Perspective

Today, one of my best friends from college told me that, though it is a vague idea, she knows what kind of book she would want to read if I had written it. She told me that I am the only person she knows who lives for the journey, and not the destination. Most people plan out their lives based on where they want to be down the road…, But then, as she mentioned, I take a two-hour detour on a 14-hour drive, simply because I saw something that interested me…, And it doesn’t bother me one bit that it added so much time to the already long drive. She gave other examples, too, that illustrated her point quite well.

What stuck out the most for me, though, is that I have never considered my life with these words…, Yet they seemed absolutely true. In the past six months, I have been struggling with a regular question of whether I am living my life all wrongly, if I’m messing everything up by doing things the way I am doing them. And I see now: the whole reason I’ve been feeling that way lately, is because I have been comparing my life to everyone else’s lives… But that is like comparing bananas to chairs – they are not comparable, not in the least.

I am not playing the same game as everyone else, and when I compare where I am to where they are, I am certainly failing their game…, But, as I said, I am not playing their game.

Some might say that I take the road less traveled, but I really think that I often don’t take the road at all… I explore the detours, and end up somewhere completely unexpected.

(This point can be quite literally illustrated by a recent hike I took with a friend of mine… She wanted to stay on the main path, and I was curious as to what this possible detour path would show us… Where we ended up was spectacular, and completely unexpected… And then I found another semi-path back to the main road, way up ahead, while my friend went all the way back the way we had come…)

I’m beginning to think that this is a huge part of why, whenever I have been asked the question of where I see myself in five or ten or 15 or 50 years, I could never quite provide an answer… It’s not that my imagination isn’t great enough, but that I genuinely have no clue as to where I will end up and what I will be doing. I know the person I will be, I know that I will love and I will be loved. Beyond that, though, there’s a world of possibilities, and each one has an innumerable set of detours I might explore. It is likely that, in this moment, my wildest dreams couldn’t tell me where I will be in five or ten years… Or even in one…

When I considered jobs growing up and throughout college, and even now, I’ve always kind of had the feeling of, ‘Why pick one? Let’s give them all a try,’ though, without actually putting it into those words.

It’s funny to me how much sense this all makes, simply because of two sentences that a friend of mine said to me today… Let us remember that I words carry so much power – whether we realize it or not, whether we feel it or not, someone feels it more than we likely ever will know.

You know, for the first time in several months, I think I can breathe fully easily now… I was right that I am failing at this life…, But I had forgotten that that life was not the one I ever wanted to live…

Now, I am free to live my life…

And that is just about the most exciting thing I have ever considered or said… 😀

P.S. Early, early this morning, the world lost the physical presence of one of the greatest people I have ever known, and possibly ever will know… I haven’t talked about it with anyone, and I don’t want to yet – I’m not ready for that. However, I feel like she was with me today in this whole realization… She has been a huge part of almost every major moment in my life since I began college, and I swear she was here this evening. 🙂 I have a feeling she will continue to be here in my life.

Post-a-day 2020

I, phone

“You have too much on our mind,” he said…, “Hai troppi pensieri per la testa!!”

Is he right?

I haven’t felt like I’m thinking about loads and loads lately…, but am I worrying, having thoughts run silently in the background, like the pesky applications on my phone, secretly using the signal and draining down the battery power without my even realizing it until I’m suddenly at only 20%?

Mayhaps… perhaps… it may be… it might be so…

Yes, yes, I can see it… the money and the fitness and the job-related… those have the tell-tale arrows next to them in the settings section, declaring that they were recently using my location…, as well as a lot of “should”s… I don’t even support shoulds, yet, here they are, attacking my brain, eating up the battery life…

Ugh…

I don’t even want to think about it right now… that’s how tired I am – I don’t even want to put forth the slight effort of sorting it out… I just want to go to bed already…

So, I’ll do a run or two or few on the mala, and clear out my active mind, so I can fall asleep powerfully… hopefully it can and will last for longer than it has been doing, and I can wake up with energy tomorrow morning, ready to take on at least one of these pesky background apps in my mind… 😛

P.S. Happy End to WWII Day, and Happy Mothers’ Day!! 🙂

Post-a-day 2020

Get your a** off the floor ;P

The biggest mistake was sitting down.

