Wednesday, June 30, 2010

I'm moved in...

Tonight, I sat on MY PATIO with friends as the sun went down, eating pizza, drinking wine, watching one of the kids throw a tennis ball in MY BACKYARD.  I have furniture in my house.  The girls made my bed for me.  The boys took the door off to get the big chair into the "reading room."  I pulled my car into the garage.  I'll spend my first night here on freshly cleaned, 600 count sheets.

I'm blessed.  To have a job I love, a new house to explore, and friends who pretty much demanded that I ask them for help.  It's humbling.  And amazing.

Good night, world, from 1802 Pine Cone Drive.  See you tomorrow.

Monday, June 28, 2010

living in limbo

Ok, I tried.  Really I did.  I very much wanted to avoid blogging about the inevitable metaphors and ironies of moving.  You know the tired cliches: "A chance at a clean slate." "Dust off your ambitions." "Oh my god - where did that [insert old, sentimental item you'd forgotten you owned here] come from?"

But it's just too interesting.  Especially now, as I find myself in the strange situation of having nearly all of my worldly possessions (minus my clothes, bathroom products and 1 each of the following: plate, bowl, glass and toaster) in a location where I'm not sleeping.  Even my bedframes have moved; they wait patiently at the new house while I sleep on my box spring and mattress, held hostage by my single pair of hands and lack of truck. 

Strangely, I am enjoying coming back to an empty apartment - no TV, no computer, no microwave.  The blank walls are soothing, lulling me into the sense that I could exist like this, with nothing more than my Kindle and I Phone to keep me in books and music.  

Yet I still get that little thrill of walking into the new house, although it's diminished slightly by the sight of all my old stuff waiting patiently to be disbursed.  How incredible it would be if I could truly throw everything out and start fresh?  Alas, that kind of luxury is for the % of folks that I am definitely not a part of.

But the new house is where the internet is.  It's where the memories I've stored boxes will keep taking up space.  It's where my favorite books reside, currently in a messy heap on the floor, but just waiting for me to obsessively organize them (by genre, then author this time, I think). 

It's where I've moved myself for at least the next 12 months.  There's a lot riding on it, not the least of which is my need for new projects to keep me energized.  I will miss the pond and the walking trails.  I won't miss having neighbors below me.  I'll miss having a "mountain" behind me to hike upon.  I won't miss not having a garage.

I haven't figured out what's behind the trees on my property yet.  I want it to be a stream that I can walk along, among big, old-growth trees.  But it might not be, so I keep putting off the exploration, saving a little bit of surprise and/or disappointment for later. 

Regardless, I fully admit that I'm weird; I love moving.  It's a new chapter.  Bring it on.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Ducks and pins and houses, oh my!

By accident I just saw all the photos from my I-Phone in rapid succession as they downloaded onto my MacBook.  They zipped by in a strangely cool montage. Before this, if you'd asked me how the past year has gone for me, I'd say "eh, it was ok."  But as I got a quick glance at all the photos (they were just begging for a soundtrack), I was surprised to realize that my life has really been quite something.  I've seen and done a lot.  Spent time with family and friends.  Traveled.  Eaten good food.  Drunk good wine.  Laughed at life's absurdities and little gifts.  Seriously...I'm a pretty lucky gal.  And it's good to be reminded of that from time to time.

Here, in no particular order, are some of the things that have made me smile recently.

1.  Tad and Fritz, the ducks in the pond near my soon-to-be-former apartment, have been waiting for me when I get home from work.  This has happened twice this week.

2. It's been (relatively) quiet at work - we haven't had a show/event in four days! My staff has been laughing a lot this week, or maybe I'm just noticing it more.  It's nice to hear.  Makes me want to figure out how we can laugh more when there are 20 shows we're marketing at once.  Hmmm.

3. My brother graduated from Duke last month.  With his MBA.  He won't say it, but that's a pretty damn big deal.  I was proud.  And best of all, he met Brenda at Duke, who has made him happy.  That's what matters, right?

