Archive for the 'Relationships' Category

Life goes on…

July 23, 2011

It’s been a while since I’ve written, why with all the changes that have occurred recently and all, I simply haven’t had the time or the inclination to sit down and write. I have also been putting a lot more focus on my other blogs, and so this one has somewhat fallen by the wayside.

But aside from the big news in my life that D and I now live together, the bigger news is that the world didn’t end on May 21st and…better yet… we’re still not paying the price for our unraptured souls.

In fact, D and I have been  celebrating. Not the end of the world, but the beginning of ours. We finally went out last night (sans kids) into the city. We talked about sex and confessed our deepest darkest secrets. Mine, of course, always a little deeper and darker. We ate tuna tartar, halibut and octopus, margaritas and martinis. And stared up at the high domed ceiling of the Ritz Carlton which was glowing pink with lights from the bar. Nothing compares to a warm night in Philly, dinner and a pear martini  at 10Arts, and then hobbling along tipsily on heels across Broad, down Walnut, and zooming back over the bridge towards home with the top down…

On the way home we  talked about a trip to Sedona for his birthday. There’s a spa out there to die for called Enchantment Resort. It’s booked and we simply cannot wait. Oh the desert. It’s calling me. In fact, I hope our desert adventure reawakens my desire to write. I’ve been so lazy lately!

The day after we actually went back into the city to have lunch at Beau Monde for some stuffed crepes and champagne. Walked around. Got coffee at a little indie place off South Street and then headed home. End of fantasy; back to reality. And reality lately has been a little tough on me, why with all the newness of my new life. All the new dynamics in my household. I can only hope that I adapt to the change as easily as I used to. With weekends like this, all things are possible. I have hope. I am excited about the future.

This is the thing about the end of the world. Despite there being a future, we die every day. And every day  we are reborn. It’s a solo journey, despite having someone along for the ride.

The language of flowers

February 5, 2011

I have always had a general reluctance towards flowers. Not so much an aversion as a mistrust. Very possibly it comes from the fact that they purport to send one message, but oftentimes end up sending another. I mean, there are books on flowers and their meanings. A black locust, for example, means platonic love. A buttercup; wealth, a daisy; innocence; a rose; love, desire, passion.   But do you think people are capable of sending the same message as the flowers they choose to send? Highly difficult task, if you ask me. In all likelihood it’s not so much that I dislike flowers as that I have always poorly  understood human nature to the point of knowing that someone may say one thing but mean another. Seriously. I’ve learned through the years that a flower isn’t just a flower, but rather, a symbol with some message attached. And that that message isn’t always the cute, flowery one that Hallmark and FTD would have you believe. Couple that with some pretty traumatizing associations to flowers and you have a recipe for doubt and dismay.

For starters, my grandmother died when I was 14. She was obsessed with flowers and so, prior to her death, she arranged to have a gazillion flowers at her funeral. There were daisies and tiger lilies and begonias and whatever else, and the whole funeral parlor was popping with yellow. I loved my grandmother dearly, but the smell of all those flowers paired with the smell of embalming fluid ruined it for me. For years every time I walked into a florist’s shop it reminded me of death.

Then there was high school. Every February there was a carnation sale. And depending on how much money your parents gave you, whom you were dating at the time and how many friends you had, you could buy carnations for your sweetheart or your friends till you were blue in the face. Then, on Valentine’s day, the teachers during homeroom would call out your name and you’d go up to the front desk, where everyone would see you, and you’d collect your carnation. Most of us received one, maybe two carnations with a little note attached that generally said something like “BFF,” and that would be the end of it. But then, there were the popular people. The cheerleaders. The football players. The jocks. The preps. They’d get some ridiculous amount of carnations, somewhere upward of twenty or so. And you’d have to watch them all day, carrying these carnations around, struggling down the hallway, fidgeting with them in class. Of course, they never put the damn things in their lockers. No. It wasn’t that easy. These people rubbed your nose in it. Literally. You didn’t just brush elbows with classmates in a crammed hallway on V-day. You had carnations smashed into your face. “Oops. Sorry my forty-seven carnations whacking you in the head. My bad.” All this, to the point where you found yourself sneaking around the gym locker room or looking in trashcans for discarded carnations to claim as your own. It was sickening to say the least. And I never quite got over it. To this day, any time I see someone giving out carnations, like Moonies or Christians on the side of the road or something, in the city, I want to ram my vehicle into that damn plastic bucket and be done with it.

