Posts Tagged ‘The Mission’

Plans, What Plans?

November 1, 2016

All plans shot to hell.

Not that I had a whole slew of them.

But.

I had hopes.

And no.

Not hopes for Halloween hook ups, candy, trick or treating, dressing up, or going out.

Although I was asked if I was “Frida Kahlo or just my fabulously styled self,” tonight.

That was quite a compliment.

I wore my Hell Bunny Day of the Dead dress today.

Oh.

I suppose I should have saved it for tomorrow, since tomorrow is Day of the Dead, but I didn’t plan on celebrating it and in fact I know that I will want to get out of the Mission as quick as possible to avoid the festivities once work is over.

No, none of my hopes for today had anything to do with the holiday except the fervent wish that it would not rain.

It rained.

I got wet on my scooter ride home and I took it real gentle and real easy.

It was messy out there.

My hopes were small.

Get some reading done for school, do some writing.

Except.

Well.

Damn it.

One of my charges was sick and another of my charges was home from school.

Grr.

No break time for studying.

I mean, I know better by this point, it so infrequently happens that I have time to do homework at work, and this is only Mondays and Wednesdays, the other days of the week there is no fucking way I can take time to sit down and flip through my school reading, then to believe I am actually going to accomplish anything.

But.

I always fare forth with high hopes.

Usually to have those hopes quietly dashed.

Oh well.

I did get to snuggle with the littlest one quite a bit since she was sick.

Which also led to her taking her nap on me.

I did manage to get her down in her crib for the first half hour of her nap, but lying down seemed to exacerbate her cough and she coughed herself wide awake, and very upset as she was so tired.

So.

I held her for the next hour and a half.

There are worse things to do for a living.

Heh.

And the nap seemed to help, she did end up rallying for the Halloween festivities and got all gussied up in her little Mexican embroidered dress and serape, her mom penciled in her eyebrow, put white sandals on her feet, and a flower headband in her hair, and!

A stuffed monkey.

She was the perfect miniature Friday Kahlo.

It just blew sugar fairy bunny unicorn sprinkles into my heart.

I’m glad I didn’t go as Kahlo, I wouldn’t have been able to hold a candle to her cuteness.

Her oldest brother was Harry Potter and her youngest Emmett from the Lego movie.

The youngest brother has asked me every time I have seen him since Halloween was brought up for costume ideas if I have seen the Lego movie.

I have not kiddo.

But god damn you were a cute Emmett.

I did take a lot of joy watching them get dressed up and seeing all the kids out in the neighborhoods going to school in the morning in their costumes and this evening when I left the trick or treating was definitely going on.

The grandmother of the brood came over to go along with the trick or treating and asked me what I was going to do after I left work.

“Homework,” I replied.

And I did just that.

I got out an hour early, and it was still a full eight-hour day, and hopped on my scooter.

I was thinking about heading straight home and doing the deal at the 8:30 p.m. spot around the corner from my house, but I kept having this whispering voice in my head that said, go, be of the world, be seen.

So.

I made my way to the Inner Sunset, got some carnitas at La Fonda Mexican Grill, and then hopped over to Tart to Tart and had a cafe au lait that I may regret later, but I think from how sleepy I felt afterward that it had the opposite effect.

I cozied up in a corner.

I did some writing.

I did some reading.

Not enough, it feels like it’s never enough.

But.

It’s a little more than yesterday, and all the little mores add up, all the minutes that I spend with the material are not wasted.

I am slowly walking toward my goal.

Which does seem at times to recede so far off into the distance that I can’t imagine ever getting there, but I know I will, and I know I’m worth the work.

So.

I got some done.

Happy to report that I also got to go see some folks and do the deal and that was good to.

Then the rain.

Which I wasn’t ecstatic about, but whatever, it looks like the next two weeks are clear weather wise.

Monday.

Not a bad day, a bit rainy, a bit long, but overall, no complaints.

Not that I ever really am justified in having complaints.

My brain just likes to create drama where there is none or no need for it.

Grateful for all the fun Halloween costumes and the cute shenanigans I have seen from my friends with kids in their families, it’s pretty freaking sweet.

I may not really dress up anymore or have a desire to go out and do Halloween.

But I do love the kids in the costumes.

The jack-o-lanterns on the steps glowing with candles.

The smell of fall.

Heh.

The panic of it too.

I had a moment on my way to work when I was all like, oh Halloween, how awesome are you, wait!!!

Is it Day Light Savings today?

I flipped.

Did I miss it yesterday?

Am I going into work an hour earlier than I need to?

Oh fuck.

It wasn’t.

But usually it is Halloween weekend, at least so I recall.

I was comforted by the fact that all my devices would have rolled back without me doing it, so it couldn’t have been, but I still checked in with a friend.

Made me laugh.

Happy Halloween friends!

I hope the Great Pumpkin brought you your every wish.

And.

Loads of candy.

Please.

Do.

Eat some for me!

 

 

Day By Day

October 27, 2016

I just get by.

Or.

So the thinking goes.

I was a little off today, a little not quite myself, a little quiet, a little introspective.

This is not a problem.

Granted.

It’s also not something that I care for very much, thinking about myself usually just breeds misery.

The day was just a day, I tell myself, sure, it didn’t exactly go my way, but I have no control over that.

Frankly I was just grateful it didn’t rain so that I could ride my scooter to work.

Mondays and Wednesday’s I’m up at the top of Eureka Street in Noe Valley and it’s no small climb, it’s not a good place to get to via public transportation, nor would it be an easy ride on my bicycle.

