Friday, December 26, 2014

Crime and Crime Again

"People think being alone makes you lonely, but I don't think that's true. Being surrounded by the wrong people is the lonliest thing in the world." -Kim Culbertson

Ain't that the truth. Its like feeling overwhelmed and distant at the same time. The contrast in company last week was highly noticeable, nearly arresting. After day ins and day outs of people at work, I needed to get away and it was even more evident with a different batch of people. A batch that just seemed less...cumbersome. I'm just around them so much; every day with people and then sometimes even longer than regular work hours once meetings and phone calls are added. I'm drained. Done. A two week break couldn't have been anymore needed, but in reality, it needs to be longer than two weeks. I think I would venture to say that I nearly all respect for a supervisor in one sitting. It just fleeted. I would have liked to take some responsibility, but once a move as unprofessional as this occurs, that's aweful difficult to do. And I still have to go back to it. When this little "stay-ca" is finished, sadly done, I will be back to face this. Them.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Pumpkin Pie Forever

I've been rather crabby lately. I know this anyway, but I know it even moreso since a co-worker pointed out to me that my reaction was "the happiest they've seen me in a couple of months." A reaction all over having my library fees paid....a big deal in the life of a reader on a budget, but not necessarily enough to drastically contrast my normal dispostion. I've had all this time on my hands, too. Without tutoring or classes or a thesis or even gardening, my time has been available for TV series, long workouts, roaming stores, writing, and reading. The stress of last year is not in vision, even after dealing with work all day I generally get to leave it behind and move on to something I enjoy. I just can't seem to adjust my attitude; it may have something to do with yet another rejection for a job interview. I must be something like 0 for 30. Not a single place has even seemed interested. My stellar resume apparently hasn't made quite the impact I was hoping for, or even suspected. Things that involved overseas, and teaching, and tutoring, and magazines, and what-not are either not as impressive as I thought or are being overlooked. I know, people are wanting specific things which require specific skills, and its a choir to sit down and get to know someone. Because I also know, there are many of these jobs I would be good at. I may even rock at.
But today is not about complaining; its "a time of thanks" as one of my little guys reminded us this week. He was even crying about something he didn't want to do, so I should may follow suit.Take this time to recharge, refocus, regroup...

Saturday, November 15, 2014

"I've survived a lot of things,
and I'll probably survive this."
 -J.D Salinger

Monday, November 10, 2014

You teach people how to treat

 you by what you 

allow, what you stop, and

 what you reinforce.  

  -Tony Gaskins

Saturday, November 8, 2014

The Write Stuff

I've been writing again. Not a lot but more since I've been lying around sick as a dog. Mostly poetry, but thats something. And mostly depressing. That's something, too though I don't know if I've actually been feeling depressed. But I've had a lot of time and motivation to self-reflect. The motivation comes from the melancholy skies and smell of a fire. The holidays start rolling in and so does the nostalgia, as all these little moments trigger feelings and emotions which, in turn, produce some unexpected or unpredictable work. It could be said that they're good and bad, both the feelings and the work, though I don't know if they are anything more than they just.... are....

It may also be seeing my entire paycheck gone in a single weekend. Once the bills - rent, utilities, loans, insurance - are all paid, there's nothing left.

But whatever it starts out as, it becomes theraputic to start the writing process.  And I've been in such a dry spell for quite some time that I really don't care how or why its now flowing. It stirs up and waves come over me and I want to put things on paper. I want to share those feelings, recreate and add to them, and I'm thankful that a shift in the weather lends to such.

