Posts Tagged ‘rainbow grocery’

Bits And Pieces

September 7, 2018

I’m slowly working things out.

I’ve not altogether gotten a rhythm with my school stuff, but then again, hey, you know, it’s Thursday and the intensive ended on Tuesday and every day since, including Tuesday, I have read something for a class, highlighted something, watched a full length video of a Harvard professor on the nature of knowledge in the age of the internet, plotted my calendar, downloaded and though I have not figured it out completely, started using an app called Mendeley, which allows me to import a pdf file to their site, save it and highlight it, thus alleviating some of my anxiety about really liking to highlight what I read, but not having been able to when I read something online.

I was tipped off to the program by a woman in my cohort who is super into tech.

I am super into grateful right now.

The work load for school is heavy and I am seeing where I can be as creative as possible with my hours.

Even today, I read for 8 minutes before leaving the house to work.

I really haven’t worked any time into my morning routine for homework or the like, but I know from my Master’s degree work that any time I have to spare I can read a few pages.

I mean, I knocked out five pages and that’s five pages less of the thousands I am going to have to read this semester.

I just have to keep taking tiny bites when ever I can so that when I do have the time to devote to the work I am not overwhelmed by the enormity of it.

I also have some grace periods coming up that I had forgotten about, but was wonderfully reminded about at work today.

The mom is going out-of-town for ten days and the baby is going with her.

Which means I won’t have my usual morning nanny routine.

Add to that, the big kids are back in school next week.

Finally.

Tomorrow is their last day of summer vacation, so to celebrate we will be going back over to Marin for a day of swimming and sunshine in San Rafael.

I am definitely down for some sunshine.

Frankly I have been a bit bummed that the fog is still here.

I don’t recall it lasting into September before.

I want my god damn San Francisco summer.

September and October, at least until about mid October, are usually really nice and warm and sunny.

Not this year.

Not yet anyway.

So a day trip to Marin seems just the right way to end the week with the family.

And next week what with the kids back in school and mom traveling I won’t have any responsibilities at the house, as far as childcare, until I do school pick up at 3p.m.

I’m scheduled to come in at 11 a.m. Mondays and Tuesdays and 10 a.m. Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.

First.

I won’t have to come in early at all next week.

Today, for instance I came in at 9:30a.m. to do the mom a favor.

I will have a straight across the board 11 a.m. start all next week.

Which means I could actually sneak in a half hour or so of extra reading in the mornings before work, note to self.

And since I won’t have childcare duties at the house I can also do work there.

Granted.

I will have responsibilities, I’m not just the nanny, I’m the household assistant and I’m often, four days out of the week on average, the dinner cook.

I will most likely be doing all the cooking for the family next week and lunch prep for the kids as well as any grocery shopping that needs to be done.

The mom is super proactive and there’s already deliveries from Good Eggs and Rainbow Foods and BiRite Market lined up.

I probably won’t have to do much grocery shopping, although I can, I have access to a credit card if I need to buy anything.

And there will be laundry and clean up.

I know what the house turns to when the mom is out-of-town.

So yeah, cleaning a bit more, but I should be able, from past experience, get it all done in the first hour to hour and a half that I am there.

Which means I should also be able to get in about and hour and a half to two hours every day reading.

I am really hoping I can knock some stuff out-of-the-way.  I’ll bring my readings, my laptop, and anything else that I need to get as far ahead as I can.  Any postings that I can do, I will do.

Plus, one of my classes has a lot of videos to watch–lectures mostly, but a few other things, that I could watch at work too.

I plan on getting as much out of that work week as I can.

I also have had a few client cancellations in the next two weeks, not a lot, but some hours have opened and I know what I will be doing with them.

I feel like this is how it will go for me.

I will have pockets of time open when I need them and I will be able to get the work done.

I am also starting to think about the Spring semester.

I am thinking that I am going to ask off from Fridays at work, starting in January.

I will make more money seeing clients on Fridays and if I don’t fill up my whole day with clients I will fill it up with studying.

I will of course need to make money, but I suspect that the money is really not going to be an issue, I’m being taken care of, I really am.

So what’s next is to nail down a place.

I saw a studio yesterday and it was no bueno, totally overpriced, and I was way underwhelmed, plus it was dark and didn’t get much light being an interior unit on the bottom of the house.

Saturday, after I go over to Berkeley and deal with some administrative work for my new internship I will come back to the city and hit a couple of open houses.

I have pretty much decided to get out of here as soon as possible.

I want quiet and low-key, I have too much on the line this first semester and I want to get out before the really big papers start looming.

I want to be in my own place and settled.

So I figure if either place looks good, both I can afford, and both have amenities I need, like laundry on site and um, hahaha, windows, I will make the offer to pay more than just the first months rent and damage.

I figure throw all of the buy out money to get into a place right at them.

Fuck mincing around.

So, fingers crossed, by this Saturday I have a place.

Yeah.

I’m juggling a lot.

But I feel like I can breathe today with the realization that it all works out.

It always has.

I am being carried.

I absolutely am.

I.

Am.

Graced.

Offer Accepted!

August 7, 2018

It’s official.

I just now, literally just seconds ago, replied with my acceptance for the Grateful Heart Therapy internship.

I am now part of their 2018 Fall cohort.

I will begin October 1st!

I can hardly believe it.