If I hadn’t sat down in the first place, I wouldn’t be stuck here right now, battling mentally with what it will take to get me to get up, go put on some clothes, and finish my post-shower, pre-bed activities so that I can go to bed and sleep.

However, here I still sit, leaning against my bed, instead of in it, and just a towel wrapped around my hair… eyes drooping closed and slowly rising again to determine if I have made it into bed yet, only to be disappointed to the point of closing them once more… the cycle repeats.

Okay, fine, I’ll get up and finish things up… I just don’t have anything for tomorrow, though I have more than one thing I would love to do tomorrow (if only it weren’t all dependent upon another), so it is harder for me to want to go to sleep.:.

Well, perhaps I can develop something wonderful simply by waking earlier than needed, and taking the time to explore what I might like to do, and then do it…

We’ll see about that…, but it is enough to get me up, so, here I go…

P.S. I Really want to go somewhere next week – no school, no work, no events… let’s either get a cheap plane fair somewhere or drive somewhere, a state or national park, perhaps(!)… ye-he-hess (Mr. Burns style, fingers and all).

Talk about crazy

I certainly feel it.

It suddenly occurred to me today that I am depressed.

I have done a wonderful job of convincing those around me that I am just tired of this or that, that I am ‘over it’ in regards to certain topics in my life…, but I was never fully convinced myself.

My lack of action, combined with my genuine interest and motivation, in regards to school is what caught me today.

The only other times I have behaved this way – wanting one thing, but being utterly inactive except under very specific, almost forced opportunity circumstances – were when I was depressed abroad, living in my own.

I hadn’t really ever experienced it here, in my hometown.

Perhaps that was why I ignored it, avoided it, for so long…

I am unreasonable, moody; I go from slightly bothered to extremely annoyed, angered, almost, at what traditionally would be something I easily brushed off.

I can’t stand being around people who bother my nerves – my emotional state genuinely can’t handle it… I grow angry and tearful just by being nearby…

I feel like I am crazy…

It is miserable…

At any rate, I am depressed.

And I don’t want to be anymore…

I am very functional, especially in certain areas of my life…, but I am depressed, nonetheless.

I am very good at flipping a switch to make it seem to the world – even to myself, for I had myself fooled for quite a while… to a degree, anyway – that I am totally fine, doing well, and am happy in my life, in my lot…

I think the best route of action at this point would be to get myself immediately an accountability partner – one who really understands my need for the accountability – for my school work.

And then I need to start conversing with myself on what’s going on for me.

I think I will converse with my cousin or best friend, too, because they will be able to help me move myself forward effectively, and without my building a dependence upon them.

My mom, to whom I reach out for many things in life, likely would make things only worse – she wouldn’t understand, couldn’t empathize, and would tell me to get over it all, unaware of my constantly saying that to myself he’s least several weeks already… to no avail, and to much crying, any time I consider what’s going on, what’s wrong with me.

Okay… now, to go first to yet another class where I have no idea what is going on, because I have not done an ounce of work in preparation for the class… yikes…

I can get myself out of this.

I can do this.

And it is okay to ask for support.

Post-a-day 2020

¿Por qué no los dos?

We met a lovely and true-to-form German man at the opera the other night.  He was so practical, 6’7″, very kind, and totally straightforward.  He was very docile and calm, but he was definitely German to the core, and in the most delightful of ways for us – it felt like interacting with family, despite the obvious distance between us.

He asked me at one point what I had studied while in Europe – my mom had mentioned my having studied in Wien and Germany.  I replied, “Language and Culture.”

He considered it, gave a small smile, and replied, “Language and culture… It sounds like everything and nothing.”

