Posts Tagged ‘serenity’

Sunday Sounds Like

February 3, 2014



The slip, slap, slosh of rain pattering down from the sky.

Sunday sounds like going slow.

Taking care of the small things.

Fixed the flat tire on my bicycle today.

I was going to take it into the shop, but the weather was so wet and cold and drear that I found myself balking big time at going out in it.

The idea of taking my bike into the Mission then wandering around in the wet waiting for it to be taken care of, then hanging out all day long until my commitment at 6:30p.m. just sounded yuck.

Wet and cold and yuck.

I mean, I like hanging out in the Mission, don’t get me wrong, but I did not like the idea of getting my bike back and then riding it around in the Mission on Super Bowl Sunday in the wet.

No thank you.

Not that it would have been all that bad, most folks were inside watching the game, but, yeah the day called for something else and when the person I was supposed to meet also texted to cancel meeting, I said, screw this, I am staying home today.

But I need to fix my bike.

Sunday sounds like self-sufficient.

Or nearly almost self-sufficient.

I had to ask the housemate’s boyfriend for a hand with the tire just at the very end.

I pulled out a tube from my stash and got my tire lever and went to the garage, flipping my bike up side down I ran my thumb along the wheel looking for an obvious, ah there, piece of glass.

It was huge.

Definitely from a beer bottle, brown glass, and I am fairly certain it was from the smashed bottles I tried skirting around on my way home from work Wednesday.

I remember hearing my wheels crunching through it and silently hoped that I would make it home without incident.

And I did.

Of course, only to get the flat the next day.

I took off the wheel and stuck the lever in between the tire and the rim and pried the tire off the rim, pulled the tube, tossed it, and got the tweezers out.

I pluck the piece of glass out then took a damp cloth to the interior of the tire and made sure there were no other offending bits hiding out in there.

Then I put a little air in the tube, aligned the tire and the rim and got them back together again.

I was feeling pretty pleased with myself, look mom, I can change a flat!

Until I couldn’t get the last bit of tire onto the rim, that’s always the tightest part, and I hollered up the stairs for a pair of guy hands.

The housemates boyfriend ambled down and lent me a hand, then polished  a bit of the chrome on his Harley Davidson.

My brain went to, when will I be doing that?

Maintenance on my bike?

I don’t mean my bicycle either.

I suppose I should rephrase that, bike connotes motorcycle and well, that’s not quite where I am going, although the principle in pretty similar.

Because Sunday also sounds like scooter.

I got a reply from my friend about his Vespa and he said, let’s talk, I am sure you can get hooked up with the scoot!

I hadn’t heard the text ping in and when I did see the message I did a double take, then yipped out loud with glee.

Oh, hello scooter town.

I will need to talk with him and see if the old offer stands, the price, the paying it off in installments and the whatnot of owning a scooter.

I will need to take the licencing class and I will probably have to get insurance, not certain about all that stuff.

Or what that all costs.

But Sunday also stands for spending plan.

Which I did this early afternoon after fixing the tire on my bicycle (I will still be replacing the tire, it’s got punctures and cuts and really should be replaced, but I will do that on a day when it’s not raining, possibly Friday since I will be in the Castro for work), tallying up my expenditures from the month of July and writing out the plan for February.

I have a good idea how much income will be coming in having confirmed Fridays for the month as well as a full day on Wednesdays, I can pretty much count on a steady income for the month.  Knowing how much I spend and what I can save and where there is wiggle room is great.

I love having a plan.

I don’t always stick strictly to it, but knowing how much I spend, where it goes and what my expenses are really gives me a lot of freedom.

Like, I don’t like how much I have been spending eating out.

It’s not a lot, but I have been eating out one to two and occasionally three meals a week.  I used to never do that.  But living further out and having a different map of places I go to do the things I need to do makes it that way.

More home cooked meals, more soup.

Made a white and red bean soup/chili today with corn and diced carrots, carmelized onions and garlic, and pan sautéed organic chicken breast meat.  Then cooked up a big pot of brown rice.  I will have beans and rice and chicken for my meals all week, good solid protein, nice hot meals to have at work.

A bowl of that and an organic apple equals a happy girl.