Monday, October 27, 2014


10. Give yourself permission to say no to the things that make you unhappy, or that take your energy.

I said it...and I took responsibility for it. I can feel and hear my voice shake in those moments but I knew this was coming; all coming to a head and people were bound to be people up in arms. I knew there were possible repurcussions. No one typically likes being called out for not doing their job; reactions are understandable, but when the accusation is true....
I just can't find the motivation any more to act as if its okay that you don't do what you need to do while I bust my ass. Every day has been a conflict of interest: I like them just fine outside of work, but I do not enjoy working with them. I don't know if I would do it differently or not. I don't even know if I'm outta line; certainly warranted and justified but to act in the name of that alone and not consider everything else surrounding it, can be dangerous. I just feel less inclined to follow along, to do what everyone expects me to do. This year has opened me up to some freedom, freedom to speak up about things. I'm still trying to find my footing, but I do believe I have the right to stumble. 

Friday, October 10, 2014

All By Myself

In Korea I did everything by myself. Here, I still do a lot of things by myself. I go to festivals, go on walks/hikes, go to the gym, go to the bookstore, to  the museum or an exhibit. And, I go to the movies by myself. Sitting in the movie theater by myself is a plesant experience I imagine many don't engage in. There is actually an element of peace that such a solo act provides. I don't need someone else to share that moment with me. I'll like talking about it and letting others in on it, and I almost think that them not having seen it for themselves gives me a leg up; I can be the first to relay it and encourage the pursuit, but I have that first encounter. And NO distractions. It's the perfect place to go for one thing and one thing alone. I often look forward to these alone activities, knowing they'll bring some-self reflection and internal down time.  

Friday, October 3, 2014

You Optimist, You

I am not a superstitous person. But sometimes starting your day off with something upsetting or unfortunate, rather it be immense or even minute, can set a tone for the rest of the day. At about 6:30am I dropped a knife in my kitchen, and the knife just happened to dagger straight into my foot. I was wearing socks so the wound was much less than it could have been, but nontheless, it left a mark and having an injury right off the bat is seemed to be a bit telling. More followed. A swollen ankle, a bruise to the arm, scratches and nail indentations that drew blood, kicks to the shin, and a few good whacks to the side. This is my job. This is a pretty typical day at work. Some days I don't encounter any such behavior, but those are rare. And while there may have been a couple more extreme incidents today, I should have seen it coming.  
I knew right away that my little princess wasn't going to show either; my "soul sister" who tiptoes around the room and brushes her hair out of her face as she makes funny faces. Who assures me that "I'm okay", or "U'm okaaay" even when it appears that she isn't. 
And the weather changed. Drastically, throughout the day. That I'm okay with. U'm okaaay with the cooling of the air and changing of the leaves.               

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

One Thousand Or More

I love airports. I love the hustle and bustle, the anticipation, the baggage, the prodding of senses. I believe I love the airport even more than the actual airplane. I could pack my bags and spend the afternoon at the airport even when I have nowhere to go. 
Its just the feeling of possibility, the possibility that at any moment I could end up somewhere else, a different place. And all of these people have that feeling. I love sitting and watching them. Couples, old and young, families with their children in tow, grandparents....They run to their destination, some drag. They rummage through their belongings, browse the stores for last minute essentials, chat on their cellphones and fiddle with their laptops. I love strolling up and down past the gates and finding where each plane is headed. Whether they're going to face something familiar or new, something exhilarating or oppressive - its a journey. Its leaving what was behind. That's something I have an urge, an incredibly strong and insatiable urge to do most of the time. I want to go...
I began reading a book called One Thousand Gifts, delving into what it means to be fulfilled right where you are rather than always chasing things and feeling like "IT" is somewhere else. Quite certainly one of my biggest challenges. Could I really find one thousand things to be grateful for and find peace and satisfaction in them?