I considered his words, and chuckled heartily.  It was, indeed, true.

Conversation went to a bit of something else, and then returned to my studies and what “language and culture” meant.  “Grammar, history, arts, religion, social change, music, poetry, writing, dialects, politics…,” I listed easily, trailing off slightly by the end, all of us understanding that there obviously were many more I could list.

“So, it sounds like you are qualified for just about everything, then,” declared honestly the German.

I smiled.  “Everything and nothing…”  And we all smiled, gave a bit of a chuckle, and felt the irony of it together, to varying degrees.

I understood the turn of phrase best of all, having experienced most acutely the struggles of the truth of this joint statement of ours… I am qualified for just about everything, then,… everything and nothing…

Thus, the question remains: What, of all of that everything and nothing, do I choose to pursue right now, for now?

I think my recent thoughts have been accurate: I need some more art in my life – self-made art.  🙂

So, let’s art… for now… and let’s be comfortable and secure in the fact that it is okay to have this be for now, and to have something else, something presently unknown, be the what’s next…  Yes, indeed.

Everything and nothing, my dear… you can do it, Banana.  🙂

Post-a-day 2020

Dreams

Last night, I dreamed that I was in a live-in minimester course at UT (Austin) with the temporary professor Johnny Depp.

The class began beautifully (though a couple people almost got hit by cars in the road), and was about learning to pinpoint pieces of perfection within one’s artistic expression in various aspects of art and life.

He was a very good teacher and quite a silly, introvert-esque guy who really didn’t seem to be too bothered by anything negative, and who was a good teacher naturally, without really trying or having to think things through too much.

It was a great class and very non-professional-like in terms of traditional school, but the activities and approaches were spectacular from a learning standpoint – he really got us getting in touch with everything within our inner core, and challenged us beautifully.

He commented multiple times about how he doesn’t really have many/any friends, and that it mostly because 1) he was weird and 2) he was busy working on stuff and being silly, and most people had normal jobs and weren’t interested enough in doing something like a paint swimming day with trampolines and dogs instead of going to the office.

They aren’t too interested in hooky…

Thus began my brief time of befriending Johnny Depp…

And then the dream ended, and I awoke wanting donuts…

I still want those donuts…

… hmm…

Post-a-day 2020

Snuggle bug

The final night has arrived: I return to Texas tomorrow.

It is weird; I don’t feel like saying, “I’m going home…” it just doesn’t feel quite right.

For at least part of me, this is home – I am at home in Japan… in a way.

No, I do not want to stay permanently.

In dinner conversation, the idea came up of my working at an international school or special private school in Japan… and I almost felt a need to quell a rising panic…

But I reminded myself that I am safe and okay, and that I am perfect as I am, and I was able to remain calm easily and communicate nicely – aka I didn’t shout like a five-year-old, “Dame!” (No way!), but instead moved the conversation forward with a different route, so as not to offend.

(Because who wants to be told, “I kind of hate living full-time in your culture, thanks,”?)

Japan is a place for me to visit, that is for sure.

I even could see myself coming for slightly-extended-stays in the future, maybe for photography or something of the sort.

But not living here again.

I am sad to leave, but I am relieved to be going home to Houston, a place that always will hold a spirit of home for me.

I am nervous to go back to my low-budget life as a graduate student slash tutor slash up-and-coming photographer.

However, I actually am quite excited at the terror of what is to come next with all of it – classes and thesis, lots of graduation announcement photos, developing my editing skills, creating my kimono art show, teaching art & yoga (bilingually at that!), tutoring and teaching French and Spanish And Japanese, studying Japanese… maybe even watching some Olympic Games (I did buy some temporary tattoos and nail art to be a Japan fan during them…)…

Yes, I am looking forward to the next steps.

Especially getting even more fit… the gym has been something crazy for me this past month.

