Posts Tagged ‘Petaluma’

My Body Hurts

August 16, 2016

My brain hurts.

Everything hurts.

I am not sure why.

It’s not sick hurt.

It’s like I slept on my back hurt in a strange way.

But I slept like a baby, like a tired baby with hot milk in its belly.

In my own bed for the first time in eight days.

I remember putting my head on the pillow and rolling over and I was out.

I mean.

OUT.

I woke up to go to the loo at some point.

I think.

I mean, I usually do, as I like to have a cup of tea before I hit the hay, but I don’t even remember if I did, it was just an assumption.

I woke up when my alarm went off and got moving.

Now that I remember it, I did feel sore when I woke up, but I think I just shrugged it off.

And perhaps it’s tension or psycho-somatic, or who knows, I certainly don’t have to figure it out, but it is certainly there.

And there is no sleeping in my sweet, cozy, dreamy little studio tonight.

No.

I have made my return to Glen Ellen, to Stone Tree, to a week of being in Sonoma, but instead of being in Petaluma, I am at work.

The family’s vacation spot for the summer.

It’s not a bad bed and fuck, the room I have is huge, I mean, really gigantic.

Bigger than my in-law, that’s for certain.

It’s just not my bed.

I will be wrangling up some ibuprofen in a little while, after I blog and make a cup of tea and I think, yes, an episode of Mr. Robot.

I tried to do some Burning Man stuff, order a few last minute things, but I found I didn’t have the focus in me to do so.

I just paid my phone bill and that was all the online activity I could handle, no Amazon shopping for me tonight.

I made it out here ok, although there was a bit of a miscommunication between me and the mom and I didn’t realize that I didn’t have to lock up the house after letting in the housekeeper.

So I was in and around the Mission for many unnecessary hours.

That being said, I made an appearance at one of many fine church basements in the Mission and got right with God.

I figured, a week out of town, a week away from my fellows, from my favorite cafes and food and San Francisco, from my bed, my home, my things, was going to warrant a little getting steady with my emotional, mental, and spiritual needs.

I will be getting compensated for the additional money I had to spend on the rental car, which is nice, but I haven’t had the opportunity to speak with the parents about it.

The conversation happened via text this morning while I was at the house waiting for the cleaner to show up.

And today when I got there.

Well.

I was too busy catching up with the boys who wouldn’t let go of me.

Dinner was had with one leaned against me and the other in my lap, there was no removing myself.

The youngest was such a little darling, he was napping when I showed up and dad had to run to town on an errand, the older boy and mom were out, and it was just the little guy and me and the dog.

Said dog who was so happy to see me it made my heart warm and fuzzy.

When he woke up, the look on his face, incredulous joy.

“Surprise,” I said softly, touching his sweet face, and wiping his little sweaty brow.

He sleeps hot.

“Carmen!  Oh, Carmen, I missed you, I want to go pick tomatoes with you in the garden and make you a salad,” he said all warm and soft and cuddly and my god, my heart.

So much.

So much love.

He crawled into my arms and wrapped himself around me and told me how much he missed me and how much he loved me, and then he took my hand and we walked to the garden and picked tomatoes off the vine and fresh basil.

When the oldest boy got back, he proudly showed me all the places they had picked blackberries and then insisted that we go back up to the garden and pick even more tomatoes, because he too, missed me, loved me, and wanted to make me a tomato salad.

They remembered from last year.

The tomatoes were out of hand and I probably ate two or three each meal, mostly chopped up with sea salt and olive oil, black pepper, lemon balm (it’s a type of herb), oregano, and fresh basil, splash of balsamic and I am a very happy girl.

Both the boys helped me make the salad and then they both ate out of my bowl and dredged their fingers through the olive oil and vinegar and ate bites of grilled chicken off my plate and just were relentless with touching me, cuddling with me, sitting on me.

“Carmen,” the oldest boy whispered to me, “please massage my back again,” he said, then tugged on my hand, when I had stopped to take a bite of dinner.

I melted, just a little bit.

Ok.

A lot bit.

We sat chair to chair and while his brother basically licked the bowl clean, I rubbed his shoulders and told him about my graduate school adventures and the animals I saw at the institute–hawks, the deer, the does and their fawns, the jack rabbit in the grass, the ears so high and big.

I tried to get a photograph of it, it was just huge, but it loped off into the high grass before I was able to get my phone up and open to the camera.

After dinner, which began to devolve, I think the eldest has a bit of a cold he’s struggling with, I let the boys smack me with pillows.

I had a sense that though they were not necessarily mad at me, there was a need to be a little aggressive with their feelings, get out some of the consternation and energy from not getting to see each other for the two weeks I was away from them.

They had missed me and they had feelings around it and they needed to express that too, not just the snuggly love stuff, which not withstanding was divine to experience, so a pillow fight ensued.

And it was absolutely the best.

I set a timer and let them hit me with pillows for three minutes solid without defending myself or hitting them back with the couch pillows.

It was so much fun.

The giggles.

Mine and theirs.

Then, when the alarm rang, we all just collapsed in a heap on the couch and snuggled more.

I was with them far past what should have been my end of day, but I couldn’t resist catching up and re-connecting.

I’ll be here until Friday.

Drive back into SF in the evening then have the weekend in town.

I’ve got some organizing to do in regards to Burning Man, then depending on what next week looks like, I’ll be heading back to Glenn Ellen in the evening on Sunday, I think, for one more week of summer vacation travel nanny fun.

Then off to Burning Man next Friday.

Oof.

Not quite ready yet.

But not really able to do anything more tonight.

Too tired to figure it out right now.

Time for Mr. Robot, I’m into the second season now, cup of tea, apple, bed.

Night y’all.

See you on the flip.

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And School Starts

August 7, 2016

Now.

Go!

Fuck.

I can’t believe I am heading off to my eight day school retreat for my second year of my grad program tomorrow.

Holy shit.

I’m a second year student.

How the hell did that happen so fast?

I’m packed and ready for it.

Although not quite as prepared as I would like to be.

One of my texts still hasn’t shown up.

There is really nothing I can do about it, surrender to the imperfect start and let myself off the hook.  At least the book is on order.  A classmate of mine admitted that she hadn’t ordered it yet, another classmate of mine said, yup, I got it, but I haven’t cracked it yet.

So I’m not alone.

Not that I ever am, but I can pull myself down pretty quick if I think I’m not doing it right or perfect, whatever the fuck that looks like, and ruin a day with my grievous mind.

I broke down a lot today.

It was not a perfect looking day.