Thankfully, I was able to recover from my botanical complex, if only for a short while. But, it was only a matter of time before I too, hater of anything with a stem or a bud, fell victim to that ancient and perennial commercialism of love, which states that if you do not receive a flower from a man, you have no worth.  My life changed at this point. I suddenly adored flowers. Not so much for their beauty as their ability to define me. And most likely because I’d never received any. And by the time I hit my twenties I felt I was something of a freak. If society validated a woman by the flowers she received, I must have been an alien.

Until S.

I was 22 and dating this Air Force police officer named S when I lived in Greenland. We had fallen in love, and despite my leaving to return home, we remained in touch. For my birthday he sent a dozen yellow roses. They were stunning. Everything I had imaged they’d be. It was the first time I’d ever received flowers. And I probably have every petal saved in a box somewhere up in my attic, that’s how amazed I was at the idea of flowers.

He drifted into the past, of course, but his flowers were possibly the last I’d ever really appreciate for a very long time. It was all downhill from there.

Throughout my marriage I only received one bouquet of roses from my ex-husband. He never bought me flowers for anything. Not Christmas. Not Mother’s day. Not any holiday whatsoever. Not even on the days I gave birth to either son, or the day I graduated with high honors from Rutgers University, after 16 years of trying. I don’t believe he even gave me flowers when my father died. Like I said, I only received one bouquet from him. Back in 1999, when I was about four months pregnant with my second child, I found out quite to my dismay, that he had sent some girl down in Georgia a dozen white roses. It would be the first of many more indiscretions on his part and the onset of the most miserable years of my life. Aside from frothing at the mouth with anger that he was cheating on me, I was possibly more incensed over the fact that he had sent some strange woman flowers (roses, no less) and had never given me so much as a dandelion. Anyway, shortly after this betrayal, I came home one day to my own bouquet. Out of guilt for what he had done, or possibly as a buffer for what he was about to do, he had sent me the clichéd dozen red roses that I still affectionately refer to as the “I just fucked around on you and sent my girlfriend flowers but now that you caught me, I’ll send you flowers too” bouquet. I can still remember throwing those things out long before they died on their own.

After the dissolution of my marriage, flowers sent to me never much improved. In fact, they became downright insulting. There were the occasional carnations wrapped in plastic from Wawa that my boyfriend G would pick up out of obligation on days like Valentine’s day. No card attached. There was the “I’ve been neglecting you to go party with friends” flower from S. It was a lily (isn’t that the flower of DEATH?). I planted it in my front yard and the squirrels ate it. And finally, there was the “we just started fucking and I want to move out of my parents house and in with you” roses from M, which, admittedly, were quite beautiful. Yet, they came with such onus that every time I looked at them I couldn’t help but wonder if I wasn’t being tricked.

The truth is, my history with flowers has been grim, at the very least. But, despite my seeming ingratitude and suspicion I do have hope.

Yesterday, in fact, was Valentine’s day, a holiday I typically downplay and try to ignore.   So, I went into the city by myself and walked and walked and walked down Pine and Spruce and then over to Walnut to revisit a few of my favorite antique shops. I bought a little vintage tin sign for the bathroom.  I had tabouli at Sarhara’s. And I strolled around looking at windows and doors, which I love to do. I thought of virtually nothing all day except maybe the temperature and how cold it got after a few days of unseasonably warm weather. When I got home though, sitting on my front porch step, there were flowers.

They were the prettiest flowers I’d ever received. There were twelve red roses, encircling a spray of extraordinarily green tiny buds, which rested upon the lip of a cylindrical glass vase with stones at the bottom.  I brought them inside and sat them on my countertop and I breathed them in.  I stared at them for what seemed a very long time. I made peace with them.