“Wake up and smile,” she told me on Saturday, “it will change your day.”

I did that today.

I really woke up and smiled.

It made my face feel a little off, like I was crankily moving muscles that did not want to move.

I felt stupid doing it, but I take suggestions, so I tried it.

Hmm, might be working.

Try that again.

Still feels silly, but yeah, better.

Then I drifted off a few more minutes of sleep and woke up at 8a.m. on the nose and grinned.

I mean grinned.

Goofy as hell.

But it did work.

Felt good to do that and to take the nap in the late afternoon as the last of the rain dissipated, a soft splash, a tiny patter of drops falling from the eaves, the burble of a pot of beans simmering on the stove, and the sound of yes, I will say it, myself snoring.


I startled awake with a little snort.

Sunday, we did ok, didn’t we?

And now I am ready for the week.

Soup made, scooter plans unfolding, bike wheel fixed, rest had.

Sunday sounds like self-care.

And serenity.

Nothing Happened

December 12, 2013

Today was a good day.


Pretty much nothing happened.

Nothing big and fancy and life changing.

Just life.

I got done with work a little early and spent the late afternoon hanging around the Inner Sunset at 7th and Irving only to find out that my intended place to be at 4:30p.m. was not happening.

Oh well.

I still got to sit in a cafe for an hour and do some writing.

I never got to my morning pages this morning.

I decided upon waking up that a shower was more needed then doing the writing.

I didn’t put that in my “sex or lack thereof blog” last night.

I wouldn’t have hooked up with my friend unless he was willing to wait for me to take a shower and shave my legs and wash my hair.


I was a dirty monkey.

Normally my routine would have been to take one last night, but since my friend came over I skipped it to spend time catching up with him and drinking tea.

By the time I was done writing the blog it was just past my bedtime and it was time to just give up on the day and know that I would do the washing and scrubbing in the morning.

I sprang out of bed.

The alarm went off and I leapt.

I don’t know why, but I was awake and ready to take on the day.

“Joy of living, is my principle today,” I said to her on the phone as I crested the top of Parnassus at Frederick pushing the double stroller ahead of me to the park.

I don’t know why I picked that particular one and for a while I was a bit miffed at myself for doing so.

Then I realized that I had fallen for the Lucy again, good ol’ Charlie Brown kicking that football thinking something different was going to happen, and whomp!

Landing on his back again.

I set myself up with expectation so quick.

I hadn’t even meant to.

I was bordering on discontented when I was wandering around the Inner Sunset, what am I doing, what am I going to do with the rest of my day, what am I going to eat for dinner, my brain was all yackety yack at me.

I glanced up from my bike and realized I had time to catch the sunset and avoid the crazy rush hour commuter traffic on Irving if I got going and stopped lolly gaggging around.

Sometimes you just need to take an action.

I slipped my foot into the my sturdy purple Hold Fast straps and rocked my bicycle down Irving Street all the way out to the beach.

I stopped by the house threw a Japanese sweet potato in the oven, grabbed my camera and headed to the beach.


Thank God.

Just that, just going down to the edge of the ocean, climbing up the big dune and then the view, the heart stopping glory of the ocean at sunset to sustain me through the rest of what really has been and is a lovely day.

Sand Dune

Sand Dune







Judah @ 46th

Judah @ 46th

I skipped about the tides and watched the ripples glowing in the light, squatting down at the edge of the water to capture as much color in the sky and the water as I could.

My body opened, my breath deepened, and all of the day fell away.

I turned and walked back to the dunes and climbed the hill in reverse sending my housemate, who has been down with the wicked flu bug that has been making the rounds, a text asking if she needed anything from the store.

I got the request for a coconut from Trouble Coffee and Coconut Club and scampered over to the cafe to purchase a young coconut for her to sip on.

I turned for the last look back as the glow diffused across the avenues and I felt so lucky to be here and alive and just peaceful, exactly in the right place, no regrets on who I am, where I am, or where I am supposed to be.

I was just present.

“Incoming coconut,” I texted my house mate, ran up the stairs, dropped it off, asked if there was anything else I could do and got the fuck out of the contamination zone.

Love you honey, but I don’t want what you got.