But I got through it despite stupid thoughts, overwhelming feelings, and lots of tears.

I mean loads.

I have no idea why.

General anxiety.

Trying to figure it out.

Figure it out is not a slogan and is certainly not a solution.

My best ideas usually end up in trouble, to tell you the truth.

To tell myself the truth.

Once in a while I do have some good judgement, a little modicum of calm, a notion to do something, to go opposite my critical head and reach for some solution, some outside myself answer.

I got up and went to yoga.

I did not want to.

I mean.

Really not want to, my least favorite teacher was subbing for my favorite teacher and he’s a tough cookie, he does some really hard core yoga, I have only taken his class one other time and it left me flustered, in tears, and frustrated.

Which is exactly where I got today.

In tears on the mat, trying to do what seem to be super easy poses, but just wrecked trying to get into them or hold them or move gracefully.

Everything felt old and cranky and crunchy.

Seriously.

The noises my knees make are sometimes ghastly.

I was miserable and when I have a hard time, I try harder, I cry more, I shout in my head, I fall over, I say fuck.

“Oh no, someone said fuck in the yoga studio,” my instructor laughed, “fuck that”

The class chuckled.

I’m glad to be here for comic relief.

After ward he chatted with me and I told him the truth.

“I hate your class,” I said, point blank, “it is by far the hardest class and I don’t know what I’m doing and I feel everything so much harder, it’s just impossible.”

“You hate my class,” he said, “really?”

“I just hate that I can’t seem to do any of it, it’s the hardest class of all the classes I have had and I just feel wrecked and always in pain and always on the verge of falling over.”

Fuck.

I’m in tears reliving it.

I was so whacked out.

But I realized in the doing that I hadn’t had a thought for pretty much the entire 75 minutes that was anxious or living in the future or dwelling anywhere than in the specific pose I was trying so hard to hit.

Nada.

Quiet head.

I know enough to be grateful for that.

A beautiful respite from me, my own worse enemy, I mean really, I wouldn’t even call myself a “frenemy” at this point, I am just plain mean to myself.

It’s all perfectionism and it’s about getting greater humility and letting go of the idea that what you think of me is important, or for that matter, any of my fucking business.

I mean.

I hope you like me, tilts head, smiles coyly.

NOPE.

Not my business how you feel about me, think about me, or on the other hand, it’s not even my business how I think about myself either.

It’s a lie.

I am good enough, sweet enough, kind enough, I am smart enough, I show up, I try.

“I have that voice too,” my teacher told me today, looking right in my eyes, “I am a perfectionist too and you have no idea how far you have come in such a short time and how much further you’re going to be able to take this.”

“You’re beating yourself up, you try harder than anyone we’ve seen at the studio in recent time, you’re doing great, you really are.”

He told me some stories and shared some experiences and I was humbled.

That’s some perspective.

And a good change for me to hear and take in and also almost, but not quite, sign up for his class tomorrow.

Except.

I have to go to school.

“You get to go to school,” my person reminded me as I was crying over my utter lack of control over my life, total and completely powerless.

“You get to go to school, you get to be of service, you get to go to grad school, this is amazing!” She said, bright and shiny and full of humor about my tears and how good it was to see me letting go of perfectionism and just showing up and being vulnerable.

This is amazing.

I am in graduate school.

I am getting my Masters in Psychology.

I get to be a student.

I get to get out of the city for a little while too.

The fog and the cold have been pretty overwhelming and the the grey and the no sun a little wearing.

I’ll be in Petaluma tomorrow by 3p.m. and that’s not in the fog belt at all.

I packed summer clothes in my suitcase.

I get to see some wonderful friends from my cohort and I get to eat really nice food and be outside in the sun.

And.

I packed my yoga mat and my yoga clothes and I’m going to keep practicing.

I’ll be showing up to the mat if not the studio.

I have come to realize that this practice is important for me to cultivate.

Being in my body is important.

I am too much in my head.

It’s a dangerous neighborhood and I go there to frequently.

Ready to head out of that dark alley and into the sunlight of the spirit.

Or.

At least of Petaluma.

Ha.

I’ll be out of town for eight days, but not out of touch.

Call.

Text.

Send me a smoke signal.

I’ll respond in kind.

In between classes.

And reading.

And homework.

Oh.

And yoga.

Because.

Yoga.

 

 

Out Of The Frying Pan

August 17, 2015

Into the fire.

Or intermediately into the fire?

I mean, I suppose the fire will be when I go to Burning Man, but wow.

It’s hot out there folks.

Today, my last day at the Noetic Institute up in Petaluma it hit 99 degrees.

Tomorrow, here in Glenn Ellen it will be 97 degrees.

That is warm.

At least for this San Franciscan lady.

I suppose it’s just preparation for the high temperatures I’m going to hit up in Black Rock City, so hey, might as well get used to it.

It, the heat, actually did not feel too bad for me.

And it wasn’t outside that I felt the most heat.

It was in the class room.

In the T-Group model that I spent a lot of time in today, all of today, and all of yesterday ( Friday and part of Thursday was well), and, dude, intense does not do it justice.

The good news is that I lived through it to tell the tale and I did not run, I did not hide.

Although, if I am honest, which I was not able to really sit down and do last night since I was still so thick in the heat of it, I did flee.

I, however, waited for the class to be done before I fled and I did not make a scene.

What I did not realize until I was almost in full-blown panic attack, was that I was having a panic attack.

I got myself to my dorm room and I swear I might have hyperventilated if I had stayed in my room.

I dashed out the dorm and tumbled down the steps.

I found a friend.

A dear.

Sweet.

Wonderful.

Amazing new friend.

And she walked with me to the dark of the hillside and let me spill it all out and have myself a good cry, and should you be wondering did I tell her about T-Group, no, I did not.

What happens in T-Group stays the fuck in T-Group.

I did however tell her about the flight or fight that came up for me, the deep shaming I experienced and the rush of anger that had preceded it.

I have not been that angry in so long I was not able to name the emotion for a moment.

I think it’s been a couple of years since I have experienced the level of anger that consumed me.

My skin got so hot I literally had and sustained a red flush on my chest and face for about 45 minutes, perhaps an hour.

I had so much adrenalin and so much blood coursing through my hands and chest and face, it was the most intense feeling and yes, that’s right, I got to have it again today.

But.

Not as bad.

And no panic attack this time.

The T-Group model, I believe, is meant to elicit an emotional response but what I saw was historical for me and I was triggered, and I hate, hate, hate that word, but that is what happened and I haven’t been triggered so hard before.