Friday, August 8, 2014

The Homecoming Lament

It has been twice now that I have left Africa. And it has been twice now that I missed it before I even left. Its a feeling unlike others, where I can't really find anything else to replace that emptiness. Its similar to the feeling that only other places have provided, in the sense that certain places and certain people contribute certain things to your life. I long for Korea, I long for Ireland, for Italy, for home...because they have supplied a rare or unique experience not found elsewhere. But the thing is, I may have felt more at home in Africa than I ever have here. And now I don't know what to do with myself. It appears that I have easily slipped back into my typical routine, my life here, but I feel so out of place.
I'm annoyed. I'm irritated at peoples' complaining and whinning, sense of entitlement, and waste of food. I'm distracted and unnerved, and without...well, I'm not even sure to tell you the truth. It hurts to leave that place. And I thought that going back would maybe do away with the last bit of those feelings; resolve some of the discontent. But the hurt just came back, stronger than it had been over the past year or so. It doesn't go away.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Hey, Get Off My Cloud

This is going to be a bit of me taking a ride on my high horse. Or tooting my own horn, so to speak. I'm going to brag about a few things so if you don't want to stick around I get it. But I'm 30 years old and I feel I have some right to do so.  Because I'm 30 years old and I don't have a husband, I don't have any kids, I don't have my own home, and I don't really have a career so to speak, and THAT is what a lot of people are probably most inclined to focus on and be concerned with.
What they may fail to overlook is what I do have and what I have done...Yes, I'm 30 years old, and in those 30 years I have earned my Master's degree, been to a dozen different countries, lived in one (by myself might I add), drank, ate, danced and celebrated with the locals, seen three oceans, swam in one, jumped off a cliff and out of a plane, pet a tiger and lion, been on a horse and an elephant, drove God's Country, seen the Grand Canyon and the Big Apple, rafted, boated, floated, canoed, paddleboarded, fired a gun, ran for hours, swam for hours, swam with dolphins, hiked mountains, climbed trees and fences and rocks and buildings. I've won, I've lost, I've loved, I've hated, I've seen life, I've seen death, riches and poverty. I've lived and I am living.

"Please hear me, dear girl:
the world has enough women
who know how to do 
their hair. It needs women 
who know how to do hard
and holy things."- Ann Voscamp

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

But I Don't Want to Wait

I'm... almost... there. The end has been on the horizon, but its actually starting to clear up now. 

"Now all you can do is wait. It must be hard for you, but there is a right time for everything. Like the ebb and flow of tides. No one can do anything to change them. When it is time to wait, you must wait."

-Haruki Murakami, The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle

Saturday, May 31, 2014


A notable amount of time has passed since my last entry that one would be led to believe that something of significance has happened; something of a worthy cause to divert my attention from my dedication to writing. The truth is I have been engaged in massive quantity of writing, just not the writing I prefer. Blogs and journals and poems and short stories have taken a back seat to essays, research papers, and lesson plans - all of which hold little of my interest to be quite honest. They have taken their toil on my state of being, overwhelming and stressing me to the point of feeling unproductive or unaccomplished. So many other responsibilities fall to the wayside, outmatched by school assignments and work. I haven't been on a trail ride with my nice bike in a couple months now; I haven't applied for new jobs in weeks; I have unfinished poems and short stories;I have stacks of books to read....even cleaning or dishes or laundry go unattended until there's an intolerable smell. 
I guess it would be pretentious of me not to acknowledge a milestone or two. Like my first pedicure. Oh, and leaving my 20's...that's apparently suppossed to be a big deal. Or feel like a big deal. Its should feel like something, and I'm struggling with that a bit. It felt just like a birthday. Don't get me wrong, people have been beyond attentive and generous. I have actually been blessed beyond expectations, though I'm unsure what my expectations even were. I often find myself asking, "Well, what next?" because endings are suppossed to open up beginnings and beginnings mean something has ended. It always gets tricky when trying to decipher which is which. 
But my 20s have ended, the school year has ended, my graduate studies are ending, and Africa is beginning. So I embark, and maybe embarking is so often confused with starting and not  undertaking. Life is an undertaking, and though things seem like they come and go or start and stop, this life is an embarkment. 

Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Use the Remote

I wish I too could drop in the middle of the floor and have everything stop or wait up for me. Really, how great would it be if I could just put myself in time out? When I'm ready, I'll emerge, possibly with a new game plan, and it would be as if I never skipped a beat...
Well, he does miss Music or snack sometimes, but that's not exactly the point.
I'm just coming off a week of recooperation and could already petition for another one. It feels as if it never happened. The pressure to complete a handful of things and make decisions about others is almost a physical feeling right now; like my body can feel the weight of everything on top, pushing down. It becomes an immense burden. I'd like to know what the future holds; I'd like to know how things are going to play out.  Maybe this is the moment right before something dynamic is going to happen. This weight that bares you down before you can be built up again.

"For a star to be born, there is one thing that must happen: a gaseous nebula must collapse.
So collapse.
This is not your destruction.

This is your birth.

— n.t.  

Monday, March 10, 2014

What Dreams May Come

I keep having these strange dreams; its been a few nights in a row now. There doesn't seem to be a particular theme amonst them, but they're popping up much more often than usual. I wake up with just bits and pieces, still half asleep and trying to put them together but not quite sure what the outcome is. They involve locations, or I should say, that location plays an important role in them. I'm in New York with a sibling; a sibling is here with me; my parents want me there but they don't know if they want to be there either. Its as if we're all trying to find our place. Maybe its my own anxiety; I need answers regarding the upcoming months and its been a bit difficult trying to get them. I understand that I am looking for certain answers, and those may not be the ones I get...

agatha christie quote

Monday, February 24, 2014

Relief or Grief

"Sometimes I wish for falling
Wish for the release
Wish for falling through the air
To give me some relief
Because falling's not the problem
When I'm falling I'm in peace
It's only when I hit the ground
It causes all the grief."
-Florence and the Machine

Sometimes I think becoming an adult is one of the stupidest things I've ever done. What was ever the rush to grow up? To leave behind those days when someone else organized my schedule and paid my bills? It creeps up little by little, but still manages to shock you when you realize, "Shit, that's coming out of my bank account" or "Shit, I have to confront that person about how they're trying to screw me over."

It must start in high school, when you're parents no longer check your planner to see what assignments you have to get done. You're just expected to get the homework done and study for the test. But even then, if there's a problem with a teacher you're parent is there to make the phone call. College comes along and you have to deal with your grades and your professors, but your parents still deal with money, the car, doctors, food, and whatever else seems out of your league. Then you get your own place on the other side of the world, well, if you're me you do, and all kinds of things are in your hands. Things that the average 23 or 24 year old wouldn't be handling and things your parents wouldn't be handling either. So you learn and laugh and cry and scream and curse and celebrate and grow before coming back to that same old comfort that you once knew. Then you leave and come back. Maybe one more time, or maybe two or three, until its too embarassing to admit that you live with your parents.  And even though you're only down the street or around a few blocks, being out for good makes a helluva lot of difference than being out for a time.  It hits me a different way; where I realize I'm not saving money. I'm not accessing their internet, I'm not using their zip lock bags,                        I'm not drinking their coffee...I'm paying rent and utilities and facing off with people at the license burrow.  Don't get me wrong - there are plenty of other advantages and perks. Like not having to call to tell where I am past 10:00, or making a mess in the kitchen and cleaning it up later, or stacking my clothes and my books wherever I desire. I've experienced a taste of those things before; the trade off just seems much greater this time around. 

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

And More Snow

This winter's soundtrack. 

1. Be Your Husband - Jeff Buckley, live
2. Ego Free Sex Free - Autre Ve Neut
3. Demons - The National
4. I Don't Want Love - The Antlers
5. Man On Fire - Edward Sharpe
6. Wings - Birdy
7. Everlasting Light - The Black Keys
8. Canvas - Imogen Heap
9. Gale - The Lumineers
10. Cassieopia - Sara Bareilles

Monday, February 3, 2014


I'm not much of a work-out partner. I like to get in, drown everything out with my head phones and thoughts, and get out. But I'm often attracted to some spectacle of the human condition. The gym is certainly one of the best places to people watch. There is the guy is the pool lane next to me, googles and all, who never puts his head under water. He just thrashes about like a netted dolphin. Or sometimes reminds me of Zach Braff in Garden State. There is a woman who comes every day, between the same hours, and though she goes to a locker and puts a lock on it, she brings her entire gym bag into the pool room with her. She has her swimsuit underneath her clothes, which she puts back over even after she's all wet. The older man comes to the big windows and looks in before he decides if its worth it or not.