I will get to see clients and get paid.

I will get to have one office, instead of four different offices.

And!

Oh the nicest thing!

I found out that the Thursday morning group supervision meets in San Francisco not Alameda!

This is huge.

Especially since the group also meets a little earlier than I thought, 8:15 a.m.

But it’s done by 10:30 a.m. and I’ll be at work by 11 a.m.

I won’t lose any hours at work, I won’t have to finagle more money from somewhere else, in fact, once I start accruing a few more clients I will actually make some money.

I won’t for the first few months, it will take some time to accrue the prudent reserve the non-profit needs me to have to make sure that I can pay rent and supervision fees.

But that’s fine.

I have time to do that.

I have time and I will get paid, I suspect that I will start getting paychecks from them in or around January of next year.

I think it will take about three months to accrue the prudent reserve.

I am over the moon.

This is happening.

I will have an office.

Yes, it’s an office I will be sharing with my former professor, so it’s not mine, I haven’t decorated it, the couch isn’t mine, but I will get to rent from her and I will get to be in the space and it’s much nicer than the majority of my offices that I have currently with Liberation Institute.

One office.

God that just sounds so damn nice.

One key instead of four.

I am a very happy lady.

I almost told my boss today, but it was a hectic day with my charges, summer camps, doctors appointments, etc, and there was never really a moment that felt right.

And I’m glad that I didn’t, because I would have jumped the gun regarding the Thursday supervision.

My god I am so grateful that it’s in San Francisco and not Alameda.

Sure, I’m still going to have to deal with commuter traffic on Thursdays, but not having to go over the bridge is huge.

Such a relief.

It feels really nice to move forward.

I told one client today that I had gotten the internship and gave a soft notice for October 1st.

Now I will have to tell the rest of my clients.

Some I know will come with me.

Some will not.

For the ones who will not I will need to do a little footwork with my current internship to make sure that they are transitioned well to their next therapists.

For the ones that will go with me I will just have to tell them what office to start meeting me in when October rolls around.

Which shouldn’t be any kind of big deal as my new office is going to be in the same building as my current internship.

That is the best part of this new internship, I get to decide where I want to rent an office, and Grateful Heart takes care of the lease.

At some point I will transition completely into my own office, and I want to stay in the same building.

There is nice community there and I like the location, Activ Space (sic) in the Mission at Treat and 18th.

There’s a Gus’s Market just a block away, Stable Cafe, the new park on Folsom street at 17th, there’s Rainbow Grocery just a few blocks away, there’s plenty of parking.

And if I should want the building also has parking if I want to rent a spot.

I probably won’t at this point, but in the future when I have a sustainable income and my bills are being met well I will.

I really like the idea of having covered parking, the street parking isn’t horrible, but there are homeless folks around and there’s a bit of drug trafficking that happens in the neighborhood.

Tonight I came out and some guy was smoking crack on the sidewalk.

No thanks.

I don’t get bothered, but I know at some point it would be nice to come out of my therapy office and just get into my car without interacting with that sort of scene.

Anyway, that’s in the future.

Right now I am just going to take a moment to bask in the glow of having accepted the offer.

I really am proud of myself and the work I have done to get here.

Not just the Master’s degree and the traineeship and the internship at Liberation Institute.

But also that when it looked like my former professor and I were going to work together and then I found out we couldn’t that I didn’t sit on my ass and mope.

I went out and discovered that there were things I could do.

I heard about Grateful Heart from my therapist and remembered I knew someone who was there and met with that person and got my shit together and did the big application and got it in to the organization before I left for Paris.

I turned it all around in three weeks.

Then I got a asked to interview, which I did this past Saturday and today I got the offer.

That’s basically a month from finding out that the original plan wasn’t going to work to finding and solidifying a totally new internship.

One that is actually better for me than the original.

One door shuts.

Another door opens.

Seriously!

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!

 

Packed!

August 21, 2017

I’m ready for Burning Man.

All I have to do is get through the week.

And what a week it’s going to be.

Oof.

I have supervision tomorrow morning in Hayes Valley.

Then work, nannying, up in Glen Park.

I might, depending on what is going on with my supervisor and some paperwork, have to spin by my school and drop off a practicum trainee review.

I have seen the review and tomorrow we will be discussing it.

I’m not super excited to tell you the truth.

It wasn’t as great a review as my other supervisor, but then again, this supervisor is tough and smart and I doubt he gives very high marks to anyone he supervises.

I did good.

Don’t get me wrong.

Although I didn’t like his additional comments about how my schedule, school full-time, working full time, the practicum hours at the internship, how I’m working six days a week and have to be careful to not get overloaded and to take time to recharge.

Sigh.

I did a lot of recharging today.

And.

I also did a lot of work.

Laundry, cooking–made a pot roast (god damn was that a great supper, I marinated it over night in olive oil, garlic, sea salt, black pepper, adobo, thyme; then roasted it super slow and low for almost three and a half hours, I also soaked it down with homemade chicken stock to keep it moist while it was cooking and surrounded it by baby potatoes, parsnips, carrots, and turnips.  I ate a nice juicy slice of it for dinner over some brown rice and put a pat of butter on it and some salt, because salt, and my fucking god, heaven), went to yoga, cleaned my house, and yeah.

Packed for Burning Man.