I actually found them to be quite beautiful.

I opened the notecard. They were from D. And he had scribbled—in his own handwriting—this little “xo” on the card. Just that. Nothing more. No “I’m sorry,” or “last night was great,” or “I’m giving these to you because if I don’t, you’ll think I’m lazy and cheap.”  Just “xo.” Possibly the purest, plainest, most direct language of affection I’ve ever received from a flower, in a very, very, very long time. A bouquet that actually came with the message it intended.

How rare.

I can’t say me and flowers will ever have the kind of relationship that say, Georgia O’Keeffe has with flowers, but I can say, I’m no longer opposed to them. They’re growing on me.  I don’t love them or hate them. I don’t see symbolism in them. But I am not averse to them. Umberto Eco once said that, “the rose is a symbolic figure so rich in meanings that by now it hardly has any meaning left.” And I suppose that’s true. But what’s more, is what’s behind the rose; what’s behind the flower; both in the giver and the receiver. It is this that speaks more loudly than anything. It is the underlying current of love, or lack thereof that can make or break a daisy, a lily, or even a rose.

Sexy Montreal-Updated

October 21, 2010

Photo of old Montreal

The last time I was in Montreal I was 20. I went to visit five of my favorite guy friends whom I’d met the previous summer in Wildwood working at the T-shirt shops that lined the boardwalk– they were guys who lived in Montreal, but worked during the summer at the Jersey shore. When they invited me, in the fall of ’88,  I couldn’t say no. I booked a Greyhound bus, cut all my classes and fled the country.  Once there, I was entertained daily– all expenses paid– shopping, meals out, sexy hook-ups, and every night a new, trendy disco or bar like the Metropolis, Pow-Wow or Peel Pub. We hung out at McGill University, smoked Cuban cigars (real ones) and drank ourselves silly.

So, when D mentioned a long weekend in Montreal, I was game.

But this time, things would be a little different. Instead of crazy, twentysomething drunken fun with five guy friends, this time it would be sophistication and love with one man. Add a spa, a Russian restaurant and maybe even a little something fringe, and well…You get the idea.

Here are some of mine and D’s plans…

1. First things first— the hotel. A Suite with French doors separating bedroom from living area and view of the street. D chose Le Saint Sulpice, whose name coincidentally is the same as a little Parisian cafe I used to frequent on my way to school.

UPDATE: Le Saint Sulpice was everything I hoped it would be. Service was friendly, room was big and cozy. We even lit a fire and candles. Shower was huge. Everything was immaculate. And decor was pure five-star.

2. The spa— We’re booked at Scandinave, Les Bains for hot stone massages. But too bad we’ll have to pass on this one. Studio Beaute du Monde is Montreal’s only traditional Hamman. Maybe next time.

UPDATE: I’m glad we didn’t pass on this place. But I need to make a clarification. This was more of a bath house or thermal spa than a traditional spa as there are no extended beauty treatments. You merely use the pools, sauna and steam room as relaxation and energy therapy; and then after, you can choose from a hot stone massage or a swedish massage. By accident, I got the hot stone and D got the swedish (it should have been reversed). I didn’t think a hot stone massage was anything more than clever marketing, and for the most part, I still believe that. But Brigitte was an incredible masseuse and I ended up falling asleep on the table.

3. Food— There’s a nice little oyster bar and bistro on the St. Lawrence River called Narcisse. We’ve made reservation there. But for some strange reason, I have a craving for Russian. Could it be because of my old friend Vladimir Ostrovski who was from Russia, moved to Montreal, then became a masseuse in Isreal? Who knows. But check out Troika. Looks very Dostoevsky. IzyskannyǏ

UPDATE: We never made it to Narcisse. They had too many eccentric menu items and I was really in the mood for something a little more down to earth. Besides, the atmosphere was cold and contemporary and we were up for warm and cozy. So, we chose Galianos instead. Atmosphere was great, service was outstanding, but the food was only OK. Rustic, Italian pasta dishes and heavy meals like chicken parm made it seem more like an Olive Garden instead. Then again, I think we’re both kinda burnt out on Italian.