There are some girls that are just far too cute to be working up a sweat. She has lots of pink and everything matches. Her hair doesn't move and the make-up prevents their face from glistening under the lights. I saw one in Christmas knee-high socks, biker shorts, a stripped tank, and a head band. The guy with the flames tattooed up his legs who looks at himself in the mirror frequently. "Beef" is what I want to nickname the curly-haired guy with the milk jug of water and loud voice.

I miss the girl at the counter checking people in, who knew me by name. But I was recognized the other day, by a former YMCA-er, who flattered me with the comment, "You're gettin' skinny."  Yes, I was the girl who ran and ran. I can't run and run anymore, I tell her. It's still a testament.

So someone is watching me, too.

picture via amodernhepburn

Monday, January 20, 2014


I've been spending money lately. Under the current circumstances, that isn't a good thing. I have more bills to pay, and I'm by myself more too which means I'm looking for more entertainment. Then there is that downfall of not being a salaried employee, especially when breaks and snow hit. So the number in the account has been decreasing, without the same replinshing as usual. I'm going to have to refrain more often and use my own "how tos" of saving money.

1. When buying travel containers for airports or the gym, make sure they have something in them. I.e. your little shampoo bottle should actually have shampoo in it.
2. Save your plastic shopping bags for trash can bags.
3. Refrigerate your rather than buy ice cube trays.
4. Wear layers during the winter, bake or drink coffee/tea throughout the day.
5. Shower at the gym as often as possible. (Their water, their soap.)
6. Dumpster dive.
7. Use the library!
8. Stock up on whatever possible when at your parents'.
9. Casually drop hints around the workplace that you're lacking.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Snow Day, or Days

I haven't been to work in nearly 20 days...the combination of winter break and a winter blizzard has put  me out of work and out of a paycheck. We took over 13" in just one day. So what are some good snowed-in activities?

1. Watch as many complete seasons of TV shows as possible (in this case Lost, The Cosby Show)
2. Watch random yet fitting documentaries (Happy People: A Year in the Taiga; It Might Get Loud)
3. Clean. Clean the floor, the toilet, the sink, the counter, the table, the dishes, the...
4. Google people. Or IMDB them or cruise Facebook for a profile.
5. Cook stirfry and soups. Bake cookies and coffee cakes because you have time. And its cold.
6. Watch random clips on youtube (song covers and tribute videos)
7. Start writing a collection of essays
8. Look through everyone else's weather photos on Facebook and Instagram, even though you could just stare out your own window.
9. Watch, through the same previously said window, and awe at your neighbors who are attempting to get up the hill. In a blizzard.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Standing Next to You

"Many things have gone wrong with the world that God made and...God insists, and insists very loudly, on our putting them right again." - C.S. Lewis

In the big picture, some of my complaints, worries, and burdens are so small. Insignificant, really. Years will pass, with me either realizing these things will be lost and letting them go or continuing to ponder them and wish differently. It seems nearly every situation or outcome could be analyzed and given an "if only" ...that extra money in a paycheck, extra points on a paper(my 4.0 dropped to a 3.9, igniting this whole entry), missing utensils or appliances, that bill, the schedule at would surely make a difference and my life would be easier, even if just a tad, if I could change some things. But what would it really do? I mean, would my 4.0 really do anything for my day to day? Or not having to pay for that internet installation? Or having a desk job versus one that required me to be on my feet most the day? Are those the things I think will make such a difference? 
I seen hardship, to the extreme that it qualifies as more than hardship; suffering. I've lived simply, without common comforts. And when I have them, what do I have to show for it? I've felt, for some time, other peoples' problems are often much more worthy of my attention. 

photo via amodernhepburn