Four large bins, one medium bin, got my cooler ready to load up, but I won’t load it until the day I head out, which is next Sunday.

I’ll be keeping everything in the freezer until the very last moment.

My four man tent, a folding chair, and my parasol.

Ta da!

I’m pretty good at the packing for the desert trip, it’s just a matter of getting my bins sorted and having laundry done.

It used to be that my wardrobe was pretty small and basically I was wearing whatever I owned out on the playa.

A little time and a little bit of purchases here and there and I have slowly acquired a playa set of clothes, although a good bit of my wardrobe still does hop into a bin, it’s not my entire closet.

And there are some things that I absolutely won’t wear out there, which is relatively new in the last couple of years, I would just dump everything I had in my bins and empty my closet.

I do need to get a pair of sunglasses, some good aviators, I couldn’t find my sunglasses and then I realized, oh yeah, stupid, paid way too much for a set of Oliver Peeples prescription sunglasses and lost them at school last semester.

Ugh.

So.

Yeah, that’s about all I have to purchase for the trip, that and the things that will wait until I get out-of-town, like ice and water, that I’ll pick up in Reno at the 24 hour SafeWay.

My ride is coming to pick me up at 1 p.m. next Sunday.

The drive takes about 8-9 hours.

I figure we’ll land on playa around midnight–the stop in Reno and any other pit stops or gassing up that needs to be done.

My ticket and the vehicle pass are at Will Call.

I was gifted a low-income ticket from the organization, it’s still $198 and the vehicle pass is $80, but it’s cheaper than the regular ticket, and I got a ticket, there’s always so many people who can’t seem to get a ticket since the event started selling out years ago.

I remember very well the first time that happened, I was nannying for the head of Media Mecca and there was a great kind of awed hush that came over her when the announcement was made over the radio channel.

It was astounding to think they sold out.

Used to be you could just buy a ticket when you got there.

You could buy a ticket at Rainbow Grocery for fucks sake.

Now it’s a big deal, it’s a lotto, they’re more expensive, they are much harder to get.

But.

Well, I keep getting lucky, I keep getting to go.

I get to keep wearing big flowers in my hair and pretty dresses and my cowboy boots and crinolines.

I don’t show much skin out there per se, sure, my bra top will show, but I always wear a bra, I’m not a run around the desert naked kind of gal.

I like a tan, but not that much.

No.

I wear gingham dresses and crinolines, or fun tights and frilly panties and loose cotton tops.

At night I wear leggings and jean shorts, and layers, I have a cheetah print jacket with a pink silk lining that I only wear at Burning Man.

I have my goggles.

And I have my box of makeup.

Really.

What I like to do is wear lots of geegaws up in my hair and put on pretty makeup.

Throw in a crinoline and my cowboy boots and that’s it.

Oh, yeah, and a few bandanas, always, one around my wrist and sometimes one around my the top of my boot, it’s nice to have a spare for the dust that kicks up.

And like that.

My day is just about done.

I need to get the last of the laundry out of the dryer and wrap up a few loose ends here at the house.

Then my full week, supervision, work, clients, therapy, and let me not forget my first weekend of classes.

Whew.

It’s going to be busy.

But good.

I know my week will be very good and I will have my moments, my quiet, sweet moments in my little home by the sea to ponder how good I have it and how much I am loved.

Luckiest girl in the world.

And packed for Burning Man!

Fuck yeah.

Kindness

March 10, 2017

I was blown away by a conversation I had with my boss today.

It started out as a bit of a joke around how I didn’t strike yesterday for International Hooha day yesterday.

That’s Women’s Day for you.

But you know what I mean.

I told her it just didn’t feel right to strike on my job when I work for a mom who runs her own business and has three children.

We joked a bit and the conversation turned to family and I found myself sharing things with her that I have not shared with previous employers.

I found myself sharing as though she were my friend.

Cautiously.

Yes.

I mean I needn’t go into gory details.

But.

I did tell her a bit more about my family.

Specifically my dad.

Which I found myself quietly feeling out the words to explain the relationship and also, and here I was really surprised by my openness, that I was thinking about going and seeing him this July when the family is traveling in Europe.

They will be gone for three weeks.

And.

I was just told tonight as I was leaving that they have the dates for their trip and also the dates for a work trip the dad will be taking at the end of this month.

I am going to help out while he is away for a week.

I’m not sure exactly what that will look like, but I will be helping out more.

I also suspect that I won’t mind at all.

She, the mom, is really becoming my friend and it’s a different relationship with a boss than I have had.

Granted.

I have had some amazing.

AMAZING.

Parents that I have gotten to work with.

Let me repeat that.

Amazing.

I am really lucky to call the majority of them my friends.

But I would also say that it was more after the fact than during the beginning of the work relationship.

I just find myself so at ease with her and I feel like I am a different person than the nanny I was when I first started.

I am also much more sure of myself and I am very aware of how good I am.

Which is not ego, but humility.

It would be false pride to belittle what I do or to downplay it.

“I could not do what you do,” my person told me last Saturday, “you really do astound me with how good you are, I still remember how you just pulled out a bag of snacks that one time I ran into you with the boys.”

She recounted a time years back when I was first began doing recovery work with her and I had a nanny gig at the time in Cole Valley.