Ever.

I feel, in hindsight that it was happening, this build up, for a while, and I wasn’t able to name it.

I can name so many emotions, I have a veritable language bouquet of emotive feeling words that I can use and use them I do.

But anger?

I had no idea that it would take that much to get me to feel it, no, that’s not correct, I was getting signals from my body, but I chose to ignore them because I didn’t think they were such a big deal.

The small irritations that happened.

Annoyance that built and built and built and at some point boiled over.

What I learned was that I have to speak my mind much faster than what I think I do.

I have to express and lay a boundary–that’s a big part of the nature of the groups–way before I feel like I do.

I kept brushing it aside, the annoyance, the gnat of a feeling, go away, you’re not worth it.

And every time I ignored that feeling, out of fear of confrontation, which is another point of the T-Group-not to avoid conflict but to learn how to navigate through it– because of that fear I wasn’t sure I’d be able to control or navigate, it got bigger.

Doing the opposite of what the model was trying to teach me to do.

Until the explosion last night.

Which wasn’t seen by anyone other than my dear friend.

I suspect that people in my group were aware that I was really uncomfortable with the emotion and that I was straining to contain it, but no one knew the extent and what do we not do outside of the T-Group?

Process.

It all has to be done in the container the model provides.

So.

It erupted and there I was exhausted, wrung, blown open and I hadn’t even gone in for the night, and I still had to pack my bags–we had to have all of our things out of the dormitories by 9 a.m. when classes started.

I had originally thought, oh, if check out is at 9 a.m. then the classes end on Saturday.

Boy.

Was I wrong.

Classes were held today.

Granted they were truncated, for which I am so grateful, but we still had them all day long and our breaks for meals were cut into to accommodate the new schedule.

After breakfast.

Right to T-Group.

And there it was the trepidation, the fear, the anxiety.

I kept walking through it, I kept showing up for my group and I am so grateful I did.

But yes, in the afternoon the issue did come to a head and I was able to address it.

With a gallon of tears and the second hottest body temp of my experience–yesterday’s anger reaction prior to the panic attack being the hottest.

I got it out.

The conflict was resolved.

But.

I soaked through my shirt with sweat.

In an air-conditioned room.

I still can’t believe that happened.

And.

Yes.

I learned.

OH DID I LEARN.

Grateful for the learning lesson, grateful to be pushed so hard, grateful to also be held so securely and safely with my facilitator who help me to do the work without doing it for me.

I learned.

Teachability, what a gift.

I also got some fantastic feedback and a deep love and gratitude for the process.

Did I like it?

Hell fucking no.

Did I have the courage to walk through the fear and do the learning anyway?

Yes.

And just for that I know that I am going to be an amazing psycho-analyst.

I really am.

I still have so much to learn and do.

Oh Jesus, sweet baby Jesus, in the manager.

Do I have work to do.

Oh man, I have some papers to write and reading to do.

But.

I am well established.

I am on my way.

I am in it.

I through the fire.

It was hot.

I have been made the stronger for the forging.

And.

The steel was worthy of the flame.

Cracked Open

August 12, 2015

I knew it would happen.

I have been on the verge for days now.

I’ve only been here in Petaluma for the graduate school retreat for 2.5 days.

Retreat.

Ha.

It is boot camp.

But at least it’s boot camp in a really pretty place.

Not that I have seen much of it, just a few glimpses walking between classes and going to the dining hall for meals, but you know, the view is pretty when I have gotten to take it in.

And.

This morning.

So sweet.

So special.

I was sitting out on a deck behind the building in which the first class of the day was to be held writing my morning pages and I heard a rustle in the grass and looked up.

Deer.

A doe and her fawn.

Just there.

Not even ten feet away, more like five or eight.

I don’t know that I have ever been that close to a deer.

The doe looked at me and the fawn regarded me, then I bent to my pages and they bent to their graze and it was a perfect communion of you do your thing and we’ll do ours.

They nibbled grass so close to me that I could actually hear them chewing it!

That was an awesome moment.

And there have been many awesome moments.

Bonding with my cohort.

Bonding in ways that I did not know was possible around issues I did not even know to think about in ways that I had no frame for contemplating previous to being here.

The defect of being the perfect little school girl, having to have my readers all read and my books all read and taking notes and listening attentively and sitting up front and raising my hand.

Here, I’m here, “present,” I said when my name was called for roll this morning.

Present.

The gift of getting to be here.

Not that many people get to go after their Masters degree.

Not that many people get to have this kind of experience.

I am hanging out with some pretty smart cookies and doing some deeply intensive, thoughtful, powerful work.

And I am working.

Let me not put too fine a point on it.

This is serious shit.

And I keep showing up for it even when I wanted to vomit in my mouth today and pee my pants at the same time when my professor handed out additional readings and said, oh there will be more posted to the syllabus on the web and here are the instructions for the five papers (FIVE!) you have to write for the course as well as a presentation that has to be done partnered up with another person in class, and the final project, which we’ll talk about tomorrow.

I was going to start hyperventilating.

I got full.

I got so full of information I stopped taking any in.

My partner looked at me, “are you ok?  Do you need to use the bathroom?”

“I’m not going to pee my pants, I’m just overwhelmed,” I said and laughed, but it wasn’t a laugh that went much further than my mouth, it wasn’t a body laugh or a joyful laugh, it was a forced exhalation of air, and a let’s move on to the next part of this exercise so we can break for dinner.

The entire cohort wandered to the dining hall in a haze of books and papers and comparing notes with the other half of the cohort and their reading schedule and who like which professor and interestingly enough, some folks switched and even though I was having a hard time navigating the amount of work that was just handed to me in my brain, I could see that I was in the right class for me.

“Have you felt this before,” the woman sitting next to me at dinner said when I told her how overwhelmed I was and the experience of being handed more work and just trying to organize it all in my brain.

And I realized I had.

We started talking about it and I shared about how no one else in my immediate family had gotten a college degree, though my mom did do some college courses, she never got her degree, which means of course that there is no one in my family who has gotten a Master’s degree and how I have had to rely on myself to go through this process.

Although that is not necessarily true, I have had my support networks, but they don’t look like traditional support.

Anyway.

I just realized how hard and for how long I have been trying to get out from underneath the pains and traumas, and dramas and neglect, the abuse and the historical ramifications of my family and it was hard work, constant struggle and effort and more to get where I am and then to get into and through college, and I don’t blame my family, they did the best they could with what they had, but I was always looking for a way out.

School was my way out.

