again to the podcast we listened to for this weekend of Trauma class, which is two hours long.

I feel a bit over having to do all so much work for these final projects.

But.

That’s what has to happen.

Plus, two weeks from tomorrow I start my supervision for school.

My plate is officially full for April.

I only have three weeks before the next weekend in May.

This means each weekend I need to write a paper.

Le sigh.

At least I had dinner and hang out plans tonight after class.

A lover came into town and we had a rendezvous.

It was lovely to catch up, I haven’t seen him since last semester, right after I had gotten out of school in December.

It was good to  get acquainted again.

Ahem.

It was nice to be in my body for a while instead of my brain.

Although the conversation at dinner was intellectual and thoughtful, he’s smart, I’m smart, we have smart conversation and yummy Thai food at Thai Cottage.

I am grateful for the “reunion” and it feels nice to have had some company.

Heh.

We even watched a video after and snuggled, which is not usually the case, he’s busy, I’m busy, we both live and work far away from each other and he had to get on the road back home, but it was good, so good, to be a human creature, get my atavistic needs met.

Which really are old needs, they are current needs.

But met needs.

I would like to cultivate a relationship that meets more than once every three or four months.

That would be nice.

I’m sure it’s happening though.

And in the mean time I am grateful for my lover and the time we did have.

A little sexy sexy is fun and it was good to feel wanted.

Who doesn’t want to feel wanted?

Anyway.

I don’t have any plans for tomorrow.

I could get up in do yoga, I might, I might not, I really am going to let myself sleep and purposefully not turn on the alarm.

If I’m up and awake in time for the 10 a.m. class I will go.

Even though the teacher is not one of my favorites, I find his classes exceptionally hard and challenging.

I usually spend my time in class wishing it were over or wondering when it will be done.

I don’t normally clock watch a class, but the few times I have had the teacher I do, and I don’t find it that enjoyable.

So maybe I will try for an evening class.

I don’t feel like making any plans.

I could go get a mani/pedi.

I might go to the MOMA.

I haven’t seen the Diane Arbus exhibit nor have I seen the Diebenkorn and Matisse retrospective.

I have not agenda besides sleeping as long as my body wants.

My brain may be a monkey and get me up early, but I suspect that after the romp in bed, the long weekend of classes and eleven days straight at work, I will sleep just fine.

Yeah.

Me and my bed head are pretty tuckered out.

Glad I got through.

Now it’s time for rest.

Night y’all.

Sweet dreams and all that jazz.

Softly Resigned

April 7, 2017

I am so up past my bedtime.

Well.

In three minutes, I will be up past my bedtime.

For a school weekend start.

But.

I had such a lovely meal with one of my dearest friends from school that I really don’t care that I will be tired tomorrow.

Sure.

I could skip writing my blog and throw myself into bed, I could skip my cup of tea and my apple at the end of the day with a little bit of a video, but I don’t believe that I would actually go to sleep.

I would toss and turn and the days events, though not earth-shaking, would spend too much time in my brain getting sorted.

I would rather take the time to unwind and put away my laundry and pack my lunch and dinner and make sure my school books and notebooks are ready to go.

I am a good school girl.

I recieved an e-mail earlier from one of my professors saying I was a “prized student” that I have “intellectual rigor” and a few other choice bon mots which are almost too kind to print here.

I was asking said professor for therapist referral as I need to have therapy in order to graduate my program.

Suffice to say, I am happy with my choice and grateful that I have started moving forward with her.

Never the less it was a great kindness for my teacher to get back to me and tell me how she had really thought about who might work for me and my creative sensibilities, empathy, and caring, and the other nice things I wrote above.

I was so freaking touched.

I am still.

I am actually quite intrigued by the people she recommended and I might try to reach out to them as well, though, truth be told, I am feeling I am exactly where I am supposed to be.

Regardless.

I will be thanking her when I see her tomorrow morning.

And I will quietly bask in the glow of her compliments.

I will also not give to much of a fuck about showing up tomorrow perfectly prepared.

I mean.

I am prepared, I have done all the reading and then some, but I am sort of over the semester, I am tired, the getting the internship stuff worked out took up so much time and effort that I don’t have much focus on the school material.

