Tuesday, March 31, 2009
It happened yesterday playing tennis. I was already feeling a little sore in my left shoulder (I think from sleeping poorly), and I hyper-extended while running to get a difficult shot. I could almost hear the streeeeeetch of that poor muscle. Now I'm guessing I strained it; it's not that "good" sore feeling from working out too hard. It's a pinching, biting pain.
I love playing tennis, but had to settle for bumping balls over the net for David to practice his stroke. That didn't hurt, because I wasn't putting any energy into it, and at least I was on the court. I have tennis courts reserved tomorrow and Thursday, and I'm so afraid I'll have to cancel. I want to play! I hate missing tennis!
I am feeling angry at my shoulder, and keep sending it negative thoughts. I should probably change that, and send healing energy to my muscle. My shoulder didn't force me to play yesterday, and didn't force me to rush for that shot. OUCH.
Sunday, March 29, 2009
One of the best parts of the entire night was when the band was done playing, and they put on some salsa. I finally got to dance with David, and even the instructors were watching us. I love dancing salsa, because I actually know some moves and can shake my hips.
All in all, it was such a wonderful time. I heard from a band member's wife that they are going to be playing at the Charleston Ballroom once per month, and I'm so excited. What a fun Saturday night!
Friday, March 27, 2009
"Go home, and eat lentils." Those were my instructions to David as he embarked on the ferry toward Bainbridge Island this afternoon. A couple days ago I created a thick, brown lentil stew with carrots, celery, potatoes, tomatoes, and kale. It's a delicious vegetarian's dream. I knew David's nutrient starved body would benefit.
"I'll do whatever you say for the rest of my life," he replied.
That got me to thinking: Do all men need a mother? Or at least someone to watch out for their needs?
David (who hates to be controlled, like me. Darn Aquarians.) seems perfectly content to let me control his health. He should be, I grew up in Oregon with a healthnut mother, eating fruit smoothies, brown rice and salmon (Thanks Mom!). He was raised in Texas where he ate hamburger helper and cereal. In our time together, I've managed to mold his preferences for food. I don't force things on him, I lead by example. Now he loves fish (salmon and halibut), and vegetables (yams and portabella mushrooms), and chicken. His stomach hurts after fast food. He eats smaller portions, and scarfs down salads like they're Big Macs. He feels so great, that he eats whatever I prepare, with a huge smile and plenty of praise.
I think that inside, all men want someone who is watching out for their well-being, no matter how much they holler and protest. But who am I kidding? I also want someone who watches out for me. I love when David gets up 2 hours before me to turn on the heaters, warm up the bathroom, make me breakfast, start the coffee, scrape the ice off my car, prepare my tea at night.
I've often heard that relationships work when it's 50-50. But I think it works even better when BOTH people give 100 percent. All I have to say is, I'm so, so, so SO SO excited he's home.
Thursday, March 26, 2009
So if you ever need a good cut, in a relaxing atmosphere, head to the Beehive Salon near Greenlake and ask for Mitchell. You won't be disappointed.
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
"Are you more afraid of the supernatural, or the real?"
"I'm much more afraid of a man breaking into my house with a gun than a ghost lingering in my room."
This isn't to say that I am not afraid of the idea of a ghost, and sometimes I believe my house is haunted. This usually happens when David is out of town, so I'm sure it's my imagination running wild.
Last night, I woke up suddenly from a dream. In my dream, some voice was whispering, you have to wake up now, you need to wake up now. I groggily opened both eyes and stared into the blackness of my room. I thought I heard movement on the carpet, and I froze in bed, not moving a muscle. I was sure it was kitty, until I sat straight up and felt a furry bundle on the bed, fast asleep. I couldn't shake the sensation that someone had been moving around near me, and I stared hard and fast at all the dark parts of my room, until I felt comfortable enough to drift back asleep.
Another instance I was sleeping in the downstairs bedroom - David was snoring up a storm - when I felt like there were several ghosts in my room. I felt the distinct sensation that it was several Native American men, standing in a circle and talking. I wasn't necessarily afraid of these men, I felt a kind and peaceful presence. But yes, I was freaked out. Again I froze in a very groggy state, listening, sensing. Eventually I got up the courage to run upstairs as fast as possible.