“And you got out,” she said, and patted my hand, “you’re here.’

Ahhhhhh.

I felt tears prickle my eyes.

I did get out.

And I am here.

Present.

To be in this gift, to be a gift, to myself and to my community and to my family.

A full meal, a couple of cups of coffee and a refilled water bottle, back to class for another three hours.

Where I broke open and broke down.

We had the most powerful lecture and the significance of the work that was done is too great for me to write in great detail–I have to go to bed soon and get up and do it all over again tomorrow as well.

Suffice to say I was not the only person in tears or who had to excuse themselves to have a cry in the bathroom or blow their nose, many, almost all of us of the sixteen, were in tears, we all worked through some stuff, we all processed, we all really got aboard the therapy bus and the journey really is happening.

I saw things.

I resolved things.

I grieved.

Oh man did I grieve.

I also yelled at God a bit.

Then I listened to my fellow cohort and we all shared and it was stupendous.

This is such a gift and I know not what the bloom will look like on the flower.

But the shell of the seed has germinated.

The husk is cracked.

And I have adequately, sufficiently.

ABUNDANTLY.

Watered the seed with my tears.

I almost didn’t write tonight.

But I am glad I did.

Just to let the tears dry a little on my face and unload a little.

It’s good.

It’s all good.

And.

It’s so very, very, very.

All the things.

Well

August 10, 2015

It’s official.

I am a graduate student.

I have gone through the introduction, I have made it here, I did not turn around, although my ride jokingly did make the offer as we were headed onto the bridge.

“Last chance!” She said as we passed by the last of the San Francisco exits before the Golden Gate Bridge.

She was a total peach and saved my butt.

My original ride got a hold of me 45 minutes prior to needing to leave–not one, but two flat tires on his vehicle.

Fuck.

He was so remorseful about it and so wanting to help he offered me the option of calling an Uber and paying for it.

I happened to be working with someone when I got the text, so I had my phone off, and I wouldn’t have seen it, that text until after she left if it weren’t for the fact that we were trying to reconcile schedules for the next time we can meet.

My schedule, is um, ah, ahahahaha, a little full right now.

I picked up my phone to check my calendar and saw the text.

My heart stop beating and I just cringed.

Oh shit.

I told my ladybug that I was processing the text and I don’t know what exactly I said, maybe, probably, “oh fuck,” as I was reading it trying to discern in my head what was the next move, could I do Uber to Petaluma, what time would I get there, would there even be any cars available since Outside Lands was making a disaster of driving in my neighborhood.

“I’ll take you,” she piped up.

Oh my god.

Thank you!

And she did.

She left to go get her car and a cup of coffee for the road and I made a quick-lunch that I had prepared yesterday.

I had gotten up early, showered, did the trash and compost, watered the plants, checked in with the housemate to let her know I would be gone, ate some breakfast, drank a lot more coffee than I normally do, packed my bags and organized my books, notebooks, and readers.

I also packed up the two readers for the two classes I am NOT enrolled in and brought them with in hopes of being able to sell them–at cost not trying to make a profit off my fellow classmates here–when I arrived at the retreat.

I posted a quick e-mail to the class list server and I got two offers right away.

As of a half hour ago I was able to hand off the two readers and two books to a fellow in the other cohort who happens to be bunked in the same dorm building as I am.

Speaking of.

But not very loudly.

I either don’t have a room-mate or she hasn’t arrived yet.

I am so hoping that I don’t have a room-mate.

Please, please, please.

It would be such a gift to have the room to myself the entire time I am here.

I am a creature of habit and routine and there are certain practices I have, especially with my morning routine that I was loath to even think about sharing.

Which is funny.

I am going to graduate school to get my Masters in Psychology to be a clinician, to be a therapist, to allow others to hold their own space and be a witness to and a guide and to help facilitate that move to authenticity of self, but pray in front of a stranger?

Please.

No thank you.

The thing is.

I would have.

I am just grateful, mainly for the space to stretch out.

The room is tiny, the beds are twins, there is one desk, two wee closets and a couple of communal bathrooms down the hall.

One less person in the dormitory is fantastic.

One less person in this tiny space is phenomenal.

And I like my space, I like knowing I can come and go and not disturb or be disturbed by another person.

I almost asked for a private room originally, but I would have had to pay extra for it and well, folks, graduate school it ain’t cheap, so I said I would share a room to keep my costs down.

So pleased to be alone.

I don’t feel lonely.

I just like to have a little alone time at the end of the night or to be able to quietly read in between classes.

And.

I am not the only person who did not get all the reading in or the only person who did not know how to access certain syllabi and who had troubles with the online portals.

A lot of folks did and I am sure there are a handful of students who did get the readings all done, but it appears that the majority of us did not.

There has been a flurry of activity since we got out of the welcome and introductions and the first exercises, which were really quit fun, although challenging ( I ended up getting partnered with a woman from Paris and we spoke French and that was hella fun and unexpected.  She used to live near the tattoo shop that I got my jackalope done in the Marais!) and longer than I expected.

We were let go at 9:15 p.m. and I co-ordinate with a guy in the other cohort and he took my readers I won’t be using and then I helped another student get online and navigate to the paper that needs to be written tonight, so many people in my cohort had new clue about the paper, then I looked over the schedule for tomorrow and I realized, I have as much done as I can.

I could read more.

But my brain is frizzled and, well.

I wanted to write.

This will be my bastion.

This will be my safe space.

My little nook in the hills were I can go and dump my anxiety and fears and let it all go.

I am exactly where I am supposed to be and though I can see the road is long, arduous, full of reading and writing and vulnerability, the journey is so worth it.

Not the destination.

The journey.

This journey.

Just to get to where I am at this little pressed plywood desk in a dorm room up in the hills outside of Petaluma, California.

Oh, my dear, my darling girl, look how far you have come.

My heart is full.

Overwhelmed and joyful.

Scared?

Sure.

But that’s just the way I am hard-wired.

Faithful, though, in the process of walking through.

“Just smile and be yourself,” her message said in regards to the retreat, “you’ll be amazed at how well you do.”

And I am amazed.

Before I was halfway through.

Crack And Cherry Popsicles

August 7, 2015

The sickly sweet smell preceded her as she walked out from the Mission Community Center.

She was wasted, sucked up.

Not the frenetic skinny tautness of a meth head.

This was classic crack head.

Sucked up and withered away.

And yes.

You guessed it.

I spotted it.

If you spot it, you got it.

I am so lucky that I got it, then it went the fuck away.