As for Troika, it was not what I expected, and yet, it wasn’t half bad. The experience turned out to be something uniquely quirky. There was only one small, no frills dining room with Greek diner-style mirrored paneling. Red velvet booths around the perimeter. And a disco ball hanging loosely from the ceiling, throwing out light dots on all our faces. We sat next to an old Yiddish  family  who were drinking vodkas and wine and singing along with the violinist who played Russian and, I’m assuming, Baltic tunes from the old days; music these folks probably grew up with. At any rate, we waiting a very long time for the food. It almost seemed as if we were dining along with everyone else and had to wait for the others to finish their appetizers before they’d serve us our main plates. D had chicken and I had some pasta dish with salmon and caviar. I washed it down with a vodka and felt satisfied with my Russian experience.

4. Fun— What better way to experience sexy Montreal than stopping by (Don’t click this link with the kids aroundChez Parée with a few dollar bills in our hand?

UPDATE: Chez Paree was a big disappointment. All the girls looked like something from Jersey Shore; our drinks were watered down too. We bailed out early and went back to the hotel for some of our own sexiness. Ahhh…much better!

5. Shopping— As if all that weren’t enough…there’s shopping.  Sexy lingerie at Deuxième Peau. market shopping at Le Faubourg. And, of course, designer apparel on Ste-Catherine and Saint Laurent Streets. This place might just force me to start using my credit cards.

UPDATE: Never made it to the lingerie shops, but walked down St. Catherine’s Street (under construction) and into Eaton shopping mall. As I had feared there was nothing more than typical American mall stores– DKNY, Fossil, GAP, Marc Jacob, Zara, etc. etc. The most interesting shops were those on the opposite side of the street with kitchy tourist crap from Canada’s Inuit country. But sadly you had to weed through the furry Alpaca sweaters with airbrushed wolves and Indians on them to get to the good stuff. Who buys those things anyway?

Confession Mondays: Sex obsessed

August 3, 2009

Lately, I’ve been obsessed with sex. Based on my last post it seems I shift from one extreme to the other. It’s got to be the beach and the fact that I see D all day long but can’t touch him (too many kids around, too many adults around, etc.). What an unappeasable temptation. Not to mention the fact that I’m probably on the hormonally insatiable side this week (was that a paralypsis?)

Coffee, wine & sex

July 23, 2009

I told D he was not allowed over for at least two days. I really need to recuperate. I have once again started up with my coffee binge (that’s two espressos a day instead of my usual one). That’s not good in itself as it leads to dizziness. But then when I go and add alcohol and sex to the mix (and lack of sleep) it becomes lethal. It’s only a matter of time before I run myself into the ground. I actually left Kelly’s class twice this morning because of dizziness. I thought I was going to pass out or die.

She talked about “balance” in class today, about the importance of balance and how your mind, not just your physical body, needs to work extremely hard to achieve physical balance. When I start eating junk and drinking excessive amounts of coffee, I am truly upsetting the balance. Mind, body, spirit; all of them are affected. I need to pull back, rest, and reset my mind to focus on balance.

I’m currently reading: “Buddhism for the West.” It’s a rather old book and smells horribly old too. But it’s good. It talks about clasping your hands together to pray or bow. How that symbolizes the “coexistence of two inseparable worlds…two aspects of one Cosmic life.” I liked that. It leads me to believe that the strife, imbalance and addiction, at times, inside me, belongs there, but can be quelled and coexist with the more peaceful side of who I am.

From Spain to Morocco…

June 22, 2009

So…my little dream may come true after all. The one I’ve had since 1991. D and I have been tossing around the idea of going to Morocco next summer. I’ll fly to Madrid with my kids to stay with my in-laws for a few weeks. D will fly over at a later date and together, we will take the trek down to Granada by train and then over into Morocco. There’s still a few holes in the plan, missing hotels etc. But basically, this is the beginning of a great adventure. Check back for updates and added plans:

Madrid – Granada – Algeciras– Tanger – Fes – Merzouga – Marrakech – Tangers – Algeciras– Madrid