Nope.

So not having rain today, grateful.

Tomorrow is another story.

Rain, rain, rain.

All week.

All weekend.

Ugh.

I’ll probably take MUNI into work on Thursday and Friday and to see my person in the Inner Sunset on Saturday.

I don’t have plans.

I don’t have Halloween plans.

I don’t have a date.

I don’t have anything.

Well.

Ha.

I guess I have homework, there is always that.

What with the rain I suppose I could get a lot of reading done.

I had hopes to do some reading today at work, but that definitely did not happen.

Kiddo out sick from school.

So, although I had a fat baby nap, I didn’t have time away from my charges to actually sit and do any homework.

Despite having brought it in with me.

I never touched it.

I did play a lot of Go Fish.

I did hang out and read him Harry Potter.

I did dance party with the little girl and her middle brother when he got home from school.

I made homemade pizza for dinner.

I did, actually, have a really nice day with them, it just wasn’t the day I had planned.

Story of my life.

And I can’t gripe too much, I actually did some of the reading before I went into work today.

I got up and did a lot of writing.

I read a bit too and that felt good to be doing it, though it wasn’t as much as I wanted, anything is better than nothing and it’s a kind of steady progress which will get me there.

I felt a little lonely today.

There is that.

Loneliness happens.

But.

I know that I am not alone and that helps.

Even when I am by myself, I am not alone.

I also had a moment of free-floating dread that happens about this time of year and I always forget about it until it’s happening and then it hits me and I’m like, oh yeah, this time of year was the time when I started my slide to the bottom, to my bottom.

It’s a kind of body memory.

I had an excruciating bottom and it began at Halloween and lasted until the first weekend of January.

It was devastating and all the holidays have their special marker of horror for me.

Halloween because I had thought I’d escaped my disease, or it had escaped me, my dealer had gotten arrested and for a month was MIA and I thought to myself when it happened, good, this is exactly what I need.

The goose hung high.

I was literally the proverbial boy whistling in the dark.

I had plans that Halloween to hang out with friends and have a late dinner at Bruno’s Super Club on Mission Street.

I was a flapper.

I had a pretty awesome outfit.

A beautiful grey cloche hat with a black ribbon, I had very short hair at the time, slicked back with one kiss curl on my forehead, buckle shoe Mary Jane’s, fish net stockings, a short sassy black chiffon dress, a strand of baubles, a fake beauty mark high on my right cheek, and a long cigarette holder for my cigarettes.

I got a lot of compliments on my outfit.

I was pleased.

I remember I was just having my first or second cocktail of the night and we had just finished ordering dinner.

I was going to get the sliders.

I got a phone call instead.

I hopped up to take it and headed outside for a cigarette.

It was my dealer.

He was out and how much did I want?

I hemmed and hawed and said two.

Two grams of cocaine that is.

I didn’t think about it, I didn’t think, wait, what, you weren’t going to do this anymore, I just spit out a number and then said were I was.

I went back inside, ordered another cocktail, sat down and waited for my dinner to come, which I never touched, as my dealer called just as my plate was being set down in front of me.

I hopped back up, said I’d be right back and dashed outside.

He was idling at the corner in a nondescript grey Saturn sedan.

I hopped in, handed him $100 and he handed me two grams of blow and said, I haven’t had time to cut it.

Fuck.

It was in brick.

I managed.

And I managed to fall right back down the fucking rabbit hole.

I went straight to the bathroom and chopped up a couple of lines.

They were too rocky, too big, but I was too excited and couldn’t wait to break it down proper.

Dinner sat and got cold.

I drank another cocktail.

Our friend got done with his shift and a crew of us headed out to a Halloween party.

Where?

I have no clue.

I do remember being the center of attention at one point on the back stairway having a game of dozens with the host and smoking cigarettes.

I remember a lot of trips to the bathroom to break up the cocaine so that I could actually snort it.

I remember calling my dealer the next day.

And the next.

And well.

You get the idea.

So.

Hello late October, hello Halloween with all your scary and tricks and treats.

I’m not much into it anymore, though a girl does like to dress up.

I don’t like the feeling of expectation and the need to party that seems to overtake even most normal folks.

The dread, once it was named, eased off my body and I went up to see some fellows and get right with God and I left feeling reconnected and grateful for the gentle reminder of how fucking bad it was.

I never want to go there again.

I mean.

Never.

Happy.

Joyful.

Free.

Thank God for this life.

I am.

The luckiest girl in the world.

Seriously.

Will You Visit Me?

October 12, 2016

Will you come to my birthday parties?

I’m going to buy you something very special.

Carmen, when is your birthday?

“December 18th, the week before Christmas, darling,” I ruffled his soft brown hair as we walked home from dropping his brother off at Rock Band Land.

“Carmen, I’m going to get you something amazing for your birthday, I’m going to get you brussels sprouts, five boxes,” he said and squeezed my hand hard (sometimes we get brussel sprouts at the Mission Farmer’s Market on Thursday afternoons over on Bartlet and 22nd Streets.  There is a food truck that does rotisserie chicken and every once in a while we stop there and get a roast chicken and boxes of brussels sprouts).

Oh sugar.

I kept a straight face, “thank you honey, that would be amazing.”

And so it begins.

The parents of my current charges have obviously begun prepping the boys for my departure.

Which explains why the littlest guy for the last couple of weeks has been hitting me and calling me stupid when he sees me and being very aggressive.

Classic splitting and projecting.