One of my classes I still feel very much engaged with, Trauma, but my other two, I’m just not feeling excited about, I did the prep work, I know what I’m bringing, but it’s not excitement, it is rather a sort of trudging, just get through the class which can be tiring to do.

Ah well.

In reality.

It’s always the same way, the night before a weekend of classes, trying to have it all organized and work out so that I can show up and be in maximum learning capabilities.

That’s just how I am.

I am trying to be easier on myself and to relax a little more and take opportunities, like I did tonight, to see my friends and to not take it all so damn seriously.

Not take myself so damn seriously.

And acknowledge.

Today was day eleven in a row of work.

I have not had a day off in eleven days and now I’m about to go into 29 hours of school in the next three days.

I am tired thinking about it.

So a little laissez faire attitude seems pretty much on point.

Just showing up will be the important thing.

It always is, the showing up.

I get a lot of things done by just doing that.

Show up to work.

Show up to the page.

Show up to school.

Show up for my recovery.

Actions.

Not thinking.

Acting.

Acting as if.

Taking action.

Doing the next thing in front of me and not putting so much emphasis on the big picture.

The big picture is made out of tiny, minute to minute, moment to moment, lights of brightness, like a pointillist painting, each tiny action an exquisite moment of beauty in a huge masterwork of art.

I remember the first time I saw a Georges Seurat painting in real life and how enormous it was.

All the detail.

So much that was attended to.

A Sunday On La Grand Jatte.

The picnic painting with the woman holding the black parasol the picnickers in the grass, the minute attention to light and how it plays on figures, the colors and the shifting movement created by the small dabs of paint.

Extraordinary.

I think of that.

My life as an exquisite corpse of moments brought before me in this now, in this reality, showing me all the hows and ways and minute actions that I took to get from point “a” to point “b”.

If I were to look at the overarching thematic maybe I could get it.

But I would get lost in the details, stuck in the bend of an elbow in the curl of a cowlick, in the shape of a leaf on a tree, in getting just the right color on her cheek.

I can’t focus on the big things.

I have goals, yes, of course, but I have to take them in tiny, small, manageable little bits.

I can’t do the whole painting in one session.

Nor can I live my life from that perspective.

I rather choose to see the infinite beauty in the every day actions that I constantly take that add up to me, this magnum opus.

Just.

A.

Small.

Tour de force.

And like that.

I am ready for the next action in front of me.

Tea.

Apple.

Bed.

Sweet dreams my loves.

Sweetest dreams.

 

Little Boxes

February 22, 2017

In the hallway.

I got my first little small packages of joyful celebration in the mail today.

Yeah.

When I discovered that I had gotten the time off request for Burning Man from work I made some celebratory purchases on-line.

I couldn’t help myself.

I got some hair flowers.

Heh.

Yes.

And some glitter barrettes.

Because.

Hello.

Sparkle pony.

I had a host of hair flowers.

Like.

A lot.

Really.

From all over, from places I have traveled too, a hair flower from a wig shop in Brooklyn, to a hair piece from Magazine Street in New Orleans, to barrettes I have gotten in Paris.

But.

After the lice apocalypse over Thanksgiving.

I got rid of them all.

I know.

I know.

I could have quarantined them or something.

But I was in a frenzy.

When they comb through your hair and it takes four people, FOUR, three hours to get through all of it and they can’t and won’t guarantee that they got them all, in fact, they did not, and I had two more treatments, when you go home and firebomb your house and put everything and anything that is fabric in the wash, thereby blowing the fuse to the washing machine because you’ve overloaded it, and you throw away your brush, all my hair accessories went the fuck out to the trash.

It was such a horrendous and horrific experience.

I just couldn’t fathom ever putting that stuff in my hair again, even if it meant starting over completely from square one with some basic hair elastics and bobby pins.

Part of me thought.

Well.

Hell.

Maybe that part of my life is over.

You know.

The one where I play the part of the girl with the flower in her hair.

Maybe she needs to grow up.

Yeah.

That lasted all of a few seconds the minute I found out I could go to the event.

I was online buying hair shit like nobody’s business.

I will say this year I won’t be dying my hair any funky colors.

Been there.

Done that.