Day 1
Madrid
• August 18, 2010
Hotel

Day 2
Madrid to Granada (5.5 hours, train)
• August 19, 2010 

Hotel Casa Morisca Cuesta de la Victoria, 9
18010 – Granada España
tel. +34 958 221100 / -609 817859
fax +34 958 215796
info@hotelcasamorisca.com  — 1 double bed with sitting room and 15th. century coloured wooden ceiling and jacuzzi-bath. [Price: 198 € – 150€ ]
• Los Baños Arabes
• Flamenco show

Day 3
Granada to Algeciras (3.5 hours, bus) –
Algeciras to Tangiers (30 minutes, ferry) –
Tangiers to Fes (5 hours, train)
• August 20, 2010
Ryad Laaroussa (Green Room, 220 Euros), 3 Derb Bechara, Fes-Medina, Morocco. Tel.: +212 6 74 18 76 39
contact@riad-laaroussa.com

Day 4
Fes to Merzouga (10 hours, 4×4)
• August 21, 2010
Hôtel Kasbah Kanz Erremal | Adresse : B.P:12 Merzouga 52202- Maroc 
Tel: (00212)35578482 | Fax: (00212)35577265 | GSM: (00212)66039178 | Email: info@kanzerremal.com,

Day 5
Merzouga
• August 22, 2010
Hôtel Kasbah Kanz Erremal | Adresse : B.P:12 Merzouga 52202- Maroc 
Tel: (00212)35578482 | Fax: (00212)35577265 | GSM: (00212)66039178 | Email: info@kanzerremal.com
• Camel rides
• Pool
• Hike to desert

Day 6
Merzouga to Marrakech (12 hours, 4×4)
• August 23, 2010
Hotel Riyad el Cadi, 86/87 Derb Moulay Abdelkader
Dabachi
B.P. 101
40000 Marrakech-MédinaTel.: +212 524 378 655
Tel.: +212 524 378 098
Fax: +212 524 378 478 INFO@RIYADELCADI.COM

Day 7
Marrakech
• August 24, 2010
Hotel Riyad el Cadi, 86/87 Derb Moulay Abdelkader
Dabachi
B.P. 101
40000 Marrakech-MédinaTel.: +212 524 378 655
Tel.: +212 524 378 098
Fax: +212 524 378 478 INFO@RIYADELCADI.COM. You cannot reach this riad by car. You need to get there via a ten minute walk. Here’s a cute video on the arrival.
• Medina
• Majorelle Garden (Jardin Majorelle)
• Jemaa el Fna
• Les Bains de Marrakech
• Koutoubia Mosque and Minaret

Day 8
Marrakech to Tangiers (11 hours, train)
• August 25, 2010

• Hotel –or-
• Tangiers to Algeciras (30 minutes, ferry)
• Hotel

Day 9
Algeciras to Madrid (5.5 hours, train)
• August 26, 2010
Home/Hotel

Day 10
Madrid
• August 27, 2010

• Plaza Mayor
• Puerta del Sol

Day 11
Madrid to Philadelphia
• August 28, 2010

• Home

La la la, I can’t hear you…

May 28, 2009

So, a man calls me up on the phone to tell me some bad news. I cringe and say, “that’s pretty upsetting, but,” I add, “it’ll all work out.” He doesn’t want to hear that. La la la. I’m not sure what he wants to hear, so I give him some advice. “Remove yourself from the situation,” I say. “Look at it from a different perspective,” I say. “Don’t jumble the fact of the issue so it suits your argument,” I say. I don’t know what to say after that. My one-liners fizzle. Everything I come up with gets a comeback that starts with, “No, that’s not entirely possible,” or “I don’t think you understand.” 