I have been totally fine without it, and even eating anything and everything delicious-tasting… and I have grown accustomed to being comfortable with myself more fully…

I am excited to return to the gym as my more-developed self that I now am… more true to myself than before (which was already purty darn good and true).

I am excited to see and to interact with my semi-crush-ish guy, and to be totally comfortable and okay with our being friends forever…

And to have that place be cleared up for something new and a bagillion times better to come into my life… I am ready to take on this life…

Thank you, Japan.

Thank you, Sara, my once-again snuggle buddy (now aged nine years).

Thank you, God.

Thank you, Texas – here I come. 😉

Post-a-day 2020

Picking up girls*

*Or one, anyway…

So, my mom and I were bringing home a woman from the workshop we had attended/catered in the yoga community, which had taken place last week and this past weekend.

And by “home”, I mean that we were bringing her back tot he hostel where she was staying, which was nearby.

I had heard of this hostel years ago, but learned little of it since first hearing about it – I had merely been glad back then that there was a hostel in Houston, and had left it at that.

So, when she offered for us to come inside and see her “humble abode”, as she called it, we gladly agreed wanting to learn more about the hostel.

While inside, we overheard a conversation about someone wanting to go to Rice University, and also that she was planning to walk the approximate 45 minutes each way.

My mom, of course, offered this nice-looking woman/girl who was clearly from somewhere in Europe, a ride to Rice in our car.

I helped by sharing that the girl was welcome to walk or take the bus home, and we could just drop her off and let her look around on her own, if she wanted, or that we even could show her around some ourselves.

At which point my mom added that we really could take her just about anywhere she liked, even if it wasn’t Rice – we were willing to help out.

After another handful of verbal exchanges, the girl says that, ‘Actually, I will accept your offer: I will take the ride to Rice.’

I get her name and tell her mine, and let her know that we’ll meet back downstairs in the entryway in just a little while, after we finish looking around.

Her name sounds almost French, and so we consider that as we finish looking around with the person who had brought us in in the first place – perhaps I will have someone with whom to reach out with French…

As we all leave together, my mom, this new girl, and I, we learn that she is German, and not of French-speaking origins.

But I still got to use a bit of German with her, which was nice (Germans around my generation’s age are notorious for being spectacular at English.).

As we arrive at Rice, it is decided that she would love to have us show her around campus.

My mom attended Rice, and so shared about various memories and events from the school, as we took the girl around to some of our favorite spots, and surprised her with the magic hidden amongst the older Rice campus buildings (they are serious cool).

(Aka science had us feeling silly, delighted, and also nerdy as we laughed over and over again at these spots.)

Eventually, she says that she would like to attend the concert with us later, that w head invited her to join us to attend.

We told her it was either a strong quartet or quintet.

When we arrive for the concert, which is to take place in an art museum on the UofH campus, we do a quick drive around that campus and are all just a bit underwhelmed after having just run around Rice campus, with all of its green and trees and live oaks overhead and gorgeous old buildings…

Finally in the art museum, we discover that we were incorrect about the string quartet or quintet.

The string quartet or quintet had played at the same performance as this group the very first time my mom saw/heard them both perform.

Since then, she struggles to keep their names straight from on another.

This group tends to be involved in slightly whacky performances and events, my mom shared as we sat in our front-row seats.

Sure enough, the concert turns out to be a bit of book readings, followed by six performance pieces, the focus and purpose being fluxus music, music from the genre of John Cage and his buddies who took music composition to a whole new dimension on many levels.

If you’ve ever heard John Cage’s piece “4’33″” performed – I suppose that’s the correct word, anyway – you can easily guess the kind of oddities and uniqueness found throughout the concert…. (View a performance of it here, along with a brief introduction on it.)

The pieces were great in their nuts-ness, and I thoroughly enjoyed the concert.

I also enjoyed that we had proffered a string quartet or quintet, and had then delivered John Cage and Fluxus

One of the greatest pieces of the evening was the violin solo piece by George Maciunas.