Everybody seems to have gotten it.

I need to pass right now, if you don’t mind.

I ducked back into my house, plugged in the Christmas tree, such sweet simple joy, just in that act, and got my potato out of the oven, made up my dinner, downloaded my photographs, did some editing work on them, posted up to my photography blog, I drank a hot cup of tea after my meal and got back on the bicycle to whip over to Ulloa Avenue and 41st for an hour.

Just getting there felt great.

The air still crisp, but not nearly as cold as a few nights back, the heady scent of fires burning in the homes, the twinkling of Christmas lights on the houses, the last smudges of the sunset inking over the dark indigo of the ocean, I breathed in and smiled like an idiot.

My legs so connected to my bike, it felt like my body was this pure machine, and I was free to drift in the sensory sea of images and smells and rich tactile air gushing past me and rifling in my hair under the infinity scarf wrapped around my neck.


Nothing grand, but so amazing to be here.

So awesome to get this opportunity to do it and do it well.

I have one week left of being 40 and I haven’t fret once about it.

I feel like my life is just deepening and getting richer and all these experiences are just prepping me for the next great thing.

Until that happens, it could just be having a cup of really hot heady tea, that is the next great thing, fyi, I will just keep moving forward not worried about what is happening and not happening.

I am breathing.

Today was a good day.

Nothing happened.

I like All The Bunnies

October 29, 2013

He said chuckling over the pair that are making out on the back of my toilet in the bathroom.

One of my favorite tchokes that I have which I purchased for 8 Euros in Paris at a flea market outside of Pere LaChaise in May of 2009.

I have another couple of bunnies in the mix.

One is a pink glitter bunny that I got at a shop on Polk Street one year for Christmas and when it was time to take down the tree I couldn’t bare to put it in its tissue paper and sequester it in my Christmas box.

Which some of you may be amused to know is a peppermint candy box from the Angelic Brewing Company.

Man that box has seen a few places.

Another bunny is one that I bought at Scout in North Oakland, when there was still a store called Scout next to Bake Sale Betty’s, it is actually a jack-a-lope and multipurpose, it serves as a piggy bank.

Despite me not putting any money in it.

Another bunny, is a squat white marshmallow that looks a little like a Japanese anime cartoon–that, if you ever break into my studio and need parking meter money–is the one with the pennies and nickels and dimes saved for a rainy day artist day treat.

I fill it up and when it’s full I go and turn it in and whatever is left is play money.

The last bunny is also from Paris, I got it at a store in the Marais and it is bright fushcia and I write little notes and prayers on it.

I call it my God box.

I think about Richard Adams and Watership Down, the mythologies he writes about, the stories the rabbits tell each other and how God is a rabbit.

I rather like that.

My God is a little bit bigger than a bunny, but that’s about all I can tell you about that.

Sometimes I react like a bunny and bolt.

Today I just sat through the day.

It was a rough one, the baby was sick, threw up everywhere, in the crib, all over the bedding, in my hand, I caught round two in a cloth diaper that I managed to thrust under his little mouth.


Last week the dance of diarrhea in the jumper.

This week, the puke.

Oh well.

That’s what happens.

You know the rest.

But as I rode my bicycle home tonight down Irving, past the fish markets, the Vietnamese restaurants, the people double parking by Andronicos, and the rally of cars and people looking for parking, it flashed through my head, “God, I love my life.”

This is utterly true.

I can get into the future and I can cram so much into so little that I don’t take the time to be in the present, but being on my bicycle, it’s hard to check out of the present moment.

Really hard.

I run the risk of getting schmucked by someone not using their turn signal and whipping a u-turn in front of me to get parking.

But it was there.

And that thought is there more often than not.

I realized a little something yesterday too, that acceptance for me takes time, and I have been on a whirl wind of a year.

Looking back one year ago, the 28th of October, I was three days away from the grand Paris Experiment.

How far I have come.

To land in the Outer Sunset where the gale winds banged and boomed and the surf roared as it crashed upon the shore last night as I fell asleep, head full of silly sauce and some relief for having written out my continually struggles with my own understanding of my nature.  I was snuggled into my comforter and I really did feel safe and taken care of.