Other times I'll be in the living room, and I feel prepared to see the ghost of a little girl. I felt she'd been in the secret room for some strange reason, and I always picture her wearing a puffy white dress with a long bow. I've had these sensations when I'm wide awake. I know the original foundation is very old, decades old, so I can't rule out the possibility that someone died there.
Are these instances just my imagination running away with me? Too many scary movies? Too many thoughts about ghosts? The rational part of my brain says yes, of course that's what it is. It's your mind playing tricks on you; this always happens when you are in a dream-like state and when you're freaked out cause David is out of town. But the other half of my brain wonders - what if this is for real? What if I could sense, not see, dead people?
Thursday, March 19, 2009
It's no different now that I'm an adult, and have my kitty Lexi, who normally goes by "kitty". She's an angel when David is away for the week; it's just nice having another living being in my house. She sits on my lap, she rolls onto her back to expose her large, furry belly. She looks up at me with those big blue eyes, and meows. And I've found I can't sleep without her.
The first night David was gone, I laid in bed for two hours before I could fall asleep. Not only did I not have him beside me, but kitty was nowhere to be found. I tossed and turned, and finally she jumped up onto my bed, a purring ball of joy. She always settles up near my chest, where I hug her like she's a stuffed animal. Sometimes we lay like that all night long, and sometimes she turns on her back so I can have my hand on her belly.
Every morning when I wake up, I see kitty near me. She rolls on her back and stretches her two front paws toward me, sometimes touching my face. She meows and jumps out of bed, and walks down the stairs at my side. I'm so thankful for my little animal companion.
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
"Seattle Times! P-I!" It's what he yells every day, his voice melodic and loud above the rumble of the engines. A bright orange bag full of plastic-covered newspapers slaps against his back as he walks.
"Seattle Times! P-I!" Maybe it's because they realized it would soon all be over, maybe they wanted a piece of history, but I watched as one car after another rolled down its window to buy the last print edition of the Seattle P-I. I've never bought a newspaper in the ferry line before; today was my first, and will probably be my last.
"Seattle Times! P-I!" It was also the last time the salesman would be saying those words.
As I breathed in the ink-stained pages I felt tears prick my eyes. The headline shouted, lonely and sad, "You've meant the world to us." I flipped through the thin pages, now tears rolling down my face, as the finality of it all set in. Newspapers are dying, and part of me is dying with them.
I've been reading newspapers since I was a little girl, and received dailies up until a couple years ago, when the Internet just became more convenient. I remember sitting on my couch with a cup of coffee every day as the smooth paper rustled under my fingertips. I fell in love with journalism through newspapers, and wrote for my high school paper, even a couple articles for the Oregon Daily Emerald. The possibilities for stories were endless, the opinion section powerful, the right of a free press something to be cherished.
Today I feel like we've lost a part of what makes journalism great, and in the decades to come, our children, and our children's children, will realize what's missing.
Monday, March 16, 2009
Last night our power went out, so we went to the neighborhood pub in downtown Winslow. We sat at the bar, since every other islander also thought a beer and a burger would be a good idea on a cold, windy night.
"It would be so nice if we could meet some more couple friends," said David, turned to look at me.
"Yeah, it really would." All of the couples we hang out with are my friends, or David's family, and we thought it would be nice to make new couple friends, as a couple. I told David we'd have to join some groups, maybe hiking, dancing, etc. I told him it would be difficult, if not weird, to meet another couple in a bar.
But then, a man next to us got up to use the restroom, leaving his girlfriend at the bar. David and I started chatting with her, since she seemed nice. Her boyfriend came back, and he was also cool, so all four of us sat for another beer at the bar, and talked for an hour or so. They both seemed genuine, and shared some of our interests. They seemed like the type of couple we'd enjoy having as friends.
They asked for my business card, saying they'd love to come back to the island for a barbecue.
"We'll call you," they said as they walked out the door.
"That would be nice," we replied.
Making new friends is like dating. You don't want to come off too strong, you don't want to call the next day, you want to make sure your personalities mesh. I do hope this couple calls. It's just funny that right as we were talking about meeting new people, friends seemed to drop out of the sky, or off the boat.
So tell me, how do you meet new friends?
Friday, March 13, 2009
I love twitter because it allows me to see brief headlines in the lives of friends and politicians, my favorite bloggers, the news, the theater, the bus schedule, anything I sign up for. It's such an easy way to disseminate information in a quick, speedy manner.