I ran into her and some fellows and I had one of my charges with me and I had snacks and diapers and back up clothes and milk and wet wipes and god only knows what else, probably a teething ring or three and bags to put wet clothes in and hand disinfectant and the kitchen sink and…

She remembers, though and recounted it, not for the first time, with awe, and I don’t think anything of it, that’s just how I roll, prepared.

There used to be a time though when I was a lot more uncertain of myself and my worth.

I don’t think I was ever uncertain of my abilities, just not of my worth.

I  remember fondly an “intervention” some friends of mine did at Samovar Tea Lounge after I had just moved back from Paris.

It was a combination welcome home and you’re amazing and should be making more money at your job and we want to help you do that.

Eventually all that peer support sunk in and I got the picture.

I started to advocate more for myself and I started to get better jobs.

And now.

Well.

It may really be the best nanny gig I have.

Health insurance.

Paid vacation.

Sick leave.

Invitations to imbibe of their food, nice food, organic food, really nice procured stuff.

I drink nice tea and have all the coffee I could possibly want.

I get to be out and about with my charges.

I have a credit card in my name.

Of course, I can’t get cash with it and they are fully aware of what I use it for, but it’s so handy, I pick up dry cleaning, I use the card, I run to Whole Foods or Rainbow, ditto, I have it to put extra money on the Clipper card (the MUNI pass for the trains), or to take my charges to Dolores Park Cafe for mini pizza.

I have the dream nanny job.

And.

I LOVE my boss.

I feel appreciated, understood, and we talk.

Like we have conversations about the world, the state of the nation under the current administration, art, Paris, Burning Man, San Francisco, homelessness, the mayor, rent and rent control, health insurance, school stuff.

I mean.

I have shared a lot.

So today it was not new exactly, it was just sharing on a slightly deeper level and twice I found myself tearing up in empathy for her kindness and good heartedness and how she just looked at me with her big blue/green eyes and it seemed as though she got it.

She got me.

In fact.

I felt like I was in the field with her.

The field is a psychology term that I liken to be in a therapy session.

There is intuition there and connection and things are seen from both sides, the therapist and the client.

There is often a kind of subconscious connection and things pop up and out and it happened today.

I thought something as she handed me the baby and then she said exactly what I was thinking.

I have found things like that happen to me when I am in tune with another, but I don’t know that it has ever happened with an employer, although as soon as I write that I have curiosity about that statement.

Regardless

It happened.

We connected.

It was a moment of awe that I got to take in and I was just super grateful for her.

And for the little lady bug who tonight when I was making dinner stopped me, looked up, and said, “Carmen I love you, and Carmen,” she said and paused almost shyly, “Carmen, you’re beautiful.”

I stopped stirring the pot and looked at her, this little fairy elven woods creature with big saucer blue eyes and the fey downy blonde eyebrows on her face rose as her eyes widened, and she looked up at me, “you want to hug me now don’t you?”

“Yes,” I do, F__________.”

“Ok.”

I put the wooden spoon down and gathered her up and hugged her.

“I love you too.”

And I do.

Very.

Very.

Very much.

I am such a lucky girl.

Luckiest girl in the world.

And.

I’m also a school girl.

Tomorrow is my first day back to school.

So.

Off to bed I go.

See you on the flip.

Sweet dreams my loves.

Sweet dreams.

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.

 

Fuck It’s Cold

July 26, 2016

Put some clothes on your children!

I wanted to holler across the street at the parent of the two tiny shivering denizens of the Outer Sunset fog belt who were scampering down the street in tank tops and shorts with their arms covered in goosebumps.

It’s July in San Francisco.

Break out your scarves.

Fuck.

It just dropped like a thick, spooky shroud.

Of course.

I may be just too far into Stranger Things.

Fuck it’s good.

But it’s not the prettiest out here, right now.

Yesterday I never saw the sun.

Today, I did, but only because I went into work.

The nice thing about yoga, I realized today when I was in the studio, is that it’s always a nice warm 80 degrees and my body needs that warmth.

I don’t like super hot, I can stand it, but sometimes the fog wears on a girl.

Never the less.

I did have a good day.

I got up early and did the writing and the coffee and a nice little breakfast.

Then off to yoga.

A good class, my favorite instructor, who, woe is me, is leaving in two weeks!

Damn it.

Oh well.

The studio has other teachers I like, but I shall miss her classes.

I can see how I have gotten better whenever I go to her class.

And.

They are sneaky classes, I’m doing well, think I got it all under control, then hours later I’m like, why the fuck am I sore?

Oh.

I had Martina’s class today.

Tomorrow I will be sore as well.

That being said, I do plan on going to class in the morning before work.

I’ve got a 1p.m. start all week as the boys are in summer camp.

1-8p.m. means that I can get in a yoga class before work as well as my writing and a shower.

I always need a shower after yoga.

It usually is a lovely thing too, that shower.

So very grateful that there is a yoga studio in my neighborhood, on my freaking block, for Pete’s sake, it couldn’t be more convenient, and it’s super helpful for me time wise, I can get in a shower and sometimes a few other things too.

Like.

I scootered over to Rainbow before work and got a couple of “luxury” items for my Burning Man efforts.

A nice hand salve.

I gift hand massage on playa.

It’s what I do.

It’s a nice way to connect with someone and most folks have such dried, beat up hands from the playa and doing all the work that needs to be done to set up their camp or their art piece or whatever it is they’re doing.