Grateful too.

My head wanted to get busy filling in the empty spots in my weekend, but I resolutely have held out, thinking on and off of my friends words yesterday and my own comprehension and slow acceptance of how I have to change if I expect change to happen.

So, Sunday, yes, this Sunday.

You know what I am doing?

Me either!

I have not put one thing on the day.

No trying to cram eighteen new hobbies into the day or writing a graphic novel in a night, not going to re-edit my entire first manuscript or try to improve myself in any way.

I am just going to let the day happen.

Maybe I will go surfing.

Maybe I will go swimming.

Maybe I won’t.

I am just not going to book it up.

I am going to give myself space to be with people.

Whether it is friends or fellows.

Just holding some space open for the Universe too, to surprise me with.

I have no plans except to not plan it.

I want to.

Oh, yes I do.

But I am giving this up, surrendering to the acceptable idea that I don’t know how best to fill my time.

I don’t.

I am also not going to panic like a bunny and bolt at the first thing that lands on my lap.  Maybe I will try saying, “let me get back to you.”

I have already booked up Friday and some of Saturday, although there’s a big gaping hole in the middle of Saturday afternoon, perhaps a trip to Flax, pick up myself that new notebook that I am itching for, and some, uh, yes, some stickers.

I like ’em, go to hell.

Because the one bunny I don’t want to be is the rabbit that is in front of the grey hounds.

The one that never stops, never rests, relentless circles in the air, a striving for some unknown perfection and speed that can never be reached.

At least not safely, in my experience.

When I go as fast as I want to, I get in trouble.

Just show up, have fun, no expectations, for myself, what the week will bring, or how I “should” fill it.

“I’m late, I’m late, I’m late, for a very important date,” said the white rabbit to Alice.

Nothing, truly nothing, is on my schedule.

I am not late.

I am perfectly on time.

With myself, this experience, and you.


Color Me Changed

September 29, 2013

I did two things today that were completely outside my comfort zone.

To do one thing that I really wanted to do.

I, first, turned down tickets to the Opera and two, I turned down a nanny gig this evening.


I wanted to take myself to the beach and watch the sunset.

Yeah, I know, craven hooker, what was I thinking?

Ocean Beach


Apparently I was thinking that I needed to do for myself.

Yeah, I want work shifts, but I just came off five days, including a double and two night shifts, in a row and I have an interview tomorrow.  I want to be fresh for that and I needed a day, and a night off.

Turning down the opera tickets was a little harder, but I was not prepared to head toward the downtown area when it came in.

I had dinner in the oven and was in the Inner Sunset at 7th and Irving just finishing up with my fellows.

I needed to get back to take it out of the oven, eat it, and well, I really did want to go down to the beach and walk by the tides and see the sun go down in my part of the world.

I was not disappointed with this decision.

I was immediately grateful when I walked out to Judah and saw the sun pitching itself into the ocean and the light was already spectacular on the N-Judah train tracks.

Train Tracks

Train Tracks

I hustled down the side walk listening to the sounds of Ocean Beach at sunset.

There were the rapid voices of a Chinese church community having it’s Saturday night dinner and I could hear ping pong balls being hit and children’s laughter and the rapid Mandarin rolling out the cracked door.

There was the sound of the train running down the tracks to the turn around.

The sound of the ocean was also louder.

I noticed this today.

I was not sure if it was that the tides are closer in at sunset or in the evening, or if there’s less traffic noise and therefor the sound of the surf is louder.

Either way the sound is louder and I enjoyed the laughter I heard and the chatter of the neighbors and the tourists all heading out to the beach.

I saw a new friend from the neighborhood outside of Java Beach Cafe.

“Going to watch the sunset,” he smiled, nodding at the camera in my hand.

“Yup,” I said, not slowing a bit, there were images I knew I wanted to capture.

“Never gets old,” he said and concluded, “enjoy the sunset.”

“Thanks, I will,” I said and cut across La Playa toward Great Highway.

There was a drum circle of kids in the dunes, a gay couple wrapped up in blankets on folding chairs, a waddle of children running toward the beach, lovers holding hands, runners, a few early evening surfers heading into the water, and lots of dogs bounding in and out of the surf.