He can’t handle the emotions inside his little four-year old body and they are coming out in words and actions that I’m not very fond of.

But.

Being a psychology masters student.

Theoretically I understand quite well.

At one point in the day today I engaged with the four-year old one on one at dinner and asked him what he needed when I sat down next to him and he called me stupid and hit my knee.

“Are you trying to tell me something,” I said softly.  “Is there something you need from me?”  I continued, “I don’t like being hit my sweet friend, can you tell me what’s wrong?”

He hit me again, but this time softer.

“Are you mad at me?” I asked quietly.

He nodded his head affirmatively.

“Can I help you with anything?”  I asked and rubbed his hand softly, “it’s ok to be mad at me.”

“Hold me,” he said in a soft, plaintive voice that just about broke my heart.

“I need a hug and a cuddle,” he continued and crawled from his chair at the dinner table into my lap with his little stuffed cat, a blanket, and a pillow from the couch.

I arranged him in my lap and gave him a warm hug and tucked the blanket around him and let him eat the rest of his dinner swaddled with his stuffed cat on my lap.

I told him I loved him and that he was very important to me.

I told his brother the same thing as we walked.

“Carmen,” he said, and kissed my hand, “you will always be in my heart, make sure that you are coming to all my birthday parties and that I will get to see you all the time.”

Well, kiddo, I don’t know about all the time, but I could probably swing a birthday party or two and considering that the family I got hired to work with next and the family I currently work with are friends, I suspect that there will be more of you in my life than previous charges.

We had a sweet day today.

I had a lot of unexpected time with the boys and I was very grateful for that, and unsupervised, which is also a really nice thing.

We went to Mission Thrift and rummaged through the bins of silverware and kitchen cook ware and spent all of $1.39 for a good half hour of fun and getting to get some exciting “new” utensils for their tiny play kitchen.

We went to Paxton Gate for Kids and played with the toys and annoyed the hell out of the staff, but fuck it, they’ve got to be used to it by this point, it’s a kids store and I did buy stickers there and the parents have probably spent thousands of dollars in the store, easy.

We went to Mission Playground and rode the merry-go-round and I had a gaggle of kids spinning and whooping and screaming on it off and on for a good 45 minutes.

It was pretty hilarious and a lot of fun.

“Carmen!  You got your exercise!”  The six-year-old exclaimed as we left the park.

Boy howdy, did I ever.

My left shoulder is still a little sore from it.

So it goes.

Then a big lunch, running around had worked up an appetite for them and then an hour of quiet time.

Which was not really an hour as I got a text from the mom saying they were running behind and would I take the four-year old to Rock Band Land?

Hell yes I will.

We had an awesome walk over.

We dropped off the youngest boy.

Then we ran into friends and went for a cookie, well, he had a cookie, and I had a cafe au lait, cafe play date at Stable Cafe on Folsom and 17th.

It really was just a sweet and sunny day.

And although I didn’t get a chance to engage with the mom and dad around the end date of the job I am very grateful that they are taking on the actions of letting the boys know that I will be transitioning to a new job.

There are challenging days ahead, I am sure of it, but I know if I stay true to my feelings of warmth and love for the boys the waters will be navigated just fine.

And it is something to be leaving a family after two and a half years and the children being so advanced with their communication skills.

Most of the time I’m leaving a family with toddlers.

These boys have feelings and they are letting me know.

It is hard.

But.

It is exquisite.

It really is a gift to have such love reflected back to me.

I suspect that I have always known that I have an impact on the children I have gotten to work with, but I have never had it articulated to me in the way that it was today.

It is an extraordinary thing to let myself be seen and loved.

So very grateful.

Beyond words.

Just beyond.

And ready to move on too.

Nice to be able to hold both emotions.

Shit.

It’s nice to hold all the feelings.

All the feels.

All the time.

It.

Really.

Is.

Good times.

Seriously.

No Date For You!

September 5, 2016

No soup either.

I chose a pork chop instead.

I was in the middle of class today and I received a text message from tonight’s date regarding where and when to meet.

Um

Uh oh.

Zeitgeist.

Now.

There’s absolutely nothing wrong with Zeitgeist, it’s great, lovely picnic tables, outdoor seating, lots of port-a-potties, good location, the Mission and all.

But.

Um.

Yeah.

The last time I was at Zeitgeist I was wasted in the beer garden and well on my way to scoring some blow from my dealer.

I was smoking cigarettes like there was no such thing as lung cancer, or a brighter tomorrow, and over tipping the bartender to over compensate for my lack of self-esteem.

And well.

He was hot, in a beer goggly kind of way.

I haven’t been to Zeitgeist in over a decade.

Seriously.

I am 11.5 years into recovery and I think the last time I was at that bar was a few months before I got sober and put it all down, thank you very much, the dancing on the picnic tables was fun when the weather was warm and the nights were boozy, but no thank you.

But thank you for the offer.

When I responded that Zeitgeist was not an option for me on a first date I got a long, drawn out pause.

I mean.

Let’s get something straight.

If I have a reason to be at a place serving liquor or where there’s drugs and extra curricular activity happening, Burning Man, a concert, a club with a good dj, then I’m all set, I have a reason to be there.

But a date.

Nah.

Meet me at the cafe s’il vous plait.

Bars ain’t no good for me and Zeitgeist doesn’t have any appeal either for music since they don’t do shows there, fuck they don’t need to, they have an outdoor beer garden and you can smoke.

Well, you could the last time I was there, who knows now, regardless, not the place for me.