I try to sit back and listen. Just listen. Like a therapist. But that feels too contrived. Fake. No, I need to be apart of this. I need to get my hands dirty and shake things up a bit. I need to inspire him with some chunk of truth he’s never heard before.  So, I rattle off facts:

  1. people adapt
  2. worrying won’t help the situation
  3. there is no reality, only perspective
  4. this is not bad news, it’s challenging news

But I start to get the feeling that I am embroiling myself in a world that I shouldn’t be in. I shouldn’t be giving advice. That’s insensitive. That’s presumptive. A little too bold. Who the hell do I think I am? Who the hell am I to know the answer to everything? My words are failing…

But, words. I want to take away his pain. That’s all. That’s all I want. I want him not to suffer. So, I think my words will save him. I think, if I can come up with just the right collection of words and string them together in just the right way, I will take away your pain and make things right. And that’s all I want. To make things right for him. That’s what it’s all about anyway, isn’t it?

Communication is about saving someone’s soul, right? It’s about right action, right?

But we go on like this for twenty minutes. Nothing resolved. No resolution. It feels abnormal. Painful almost. I haven’t solved his problem and the bad news is still bad. I didn’t do my alchemical part and turn his metal into gold. In fact, I might be making things worse. And so I fall apart. Speechless.  Stammering. Until the route he’s taken has brought him to a place where communication is no longer possible and we slip back into separateness. 

I think of how I learned to communicate and expect a beginning, a middle and an end. I spent my entire youth watching those thirty-minute sitcoms we all grew up with. Think Love Boat. Think Fantasy Island. Think Brady Bunch. Week after week of the same thing. A conflict, a resolution, a happy, resolved ending. All loose ends tied up before commercial break, as I sat content upon the sofa letting Jan Brady work it out. Anything less that an Aaron Spelling ending was simply not acceptable.

I never saw my parents “work out” anything via dialog. Sure, they talked. But it was always my dad pacifying my submissive mother. Telling her he was right, she was wrong. “This is the way the world works honey. Just deal.” It was always so black and white. And then the issue never cropped up again. She believed him. And went about her day trying not to question or even notice the nagging loan sharks at the door. All part of the business world, honey. 

And then, I spent a couple hours reading MLK’s “Letter from a Birmingham Jail.” It was so much more than I remember, from when I read it years ago in a college comp class. He talks a lot about his non-violent campaigns, which helped to sway the country in abolishing segregation. Real movement. He says, “there are four basic steps [to a non-violent campaign]: collection of the facts to determine whether injustices exist; negotiation; self purification; and direct action.” I tend to see this manner of communicating as right and good and worthy of positive resolution. Hell, it changed the country. And yet, the very paradox of MLK’s ingenuity and creativity of communicating peacefully, seeking resolution, is that he is sitting in a jail cell writing about it. 

No resolution. 

At least not at that moment in time.

I think patience. I think that words can save, but they need to cook. They need to sink in. I think that other people have other ideas, which need to be valued and respected, and that communication is not so black and white–I’m not always right, he’s not always wrong. I think there is a lot to be said for saying nothing, and instead supporting with kindness, open ears and an open heart. Listening is not fake if you really listen. I think that not everyone wants to be saved. Sometimes they just want to bitch. And hurl angry sentiments into a phone. And curse the world for being so unfair. And they want to expose their tired, imperfect, scrappiness to you, not so that you will save them, but so that you will Know them and love them anyway…

Birthday Bash

May 26, 2009

“The aim of life is to live, and to live means to be aware, joyously, drunkenly, serenely, divinely aware.”

-Henry Miller

I’m posting my journal entry here instead of in its usual place (in my physical paper journal) because I’m hung over and too lazy to crawl under my bed and dig it out (I hid it before the party), and because I haven’t updated here in awhile and there’s lots to say.

The party was smashing. There were about 75 people there and all my favorites showed up. The best part, however, was after almost everyone left and we were down to our usual core group of favorites: D, K, B, N, T, my D and his two friends V and A. I think everyone instantly fell in love with V and A (how could you not) and it made truth or dare all that more exciting. We sat around the bar, outside, under the cheap plastic tent as it rained, laughing and drinking margaritas. Someone humped a tree (dare), someone else sat his “bare” naked ass in a cooler of ice (dare), a couple of the girls french kissed, I took my top off twice (tradition) and D and I switched bras (her bra size is three sizes smaller than mine, which makes for quite a funny looking picture). Our truths rested almost exclusively on the topic of sex, though no one came out and said “let’s just keep it to sex.” And though this is my usual idea of “fun” I wasn’t quite sure if we would scare our new friends away. But we didn’t. And they stayed. And some of the best questions and dares were theirs. 