I pulled off my glasses and turned on my camera.






Coast LIne

Mirror Image


I forgot about the nanny shift, the opera tickets, the world just fell away.

Things are slowly be re-arranged inside, aren’t they?

I stayed until my feet were cold and my heart was warm.

The rosy sky ushered me back home and I sank down at my table and edited my photographs.  More of which may be seen here.

Even when I was writing out the rent check for October and watched the numbers dwindle down quickly in my register, I did not regret the decision.

I needed a day off.

A day to sit on the back patio and read and catch up with a friend on the phone.

A day to sleep in after the head ache I brought home with me last night.

A day to do laundry and the little household things that need to be done on a weekly basis.

What is funny, to me, anyhow, is that this morning when I was doing my writing, three pages long hand, every day, thank you very much, and my morning meditation (just a quick one, eleven minutes, but still any time I can get myself to sit is a good thing), I did not know what I was going to do with the day.

Had I been asked at that time to work, I probably would have said yes.

I am not good with unstructured time.

I feel often that I must go and get and achieve and do.

I forget, more often than not, but not as often as before, that the not doing anything is actually good for me and it allows me to be more efficient when I am trying to get things done.

It is all about balance.

Happiness is not excitement.

Happiness is being serene and calm and present.

I used to think that unless it evoked intense emotionality, the peaks of a roller coaster and the dramatic plunge, that it was not happiness.

Today I know better.

And I can see that I have changed for the better.

I also said I get to go do something fun for me.

I bought tickets to see Mike Doughty play at the Fillmore in November.

I once, and not too far back, would have said that I could not afford it.

But I remembered how disappointed I was with myself the last time he was in San Francisco and I decided I could not afford the ticket.

I can’t afford to not go.

I love Mike Doughty and I swear that listening to his solo album,Yes And Also Yes, while I was in Paris along with a cd compilation a lover had made for me called Something to Write to (there was another, actually, called Something to Move to, that I also frequently listened to) was the sound track to my time in Paris.

He, Doughty, is going to be performing pieces from the Soul Coughing albums.

I am super excited and I dropped the $40 for the ticket without a backward thought or glance.

I also have a number of friends that I know will be going, so that will be good times too.

I am changed.

I am different.

I am slowing down.

Color me content.










Kiss And Tell?

September 22, 2013

I am not one to do that.

ER, um, well, maybe I will break my own little rule a teensy bit.





The braces are just fine.

And that’s all that I have to say.

I mean, I want to revel in it, but I don’t want to share it.

The more it means, the more it means I want to be circumspect.

Suffice to say I am not in a mood to do a lot of writing, but old habits, this habit, die-hard.

I had a nearly internet free day today and I was thinking it would be nice to go the entire day without having to  log onto my lap top that would be a nice thing.

Then I remembered, oh, yeah, that blog thing needs to happen.

Then I opened my blog and looked at the stats, I like to do that, and I was reading a blog a friend posted and then, it hit me, this is it.

This is my 1,000th post!

I had talked to my friends about doing a party.

I forgot.

And I got busy being busy moving in.

I showed the Mister my new place, which early in the day was described to me as looking like I have lived here forever.

“Look at you, all beachy and relaxed, and your place is perfect, you look like you have lived out here forever,” she finished poking her head out the back door and scanning the yard.

“It’s so peaceful!” She exclaimed.

It is.

I fell asleep last night with the door to the studio open, listening to the ocean.

Nothing else.

Just the ocean.

I am awed that I can open the door and hear the ocean.

It may become old hat, sometime further down the road, but it is still miraculous to me.

I may be a fiery Sagittarius woman, but there is something to the call of the sea that gets to me.

“You let me know when you are ready for that walk on the beach,” he said to me as we strolled up Judah back to the house.

We had made a quick pit stop for a late bite at Java Beach cafe.

It’s so nice that there is a late night spot in the neighborhood.

There was a thin skein of fog and smoke from a beach bonfire in the air, a group of guys in front of the cafe playing acoustic guitars and a couple out walking their dog.

It was such a California beach town scene, I just about clapped my hands out of pure enjoyment of witnessing it.