My potential date quietly and vaguely backed away from the meet up.

I asked for some clarification, not that I gave a shit, you don’t want to hang because I don’t drink, no biggie, you got your heart set on a pitcher of pilsner and a smoke in the beer garden at Zeitgeist on a Labor Day weekend, do it.

He had made a soft ball pitch, underhand, slow pitch, not fast, that maybe he would consider hitting Dolores park.

Which didn’t have much appeal to me, but I could if enticed.

There was no enticement though, again a vague rather back out.

I finished up my day at school.

Hurray for getting through the first weekend intensive of the semester!

And.

I sent a text asking for clarification.

Did he want to meet or not?

The answer was a no.

And like that I was free to go about my day.

We were both congenial in our response and that felt rather adult.

It also reminded me of the things I have been writing about regarding the want to attract an adult male partner.

Sobriety is pretty high on that list, followed closely by not smoking, gainfully employed, self-supporting, age appropriate, local…

I was grateful to turn down the date and be honest about what I want and need.

The first step in manifesting a mate, yeah, I know, hocus pocus, but fuck you, I’m giving it the old college try, all things considered I have manifested stranger–hello three seater Cessna plane ride home from Burning Man this year (you do realize my stuff is still on playa gathering dust as I type), why not a sober mate; is to know what I don’t want.

I don’t want an active drinker, drug user, or cigarette smoker.

I do want someone who is emotionally available, strong, powerful in themselves, aware, intelligent, creative, funny, affectionate, will bring me flowers…

I could go into further detail, but suffice to say, said partner is not going to want to take me to Zeitgeist for my first date.

Nope.

Truth be told, it was nice to have the afternoon to look after myself once school had wrapped up.

I took my time, chatted with a few friends in my cohort–man, I am liking how well I have been getting on with everyone–and slowly took my leave of campus, tucking my books and notebooks into my scooter basket and zoom zipping to the Outer Sunset.

I dropped off my school bag at home and headed back out on my scooter to do some grocery shopping.

I decided to cook myself a nice meal: boneless pork tenderloin pan sauteed in orange and rosemary infused olive oil with tarragon, garlic, sea salt and pepper; accompanied by thinly slice brown butter (ok, ok, it was Earth Balance, but brown butter sounds so much nicer) brussels sprouts, brown mushrooms, and white corn.  I served it over a little bed of brown rice and happily tucked into the deliciousness with some sparkling water.

After that I was a good school girl and read for about an hour and a half.

There is a lot of reading this semester.

A LOT.

And despite wanting to sit it out for a minute, I knew that it would be a better use of my time while I was freshly fed and hydrated and relaxed in my cozy little home, to get in a little reading time.

I do better with retaining the material if I do a half hour to an hour and a half at a time.

More than that and my eyes cross.

I read for a bit over an hour, took a break, then went back and picked up a different book and read for another 30 minutes.

Perfect.

Some hot tea, some blogging, some relaxing.

I’ll watch a little Mr. Robot, have a little snack, a cup of tea, and sleep in tomorrow.

I won’t be setting my alarm for 6:30 a.m.

I will be resting.

I don’t have plans for tomorrow.

Like none.

I suspect I will spend most of my time in the neighborhood.

A walk down to the beach, perhaps.

A long sit in the sun, if the fog lifts, in the back yard.

And.

Yes.

Very likely.

More grad school reading.

But.

Hey.

If you’re a sober male, appropriate age and local.

(non-smoker)

Let me know.

I’m around.

And.

I like coffee.

You?

Have You Hugged Your

July 28, 2016

Tent today?

I have.

OMG.

It was hilarious.

I mean.

I should really be video taping myself unboxing my things for Burning Man.

Right now.

I am rocking out my new bunny slippers.

Oh yes.

Giant white fluffy bunny slippers with little black eyes and pink ears and pink noses and yes, little whiskers.

Totes adorbs.

I know I’m a 43 year old woman.

Fuck off.

Hahahahahaha.

Besides, having slippers in the morning is so very nice, a trip to the port-o-potties in slippers is so much nicer and there’s just something so je ne c’est quoi about wearing fluffy animal slippers on playa.

It’s just the thing to do.

And in the mean time, my toes are cozy.

Because it’s July and it’s fucking cold ass fuck out here.

Cold.

Foggy.

Did I mention it’s cold?

I mean.

REALLY.

Cold.

Turn on the heat as soon as I walk in the door cold.

Fog city baby.

So.

It’s something grand to have new slippers on my toes.

Oh, and heh, the bunny slippers have little cotton tail too.

I’m going to barf with joy.

Bwahahahaaha.

If I can’t laugh at myself than I don’t what to do.

Life is full and funny and awesome and has a few bunnies in it.

The way it should be, you know.

And.

A new tent.

That’s right, got off track with glee over my bunny clad tootsies, my new tent, my first brand new tent for the event.

I have had a tent before, bought it off a sidewalk sale in the Mission my second burn, way before the Mission was too gentrified to get a good deal at a junk sale.

Now it feels like things are very much geared to the tourists and the guided walks and the junk sales have gone the way of many, many small treasures and experiences that I used to have in the Mission.

Oh.

There is still magic, it’s just gone a bit underground.

Anyway.

I digress.

I got my tent in the post last night, but did not open it as I had other things on my plate to deal with, but I did today before work.

I also yoga’d it up today.

Four days in a row.

I’m making yoga while the sunshines.

Er.

While the fog lasts?

Hmmm.

Yeah.