It's interesting that we need all this technology to stay in touch, as we move further and further away from human interaction. The human race is social, we need to feel connected to each other. Before, we lived in villages, now we live in online worlds. Sometimse I wonder if we'll ever move back toward getting to know our neighbors. I don't know any of my neighbors.
I feel as though I have plenty of real human interaction, that Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter aren't really taking the place of that. But I do feel a little apprehensive that one day, we'll all just sit in our own bubbles, twittering away our lives.
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
The anxiety started in the pit of my stomach, where it fermented and boiled, then traveled to every extremity, every cell of my body. It took over my nervous system like a strange disease that left me shaking and sweaty. I felt the sweat curdle in my armpits, staining my white blouse yellow. The shirt seemed like a good idea this morning, when I was feeling vibrant and sure. It was loose, flowing, sexy yet subtle, and reminded me of tanned expatriates wearing chic, embroidered Mexican clothing. I realized too late that white is no good for a person scared crapless; only those who have nothing to hide.
The Aeromexico plane arced like a rainbow over the city of Seattle, painting the Olympic Mountains with memories. They were hunched guardians with capes made of snow, their heads rising slowly above the puffy white clouds. I thought they could protect me from my fear of change, but they changed too, eroding through time. Change wasn’t as easy to see, that way, when it took a millennium for one boulder to fall. I pressed against the window as we banked deeply to the right, heading south, to my new home. I saw waterways far below, the hills rising green to cocoon Lego housing developments and Lincoln Log marinas. Nothing looked real from this high up, even my own life was a dream. The ache turned my insides to stone as I tried not to think about what I’d be leaving, who would be lost.
I’d cringed when I last saw Steve’s face. His brows knitted worry along his forehead, his mouth turned down in disapproval. His frown teased the wrinkles out of his skin as it lost one more battle of its war with age.
“I can’t believe you’re giving it all up, your work, your life, me.”
“Oh, Steve.” I’d reached for him then, not because I felt he needed it, but because I did. “I’m going to miss you so much.” I breathed in his Giorgio cologne, his cheek scratchy against mine. He smelled salty; a whisper of dried tears that he never wanted me to see.
“I don’t understand it, Isabelle. I would have never mentioned San Miguel de Allende if I knew it was going to take you away from me. I want the best for you, but I feel like you are just running. Maybe if you turned to look back you could face it here, head on, in Seattle, with me.” His voice cracked and he bit down hard to stop the quivering of his lips.
It was then that I cried, tears drawing lines down my cheeks as our history swelled and burst the lining of my heart. Our bodies melted against each other as we held on tightly, each afraid the other would let go first.
“We’ve talked about this before, Steve,” I whispered against his ear, “This is something I need to do for myself. I can’t explain why, just yet, I just know, somehow, that it needs to happen.” I know Steve hated ambiguous answers, and I felt him tighten against me. It was the best I could do under these circumstances; even I didn’t quite know why I felt the overwhelming urge to be in Mexico. To find myself? To get away from a life that wasn’t mine?
“Fine then,” he said, suddenly pushing away from me, like putting distance between himself and pain would make it disappear. He didn’t realize yet that it follows you, wispy and illusive, circling your life until there’s nothing left.
It was then that I turned to go; knowing that a thousand more words between us would do nothing to fill the void in our hearts.
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
David has suspected a layoff for weeks now. The economy is obviously slumping, and the non-profit he worked for didn't score any new contracts. Not a lot of people want to invest in e-learning when they're not making any money. We told our property manager that a layoff could be imminent back in February. "We could lower your rent," they generously offered. This is another reason neither of us are worried about a layoff.
I know our viewpoint is very rare in this tough economy, but I think its important to spin something potentially negative into something positive. All we hear is about how layoffs wreck lives, how people lose their homes, how everything in life is ruined and ugly. This is a time for David to focus on building his own business and his website. It's a time for him to play tennis and practice his trombone, since he just joined a swing band and a large brass band. It's a time for relaxation and personal development, and of course, cooking me delicious dinners. I think all of us need a break from work once in awhile, to get out of the rat race and focus on what is truly important to our lives and to our future. Getting laid off is like taking a deep breath before jumping back into the pool. Sometimes I wish I was the one in that boat.
Another reason neither of us are worried is that we know work for David is on the horizon. He already has a couple of leads, and of course has to keep applying for jobs to get unemployment benefits. But I encourage him, "Enjoy this time, use this time for yourself, because before you know it, you'll be back at it, working 40 hours per week again." I know that at another point in our lives, David will return the favor for me.