I had a day today and then I would get these moment, call them God shots if you will, coincidence, serendipity, what have you, but I saw them as divine signs as a gentle reminder that even when I “think” my load is heavy, it is light.

And it does not smell like artificial sweetener, corn syrup, and red dye number 127.

Or crack cocaine.

She saw me.

She saw me see her.

She scuttled away.

That’s the best way I can put it, scuttled, like a stunted hermit crab trying to escape a fat gull on the beach.

I put my hand on the head of the five-year old I and gently pushed him to walk on the other side of the stroller, he did not notice, too engrossed in the story he was telling me about the tooth fairy.

He has now officially lost two teeth and the tooth fairy better deliver tonight.

He’s got some expectations.

For the second tooth he wants.

Yes.

A hovercraft.

Dude.

Listen, I know it’s getting all sorts of crazy up in this joint, San Francisco rents, tech crazy, $2,000 skateboards zooming by on remote control, but little dude, I don’t think the tooth fairy is going to pony up for a hover craft.

Just saying.

Although he got to have so many special things today I’m surprised the kid could function.

He had a minor procedure and was in and out of the doctors and back home before I got to work, a simple thing, really nothing to worry about, but you know, kids, they can get anxious, so to assuage the anxiety and to help ease him through–it got to be his day.

Man what a day.

I’m not jealous of his day, it was too much of an emotional roller coaster what with the numerous videos and special snacks and outings, literally I was worn out with the treats before I had even been there an hour.

Prior to my arrival there was juice.

Popsicles.

Ice cream.

Bowls of oatmeal, which, yeah, sounds great, you know healthier than say a grape popsicle, but laced with raisins and mounds of brown sugar.

And the little brother got to imbibe too.

I have never walked into the inferno like this before.

The sugar tsunami was in full effect.

We did ease up, he only got one more cookie over the course of the day and special lunch out at Tacolicious, but it was an up and down day, sugar can take a lot out of kid and it took its course.

But he was also sweet and we had some wonderful moments today and I was pretty on keel.

In fact, considering how my day had started, I was doing hella good.

I feel like there was a lot of foreshadowing that there was going to be stuff happening and I remember praying this morning to get to work and home safely on my bicycle.

Well.

That did happen.

But so did a lot of near accidents.

Weird traffic.

And.

Yes.

A fucking traffic cop nabbed me on the Wiggle.

Fuckers are cracking down.

There is just nothing worse than the whoop of a traffic cop on a motorcycle (hello I’m on a bicycle, you don’t need to scare the fuck out of me as well as issue me a huge ass ticket) and the flash of the red and blues.

Do you have any idea who I am?

Sigh.

Just another fixed gear riding bicycle rider blowing through a stop sign on the Wiggle.

“You know there’s a stop there!” The cop hollered at me.

“Yes, I do, you are right,” I said, already in tears, partially because it was windy and partially due to the adrenalin of nearly getting smacked by a driver right before I turned onto the Wiggle where the trap was.

I swung my bag over my shoulder, pulled out my wallet, handed the cop my drivers licence and tried not to say anything.

I had just turned onto the Wiggle from Haight Street and zipped right into a truck that was in the middle of the road, no flashers, no cones, nada to indicate that it was about to drop a storage Pod onto the street as I rode by.

Nothing says good times like almost getting hit a second time on my bicycle commute.

Oh yeah, I didn’t mention that a fire truck blew through an intersection, and I heard it and pulled over, but the van right behind me, didn’t and proceeded forward only to almost get jack knifed by the engine which was blasting its sirens so loudly to warn the van that my entire body squeezed up in fear.

The van abruptly pulled over.

Narrowly missing me and the fire engine.

Add then, the Pod drop.

Then the cop pulling me over and of course I was in tears.

“You didn’t even slow down,” the cop sighed, shaking his head, “is this your current address?”

“Yes, it is,” I replied.

I did not reply.

I DID slow down.

You should have seen how fast I was going.

I always slow up at the stop signs, but yeah, a lot of times I roll through.

But.

I also always signal my turn, stop for any pedestrians in the cross walk and make sure the intersection is clear.

I don’t blow lights.

I don’t want to die.

I have been bicycling in the city for 9 years and it’s bad out there with the Uber drivers and the Lyft drivers and the tourists on the rental bicycles and the plethora of people bicycling through neighborhoods and it seems just mean, but yes, I did too slow down.

Damn it.

But did I stop?

No.

So, I’ll take my ticket.

But.

“I was startled by the Pod dropping in the middle of the road, it almost hit me, and you’re right, I didn’t stop, and I accept the ticket, but would you please go back and ask the driver to cone off the area, somebody’s going to smash into him.”

I reached for the ticket.

The cop leaned over, “sign this.”

And then, sotto vocce.

“Don’t say anything because my partner is writing out a formal ticket to the guy right next to you, but I’m just giving you a warning, ok?  You’re free to go and I’ll make sure the guy puts cones out.”

He patted my hand, ripped off the ticket and handed it to me.

Whoa.

Dude.

Did that just happen?

Amaze balls.

I hit it and obeyed the traffic laws the rest of the way to work.

Well.

Most of them.

Ahem.

And I was happily surprised that I was so even keeled.

All day.

Until.

My lunch break when I found out, that yes, the family is able to accommodate my request off for the 25th of my student orientation, but guess what?

They’re not going to be in Sonoma for a week.

They’re going to be in Sonoma for two and a half weeks.

Oh my fucking god.

Oh my fucking god.

Oh fuck me.

FUCK.

Breathe.

How old am I?

42.

Take forty of those suckers.

Breathe in, breathe out, breathe in, breathe out.

“So we need to figure out all the rental car stuff before you head out to your student retreat,” the mom said clicking over her calendar.

OHMYGOD.

“Ok,” I said.

“I thought you were only going a week,” I said.

Breathe.

“Nope, two and a half, from the 14th through the 30th,” the mom replied.

HOLY SHIT.

I sort of fell of my spiritual beam.

Why?

Well, let me tell you the ways.

Cohort retreat with the incoming ICPW (Integral Counseling Psychology Weekend Cohort) students from this Sunday, August 9th through the 17th in Petaluma.

Then I turn around, come back to San Francisco, head to the air port, pick up a rental car and go back to Glen Ellen and work for the family until, yes, the 28th.

When I am supposed to leave for Burning Man.

I tried not to vomit out the fear in my mouth.

Away from my people for a month, my five ladies for a month, no for five weeks, because when I get back, the first weekend after Burning Man, is my first full on campus weekend.