Q: “what would you like your current boy friend to do to you in bed that he’s not currently doing?”

A: “play doctor.”

Q: “Through all the sexcapades you and your significant other have had, have you ever had a threesome with two men?”

A: “No.”

Q: “What’s the kinkiest sex you’ve ever had?

A: “Frozen pizza sex.”

Um, OK, so most of us are almost 40 or, in my case, 41. But, hell. If we can’t act like insane twentysomethings once a year, then what’s the point in growing old? Wisdom? Dignity? I don’t think so. 

D and I abandoned everyone right before one o’clock. We never even said goodnight. The rain had stopped and the sex questions were getting lame. “V, blow out the candles…” I said, dragging D behind me- who was quite willing to be dragged. And off we went for kinky loving emotional drunk middle of the night sex. 

We didn’t fall asleep until almost three.  He must have said, “I love you, Tracy,” thirty times and every time it meant the world to me. I wrapped my arms around him, we kissed and I said, “I don’t want us to end.” And his response was, “I believe in us, Tracy.”

Oh belief. Oh faith. Oh love. 

I woke up super early to a house that smelled like stale tequila and grease, but couldn’t be happier.  The doors were left open all night and there were a million mosquitos on the walls. Aside from D and I, the house was empty. We cleaned, went back to bed, cleaned some more, went out to breakfast with D, K and B. V and A happened to pop in as well. 

I know why Hemingway wrote while he was drunk. There’s an emotion and a lust for life that comes the day after a night of drinking. It doesn’t last very long, but it makes me Know and Believe in the essence of life. It creates waves of passion in me for all things, and that is how I feel this afternoon as I write this. I feel alive. I feel in love. I feel about Medford Lakes and D and my little home what Henry Miller felt about Paris or Hemingway felt about Spain. I feel stirred. I feel soulful. I feel full. Intoxicated. 

I feel happy.

Deeper, bigger, better, real

April 1, 2009

kiss Last night D came over in his suit and tie, after a late night meeting. He looked beautiful. I fed him leftovers from the spaghetti dinner I’d made for Susan the night before, and we sat at the kitchen table and talked. He brought me home a gift that he picked up down in Florida. A kaleidoscope. Not just any kaleidoscope. This one was a variety I’d never seen before; an iridescent, oil wand kaleidoscope in a pearly stained-glass casing.

I couldn’t get enough of him from the moment he walked through the door to a little after midnight. It was mutual. I always find it to be amusingly rhythmic, the lilt of time spent between two people newly in adoration. How we move from the kitchen, to the bedroom, to the office, back to the bedroom, to the kitchen again, to the bedroom. If someone took a time-lapsed video of us, we’d seem as senseless as ants in an anthill. And yet, there’s a purpose to all that movement—if only the fact that it’s a dance. By twelve I could barely keep my eyes open, and so that was that. I kicked him out. He has the key now, so he can see himself to the door and lock up. And I can be lazy.

There are several others on facebook who are having romantic relationships parallel to mine and D’s (as far as timeline is concerned, that is). SF is at the three-month mark and he’s asking everyone via his status updates if it’s OK to just start calling this chick his “girlfriend.” Among a variety of yeses and nos, I wrote, “isn’t that something you discuss between the two of you?”

Then there’s CG who’s having a relationship with some guy out in Indiana or Ohio or something. She keeps posting her discontent at how much she misses him. From what I gather, they were together years ago and it didn’t work out. Now they’re back at it. He calls her “the bees knees” and she calls him “pooh bear” and “honey bunny.” She posted all these photos of the two of them when he came out for a visit last week, and then a few from twenty years prior when they were engaged. He didn’t age well. That’s for sure. Looks like he had a rough life. Totally weather-beaten. Broken. Apathetic. Dismantled. Wouldn’t be surprised to hear that he’s a drinker. She, on the other hand, looks a mess; desperate, pathetic, a bottomless pit. I feel like sending her an email or something: He’s not the answer, honey. You’re going to get hurt. There’s got to be more to this story, and quite frankly, I want to find out. Why didn’t they get married twenty years ago? Has she waited for him all this time? What the hell has she been doing since then? I don’t know what it is but the whole story kind of disgusts me and yet lures me in. Like that Two Girls One Cup video that’s been going around for a few years now. So grotesquely disturbing, yet you can’t look away.