I’m good with just going with my natural shade of brown and quite happy to augment my hair with accessories versus hair dye.

So.

Yes.

Some fabric roses.

A yellow satin one and a dark red velvet one.

Some daisy hair clips.

Pink and white.

Little, like tiny miniature daisies that you see growing in the outfield of baseball diamonds.

And.

Yes.

Glitter barrettes in pink, teal, and silver.

Because.

Glitter.

See aforementioned sparkle pony.

I may have some other things arriving too.

Ahem.

Yes.

I did.

I went ahead and ordered a jackalope headpiece.

Yes.

It was expensive.

Yes.

I don’t care.

Yes.

I got a tax return.

I am fucking going to embrace it.

A friend at the event last year had a pair of horns with flowers that really were sweet and she loaned them to me for a night and a day and I wore the fuck out of them.

I have been ogling a pair of jackalope bunny ears and horns on Etsy for three years now.

I got the news about getting the time off and I went to the site and I bought them.

In fact.

I totally splurged and bought a bigger set then I had originally been looking at.

It can’t be called an impulse buy if I’ve been thinking about buying them for three years.

Or so I rationalized the purchase.

Check them out.

Here.

God.

I am such a dork.

And.

Nope.

I don’t give a flying fuck what you think.

I am happy.

And they are fabulous.

The artist is going to make the ears in candy floss pink and use cream flowers for the headband.

I also asked that she incorporate some daisies into the piece.

Since.

Favorite flowers, yo.

I’m stupid psyched to see them.

I should get them sometime in March.

Plenty of time to co-ordinate outfits before the Burn.

Heh.

I also reached out to a camp today about camping with them.

I really liked where I camped last year.

But.

I want to try something new.

Not too new.

I know plenty of folks where I asked to camp and the head of the camp is a dear friend of mine and someone with whom I experienced my first burn with when he and I were both affiliated with another camp.

Then he split off from that camp and started his own and I was always working and camping with whomever I was working for.

But.

NOT WORKING.

No.

Not working this year.

I have vowed to myself that I am going to Burning Man.

I am going to participate and help out wherever I camp.

But.

I am not working the event.

No nannying.

No fluffing.

No nothing.

Just me and a spiritual experience out in deep playa.

Aka.

Make out session.

Hahahahaha.

Sleeping in whenever I want.

(If I can manage a shad structure over my tent this year, it gets hot early and there was little sleeping past 7 a.m. in my tent last year)

Staying up late.

Not being tied to anyone else’s scheduled.

Free to play.

Free to wear flowers in my hair.

And jackalope horns.

Because why the fuck not.

I’m an artist.

I get to express and dress as I want.

Not to impress anyone.

No.

But because it makes me happy to do so.

I love playing dress up.

Putting up my hair.

Putting on make up.

I’m just going to go and play playa princess all fucking week-long.

So help me God.

I deserve to put myself first for a turn.

And.

Like that.

I just got word back from the head of the camp, that I am indeed invited and welcome to camp with them.

I’ll be at Camp Run Free this year kids.

Seems quite apropos.

Does it not?

 

 

Hurts So Good

December 28, 2016

God damn I got a work out today.

First I did yoga.

And I do not know why, if it’s this particular teacher, I cried in pain the last class I took, and I felt close to tears in this one, maybe I’m old, my body is just not what it used to be.

And when it was.

Well, fuck, I was like 80 or a 100 lbs heavier, so who would have known anyway.

But.

I was stiff and sore and tender after.

Which was not a bad thing.

Especially since I splurged and booked myself a Thai massage today.

OH MY GOD.

It was so good.

I decided to splurge, last of the Christmas bonus, which I also used to pay my January rent a little early, not all of the bonus, but a big chunk, it’s pretty much gone at this point.

I let myself investigate a few options and I decided on this particular place for two reasons, one it was in a neighborhood I’m familiar with and two, it was next to Rainbow Grocery and I love shopping there.

I, in fact, had lunch there.

I got to the spot, the massage place, a little early as I wanted to take my camera out and get some street shots of Erie Alley.

Great graffiti.

Unfortunately, also a little on the edgy side, there’s a big homeless encampment on the street.