Six weeks before I can meet with a lady bug.

I made some phone calls.

I got right with God.

I said, “however I can be of service, and yes, I will make up the date on the 25th by working an extra day for the family, either the 22nd or the 23rd (I have off the weekends still, but like it matters, the one day I have off will be spent packing my shit for Burning Man, good thing this is not my first rodeo).

And I will be accountable for the Monday prior to the student orientation and I will have to be back to work the morning after.

So, a fly by to San Francisco and then right back to Petaluma.

The good news?

I won’t have a lot of food expenses.

I get paid an extra $50 per day I’m with the family outside of San Francisco.

I will have a rental car so I can go do the deal in Sonoma and Petaluma.

I will be too busy to be freaked out about anything.

I will be so in the present moment it will be exalted.

And as I rode my bicycle home through the park tonight, the one fast filling up with lights and fences and stages and sound machines and port-a-potties (Outside Lands starts tomorrow) I was so in my body it was spooky.

And exhilarating.

I am alive.

ALIVE.

And there but for the grace of god go I.

No cherry popsicle for me today.

No crack cocaine.

Just all the things.

Wow.

I mean.

All the things I could possible schedule into my life.

Now’s the time I’m going to get asked out by the love of my life.

Because, hey why not pack something else into my schedule.

Bwahahahahaaha.

See you on the other side.

Lucky Motherfuckers

July 15, 2015

That’s my camp.

Bahahahaha.

Oh.

I love it.

And I love that I am on this thread which updates me as to all the other “lucky motherfuckers” that I am camping with.

I received another missive from the Jack Rabbit Speaks, this time in regards to Burning Man with children and the infrastructure thereof and how to do it and how not to do it.

My favorite part was where it was suggested that Kidsville was not a baby sitting camp.

That one doesn’t arrive in Kidsville, drop the rugrats at the door and go off into the playa sunset to play.

I have had that experience.

“Oh you’re the Burning Man nanny?” She said, as her wild toddler boy feral with sugar and popsicle trails of juice dripping from his little dusty maw, swooped and swung around the camp while I was nannying my charge.

“No,” I said, “I nanny for people who work for the organization, I don’t work for the org, I’m not the,” inserting hands making quotation marks, “the Burning Man nanny, I’m just the nanny.”

I could see the crestfallen look that surfaced on her face.

Really lady?

You’re going to dump your kid on a complete stranger so you can go fall down a k-hole?

I don’t think so.

It’s not the first time I have been asked or had it alluded to that I could or should help out.

And the funny thing?

I will totally help out.

I have always been that person, you need it, I can see the legitimate need, I will offer my services.

But.

It’s on my time, it’s my decision.

And I bristle when the assumption is made that I’m going to babysit so you can play.

Unless, of course, I’m in your employ.

Then go get your play on.

Besides, I know this is going to be a much different experience for me nannying on playa than at any other time I have gone.

I won’t be working the hours that I worked before.

That being said, I won’t be getting paid for said work either.

It’s rather a swap of services for services.

I get a ticket, a place to camp, a ride there and back, all the infrastructure of camp, plus gear so that I don’t have to drop a dime on outfitting myself, and the company of some of my absolute favorite people.

I got all excited when a flurry of messages went out and I found out that so and so and so and so and he’s coming and they’re camping with us too.

And.

Well.

I am a lucky motherfucker.

Literally and figuratively.

I also sat down tonight and got in a cup of tea with my housemate and a catch up.

It has been a hot minute since we’ve sat and talked and caught up and it was really nice.

I forget sometimes that I have a friend who lives right over my head.

She’s not just my landlady, she’s a friend.

And so it was nice to get that catch up to get that friend feeling and to have some tea and talk.

I let her know all the travel that I will be doing, and also the possibility of travel that I may be doing as well.

Aside.

I need to talk to my friend about that possibility if the camping, The Grand Canyon trip, or maybe a road trip up the coast to the Avenue of the Giants is still on the table.

I have a possible vacation coming up at the end of July.

My employers are going to be in Tahoe and they are not taking me.

Granted the mom did allude to having some household projects for me, but I can’t imagine what they could be nor any project that would colluded to have me being in the city the entire week that they are in Tahoe.

Anyway.

I let my house mate know when and where I would be going.

Petaluma for a week.

Sonoma for a week.

Burning Man for a little over a week, 8-9 days depending on who I want to ride back with, how my burn is going will be the choice.

The small quiet voice in me says leave a little early and get yourself acclimated and back into the default world and set up so that you can go to graduate school proper that next weekend, because that is what is happening.

My first official weekend of graduate school happens that week that I get back from the burn.

Then again.

I think.

Heh.

Well, burn that candle to the ground, get as much as you can, get all the experience, come back dirty and dusty and burnt and start afresh and yeah, like that.

I may see how I feel around that depending on how much reading I can get done before that weekend, plus, I know I will have papers due after I do the retreat, which I will likely write while I am working in Sonoma.

Yeah.

That’s right.

When I looked at my schedule to tell my house mate the dates I would be gone I freaking realized that I would be going from Petaluma right to Sonoma.

Do I stay there and just go from Petaluma to Glen Ellen?

Do I even bother to do the drive back to the city to turn around and go right back to Sonoma?

I mean.

That doesn’t make any sense.

So I may actually be completely out of San Francisco for two solid weeks in August, back one week, then out to Burning Man.

Whew.

That’s a lot.

And I realize.

This weekend.

No emotional sabotage thank you very much, I will be too busy living my life.

And I will get my books and my papers and my readers and whatever else I need to get and get the fuck on it.

I set myself that goal.

Retrieval of said materials and the accumulation of the stuffs to do the things.

My Burning stuff started to arrive today and I now have solar lights to string up on my bike frame.

Makes sense that I prioritize getting my course work for graduate school too.

I only get to be a lucky motherfucker if I keep doing the work.

That makes me.

A lucky motherfucker.

Very lucky.

Nailed It!

February 27, 2015

“Yeah you did.”

The text response to my update on my graduate school interview.

I nailed it.

Nailed it.

Nailed it.

Ahem.

I’m feeling pretty good about that.

I won’t know for about another week, but it feels like a done deal, it really does, it didn’t hurt that one of the faculty members came up to me afterward and said, “I want to talk to you about something, stay if you have a few minutes to chat.”

Turns out she feels that I am a perfect candidate for the Diversity Scholarship the school provides.

Hell yes.

Give me the money.

So I can give the school the money.

I don’t care what you call it, just so long as I don’t have to take out more than I need to in financial aid.