I also picked up some boxes of unsweetened vanilla almond milk, a pair of heart shaped sunglasses, and some of my favorite body lotion.

What with what I got yesterday on Amazon, all I need is to get the rebar for my tent and some work gloves.

I’ll hit up a hardware store this weekend and get it wrapped up.

This weekend so far looks like some “homework” for the American Red Cross CPR child/infant/adult class I’m taking on Sunday.

It used to be that you would have to devote nearly a half day to the cause, the class was four and a half hours long, now you take part of it online then go in for an hour and a half.

The class portion is Sunday.

I hope to have the online stuff taken care of on Saturday, I haven’t really looked at it yet.

And Saturday, aside from doing the deal with my person at Tart to Tart at noon, I’ve got another friend’s 40th birthday party extravaganza to go to in the afternoon and my commitment that night at 7pm.

Sunday, after the class I’ll be heading over to Oakland for another housewarming party.

I wish my friends would all stop moving over to Oakland/Berkley/et al.

I miss you guys.

I totally get it though.

I do.

I just, well, I’m holding tight here as long as I can.

I really feel like I’m more San Franciscan than anything, and I try to represent best I can, that San Francisco weirdo.

I don’t always succeed, but I certainly don’t fade into the background.

Even here.

I do, however, miss the sunshine, and I am constantly grateful that I work in the Mission, at least I get to experience sun there.

Not that I made it much outside today.

Today was all things cooking.

Pot of sushi rice.

Beef stew with vegetables.

Fish for the boys.

A vat of broccoli soup.

Roasted cauliflower.

There will be a bit of cooking for me this week as the boys are at camp for a part of the day that I’m at the house.

Laundry, cooking, errands, marketing, running to Walgreens for prescriptions, going to the dry cleaners.

All sorts of things.

Especially as the family prepares to go on a little trip next week.

FYI.

My people.

I have to work that Monday at the house, let in the housekeeper, this is August 1st, but I’ll be off early, and, and, and.

I will get Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday off from work.

I’ll go back to the house on Friday to cook and prepare for the family to return and make sure the house and everything is in order.

But yo.

I got some free time next week.

Coffee?

MOMA?

I just got my new membership, I can take up to two people with me.

I should definitely go next week, even if no one goes with me, I’m a good solitary museum goer, shit, so many museums have I gotten to visit, such a gift, that.

The Louvre (Paris), The Metropolitan (New York), The MOMA SF, The MOMA New York, The Whitney (New York), the new Whitney, the Brooklyn Museum, The Palace of Fine Art (San Francisco), Le Petite Palais, L’Orangerie (Paris) The Rodin Museum (Paris) The Pompidou, Palais de Tokyo, the Asian Museum of Art (Paris), the LACMA, The Chicago Museum of Art, The New Orleans Museum of Art, The Dali Museum(Paris), the DaVinci Museum (in Rome), The DeYoung (San Francisco), The Tate (London), Galleria  Nazionale d’Arte Moderna (Rome), The National Gallery in London, The Jeu de Paume (Paris).

I’m sure I’m forgetting some, in fact, I know I am.

But man.

I am lucky to get to have had so many of those experiences, and most, truth be told, on my own.

Although once in a while with a friend, or a lover, although never a boyfriend.

It’s been twenty years since I have been to a museum with a boyfriend.

My ex-boyfriend back in Madison was way into art and we hit up the ones in Chicago, Milwaukee and Madison.

I remember when I introduced him to Dali.

And to Klimt.

And Kandinsky.

Twenty years.

That’s a long time.

Grateful I haven’t sat around waiting for a boyfriend to go out and live my life.

Not to say I wouldn’t eschew one.

Just that I don’t need a man to complete me.

A compliment, that I could handle, some one to walk by my side.

Until then.

Well.

Friends.

Masturbation and Stranger Things.

Heh.

You Look So Pretty!

February 11, 2016

What’s the occasion?

“It’s Wednesday,” I said and smiled.

She looked agog at me, “oh my God, that’s fucking brilliant, I want to dress up like a princess too!”

Just doing my job.

Being happy.

“You look like a 50s pin up girl,” the greeter at Office Max said to me as I sauntered into the store.

I have no idea what over took me.

I spun on my toes and my skirt flared out.

I guess you could say I was feeling sassy.

I had a fast, brilliant, quick, and delicious ride into work today, but before I got there I had made a pit stop at Office Max to pick up a new USB cable for my printer–I will be printing off my first paper tomorrow before I head into work!

And.

I also got a two terra byte portable hard drive.

I am going to pull off my photographs and music library and give my Macbook Air some space.

I keep getting the message that my disc is almost full and I need to delete files.

Um.

No thanks.

I may not be the best photographer or writer, but I do have such a connection to those things, the pictures and the blogs, the poems and stories, the papers.

I did a bunch of clean up, but really, I have known for sometime that I need an external hard drive and I was there, so I got it.

I spent money like I wasn’t worried.

I am not.

Oh.

It’s been an interesting twenty four hours with it.

My landlord raised the rent.

Yesterday.

But not too much.

It did freak me out, but I can afford it.

Then.

I didn’t get as much back from my student loan disbursement as I thought I would.