I did venture further in than I normally do, but when a dog fight broke out between a homeless guy walking by with his pit bull and a prostitute doing her trade, I was like, ok, I’m out.

I got some great shots though.

Check them out here.

I was happy.

Then.

Rainbow for “lunch.”

It’s not what I would typically have for lunch, but I had a big breakfast, and I had booked the massage at an odd time of day for having lunch–2p.m.

I got myself an hour and a half massage and as I booked during the weekday I also got a free 15 minute foot massage.

Please and thank you.

So, all told, I was on the floor for an hour and 45 minutes.

Yes.

I said floor.

Thai massage, if you haven’t had it, is a little different than traditional massage.

I was on a low platform bed on the floor.

There is a bar over head that the masseuse can use to keep themselves balanced, some massage therapists will massage with their feet.

My therapist used hands and elbows and I think her feet once or twice, I don’t recall.

I was a wee bit blissed out.

Right now I’m also sore, but she worked out some kinks that I have had for, well, years.

I don’t often indulge in massage, I suppose I should more often, I was super tight.

She got into areas that made me want to wail, they were so tender and tight and painful, but my God, afterward, the release was so good.

And.

I didn’t just get the traditional Thai massage, I had gotten myself a package, which for an hour and 45 minutes was $130, a fucking deal.

There was the free 15 minutes of foot massage and the, wait for it.

HOT COMPRESS MASSAGE.

Oh my fucking god.

It was the best massage I have ever had.

She did the big deep tissue stuff on my back and my legs and arms and then wiped me down with big warm towels to get the massage oil off and rewrapped me in blankets.

Then.

She took out these big hot compresses that were filled with some sort of grassy sweet smelling herb.

It was a cross between warm baked bread, hay, and cotton sheets being hot ironed.

It was amaze balls.

I mean.

I can’t even begin.

And then I got the same treatment on the front, deep tissue massage, mostly with her hands and elbows, then the wipe down with warm towels, and after the hot compress massage.

It was like being massage with big loaves of fresh baked bread.

I mean.

I can’t even quite explain.

My only complaint was that the room was a tiny bit too cold.

I am sure the therapist didn’t notice as she was moving and using hot things on my body, but my feet and hands got a little chilled.

Good thing to note.

As I wanted to fully relax but at times I also just wanted to get my hands and feet warm.

Granted.

It was like she’d read my mind and I got an extra hot towel wrapped around my feet for a little while when she did the last manipulations on my back and neck and head.

Fuck me.

Facial massage.

So, so, so good.

And I’m getting warmed up now.

Hot tea.

It really is something that I have noticed recently and I don’t know if it’s the riding on the scooter, I mean, the wind chill is nothing to sneeze at, or if I’m just, well, getting old.

I know that I also tend towards anemia and that translates to poor circulation in hands and feet.

All I know is that after I lost the biggest amount of weight, every year I seem to notice that I chill faster and faster.

I could see moving somewhere warmer.

I thought about that while I was lying there getting the rub down.

Maybe somewhere further south in California.

I’ve occasionally thought about it, I love San Francisco though, I don’t see moving anytime.

But you know, I can understand how people get tired of the cold and the fog, it does get into your bones.

At least into mine the last few years.

And now I’m thinking that I may splurge again and go to either Kabuki Spa and do a hot tub or go check out Banya SF, which is a Russian bathhouse out in the Bayview, I have heard a lot of good stuff about it.

We shall see.

I don’t have plans past tomorrow morning and early afternoon.

I’ll be heading to the MOMA at 10 a.m. to get my art on with two of my favorite, fabulous, and oh so fierce men in the Bay Area.

I can’t wait to stroll the galleries with them and have a nice lunch after.

So sophisticated.

Ahahahahaha.

Me.

Sophisticated.

Shoo.

 

Puerto Rico

December 19, 2016

In the New Year?

Um.

Yes please.

So today was my birthday and like all good plans, hahahaha, plans you are just awesome and always so fucked, it didn’t quite go the way I um, planned.

Free Gold Watch was closed for a private party.

Which they hadn’t advertised and so when I showed up with my friends there was no pinball to be had.

And it was cold.