I’ve got this week and next week with a very open work schedule and I have been able to get myself to class every morning this week before work.

Granted I’m sore as fuck.

But I can see some benefits, I’m moving better, I feel stronger, my head is not as loud, and it’s nice to feel stretchy.

Plus the next month will get crazy after the first week of August and I’ll be out of town a lot with work and school and Burning Man, so might as well get it now while I can.

When I got back to the house after yoga I had a nice hot shower, ate some breakfast, and made some coffee and wrote for awhile.

Then.

I ran up to Other Avenues and bought a few groceries, re-upped the coffee supply and hit the nectarines.

God damn I love a good nectarine, but crunchy like, I like them crisp.

The market had some nice ones and I chatted with my mom while I was picking through the fruit.

I updated her on the rest of my comings and goings and the eminent start to my second year of graduate school, then got back to the house.

And.

I was ready.

I had the time.

I am good at delaying for some gratification.

Ahem.

But.

I could only wait so long.

I opened the box and pulled it out.

It has an awesome carrying case and it’s exactly what I was hoping for.

I smiled and yes, I totally hugged it to my chest.

I was very happy.

Granted.

Yes.

I will have to supplement the posts for rebar, regular tent stakes do not hold up in the winds of Burning Man.

You got to have rebar if you’re going to tent it.

And I am tenting it this year.

But, I got my tent!

I am also back to square one looking for a ride.

The ride I had tentatively found on Saturday is not certain when he will be going up, plans seem to be changing and he may not go up until the Wednesday of the event.

And well.

Fuck.

That’s not going to work for me.

I need to come back that Wednesday.

Granted I don’t have to leave right away Wednesday, but I really want to be back in the city by Wednesday night so that I have a day to decompress and shower off the dust and get my shit together for school and since I have the tickets to go see Mike Doughty play.

Which I’m not going to miss.

Too many friends going, and one of them, well, it’s her birthday, I sort of really have to be there.

And, you know, I want to see Doughty play.

It’s going to be hella intimate, and small and that is just the experience I want to have.

And then it’s school the next day.

Oh all the things.

But.

At least I’m prepared.

I just have to get from here to there and back again.

I have a ride to and from my school retreat.

I confirmed with the family that they will be renting me a car for the two weeks that I’m working for them in Glen Ellen, so I will be able to get out and do the deal in Sonoma or Petaluma if I need to, and I’ll be able to come back to SF the weekend in between the two weeks.

That’s going to be a nice little perk.

Having a car for a weekend.

Not that I will have to do any more Burning Man prep at that point, but you never know.

I’ll be coming back into the city the night of the 26th and returning the rental car and all fingers, toes and other body parts crossed, I will be leaving the next morning for the playa.

Again.

No clue how I am getting there and back.

But.

It really is all falling into place.

I mean.

Hello.

A new tent.

And.

Bunny slippers?

Please.

I got my ticket.

I am so ready to burn.

Bring it the fuck on.

Seriously.

It’s An Inside Job

July 27, 2016

In more ways than one.

Ah.

Life, just keeps showing up and saying hey, here’s something else to experience.

I didn’t get outside today at work and I was wondering why I felt wonky by mid-shift, oh yeah, I haven’t left the house.

Once.

It’s a really challenging thing for me to not get outside during my work day.

Especially when it’s beautiful out and the skies are blue and the sun is shining.

I actually felt a little physical pang as I realized that I was’t going to be able to leave the house today, it was so pretty out.

Not so much out here in the wilderness of fog and chilly air.

It was foggy when I left for work.

It was foggy and dreary and cold coming home.

At least there was yoga before work and I knew, I had a feeling, that I might be getting stuck inside and to let it happen and roll with it.

I’m going to have some spare time from work next week and if this is how it’s playing out this week, fine.

Summers are strange.

Not just weather wise.

I love it when folks on social media are all like, global warning, gah!

Yes.

There is undoubtedly global warming, I’m no rocket scientist, but I can see that weather has changed a lot even since I was a kid, but hey, folks, this is San Francisco, it’s July, it’s foggy.

Stop acting all shocked and layer up.

Nothing says “local” like layers.

Today I had on a tank top, a blouse, a cardigan, and a hoodie.

Most of the day I was in the cardigan, but the hoodie came in handy and I could have worn something even heavier for the ride home as it was so cold, damp, foggy, and dreary.

I did have a motorcycle jacket on over all of that.

Thank God.

I love this jacket.

It’s padded, like armor padded, in the back, shoulders, and elbows, it’s a little stiff, but I don’t need it to be flexible.

It’s also a serious wind breaker and water proof.

I rarely ride without it on and I have it with me at all times on the scooter.

Because even if it is hot enough during the day to ride without it, which it rarely is, it will get cold at night and I will want it for the long ride home.

Speaking of the long road home.

A dear friend offered me her place over the weekend in the Mission.

I’m contemplating it, if only to get out of the fog and have some sunshine on me all weekend, that and they have a big clawfoot bathtub.

However.

I have a lot going on this weekend, doing the deal with a couple of ladies, going to do the deal with my person, going to a 40th birthday party, in 50s housewife drag, taking the American Red Cross class to get re-certified in child/infant CPR and first aid, going to Oakland for a housewarming party…

If  I didn’t have life responsibilities right now it would probably happen.

But.

I think I’m probably going to stay out here in the fog belt.

Yoga.

It’s just down the block and having all my things in one spot is a nice thing.

Plus.

Well.

I am a creature of habit and of comfort.

I have all my creature comforts right here.