I’m ahead of the curve on that one, two of the other candidates, four of us total in the group that interviewed, hadn’t applied yet for financial aid.

The interview was group style, four of us, three of them.

It was approximately an hour-long and I got there well in advance of the start time.

Enough time to grab an iced Americano in the cafe and to sit and chat with one of the other candidates for the program.

Turns out we know each other through friends of friends.

That was a nice discovery.

At first I felt that I was putting my foot in my mouth, but by the end of it, I felt that I had acquitted myself really well and I left floating on a cloud.

The interview also did something for me which I wasn’t expecting, it dispelled for me any doubts I had about the program and whether or not it was a good fit for me.

It’s a little granola, it’s a little crunchy, its experiantial learning, but after doing a couple exercises to show the panel what I would bring to the program and to the cohort, I felt like I would be able to fit in and I felt that it was going to help me grow as well.

In fact, I found myself welling up a little during one of the exercises and the emotional response surprised me, but it was also a good feeling, I think I was afraid that I am a little jaded.

That these crunchy granola, Californian types with their hippie ideology were not going to accept me.

Thing is, I’m a hippy in disguise, so uh, I fit in fine.

Like a really good interview, I left feeling that I was the right fit for the program and that it was the right fit for me.

It reminded me a little of my doubt around working with my current family, I had some reservations about working with children that were already into toddler stage and beyond and what that would look like, would I like it, would I be good at it.

And it turns out I love my job.

And they love me.

I felt pretty at home at my job once I got past my own prejudices about what the job was going to be like.

I believe the same thing happened for me in the interview.

I realized that I needed to be interviewing the school just as much as it needed to interview me.

We both needed to make sure we would be a good fit.

I’m pretty sure I’ve met my match.

I will know in approximately a week, the panel advisor assured us that we would have an answer by next week and she also gave me the dates of the week-long retreat.

August 9th-16th.

How freaking handy is that?

Well, it happens to fall in between Burning Man and the week in August that the family takes to go to Sonoma.

One week of scheduling down!

I will be able to work for the family in Sonoma, and ironic, paradox, is it odd or is it God, the retreat will also be in Marin–Petaluma to be exact.

The center is called The Institute of Noetic Sciences and yup, looks like a hippy hold out, but you know what?

I’m down with it.

Petaluma is gorgeous and the weather will be great and it will be just what I need to have under my belt before heading into a week of nannying for the family in Glen Ellen.

Then Burning Man?

I think it’s possible.

I didn’t get the exact dates for the beginning of the semester, we’ll be e-mailed that, but I was told the last weekend in August.

Burning Man is August 30th through September 7th.

Now if I get into the program, I will, that would mean I wouldn’t be able to go pre-event, I’d have to be in the city to go to school, and I would miss the first day or two of the event.

But.

I could go.

So.

Buy a ticket?

Go as a tourist?

Really do Burning Man instead of doing Working Man?

I dunno?

Maybe.

Yes.

Yes.

I could do that.

I’m going to hold off on making those plans for a moment.

I still have to find out about whether or not I got into the program.

Upon affirmation that I have I will need to pay $300 as a good faith payment to secure my spot in the cohort.

This money will be slotted towards my tuition.

Then I will get together with the financial aid officer at the school and find out what kind of student loans I can get.

The school has received my information from my FAFSA forms and they have a SAR for me–Student Aid Report–which lets them know what I can contribute personally to my tuition and what I will need to receive to go to the program.

I believe, I really do, I have been writing affirmations for months now, that I will receive the money.

I will apply to the Diversity Scholarship at the school and I will do the next steps to do the next steps.

This is only the beginning, but a beginning has been made and I am over the moon that this is moving forward.

It astounds me how smoothly things happen when I get out-of-the-way and let the Universe lead me to better things then I think I want.

I accept the abundance and love and prosperity that God wants for me.

I’m going to need it!

Tuition’s about $30,000 a year.

But the investment, me, well, I’m fucking worth it.

And I think the department thinks so too.

I’ll let you know as soon as I hear.

One more step in my journey of a thousand miles.

 

I’m A Pussy

December 31, 2014

To a point.

Once I’m moving, the cold doesn’t bother me too much.

Although my fingers feel like they are still defrosting.

It was a chilly, chill, chill ride home tonight on my bicycle.

And I argue that the weather here though temperature wise is warmer than say, Wisconsin, or Alaska, it’s still nippy out there and uncomfortable.

Yet.

There were moments in the park, in the dark, the wind whistling through my hair, the sound of my bicycle a fast low whip of feet churning and the slip of wind wicking through the spokes of the front wheel, that I felt so free and light that the cold was no more nuisance than a falling leaf.

There was more than one falling leaf however.

There were blown down limbs, palm fronds, acorns, seed pods, walnuts, scattered detritus that threatened to derail my wheel and send me flying over the handle bars.

There was just enough light in the park to avoid the majority of the windfall, but it was a winding road I rode.

It reminded me of the path, the journey, the way forward that I walk.

I realized that though there are times when I am literally the only person on a part of the path, some intrepid wanderer has gone before me.

I am not special.

I am not unique.

The most popular thing?

Yeah.

I will probably like it.

Although I have my tastes and foibles, they are often such to alienate me from the pack and isolate me, make me feel special, unique, mysterious, or some such other crap that is generated in my brain to pander to my super special ego self.

I am no trailblazer.

This is the thought that came unbidden to my mind as the wind grew woolier and the trees creaked in the sluice of air.

I suddenly had a feeling of what the woods were like, here, at the end of the wilds before the sea, the trees, the dark smell of earth and salt, the special light of moon playing over the meadows, an eery blue-white that velvet like drapes itself across every blade of grass and edge of leaf.

There was the road I was biking upon.

And there was the path, winding through the fallen leaves, sticks, boughs, branches, and various other road blocks, it was not wide, but it was there.

I was not the first bicycle through the park in the messy weather, and I  probably wouldn’t be the last this evening.

I would bet, though, that I may be one of the last folks heading all the way through the park to the wilds of the Outer Sunset at 9p.m. on a Tuesday night.

A night I had previous to today, thought was going to be my Friday.

I was under the impression that I had tomorrow and Thursday off for the holiday, and without realizing it, I had also assumed  I would have off Friday, like I did with the day after Christmas.

Not that I am being some sort of hound for extra paid holiday days, but you know, I like to know when I am working and I also wanted to co-ordinate with my guy, who was also under the impression that I would have a long weekend.

However, I was wrong.