I really don’t quite understand the breakdown, but instead of breaking my head on the numbers, I just accepted that they know better than I do what things cost and that I am grateful that I had some left over, $477, instead of owing anything out of pocket.

So money stuff came up, but I feel good about the fact that I have a prudent reserve set aside of a month in savings, I have money from the tax return, and I am getting paid for the week that the family is away on vacation without having to take any corresponding vacation days for myself.

I am saving them up for the school retreat in August.

I get to go to grad school.

I remind myself.

It’s the best debt I can have and the only debt I have.

Student loans how I do love to loath thee.

Anyway.

I was feeling happy.

I let myself put on my favorite polka dot dress and I wore a bright cardinal red cropped sweater with it, black leggings, and my crinoline.

I put red roses in my hair and red lipstick on my mouth.

I even did a tuxedo eye.

I looked fucking smashing.

“I love your dress!” The three year old said to me.

Both boys home sick again, but making it through, and I am holding steady, nothing seems to be taking me down.

I hope to stay healthy.

I have one more day of working with the sick monkeys and fingers crossed the oldest seemed better and will be back in class tomorrow.

I confirmed that I would come in on Monday and help the housekeeper and do some small tasks about the house.

Then I got on the making plans tip.

I am going to see a girl friend from my cohort on Friday after classes for dinner.

Confirmed.

I am getting to hang out with another of my school girl friends on Sunday, she’ll be joining me and my person for dinner at Firewood Cafe in the Castro and then coming to hear me share my experience, strength, and hope.

And fabulousness.

“You will get dressed up, and girl, make an entrance, people need to see that,” he told me last night.

I will be pleased to do so.

And it was pleasing to my heart to be pretty today.

“You look great!  Reminds me of those girls, you know, from the drive ins, you look like one of those girls,” the FedEx driver complimented me.

I smiled and said thank you.

It was a happy day.

I also had myself a little self-love splurge at Rainbow Co-op.

I don’t often shop there any longer since it’s a bit out of my way and I’m a member of a great organic co-op out here in the Outer Sunset–Other Avenues.

But.

I had some time after grabbing my computer accessories at Office Max and figured I would grab a couple of apples and some carrots for work.

Which ended up being an $88 trip.

Oh Rainbow.

I forget how sneaky you are with all those lovely lotions and soaps and candles and cards.

I was like.

What just happened?

But.

It was fun and I have a lovely little stock of small indulgences that make me happy.

It’s all about the happy today.

In fact, it was my spiritual principle.

Speaking of.

I have finally found, at least I am hoping, what I will be doing for the exercise that my person suggested to me.

Yes.

It does seem that yoga has won the fight.

Really, what it is, scheduling.

I needed to find something that was going to be close to either work or home and that would work with my work, school, recovery schedule.

Laughing Lotus!

I had forgotten a darling acquaintance of mine runs an amazing yoga studio in the Mission.

They have late classes!

8:30 p.m.

I can go after work three days a week.

Or twice a week and once on the weekends.

It’s working out.

I still feel like I’m balking a tiny bit, but I am going to head over there on Monday after I finish work and have a tea time date with a friend of mine in the Mission I haven’t seen in ages.

In fact.

I also made a dinner date with another friend who will be in town working, for next Friday.

I have three dinner dates and a tea date lined up for this up coming week!

Yoga class.

Maybe some swimming.

A massage.

Playing.

Having fun.

Being happy.

Lightening the fuck up.

It’s all happening.

It’s all coming up.

Happy.

Joyous.

Free.

 

I Didn’t Do Much

January 4, 2014

But I did a whole lot of it.

I had one of those days, still am, I believe, where I feel like I did not accomplish a single thing, but upon reflection did a lot of things.

I went grocery shopping at three different grocery stores.

That is what may have set me off.

Realizing this morning that I either was going to have black coffee or make a run up to Other Avenues to buy some almond milk for my breakfast.

I don’t mind shopping there, it’s just super expensive.

More expensive than Whole Foods.

Pricier than Rainbow.

It’s a co-op that I cannot justify buying a membership to as I won’t spend enough there to make it worth while.

But sometimes you just gotta have the milk for the morning coffee.

As I was sitting back at the house, having gotten back without too much of a dent in my pocket-book, I sipped my coffee, and thought, I really need to do a big grocery shopping trip.

I had recently done my spending plan for the month of January and I was reviewing how much I spent on groceries and eating out in December and it was a lot more than I wanted to be spending.

Food in San Francisco is expensive.

And, too, I realized yesterday after sitting down and talking in a cafe with a confidant, that I was eating too many convience meals.

Eating out more than once a week for dinner or not spending the time to really cook a meal, so I rely on a Japanese sweet potato microwaved in the oven at work with carrots and hummus for snacking and an apple or pear to get me through.

And while that’s all well and good, it does add up when I am not actually cooking my food, when I just grab and go.

Plus, there’s something about having a home cooked meal that is really nice for me.

So, as I finished my breakfast and decided yes to another cup of coffee, I made a list of groceries and resolved to actually get to Rainbow and maybe even Trader Joes, Bed, Bath, Beyond, et al at the little shopping outlet down on 9th and Harrison.

I also took down the Christmas tree.

Wrapped up all my ornaments, curbed the tree, and cleaned the house of all pine needles shed while dismantling the tree.

I did two loads of laundry.

Wrote three pages long hand.