Check out the written piece here, what goes on the music stand, when the violinist performs.

Did you check it out???

If not, I’ll offer it again, because you need to read it before moving onward here: Solo for Violin by George Maciunas.

…..

Now, isn’t that nuts?!

What’s more nuts is that a guy actually performed it.

I was very stressy about it at first, then calmed down a bit, and eventually got a point of hilarity at it all – it is only a piece of wood, and we put a lot of importance into the piece of wood, and this is practically irreverent, but that this piece of wood is not actually anything to do with God…, and it was somehow hilarious… I could hardly contain my laughter by the time he started drilling holes.

Plus, he guy did a great job of acting with it all and really having fun with the whole piece – and it made it all that much better and well worth his efforts.

I share here a few photos from the performance, as well as what was slid and tossed at / handed to me near the end of said violin solo piece.

The fact that the lady had done a reading from her soon-to-be-released book (March, I believe) on Fluxus was really helpful, both in understanding and appreciating the pieces, as well as being mentally prepared for them all.

It was fabulous.

These were the pieces:

Afterward, I offered for us to go have leftovers from the amazing food my mom and I had made for the event the previous several days, and the German girl once again accepted our offer, though we made it clear yet again that she was 100% welcome to decline, if she so wanted.

We had a little picnic in my living room, and it was a lovely, hot soup (including the dessert: hot apple soup) dinner that we all enjoyed greatly.

Finally, my mom took the girl back to the hostel, and then headed home herself, while I started rushing to get myself to bed ASAP.

Unfortunately, I got to bed around 23:30, and had to be up around 6:30 at the latest the next morning… so, I was exhausted Monday… I even cried a little at the start of the gym time after work, I was just so tired and my emotions were out of whack from exhaustion.

(Fortunately, the girl with whom I was talking at the time totally got it… also, I had voluntarily asked her for a hug when I’d first arrived, and that was great [even if it did set off my crying spell].)

Then, the German girl/lady walked over to my place for dinner again Monday night, and my mom joined us a bit later, after she finished a meeting downtown.

We went to the Waterwall, to show one of my favorite spots in town, only to find that it had either closed early or closed temporarily for construction – we really weren’t and still aren’t sure which… super bummer… anyway…

Now, the German girl/lady has headed off to Georgia to visit her family from her days of au-pèreing, and life is back to usual for my mom and me.

But I have a new friend in Germany (who also wants me to come visit sometime) now, which is great, and I have a renewed sense that I am sharing lovingly with the world – she had an amazing and blessed time while visiting Houston, and in ways she never could have anticipated.

And I am grateful that my mom and I were able to offer that to someone, to share our love so distinctly and strongly with someone.

Gratitude 🙂

…..

Be sure to check out Natilee Harren’s book on Fluxus in the Spring – I think it would be a valuable read for everyone to learn a bit about the whole process of creation involved in this whole movement of music composition and performance.

Also, find the music ensemble Loop 38 if you’re ever in the Houston area – they are sure to impress, though I couldn’t tell you in what way it will be, aside from music’s being somehow involved!

Post-a-day 2019

Repeat scenarios

Well, tonight, after work, kind of ended up being a happy reprise of our adventures with our spontaneously adopted friend yesterday.

It was a good time, and very enjoyable.

However, the fact that the Waterwall was off before its actual closing time was a Huge bummer… we took her all the way over there just to see it, because it is one of our favorite parts of Houston…, and then it was just super underwhelming in comparison to when the wall is on… hmm… just a big sigh to that all… :/

Anyway, I am exhausted to a whole new level tonight, and so just sleep now.

Therefore, I will share our Sunday adventures today’s tomorrow, instead of yesterday’s tomorrow. ;P

Goodnight. ❤

P.S. If you don’t know the Houston Hines Waterwall, go check it out – itnis well worth visiting, so you can stand in the center, and walk to the edge and gaze upward, head dropped back… it is spectacular… 🙂

Post-a-day 2019