And I had stood outside for a long time waiting in line at Zazie’s in Cole Valley for brunch to want to stand outside any longer and figure out anywhere else to go.

So.

I called it a day.

And I have no regrets, no hurt feelings, because.

Ha, I had no expectations.

Which is actually a really nice way to roll.

And.

I had such a good time, such a lovely, sweet, warm, cozy, when we finally got seated in the restaurant as we had to wait in line for over an hour, but so worth the wait.

I had a delicious meal.

A lot of coffee.

And the company of some dear friends.

I am a very lucky girl.

Standing on the curb in Cole Valley outside a hopping French bistro waiting in line to have brunch on my birthday, feeling all the love.

I was a little disappointed to not play ye olde pinball, I love pinball, but I wasn’t upset that I was missing out, I had already had such a good time.

And.

My friends sang me Happy Birthday in the restaurant and the entire place joined in.

Wonderfully mortifying and special all at the same time.

Full, replete, and warm, I couldn’t have asked for more.

I also had an awesome talk with my dear friend who came over from Oakland to have brunch, we hadn’t seen each other in months, but sometimes, when there’s a connection, there’s a connection and it doesn’t matter that it was a little while, we were right back in it.

And.

Guess where he’d been?

Puerto Rico.

And guess where the airline I have the voucher for flies to?

San Juan.

Puerto Rico.

Of course, it’s too late to get a flight anywhere, all the holiday traveling, and I’m fine with that, but I corralled my friend on the curb and told him about my Christmas plans changing and that I had to cancel my ticket and now had a flight voucher that I could use to travel anywhere the airline had hubs.

It’s a small airline-SunCountry, so no Hawaii or international travel, except Puerto Rico, some spots in the Caribbean and Mexico.

Hello.

I said to the little map showing off Puerto Rico.

I haven’t seen you in a long time.

I mean.

A really long time.

And I have wanted to go back, to do it right.

To do it sober, for one, to go again to the bio luminescent sea, to walk the cobbled streets of Old San Juan, to swim in the water and lay on the beach.

So as I’m explaining to my friend about the ticket and my thoughts and wondering when he’s going back to Puerto Rico, he just starts smiling and smiling and then.

“Nena, open your gift.”

I looked at him, “ok.”

And opened my gift on the sidewalk outside Zazie’s and screeched with joy.

A travel book to Puerto Rico.

A bag of Puerto Rican coffee.

And a jar of Adobo spice.

OMG.

So made my birthday.

“How the hell?” I was so excited,  smacked my friend with the Adobo.

“I don’t know, but obviously the Universe provides,” he smiled.

We’ll be talking more, he’s got business there and will be going a couple of times a year for the next year and a half, two years, so sometime in the new year there will be a trip to Puerto Rico with my dear friend.

I am so excited.

And though the plans, they keep changing, I will be here for Christmas, I’m not upset about them changing, life happens, things change, roll with it.

Tonight will be an early night for me, despite it being my birthday I don’t need to go and paint the town eighteen shades of red, rather, I get to curl up here in my cozy home, by my sweet Christmas tree and have a little more tea and get a good night’s sleep.

Tomorrow begins my last week with my current family.

It will be sad to say good-bye to the boys, but also I know it’s not a true goodbye as the next family I work with goes to the same private school.

I will see the boys at pick up and drop off and that will be a kind way to ease the transition.

Both for them and for me.

I have some Christmas presents for them and some things that I hope will remind them of me and keep me in their hearts, but I am ready to move onward to the next adventure.

I am also grateful that I have week off from said next adventure.

There will be much yoga.

There will be a little travel over to the other side of the bridge to help out a friend on Christmas Eve day.

There will be trips to the MOMA.

Dare I say it?

There will be naps.

There will be time to figure out my camera and why I can’t download my pictures to my computer.

There will be time to attend to a few school things–practicum applications, resume writing, gathering references.

As well as doing my FAFSA for the next school year and starting to order my books for the next semester.

Fingers crossed.

There will be time for at least one book that is pleasure reading.

There will be time for a ferry-boat ride on the bay me thinks.

I love to take the ferry once in a while, it’s my special solo date gig.

There will be lots of writing.

When isn’t there?

There will be plans that go awry and things that change and I will grow and change with them.