I have this air of superiority when I’m confronted with these other love stories. It’s like my relationship is to theirs as  Necker Island is to Clementon Amusement Park. The inference being that I have been blessed with a far deeper, bigger, better, more real relationship than these others. Case in point, I just checked facebook and CG has deleted all her previous status updates and posted this new one: ok she takes it back, he just txt’d her…so she is a little less cranky…

Even at my lowest point with G or S, I never based my happiness on the consummation of a fucking text message– and then went and told a hundred people about it.

I suppose my projection and my feelings of superiority all go with the territory of romance. I am yet one of a billion or so victims that finds herself mumbling nonsensically that she is presently experiencing something far deeper and more profound than any other person on the planet or in the history of time. Actually, I take that back. All I am really saying is that these other freaks are making fools of themselves and I’m not.

Night alone-sorta

March 21, 2009

Two Days in Paris

Last night was my first night alone in awhile and I was kinda looking forward to it. So, as soon as the boys took off for R’s I put on the TV and scanned around for something decent to watch while folding laundry (believe me when I say that is my idea of a fun night alone!). The sun was still streaming in through the back window, the whole room was bright. I was happy. I found Two Days in Paris; a story of an American guy and his French girlfriend whose true personalities are revealed during a trip to France. About half way into it, the doorbell rings. It’s G, returning a piece of hardware from the drum pack that I lent him a while back. 

I invited him in, despite really wanted to entertain guests (Umm, hello? This is supposed to be my mediation time). But we chatted a bit, some small talk and then I asked if he wanted to catch the rest of this movie with me. I knew he’d be happy to just see a pixelated box, really. He doesn’t have a TV (by choice) and yet, he’s always so thrilled to watch anything. Eventually, after the film and after more small talk he came out with the questions.

“So, how’s the new guy? Are you serious?” he asked. 

“Yeah,” I said. “Pretty serious. You want to see his picture?”

“Sure.” I think he’s always found a weird pleasure in knowing that I am with someone else. It’s one of the things that always annoyed me about him when we’d get back together. It was like he liked me better when he was at risk of losing me. It never made any sense and it still doesn’t. 

So, I showed him the first picture we ever took together over D’s house one night, and he sat there and examined it like he was examining a piece of fruit for a bruise. 

“He’s the one,” he said with certainty.

“Yeah?” I laughed, but hoped that he had some ex-boyfriend special powers and saw things I was unable to see. “Why do you say that?”

“Because you two have the same nose,” he said. So, we sat there on the sofa, with my laptop, and examined mine and D’s noses with great scrutiny. 

“I didn’t know that if two people have the same nose they’re meant for each other.” I said, and laughed at the silliness of his theory. He kinda laughed back and said, “Well, it’s the whole parallel feature thing. You’re most compatible with people who look like you.”

That’s when G’s argument kind of fell a part. D and I look nothing a like. We’re a classic case of opposites attract. Anyway, it was fun talking about D’s nose. I told him too that he’s a drummer. He was happy to hear that. He asked a bunch of typical questions that he had asked last year about S: How many times do you guys do it? Is it big? What’s the sex like? Does he have kids? Is he good to you? Do you love him? and so on…”Just be careful,” he said at last. “He knows a lot about the law and, well…”

And that’s G. Paranoid. Conspiratorial. Always looking for the hidden in things, as if he has the power to uncover them before others. 

“Good point, G. I’ll watch out for that.  He knows a lot about the law and that’s a dangerous thing,” I said. We laughed, and then at around 7:30 I kicked him out, still intent on having my night to myself, which I did. I ended up watching Traffic, read a little more of the Carl Sagan book and went to bed dreaming of D, out at sea with the setting sun at his back.