Though it is tempting.

It would be a little like being off the grid.

Well.

Not really.

But it would be different and sometimes a change of scenery is good for me.

Hmmm.

I’ll be sleeping on this, my friend said I didn’t need to get back to her right away, so I can ponder a bit longer.

I’m sure I’ll have more time to think about things tomorrow.

It’s most likely going to be a repeat of today and so forth through the week.

On one hand it is a challenge.

On the other hand.

I do get to go to yoga before work.

The boys are in summer camp this week and I am not at work until 1 p.m.

So I have been getting up and going to yoga before work.

Which is the nice part.

If I was working the 10a.m.-6p.m. shift that is the “normal” for the summer, I’d be unable to get to the morning yoga class before work.

Of course, I just reflected, after this week, nothing will be normal for the next month.

The family being out of town next week.

Then I will have my retreat for school.

Then the family will be in Sonoma, at Glen Ellen for two weeks and I’ll be working overnights there until I go to Burning Man.

Then school that next weekend.

Then the boys are in school and my schedule will be 1-8p.m. again.

I’m just going to easy does it through this week.

Get out and see my people after work and do yoga before work and it will all fall into place without me fretting.

And hopefully there will be outside time for me, even if it’s just a run to Lucca’s to pick up cold cuts or to the cleaners to drop off mending.

My life is pretty full and wonderful.

All the things they be happening.

And!

I got my tent in the post today.

It was leaned up against my door when I got home.

I’m thinking I’ll set it up in the back yard sometime next week when I’m not working.

I can do a dry run and see how it works and figure out how many rebar stakes I will need to get from the hardware store.

It’s going to be fun coming home from work every night to the packages of camping gear and Burning Man supplies.

Which reminds me.

Time to check in on that possible ride.

The ride share board via Burning Man hasn’t yielded results.

Yet.

I have faith.

I have hope.

I know it will happen.

It always does.

It really.

Really.

Does.

Just one little action at a time.

They will add up.

And the results?

Well.

They’re not mine.

Never have been.

Never will.

And always.

I mean.

Always.

Better than anything I could have planned for myself.

Seriously.

 

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.

Information

July 23, 2016

Good information to have.

No judgements on myself or others, it’s all just information.

Like.

Second swing through date with guy from Tinder and no, there’s not chemistry, but, nice guy, and I’m glad the he was in town with friends, he’s an Oakland guy, and at a club near the surprise birthday party that I was at and he came by for a little while.

We cut a rug.

But I was pretty tuckered out.

And that was a clear sign to me.

When the allure of coming home was more than the allure of staying on the dance floor shaking it to a good dj with a guy who wants to dance with me.

Fact is.

My knees were sore and my feet were in agony.

I have fallen arches.

I were arch supports in my shoes.

It sucks.

It is what it is.

However.

The party I was at, the hosts asked that we all remove our shoes, which is great, hey, sure, no problem, except, that I realized I was standing and talking and dancing and walking around and exploring the house, it was awesome and cool and made me have hope of there still being bastions of interesting things in the Mission versus the white washing of condos that seems to be in heavy proliferation there.

So.

My feet hurt.

Like awful.

I go to the party at 9:15p.m.

I left at 1:30 a.m.

That’s four hours of being on my bare feet.

Of course there wasn’t chemistry.

I was in pain.

I’m in pain right now, but it’s not as bad.

That being said, no yoga tomorrow.

At least not the early morning classes.

I am going to let myself get a few hours of sleep, get up shower, meet my person at noon, do the podcast at one thirty, have coffee with a friend in the Castro then run over to Scooter Centre and have them show me how to inflate my scooter tires.

They are low and I noticed it last night.

My scooter seems real bouncy on the road.

I am sure that I could figure it out, but there’s a weird little bit of fear in me the first time I go to do something and I have never done it before, I just want to be shown how to do it and I figure I should also make an appointment for a tune up.

I haven’t done so since I go it in November and I have already put on 1,900 miles on it.

That’s what happens when you live 6.5 miles from work.

No wonder my knees are crappy.

Ten years of riding a bicycle in and around the city and the last five of it on a once speed that I had in fixed gear for three years before I flipped over my hub and went to free.

My knees are shot.

Let me not think about the years and years of being in the service industry and all that wear and tear and just the general bad way I took care of myself for so long.

It takes time to heal from some of that and some of that damage may be too far gone.

I’m ok with that.

I am an old lady.

Yeah, I know, I don’t act like that, although I am very old school about certain things, I am wearing bifocals, call them progressives all you want, I’m wearing bifocals and bitching about my fallen arches and sore knees.

Old.

My brain’s wide awake though and here I sit, decompressing from the day, the night, the drive by date.

I do think I’ll be canceling our coffee date on Sunday.

He’s nice, but I was just not feeling it and my time is precious.

I’ll sleep on it, but yeah, I think there’s not much there.

Friend though, I can tell that, definitely a nice guy and we discovered that we do in fact have a few friends in common.

And.

That leads to an interesting conversation I had with a gentleman tonight at the party, the who do you know game, the six degrees of separation from the birthday girl, and we ended up having quite the fun chat before the date showed up.

I even confided that indeed, a date was on the way.

We had fun chit chatting and flirting, there was definitely flirting and though I separated myself off to meet with the other guy who came by, I did happen to bump back into the gentleman who I had conversed with more.

He was in line waiting for the bathroom, which I had just used.

I told him I was going and he asked about finding me on facecrack.

I said, yes, absolutely find me on all things social media.