Hello 44 years old.

You look pretty damn good.

Glad we’ve made it this far.

Luckiest girl in the world.

Saturday Afternoon Sad

October 30, 2016

It’s been a sad day or so for me.

The sads, they caught up with me.

They had a tea party with the sorrowfulls and the woefulls.

They had a big cup of cafe au lait with the maudlin and the melancholic.

And then they moved the fuck on.

Like the grey scuttling clouds dusting me with blurry tears of rain on my scooter as I zoom zipped up Lincoln Avenue to meet my person at Tart to Tart.

She sat down across the table from me and cocked her head, “are you crying?  Have you been crying?”

Ugh.

Yes.

Off and all since yesterday.

There are reasons.

And there are reasons.

And there is a season to my sorrow and it will pass.

If I let it, if I talk through it, let it out, cry a little, laugh a little, tears sliding down my face just as my tender footed heart does a drop kicking curtsey of pain through the goal posts of my soul, I put my head on the table and collapsed for a moment.

“What’s going on?” She asked me.

I told her and cried.

I got it out and cried.

We talked and talked and thank God I have her in my corner, thank God for her experience, strength, hope, for her guidance and perspective.

“Of course you’re sad,” she said, “let it out, but don’t wallow in it.”

We talked about things I could do.

Basically nothing.

Well.

That’s not true.

I have to surrender people, places, and things, I have to let them go, I can’t control situations, I can’t control people, I can’t make the trains run on time.

I am just not that fucking powerful.

What I did do though was take her suggestions to do some writing and also to be gentle with myself and do something nice for myself.

I text my friend and said, “hey thanks for the Ghost Ship pass offer, but I’m going to rescind my ask, I’m too emotional to be in a big crowd with loads of drinking and drugs.”

I needed to be with my people tonight.

My fellows.

My fellowship.

My friends.

And I was.

But.

Before I got there I decided to celebrate me.

My life.

My recovery.

My sobriety.

Because without that I would have nothing.

And I am so very grateful, so overwhelmed with the awe of it that I am still here, still sober, still doing the deal, still showing up, that I needed to do something special and just for me.

I went to the MOMA.

I had a quick-lunch at La Fonda Mexican Grill, carnitas anyone?

Then scootered down town.

The traffic wasn’t bad and the last bits of rain had cleared.

I parked in the motorcycle parking just off Minna Street and popped into Blick, the art supply store and yes.

I bought myself stickers.

Because a girl likes stickers.

And I wanted to give myself the little things that mean something to me, I’ll write every day for weeks in my notebook in the morning and every day I will put down a little sticker in the margin and it will remind of the day, the moment, the heart-felt sorrowful tears and also the gratitude and joy of being alive and on my scooter in my pink lady motor cycle jacket.

I mean.

I used to use and drink in that neighborhood and to see where I am now in comparison to where I was, it’s a fucking miracle.

I am not exaggerating.

Not a bit.

Not a tad.

Not at all.

I am a fucking miracle.

My life is extraordinary.

Miraculous.

Awe-motherfucking-some.

Sure.

I have feelings.

And I can swim in them.

Or.

I can be a light.

I can be a beacon and I can shine.

Maybe some will be draw to that light.

Maybe.

I got my stickers and went to the MOMA.

I stood in the short line, the members line, and got my ticket.

I asked what was the favorite thing in the museum for the desk person.

He told me about the Bruce Connor exhibit.

It was exquisite.

There were so many mediums the artist worked in it was enthralling to see the breadth of his work.

I watched a few films, I stood in front of photographs and felt wonder.

I felt awe.

I felt warm and held.

I felt safe.

The MOMA was always my safe place when I was using.

I used to work at a high-end fancy pants restaurant around the corner and I would drink in the neighborhood, I knew the industry people, I went to the Palace, House of Shields, The W Hotel, Dave’s on 3rd.

I did cocaine in all the places at any of the times I could get my nose into it.

Shit.

I did key bumps in the bathroom at Starbucks.

But.

I could never bring myself to use in the MOMA.

It was sacred.

This church of art.

My first home, the first thing I did when I came to SF, I went there, I wanted to see the art, I wanted to walk the Occulous Bridge, I did so again today, I got a membership.