Meditated.

Moved stuff around the garage and re-arranged my space a little.

I am resolved to get an extra chair in here where the Christmas tree was so that when I have guests over I can entertain a little better.

Nice to have a cup of tea and sit across from someone.

Also something I did today.

I had someone over and we sipped cups of tea and read some stuff that’s pretty important to my life and hers.

Then I hopped a ride down to the Castro with her having put it out to the Universe, ie Facecrack, that I needed a ride to run some errands and gotten an affirmative response almost immediately, I had an errand to run at Church and Market then we were going to meet in the Mission.

I went to PhotoWorks and decided to really drop a dime.

I am in possession of my grandparents, on my mother’s side, wedding photo.

I believe it’s the only one in existence and it’s torn in half.

I found it tucked in between the pages of a book my mom had sent me years ago and she must have gotten it from my grandparents house when my grandmother passed nine years ago this Christmas Eve.

I unearthed it with my things when I unpacked the things I had in storage when I left for Paris.

I have had it propped up on my bookshelf for a few weeks now and decided last week that I wanted to restore it, frame it, and give it back to my mom when I go see her and my sister in Florida next weekend.

I fly a red-eye out from SFO next Saturday.

I am going to be there for an anniversary of my sisters and another of mine that we happen to “coincidentally” have in common.

Life is amazing sometimes.

It really is.

“Good thing the tear is not down the faces,” the clerk at PhotoWorks said to me as I handed him the fragile sepia paper.

“I think we might be able to repair it, but it’s going to take some time and a bit of work, let me get you a quote,” he said and then disappeared for a few minutes behind the door in the rear of the shop.

“Yup,” he said when he returned, “it’s actually quite a bit more than I even thought,” he placed the two pieces of the photo down gently in front of me.

“$150 to do the restoration,” he said pushing the pieces toward me.

“Oh, wow, that is a lot more than I thought it would be,” I said hesitantly looking at the photograph, the smile on my grandmother’s face as she looked up at my grandfather, he towering over her in an old-fashioned black suit and thin tie, a smile on his face that I rarely remember seeing.

I held the pieces in my hand.

“Do it,” I said with some resolve.

It’s only money, Martines, you won’t regret this.

There is more money coming.

Invest in your history.

Do this.

“You can change your mind,” the clerk said, “we won’t be able to get to it until Tuesday.”

“No,” I said with more resolve, “this is it, this is important, please take care of it.”

“Ok, if you decide to not proceed, just call us by end of day Monday,” he scooped the two halves into an envelope and carefully sealed it.

“Do you want any prints of it?” He asked as he wrote my name and information down on a label which he then affixed to the envelope.

“I do!” I said.

Then I thought, Jesus, how much are they going to be, but I want one and I think my sister should have one too.

“60 cents,” the clerk said with a smile.

“Yes!” I said with relief, “I will take three.”

And I walked out of the shopped dazed, but happy I invested in my family.

I am grateful beyond words for them and I can’t wait to see my mom’s face when she opens the box.

I also procured some frames for the photographs on my walk from the Castro to the Mission.

Then my friend called, swooped me up and took me to Rainbow, where I did the novelty of shopping with an actual cart, not a basket.

I got a lot of food.

More than enough to get me through the next two weeks and then a few days more, most likely.  I got extra almond milk and coffee because I don’t get to Rainbow often, I also got the really big container or organic yogurt and extra eggs and string cheese, and the fixings to make a really yummy soup.

I am soaking the cannelli beans now.

We also dashed over to Trader Joes and I picked up some organic chicken to make my bean soup with.  I am going to do a white bean soup with garlic, onions, shredded chicken, black olives, corn, carrots, and peas.  I got extra brown rice to go with it and in between my commitments tomorrow I am going to rock out some tasty soup.

My friend and I sang songs from the Glee soundtrack at the top of our lungs on the drive back to Ocean Beach and the sunset smeary pinks and smokey grays, dusky indigo over the sea and my heart filled with the sight.

We unloaded my goodies (also a trip to Bed/Bath/Beyond for dish detergent, toilet paper, razors, toothpaste all the shit I don’t want to think about but have to plan special trips out for if I am on my bike–toilet paper especially is a hassle in my messenger bag, too bulky) and I made him a cup of coffee.

I drank my tea and we chatted, love and dating and friends and fellows, jobs and school and travels and I thought, how lucky am I to have such a sweet friend in my life?

When he left to go play poker with friends I fished out the Japanese sweet potato from the oven that had been roasting as we caught up, and had dinner.

My brain said, man, you didn’t get much done today, but looking about, the frames in a stack awaiting my grandparents wedding photo, the new frame on my wall highlighting an original photograph I bought over fifteen years ago from an artist in Madison (another find in my boxes of stuff in storage I had forgotten about), the cupboards full of good food, the beans soaking on the stove, I knew I had gotten a lot done.

It just did not feel crazy because I did not feel crazy or rushed or busy.

The day unfolded in a lovely divine mellow sweet way.

Just like my life probably will, as long as I stay out of my way and let the “opinions” in my head just be opinions.

“Feelings are not facts,” I told her today, “I am my actions, not my thoughts.”

My actions, indeed.

Sometimes the acts of basic self-care are the hardest ones to accomplish, and the least likely to be applauded, but they bring me the most fulfilment.