However.

There is an easier way.

“Do you have your phone on you?” I asked.

He pulled it out.

He handed it to me.

I put my phone number in it, called my phone, and then plugged my name into the contact field.

“Now you’ll know how to find me,” I said.

FYI.

I have never done that before.

And it was real easy.

Good information to know.

I think there was a quick hug, then I was gathering up all my things and scooting out the door.

To scoot on down the road.

To get home to my sweet, humble, cozy little abode.

I am so lucky to have such a full life.

Even if I miss yoga in the morning and don’t have quite the amount of sleep I’d prefer.

Oh!

And I may have procured a ride up to Burning Man.

Not back, which is what I figured would happen, one person up and another back, but hey, that’s half the battle, we’re going to talk next week and iron out details.

And my bike has a ride up.

Things are starting to fall into place.

They always do.

“Have you figured out Burning Man yet?” A friend asked me this evening on the sidewalk outside of Our Lady of SafeWay.

“Nope, but it’ll all fall together, it usually does,” I said and smiled, completely in faith that what I was saying was true, because, well it is.

“That’s what I like about you Carmen, you buy a ticket and you just go!” He smiled in wonder.

That’s called faith.

And I do have that.

I do.

And that is probably why I am the luckiest girl in the world.

I don’t need to figure it out.

I just need to have faith.

And I have it in spades.

Seriously.

Calendaring

July 10, 2016

Seriously people.

This is a thing.

I need to be booking dates with folks weeks out it feels like.

Sometimes it just feels like too much and I want to cancel, but then, I am so glad I didn’t.

I even made it to Oakland today!

I know.

Right?!

Big fucking move, taking the BART going across the bay, I mean, I came from the Outer Sunset, which, fuck, for people in the Mission is a distance.

Makes me laugh, but that’s pretty much what it’s like.

Oakland?

Berkeley?

Cool places, but I’m in San Francisco, sometimes the effort to get to the Inner Sunset is too much on my day off.

But I’m glad I did, did get to the Inner Sunset, did do the deal, did hear some fantastic recovery, did get to be of service to some women I know and did get to share my experience.

Which is only valuable if I pass it on.

Then.

A manicure, a little lunch, and the train downtown to catch the BART to go to West Oakland for a friend’s birthday party and housewarming.

It was lovely.

And sunny!

And warm.

It was really good to see my friend, though it took me a minute to get comfortable with being there, but hey, hand me a baby who is four and a half months old and I’m all ready to hang out all night long.

“You’re really good with him,” the parents were rather in awe and I just smiled and talked with them and said it was no trouble at all, I mean, seriously, the warm, just baked baby smell wafting from his head.

I couldn’t decide if I want to eat him or squash him in my bag and take him with.

So delicious.

So divine.

The soft, sweet, warm pressure of a tiny foot in the palm of my hand.

The heaviness of his head on my chest.

I was in infant heaven.

And the parents, it was adorable, they were so relieved to just have moment to be themselves, I could tell they’ve not had much sleep, but so kind and lovely and it was nice to just hold the baby for awhile.

The mom took a picture of my with her son.

I have no clue what the parents names were, in one ear and out the other.

But the baby.

His name is Maverick.

And he was beyond scrumptious.

Then.

My friend from school showed up with her husband, I had no clue they were coming and it was just such a lovely confluence of people and conversation and suddenly what had seemed, in my head, a chore, was the most surprising mix of new friendships and plans to go dancing and have dinner and socialize.

I like to socialize.

I forget this.

I can be awkward and shy and then, not.

Just wide open and fun and ready to hang out and talk and I was absolutely astounded that it was nine o’clock.

I had been there for five hours and if you had asked me that when I first got there, I would have said, five minutes, I give this party five minutes, then I’m out.

That’s the nature of my disease sometimes.

I just want to isolate.

So realizing that.

I could immediately see that I need to start connecting with people before the summer is over and I’m back in school.

My friend and her husband and I are making dancing plans.

I got a message from another friend about finally getting our asses over to the new MOMA and getting shared membership there.

We are thinking next Sunday.

I also might have a brunch date, Tinder.

Which would be a second date with said gentleman.

No, none of these dates have been in the bedroom, thanks for asking.

Although there is possibility there.

I may have another date sometime this week, but nothing confirmed.

Just out there having fun, y’all.

And of course.

There is the big get together out in the desert coming up that I need to prepare for.

You know what I have done today?

Aside from conferring with the person I asked for help with regarding getting the ticket.

I looked online at parasol’s.

Yeah.

I know.

I didn’t look for a ride up, which I should definitely get the fuck on.

I didn’t look for a tent, which I definitely need, since I have no gear.

Nope.

I looked for a parasol.

Ha.

God damn.

I amuse myself.

I will get on that too.

But today, tonight, I just wanted to get connected with people in my life.

I also might go to the Diana Ross show Tuesday night, just got a message from a friend regarding an extra free ticket.

Diana Ross?

Free?

Hells yes.

I’ll put on my new disco heels from New Orleans and do my hair up real big.

Oh my gosh!

It does look like I’ll be going to Diana Ross!

Holy shit.

And I may have two tickets.

Yes!

I am going to Miss Diana Ross on Tuesday!

How fucking fabulous.

And.

I just confirmed a dinner date and tea, with possible make out, for tomorrow night.

Excellent.

Nice weekend.

And all totally unexpected.

But so grateful to get to do stuff like this, to have connections, to live life, in fabulous San Francisco.