I have a membership again and the skeleton of the museum is there, nooks and crannies that remind me of the horrors of dancing along the skein of insanity that threatened to entrapped me as I hollowed out my soul using and drinking.

But now.

Well.

Now.

All gratitude.

All the love I have for myself, the awe I felt when I bought a postcard from the gift shop that was a photograph from the Bruce Connor show that was a street graffiti that side “love” where it should have been a right turn arrow on a street in Oakland.

That was the only thing I bought at the gift shop.

I am a museum gift shop junkie.

I like to get my magnet or my postcard.

Today, though.

Shit.

I almost bought a Polaroid camera!

There is a company, I did not know, that when they heard that Polaroid was no longer going to make the instant camera and film, stepped in and bought the processing plant and the equipment.

It’s called The Impossible Project.

I was pretty smitten.

I mean.

I almost did it.

I almost bought it.

The camera is actually not that expensive.

$150.

The film is a bit though, $20 per packet and you get 10 Polaroids.

I waffled.

I just paid rent.

But.

Heh.

My birthday is coming up and I resolved that I will get myself one.

I would love to bring it to Paris with me in spring.

How amazing would that be?

I also will be getting another camera, a point and shoot digital to replace the one that I finally broke at Burning Man this past burn.

A Fuji Fine Pix.

I priced them about a month ago and they’re a bit expensive, but the one I had before last me 9 years!

I took it with me to 7 Burning Man’s, to Paris three times, Rome once, London once, New York, Los Angeles, I literally took over 10,000 pictures with it.

I probably took triple that, I just realized.

My photo library has over 10,000 photos.

And I am a mean editor, I delete the shit out of my photos, so yeah, I probably shot over 30,000 photos with that camera.

I’ll be getting another one of those, yes please, and thank you.

But.

The Polaroid.

Well.

It truly called to me.

Whispering sweet secrets of my seventies childhood.

I always wanted one when I was a kid.

I never asked.

I didn’t think I would ever get one.

I remember when my cousin got one.

Christmas I think.

That could have been the year that my mom told my sister and I that there was no Santa Claus.

See.

My cousin’s parents were going through a divorce and man oh man was she getting the spoils.

My mom was poor.

God we were so poor.

And there was certainly not going to be a Polaroid under the tree.

We were living with my aunt and my cousin at the time.

My sister shared a room with my mom or my cousin, I can’t remember.

And I slept on a mattress in the basement.

It was horrible.

And there was no Santa Claus.

No.

NO there was not.

So this year.

Hey Santa, I’ve been a really good girl and I’m super grateful for my life and my sobriety and all the amazing things I get to do and be and well, it might help the sadness you know.

If I got a new camera instead of coal.

I know.

It’s early.

But you know me.

Always looking ahead.

Yet.

When I stop and pause and breathe.

I see.

That I have been given the best gift.

The most amazing gift.

The awareness of grace and how I have been snatched from the jaws of insanity, psychosis, and terror.

Hospitals.

Institutions.

Death.

I am grateful beyond my ability to express.

And when I sat on the top of the infinity fountain that spans the view of Yerba Buena park, across from the MOMA, I basked in the sun.

I basked in the light.

I pulled out my postcard.

“Just look how far you have come,” I wrote.

I printed my name and address and stuck a stamp in the corner and dropped it in the mailbox on the corner of 3rd and Mission Street.

Thank you God for my amazing life.

I really am.

The luckiest girl in the world.

Even when I am sad.

Most especially then.

It’s ok.

Because.

I know that I am loved.

 

Cures For The Every Day

July 18, 2016

Emotional hang over.

Get eight hours of sleep.

Get up and drink cold brewed iced coffee from the last of the Mojo Coffee I brought back from New Orleans.

Go to yoga.

Cry on the mat.

A lot.

Then do the fucking pose.

Breathe.

Do it again.

Go home.

Shower.

Realize that it doesn’t matter that I am terrorized to have confrontation.

Will do it anyway.

Finding over the course of the day as I focus less and less on the “problem” and more and more on the solution, that it will work itself out.

Even though I am afraid.

That’s ok.

Be afraid.

Just don’t not take any action.