I do feel myself getting settled here.

I do feel the lure of the dunes and I walked around the neighborhood more today, taking 46th on foot to Noriega and discovering another little hamlet of cafes and surf shops and a little trendy boutique as well as another organic outpost of a market.

Loving this beach community that I have fallen so serendipitously into.

Then I walked down to the ocean and crossed the Great Highway and headed to the surf.

Standing in the dunes with my face to the wind and the sun, my head soothed by the balm of the noise of the surf, I felt so myself and perfect and there was not a worry to be had in a single part of my body.

I had plans to see the Mister in the evening.

I had my fix early in the afternoon with my ladybug at ye old Trouble Coffee Shop.

I had a scrumptious home-made lunch on the back patio in the sun.

I had a persimmon for dessert that made my whole body sing with pleasure (warm sliced persimmon with sea salt, cocoa, nutmeg, cinnamon) and a cup of Tahitian Vanilla Spice tea as well as a few chapters in a new book in the sunshine.

And then a long walk ending up on the high dune overlooking the sea and the clouds.



I stood taking it in and decided, that yes, I did want to walk down to the surf.

I pulled off my flip-flops and meandered down the dunes, still damp from the rain that happened this morning, but had cleared off into the vision of the day before me.

I scanned the beach for sand dollars.

Finally locating not one, but three that were whole and unbroken.

Another small treasure to bring back to my home by the sea, of the sea, just for me.

I rinsed them off in the ocean tide and took just one of the three in my hand for my nightstand next to my bed.

A reminder that I am here, unbroken, loved, and taken gently in hand.

As I stood up from the tide I noticed the clouds and then, with an audible gasp, I noticed the reflection of the clouds on the thin skin of water that was the end result of the crashing waves on the shore, the last finger of water that stretched over the wet sand, making a mirror of the sky above it.










I fumbled for my camera and breathed in the fine salt mist as I squatted down to capture the shot.

I knew I looked like a tourist to the folks walking their dogs and I felt like a tourist for a moment until I realized that I had to go to the bathroom and I just had to walk back to the house.

Not many tourists can say that.

I laughed at my inside joke, gathered up my hem on my dress in my hand, pulling it up over my knees to climb back up the dune to the Great Highway.

I turned again and took in the vista, before closing my eyes and lifting my face back to the sun, searing the image of the water and the horizon on the inside of my heart.

Drifting back up the sidewalk I passed Java Beach and thought, I will have to have a cup of tea there soon.

I wasn’t expecting it to be tonight.

I was happy to have it.

The company as well.

The walk back to the house, the fog not so thick, but just there, the smell of wood smoke, the smell co-mingled with the wafer cookie vanilla musk of my companion, intoxicating.

The kiss more so.

The first kiss in my new home.

That is the party for my 1,000th blog.

I can think of no better.

A private party.

Just for me and a few thousand words.

And the flutter of butterfly wings in my chest.


Serenity by the Sea

September 15, 2013

“It’s so peaceful out here,” my ladybug said to me this afternoon as we walked from Trouble Coffee back to my place.

It is indeed.

I sat on the back porch twice today for my meals.

Lunch and dinner al fresco, the sun broke through the fog, the ravens took wing swooping and diving and occasionally deigning to sit upon a roof top and survey the world with bright eyes before careening off into the blue sky again.

I woke up rested in my new bed, ate a leisurely breakfast, did some writing and then a hot shower, coffee, and the meeting of minds at the coffee shop.

I caught a ride to the Upper Haight with her and went grocery shopping, returning via the N-Judah with sacks of supplies to eat my lunch on the porch right outside my door.

It is really sublime to open the door and step out to the sun and hear the crash of the surf and smell the ocean, just there, just a few blocks down, three to be exact, and feel so calm, so relaxed.

So serene.

After lunch I chit chatted with my friend, landlord, room-mate, but not really room-mate, our spaces are pretty autonomous even though we have a common entry way, there is enough space between her space and my place.

Yet, it is also near enough and open enough that I can just holler up the stairs and see what she is up to.