Which doesn’t mean I don’t have plenty of just regular, getting it done, doing the deal, going to yoga, it’s been a minute, and groceries and cooking to do.

That all goes in the calendar too.

Just means.

That I have a rich, full, wonderful life.

Especially when I get out of my own way and let the plans fall to the side and let myself be open to going places outside my comfort zone.

Like.

Oakland.

Ha.

Who knew.

It has sparked a delicious domino affect of friends and plans and goings on.

So grateful.

So happy, joyous, free.

Even when it’s foggy.

Luckiest girl in the world.

It’s true.

I Missed You!

July 6, 2016

He leaped into my lap and curled up into a little ball, stuffed cat in the center of it all, his small, soft, warm limbs entangled with me.

“I missed you too, bug,” I said and wrapped my arms around him.

It’s nice to be missed.

Even the dog seemed extra special friendly when I came to work today.

It’s always nice to get a warm greeting from an animal.

From a child.

From my employers.

I am grateful for my job.

Very much so and it was nice to be back in the mix.

It was cold and foggy most of the day, even in the Mission, but we did manage to get out for a little while and I felt happy to be home in San Francisco doing what I do.

Even with Sutro Tower obscured by the fog, I knew it was there and my city had me.

“What does ‘obscured’ mean?” Asked the six year old when I pointed out that Sutro Tower had disappeared from the city scape.

Then I told him that the name of the fog was called Karl.

This led to much yelling at Karl to go away.

I had to laugh.

He wasn’t the first person I heard today yell about the fog.

The thing is, I’m used to it, sweatshirts and layers and turning on the heat in July rather than the opposite.

Although it can damn straight get cold here during the winter too, wet, splashy, soak the bones cold.

I am not thinking much about the cold.

I’m thinking about the messages I received earlier from a Tinder date I went on months ago.

He and I hit it off, really, really, really well.

Ahem.

However.

We have not managed to get back together and it’s been a funny game of text tag.

“Nope, in Ohio,” from him.

“Nope, I’m in New Orleans, or New York, or working,” from me.

“I’m in Europe,” from him.

It’s kind of silly.

However.

It is awful flattering to have someone remember you with much fondness and ask after you and there’s nothing like a handsome man telling me that I am beautiful.

Thanks man.

Even should we not manage to hang out again, I always appreciate a sincere compliment.

I appreciate dating.

I’m getting a mite better at it.

I think I’m also taking it much less seriously.

I remember, more and more often, to have fun.

I realized the other day as I was happily surprised to see a friend of mine post her engagement ring picture, that there was no compare and despair, rather just a very honest assessment of her journey to this relationship.

She’s dated.

I have not dated so much.

It takes practice and finding out what works and what doesn’t.

It takes asking for what you want.

Sometimes I can do that.

Most often I am not so successful, but I am seeing areas where I can improve.

And.

Also, my confidence is higher.

In myself, in my choices, in my life.

I just see a lot of work slowly paying dividends.

I was thinking, in particular, about a couple that I witnessed having a fight in a restaurant at the table next to me on Friday night in New Orleans.

The man wanted to be right versus happy.

And the woman, who had the better logic of the argument, couldn’t get him to drop the conversation from the table, the loud, angry, I’m rightness of his voice banging up against her protests.

She was also obnoxious, I’m not going to lie, both parties at the table were idiotic at one point or other in the discussion, but the man was a jackass and loud.

And she cried.

It was sad.

At one point the busser cleared a dish and managed to intervene a little.

A server asked them to bring it down a little.

And the woman fled the table, wet faced and mottled red with shame and anger.

I sat at my table happily people watching, enjoying the fuck out of my awesome company, me, being nice to the server, eating an amazing crab and avocado salad and I almost, but did not, although it was tempting, turned to ask the man a question.

“Do you want to be right, or be happy?”

But.

I already knew the answer.

He wanted to be right.

The break up wasn’t imminent, both the man and the woman seemed oddly resigned that they were going to be together, yet, I felt it, the leaving of one person or the other, the despair and the wash of ugliness that a person can have even with a person they care about.

It did not seem a relationship, or marriage, or love, more one of convenience and desperation, there wasn’t going to be anyone better and I better get it while I can.

I wanted to stand up.

Say, “be brave! Change!  Eat some humble pie and let the other person be happy.”

Not that it would have made any difference.

I just felt compelled.

And.

I realized, this is not my experience to have and I am grateful for it.

I had someone reach out and ask me some questions regarding my paramours and my dating activity and I was more than happy to share.

I divulged a bit and it was fun to talk about it.

And.

I realize how many people are jealous of my lifestyle.

I am free to go and do what I please.

I have no one to be accountable to.

Just me, myself and I.

I am happy.

“My spiritual principle today is happy,” I expressed to my person on the phone when I called and checked in with her.

Why shouldn’t I be happy?

I got laid last night.

I had a lovely company and was a spoiled princess.

I have a home in San Francisco.

I have a healthy, able body.

I have recovery.

I have myself and my love for my challenges and all the twists and turns on my journey.

I am a part of a community.

And.

I got the most beautiful gift in the mail today.

My grandmother crocheted me an afghan.

It was delivered when I was away, so I took the USPS slip to the post office before work today and picked it up.

It is gorgeous.

Stunning really.

And it fits so well into my little studio’s color schematic, it’s just perfect.

I am loved.

I am taken care of.

There is beauty everywhere.

And I get to be a part of it.

Divinity.

Grace.

Joy.

Happy.

All of it.

All the things.

All of them.


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