Today’s actions also included meeting with two ladies back to back and doing some reading and sharing experience, hope, strength, faith versus fear, and lots of letting go.

I had a nice breakfast too.

More coffee as well.

Did some writing.

Wrote a really long gratitude list in which I also expressed being grateful for the challenges in my life as I get to grow from them and through them.

Get my ducks in a row and then headed out to the MOMA to visit with a couple of friends and get a dual membership.

Seriously.

This is the way to go.

My friend and I split the dual membership which is $150 for the year.

So, $75 a piece and I can go any time I want for the next year.

Considering that a one time ticket to the museum is $25 I’ll pay it off in two more visits.

Plus.

I get to bring in 2 people with me as visitors.

So.

You want to get your MOMA on.

Let me know.

Even if I just go down and get you in and do a gallery or two, I figure that may happen once in a while, pop in, just see a few things and pop out.

Plus.

The place is huge.

They really added onto it and it’s now 7 floors of art.

So much scrumptious, delicious, devastating art.

I was so happy.

I got to see some of my favorites from the permanent collection that I always love to see–Warhol’s Triple Elvis, of course the various Marilyn’s, the Dolly Parton’s too, so good.

Rothko.

Gerhard Richter.

Hopper.

All the Calder pieces, so many!

Diane Arbus photographs.

And the Oculus bridge!

I was so happy to see that they kept that part of the museum.

It is one of my favorite bits and I walked across it happy in the moment and also softly aware of the moments prior when I walked it first.

That being back in 2000.

Wow.

Sixteen years of going to the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

I have always had a membership since I moved here in 2002.

Excepting while it was closed for the renovation.

My information was still in their system and it was a lovely little trip down memory lane layered with so much gratitude.

See.

I used to work down town, at Hawthorne Lane, which is now Benu I believe, and I used to go to the MOMA cafe on my way into work and sit in front of the museum and smoke cigarettes and drink lattes and people watch.

A lot of times I was also recovering from a hang over.

Or I was still high from the night before.

I used the bathrooms all the time.

But.

I never used in them.

I couldn’t ever bring myself to.

It was sacrilegious.

It was my church.

Art still is my church.

Museums are where I go to commune with God.

Get high on art.

I just couldn’t do it.

I don’t recall a single time being able to allow myself to do it.

I didn’t have a problem using the bathrooms at the park across the street, or at Starbucks on 3rd and Howard, or at the Metreon.

Fuck.

I could get high all over the city.

The W Hotel bar right there on the corner.

Or.

Dave’s sports Bar on 3rd at Market.

But the MOMA?

Fuck no.

I just couldn’t do it.

And I was so grateful to know that my bastion of art and love was never tainted with that.

Granted I don’t have a problem going places I have used before, but I am quite grateful that I never did there.

It was sort of like how I felt about music.

When I first was in the club scene here in the city I was all about the ecstasy and the cocaine and the dancing and the getting out.

But.

Eventually I didn’t enjoy it anymore.

Spending too much time in the bathrooms and not enough time on the dance floor.

Or.

Just wanting, desperately to be home in my room before the sun came up so that I could use the way I wanted to use without anyone bearing witness to it.

It was not a good scene.

And.

Eventually I couldn’t even use at home with the music on.

It got real quiet.

And.

Real uncomfortable.

Real fucking fast.

All the small reminders as I was downtown, which is a different downtown than it was eleven and a half years ago, but still, plenty of sense memories to recall and remember and to get to be at the MOMA.

A place, one of the first places, I went to when I first came to SF in 2000, that I revered and loved and still do.

So much.

It was an honor and a privilege to buy my membership.

Despite my fears of financial insecurity.

Despite my over magnifying mind trying to blow up a simple boundary request at work into a scenario where I am homeless and alone living with a feral cat in the park.

I got to amend my behavior.

I got to drop a few bucks and make good on my promise to live this day fully, with love and presence and the gift of being there with friends and running into my sweet Parisian friend from school and her husband.

I am so graced.

And.

I don’t have an emotional hang over at all.

It dissipated in the groundswell of gratitude flooding my heart.

Happy.

Joyous.

And oh.

So.

Very.

Very.

Very.

Free.

 


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