She had busy work, her weekends are geared to work and her daughter was recovering from a slumber party, who sleeps at slumber parties?  They should be called up all night and giggling parties, and she was pretty chill with her My Pretty Ponies corralled up in a nest of cushions on the floor.

Not a bad way to spend a Saturday afternoon.

I checked in with my friend about furnishings she said I could borrow for the in-law and I showed her the new set up, my bed basically, and how the space was shaping up.

I got the go ahead on the chaise lounge in the garage and the next thing you know she has dusted off two chairs and pulled out a shabby chic beach blue table with folding leaves, and a couple of night stands and voila!

I am totally set up.

It is amazing.

I have a home.

It feels a tiny bit like a motel room to me as everything is so brand new and clean and un-marked.  I have not put any art on the walls or photographs.

I am awaiting the right time to go out to a friend’s house way out in the Excelsior and get my boxes out of storage–photos and art and notebooks, my grandfather’s spice rack, and if I am not mistaken a couple of lamps.

When those things are procured I will have my space fully realized.

That and a rug, a throw pillow for the chaise, and a soap dish for the bathroom.

And that’s it.

I have  a home.

I have a home I want to stay put in, for a long time.

This feels like home in a new way and in an old way too.

“I grew up in the bay area and my first memories are of the beach,” I told my ladybug as the sounds of the Beach Boys was playing at Trouble Coffee.

“I feel like I have come all the way home, after a very long meander,” I finished, sipping the hot Americano and looking out the door at the light in the sky.

That special kind of light that bounces off the water and paints the  buildings in sand washed warmth.

When the last tweaks on my in-law were done and I had a cup of hot tea in me I decided it was time to take my inaugural walk to the beach.

I slipped off my Converse and socks and put on a pair of polka dot flip-flops and headed to the ocean.

Flip Flops

Polka Dot Flip Flops

I took them off as soon as I hit the sand and climbed up the dunes to the crest to see the sea spread before me, splendid and board, all-encompassing, shattered with light and sunshine.

Sand Dune

Sand Dune

Pacific Ocean

Pacific Ocean

I breathed in deep.

Delighted to be here, the crash of the waves drowning out any noise in my head.

I understood in a split second why, early into my sobriety, I was drawn to the sea.

The noise was louder than the noise in my head.

The serenity of not hearing the constant monkey wrench grind of my thoughts and the chitty chitty bang-bang of useless dreck being constantly manufactured.

Just the bash of the waves and the crescendo of the surf.

It created a kind of dream like meditative state.

I felt like I was walking in a silence that was deep and powerful and lulling.

The lullaby of the ocean.

How have I lived this long without that noise in my ears?

I walked out to the surf and got my toes wet.

The water swirled around my feet and my heart soared above me, a kind of delirious feeling of vertigo threatened to over take me and I swayed watching the clear bubbles draining away back to the ocean as the tide pulled back out.

Dogs splashed past me, lovers leaned into each other and laughed, sharing a private moment on the vast beach.



The sun and sky.

The wind and the water.



I wondered, as I took my camera and aimed it at a kite surfer, will I get bored with this?

Will it become blase?

Or will it continue to delight and soothe and comfort me?

I tend to think the latter.

I am grateful to be here and excited to see what develops in this land of sand and salt.

The tears in my eyes were probably caused by the wind pushing its way past my glasses, my vision blurred as I pointed the camera directly to the sun and shot another photograph.

Kite Surfer

Kite Surfer

My heart burst with the beat of the ocean and I brushed the moisture off my face, pocketing my glasses, I stood, eyes closed, surf rolling over my feet, and said a few words of grace.

For graced I am.



Salt saturated.



Home by the sea.

Where Did the Day Go?

July 30, 2013

I have felt perpetually three hours behind all day long.

I got locked out of the house this morning and my whole plan on the day was just like that, tossed out the window.

That’ll show you, don’t step outside without your keys to check the fig tree.

I had gotten up this morning, a little late, but I was up a little late, making plans with a friend to do some museum stuffs this afternoon.

I had suggested the MOMA.

And what do you know!

The museum is closed for the next two years.


I had no clue.

Well, that makes me re-consider renewing my membership.


There were a couple of shows he was interested in, and of course, it’s a Monday and the shows weren’t open.