Not impossibly wrong, but just slightly off, I will have Thursday and Friday off.

Not tomorrow.

So, off to work I go.

But with a four-day weekend in sight, I am happy to do so.

I don’t mind working tomorrow, I had a long weekend last week, and I still am going to get four days off in a row.

Plus, I have a date for tomorrow night and a destination!

I am going with my guy to Petaluma, to the Mystic Theater to see Tommy Castro.

I’m going to get some blues music on, some rock and roll, with a splash of rockabilly and I am psyched.

I get to dress up.

I get to go out with my guy and have a new experience.

I get to dance!

I don’t know swing, I don’t know two-step, all that well, maybe a tiny bit, I don’t really know anything formal, but I know how to rock out and I know how to shimmy and shake to a good blues line and I know how to kick up my heels.

My heels shall kick tomorrow night.

I’ll work until 6:30 p.m.

Hop on my bicycle, hopefully all the windfall will have been cleared up, and I will put on my swing dress with polka dots and put some fishnets on, red roses in my hair, re-apply my lipstick and head out-of-town.

We’re going to grab a bite somewhere on the road, which is fine with me, I don’t need to do anything fancy, I’ve had plenty of fancy for a while, then get to the show and hang out with my baby.

It’s nice to have plans.

It was nice to get the surprise text from my boyfriend about the show.

I didn’t know what we were going to be doing, aside from a possible party within our fellowship of friends, nothing really seemed on the menu.

And now I got a date to dance.

Pleased as punch.

And though I have sat and warmed myself up and had some tea and I am loath to wander out into that cold night, current temperature 50 degrees, I am off to Celia’s by the Beach to have a late night dinner with my honey.

Well, he’ll eat, and I will watch.

Discuss details and make our plans for tomorrow.

And do what all humans want to do when they are cold.

Snuggle into the arms of someone who cherishes them.

Nothing new to see here.

 

 

Where Are You Camped

June 2, 2013

I don’t remember.

I know I am not going to be by Media Mecca this year, but I won’t be too far off, the big Ranger station?  Somewhere along 3:45 and C.

What about you?

When are you going up?

I’ll be getting there August 17th, leaving the Bay on the 16th, staying overnight in Reno, then hitting the playa that Saturday.

Yup.

I was at a Burning Man BBQ today.

It was awesome socks.

I got to go out with an old friend who picked me up from Graceland today and we drove out to Petaluma for the Media Mecca BBQ and gathering.

I saw faces I had not seen since last year’s event and faces I had only connected with via Facecrack, and a few more friends who I had briefly seen at another Burning Man centric back yard bbq my first week back.

It was lovely to catch up, sit in the sun, in the grass, out in the California country.

To watch the fire under the hot tub licking the sides of the big round trough of water up on cinder blocks.

“It’s like a hilly billy hot tub,” my friend noted as I sat snuggling with his “puppy” ( a four-year old Pyrenees Mountain Dog, a dainty 118 lbs) as we watched the host stuff another log into the fire pit underneath the tub.

“It is fucking brilliant,” I said to the host early in the day as he showed me and my friend around the house and the  gardens.

It, the tub in question, was a large round horse trough up on cement blocks over a brick patio.  Underneath the tub, which had just been filled earlier that day with fresh water, was a fire pit.  The host looked at his watch and calculated, staring now, around four pm, the water should be hot enough to climb into by nightfall.

Good thing we left right before nightfall, another event beckoned my ride back to San Francisco, or I would have been cavorting naked in that tub.

And I am not a ready, set, disrobe sort of gal.

I like keeping my clothes on, thank you very much.

“When are the girls going to come out?” My camp mate asked my first year on playa at Burning Man.

“Uh, my girls?  Do you mean my breasts?” I asked a little askance.

“Yeah, aren’t you going to let them come out and play?” He continued.

“No,” I said, “I am not that kind of Burning Man person”.

I never want the playa name “Dusty Tits” frankly or “Dusty Bits” either, for that matter.

I am not a get naked at Burning Man girl.

I don’t ride in Critical Tits, although one year I got inadvertently swept up in the crossfire, I don’t wear sheer items on playa, I just don’t get naked.  Unless it is pre-event and in the dark and out at the hot springs.

I am not a cavorting topless lass.

You perhaps can conclude then, the hot tub, hilly billy or no, was quite alluring.

It was also fun to hear from folks who have seen the Sparks A Burning Man Story, a documentary that was premiered at South By South West and has its West Coast premier this Thursday, June 6th at the Roxie Theater on 16th and Valencia.

“Have you seen the movie yet?” My friend asked.

“No, I have seen the trailer, but not yet the film, I heard the tickets were sold out to the premier, I am bummed I missed getting one, I really want to see it,” I said to my friend.

“The shot of you is pretty spectacular, you look all blissed out and sunshiney and smiley and like you were just dancing your heart out somewhere or having a cosmic moment with the Universe, you know, like you do.” He said with a fond smile on his face.

You know, like you do.

Yeah, I do know.

I do have those moments.

On playa and off, where I let people in and I get a little dreamy and I recite poetry or get transported by music or I get caught up holding someone’s hand and telling a story.

I have not been a lot of places where I am so my authentic self and so guarded at the same time.

“Where’s your Burniform?” My friend questioned me.

I smiled.

I am in it.

My uniform usually consists of tank tops, boy briefs, tights and boots.  I’ll strap on a pair of goggles to my leg, wrap a bandana around my wrist, and maybe another around a boot.  Slap together some sort of belt and carabiner with a water bottle attached to said belt.

That’s it.

I don’t get too fancy, although I do have a crinoline I break out to flounce around in once in a while.

I will certainly flounce in it this year.

“You should see the picture she took of me,” my friend said, “it was hilarious, it is one of my favorites,” he scrolled through his photos on his Iphone.

“Meet clown at 5:15 and esplanade Monday.”

This was written in black sharpie marker on his forearm.

Neither of us knew what to do with that information, but a clown was expecting to be met the next day, that was clear.

It was a day out in the country, short ribs on the grill, smoking fire warming up a cauldron of water, it’s not a Burning Man party without some fire and smoke happening, pitchers of lemonade, watermelon salad, home-made guacamole, one large dog, and lots of stories.

Lots of stories.

I don’t know where I am camped this year, I forgot and my sense of direction is shoddy anyhow, but I do know I will be there and I will have my camera and there will be more stories to be told.

More memories made.

More life experienced.

I am a lucky, lucky, lucky girl.

You can see it in the smile on my face.

And maybe you will, if you managed to get tickets to the movie!


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