Read a little.

Write a little.

Drink a little tea.

Hug a friend.

Sing.

Cook.

Breathe deep.

Just because it feels like I didn’t do much.

Doesn’t mean that great things weren’t accomplished.

They were.

 

Integrity

December 28, 2013

I so did not want to spend the early evening hanging out around the Mission, and that is funny, because there have been many, many, many times when I did not.

However I was due to be of service at 8p.m. and with work done for the week at 4:30p.m. I had some down time.

I spun by the bike shop, got my brakes tightened, had a little oil slipped onto the chain, chatted up my friends there and then headed to Rainbow to get a few groceries.

So sad the groceries at Rainbow.

Which is not usually the case, normally the fruit and veggies look spectacular, but the after holiday pickings weren’t so great.  However, the main reason I was there was to get myself a bag of Stumptown Holler Mountain and that was achieved.

Then over to Herbivore for my “I play a vegan on tv” dinner.

I am not a vegan, but they do have a super tasty plate that just makes me all sorts of warm and fuzzy and I get my Mexican in the Mission fix without eating suspicious meat or a lot of grease.  I get the Mexican beans and rice with fresh salsa and guacamole and fake sour cream with a little side salad and fake chicken and it really hits the spot.

Don’t know why, don’t care to analyze it.

Then a manicure because that is my splurge and a cup of tea and then the doing the deal and thankfully, as it was late and my bag was full of groceries, I got offered a ride home to the beach, my bicycle nestled into the back of a truck and voila!

Home.

Home.

Home where the house is clean and smells like me and says, “hello! Glad you are here.”

Here for tonight and off to be a bit busy this weekend, but not too over scheduled or over booked, just enough to provide a bit of structure and a bit of wiggle room should something fun pop up for me to do.

“Want to go surfing on Sunday?” My friend asked me tonight as I greeted him in the Mission.

“Yes!” I said, followed by, “when?”

“Sunday.” He said.

“Perfect!” I said.  Keeping that Sunday open I am! And I was able to say yes.

“What time?” I asked.

“In the morning,” he said slyly.

“Ugh.  Yes, ok, how early?” I asked, I guess I am getting up to an alarm on my day off.

“Eight?” He said.

“Ok,” I said with a small sigh, “I can do that.”

He looked at me and smiled, then cocked his head to the right slightly and said almost too quietly for me to hear, “seven?”

“Jesus, I suppose I could, good thing you already offered be a ride home tonight or I would not have said yes to that,” I joked.

Although, I would have.

This will make surf trip number three for me.

I think I will have a little something extra to do tomorrow, now that I know I will be getting into the water in the morning, time to buy some booties.

I did not mind surfing without them the last time I went, it was getting out of the water and walking on the beach when I could not feel my feet that made me a bit nervous.

That and walking back to the car, it was nice to have some protection on my toes.

So, looks like I will be getting in one more surf session before the new year commences.

I confirmed my work for this upcoming week and gratefully found out that the family will not need me next Friday.  I get  a three-day weekend!

That will make up for the very intense work week I will have with the overnight happening on New Years Eve.  I work a double or triple shift depending on how I look at it.  New Years Eve day I work my normal hours 8:45a.m.-5:30p.m. then I will hop in the car with the mom of one of my charges, with my overnight bag, and head over to her friend’s place in the Mission and nanny for two little monkeys overnight.

My shift officially is listed at 7pm Tuesday night until 10a.m. Wednesday morning.

Then I will have the rest of the day off.

Which I will need.

Work a regular shift on Thursday with my charge in NOPA and then three-day weekend.

Excellent.

I can do it.

Especially with the next two days off to write, surf, do some inventory, almost done, which is good since it has to be by 12:25p.m. tomorrow.

Ha.

Coffee with someone in the early afternoon, tea with someone in the evening, head up to Noe Valley, do that thing there, then back out to the beach.

Squeeze in a trip to a sporting good store to get myself some booties.

Ah, yes, that works, thanks brain, sometimes you do come in handy, I will make a run over to Wise Surf Shop when I return from my noon get together at Tart to Tart.

That’s where I got my wetsuit and I believe their prices are a little more inline with my needs then Mollusk, which though adorable and half a block away is a little bit pricier.

I feel pretty good about that at the moment, the finances, being responsible girl I am.  I paid rent for January last night, paid my student loan, and just wrote a check out for Healthy San Francisco f0r the next three months.

Happy Holidays!

You’re financially sufficient!

Yes.

I also put money in the savings account and sent a message to Barnaby to figure out how to pay him the plane ticket money.  I want that out of my hot little hands before I decide to delay and get a new lap top.

I want the debt dealt with and done before the new year commences.

These things all mean that what ever money I make next week, it’s sort of bonus money.  Oh, there’ll be incidentals and groceries, there always is, but I don’t have to pay any bills with any of the money that I get the next week.

I can sock a good amount away toward the new laptop and I can get a pair of booties.

Good to know where I stand.

And soon to stand, on a surf board.

I don’t know that I will be able to get up on my third go out, but I am going to try to get up, even if it means just to fall off.

Showing up for it is the biggest battle.

Just showing up is 99% of my life right now.

Glad to do so, even if it means setting my alarm for 6 a.m. on a Sunday.

I shall.

My word means something today.

Today I have integrity.


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