Long and short of it, we decide to hit the Jewish Contemporary Museum for the photography show of Allen Ginsberg.  And because he’s a beat and we’re in San Francisco (so close I can taste the salty foggy air) we further decide to go wander the stacks in City Lights.

Jewish Contemporary Museum

Jewish Contemporary Museum



Photograph by Ginsberg

Allen Ginsberg’s Grandmother


It’s a date.

I get up, shower, do the deal, start the coffee, get the oatmeal going, then, I think, “oh I should check the fig tree, I’ve been gone all weekend, maybe there’s a ripe fig on the tree.”

It’s a nice little treat, fresh, warm purple fig diced up on top of a hot bowl of oatmeal with a little ripe banana and cocoa and cinnamon.


I have moment, why don’t I listen to these moments?


When I think, out of nowhere, go out the back door.

Now why, would I do that?

The fig tree is out front.

I almost do it anyhow, the cats are on the back porch and Fred looks like he needs some pets and then, I turn, go out the front door, and check the tree.

No ripe figs.

Oh well.

Back inside.

Or the attempt to go back inside happens.

The door handle is broke.

I actually bang on the door and say, “Hey!” really loudly, like there was someone in the house with me who turned the dead bolt.

Like the cats have suddenly gained opposable thumbs.

Nothing happens.

I am still locked out.

You know what the curse of modern technology is?

No one remembers a god damn phone number any more.

They are all programmed into my phone.

Not into my head.

I sit and jiggle the door handle and shake the door and think, well, what’s next?

There’s got to be a spare hidden on the property somewhere.

I am sure there is.

But I do not find it.

I check.

I check again.

I lift ceramic frogs, mats, planters, I look under pottery, beneath the back steps, I get dusty, cobwebby, dirty, slightly hot, and I marvel, not too annoyed, at how I am actually fairly serene through this entire process, although I am hungry.

That was breakfast in the microwave.

I can almost smell the warm banana wafting under the door.

The hot coffee I would really like to have a cup of right now.

I clamber around the yard, make a complete circumference, look at all the entry ways that could possibly let me in, say hi to Fred, the cat, give him some loves, hi to Buford, another cat, hi to the neighbors.

I peer through the thicket of plant life they have going on and wonder if they are home.

I bet they are.

Maybe they have a key.


They do not, but they do have my room mates number and a call is placed and I am directed to the key safe.

But it is not there.

It has been moved.


No one knows.

The key fairy took it.

I sigh.

He says he’ll come back from the city.

I feel bad.

Why wasn’t I happy with the yummy oatmeal I had working, why did I have to pretty it up with figs?  I have strawberries, they would have been just fine.

Damn it.

The wife of the neighbor insists I take their card and call if I need help.

Um, lady, I know that the garden in back is for “personal use” but I think you should lay off the bong for a minute.

I don’t have a phone.

That’s why I, uh, don’t even bother to explain, take the card, pocket the card, continue on.

I walk around the house a few more times, holding the useless card in my hand and then just get into the moment.  I am going to have to settle down and just chill.

I turn the card over to look at it before I toss it in the recycling.

“Trash Hauling. Maintenance. Repairs. Locksmith.”


Does that happen to include the really awesome way you jiggle the handle on the door and said, “ahyup, that’s broke.”

Dude, you seem like a really nice guy and you were sweet to let me use your phone, but maybe, take the locksmithing off the business card.

Suffice to say I got some meditative time on the back porch.

I sat and watched the birds rustle through the plum trees, fledgling robins with new wings, hummingbirds, pigeons, ravens, nuthatches, sparrows, the wind kept me company, the sounds of the neighborhood, the cats on the steps.

This is not so bad, I thought, and put my feet up on the ledge.

And eventually the room-mate came back, I slugged down a tepid cup of coffee, ate my oatmeal, which was congealed, but still tasty, and hit the road a few hours back from my schedule.

I was not too far off time for showing up for my friend, but I did not attend to any of the errands, writing, or other chores I had in mind.

Oh well.

That’s how it goes.

Sometimes we get locked out.

How did I accept it?

By accepting it.

And being very grateful I had just used the bathroom before going outside to check the fig tree.


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