Monday, March 9, 2009
He played a serial killer in No Country, and absolutely scared the living dickens out of me. I'd never seen him before, and thought he encapsulated evil. Whenever I saw him on the screen, my palms would sweat and I felt incredibly nervous.Then, last night I saw him in Vicky Cristina Barcelona. He played a creative, intellectual, seductive artist living in Spain. Was this the same man? How could it be?
I couldn't keep my eyes off him in this movie. I loved the romanesque nose, the steamy, brown almond eyes, his voice, the unique, interesting face. I loved the character. Even David said, "Wow, that guy's a stud." This is after both of us were seriously disturbed after No Country.
I had a dream last night that had alternate endings for Vicky Cristina Barcelona. This isn't a giveaway, don't worry. In my dream, people were hunting him with big guns, even though he was a cute artist. They were trying to shoot him in his own home, and he was shooting people back. Who IS this guy? I just can't wrap my head around it since he played such different parts in these two movies.
To me, this is what makes an incredible actor. He deserved the academy award he received for No Country for Old Men. He is so versatile that it leaves me stunned. I am going to now run out and rent all the Spanish movies he's ever done.
It also goes to show that what really makes someone good-looking or bad-looking is their personality. He was truly awful in Old Country, and very lovable in Vicky Cristina. I think I have a crush. A big one. This man is truly amazing.
Friday, March 6, 2009
I never thought I liked school when I was actually in it. I'd dread going to classes, raising my hand, writing tedious long papers about subjects I didn't care about. In college I skipped astronomy almost every day and still got an "A". I just wanted to learn on my own time, not in a crowded lecture hall with 300 students. The classes I thoroughly enjoyed in college were Spanish, and electronic media, but even then I wanted it all to be done, so I could be a "big girl" and go out into the world.
Now that its been 6 years since I graduated college, I realize how truly inspiring it was. I loved walking in the cold across campus through towering oaks and willow trees, my backpack pulling my shoulders. I liked the sharp, inquisitive minds of young students all around me. I really enjoyed being exposed to new things, being on the radio for the first time, editing my first television package. Everything was fresh, and exciting.
In the past 6 years, when someone asked "Do you ever think of getting your Masters?" I always answered with a heartfelt and resounding, "NO WAY!." But now, I'm not so sure. Maybe it would be fun to once again learn something new. Perhaps psychology, my other profession of choice. Then I think of a tuition tab in the thousands of dollars, the tedious reading, being forced to write pages and pages of papers.
Maybe I'd be better off checking out a few psych books from the library, and some tater tots from Trader Joe's. I can bring back that newness of learning, it's up to me.
Thursday, March 5, 2009
Wednesday, March 4, 2009
I like when the game goes smoothly, where I spend a certain amount of time on my own trying to figure something out. But when I can't figure it out fairly quickly, I log onto the Internet, go to favorites, and look at "Zelda Twilight Princess Walkthrough." This shows the entire game, step by step. I used it when I couldn't figure out how to beat 3 shadow monsters, or where I needed to go next. I sorta feel guilty when I do this, like I should spend the hours other people spent to figure out the puzzles.
But you know.....I don't have time to spend 3 hours trying to figure out one monster. I'm not a huge gamer, and want to have fun when I play, not be frustrated. I wish the "Walkthrough" had existed when I played Zelda on the Super Nintendo in the 90's, because I became so frustrated that I just quit.
Is it wrong to cheat on video games? Does this mean I can't stick it through the tough spots?
When I start to feel guilty I just remind myself - it's just a video game. It's not real life.
Tuesday, March 3, 2009
Spring is my favorite time of year. I feel like those buds, slowly awakening to more light and warmer air. Something inside me stirs and comes alive. I feel like there is an end to the long tunnel of winter, that pulls my heart and mind down. I love that there is light in the morning when I wake up at 630am, like the earth is waking up with me, instead of me waking up the earth.
The only thing I'm dreading this year is the early arrival of "Spring Forward", setting our clocks forward one hour. It's happening THIS WEEKEND. Yes, it will be wonderful to have light in the evening until 630pm, but I think I'd rather have it at 630am. Once again, I'll be thrust into darkness every morning, looking forward to the light, that's not quite attainable yet.