4.  Somehow I've managed to connect to Outward Bound's social media channels, and after an innocent comment on twitter, I received an OB pin in the mail.  This is going to sound lame, but it absolutely made my day.  I've never forgotten about my OB sailing adventure (see top right photo), but I have missed being more directly connected to it.  And I've felt vaguely ashamed; wondering if, given that I've gained weight and am not an athlete anymore, I could hack it in the super-active/outdoorsy OB world.  Losing weight is probably the biggest worry in my life now, and so I've decided to pin my OB pin on my purse and take it with me wherever I go, because, cheesy as it sounds, OB taught me that the only limit on my success is one I place there. I need inspiration.  I'm not sure if a pin can do it, but it's a start.

5.  On Saturday, I saw my good pal Lisa for the first time since she left Walton Arts Center for new adventures.  She and Jenn and I got tipsy at brunch.  It was fun.  (But having a wine hangover in the afternoon? Not so much.)

6. I've made myself a new rule; no watching TV until I work out.  Surprisingly, I've stuck to it for two weeks now, with only one or two lapses.  As a result, I've been walking more, and as always, I feel a million times better.  It makes me feel like a 5 year old,  being bribed to eat my vegetables, but I'll take whatever I can get these days.

Speaking of walking, it's spring, and a few weeks back the honeysuckle was incredible.  I've also come across some pretty flowers along the path.  They're at right.

Still on the walking thing, I discovered a program that will tell you the beats per minute on songs, so I can build a songlist of great walking beats.  Unfortunately, I walk in a public place, which doesn't let me dance to the tunes like I want to.  Someday, maybe, I'll get the guts to not care if people think I'm an idiot and just do it.

7. And finally, after months of hemming, hawing, and generally being wishy-washy, I have a new rental house!  It's cute, clean, has a yard and a garage and I get the keys on Saturday.  I feel like a kid waiting to go to Disney World; three days is just TOO long to bear.

It's been nice to feel positive lately, and there's really only one negative I took from my "life in pictures" montage.  There aren't enough people in them.  I've always known that I like taking pictures of things, objects.  But I wonder if focusing on people will make the montage even better.  Hmmmm...

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

I'll never do that again...

Wow.  It's been over a month since I last posted.  I guess that means I was a) really busy b) so depressed even my blog couldn't cheer me up or c) lacking in bloggable material.  Happily, it's "a".  Good grief, this has been a busy month.

Before launching into my post, I'd just like to pause and say that I've been reading some youth fiction lately, a series by James Patterson about kids who have wings. Strangely, I find myself wanting to talk like these kids (totally, like, gotta stop that), but the most curious realization I had while reading is that the emotions and mood swings of teenagers still happen to those of us in our 30's.  We go from the top of the world to feeling like a fat, miserable middle-school loser in the space of a few hours, nay, minutes.  I wonder if those feelings ever go away.  Or maybe that's just me and I should seek professional help.  Whatever.

Anyway, today I tried out the bike trails in Fayetteville, which have been earning rapturous facebook posts and raves from friends for a while now.  As part of my new "I've got the exercise discipline of a 5-year-old" rule (no TV before I've exercised), I rented a bike from Clubhaus Fitness on Dickson and struck out.  Here's a quick recap:

Mile .25
Holy crap.  I forgot how to do this.  Oh god!  I'm gonna fall off the sidewalk! 

Mile 1
Ok, yeah, that's more like it.  Oh look!  Gears - I remember those!

Mile 1.25
Jeez.  There are no railings on these trails.  If I'm not careful, I'm gonna sail off that curve into Scull Creek.  Next time I'm wearing my helmet.  

Mile 1.5
Yeah.  This doesn't suck.   

Mile 2
Helmet vs. non-helmet tally.  About even so far.  I should be wearing mine.   

Mile 3
Feeling great!  Had a spiritual moment as I rounded a turn and realized that I had absolutely no idea what was around the next bend.  Definitely gonna blog about that later on. 

Mile 3.75
End of Scull Creek trail?  Whatever - on to Mud Creek!

Mile 4
Mind blank.  This is AWESOME.

Mile 5
Hmmm. Mud Creek trail feels harder - energy starting to fade.

Mile 5.something
You know what would make these trails even cooler?  Water fountains.  Sprinklers would also be cool.

Mile 6.something
Losing track of miles.  But look - there's a circle up ahead...the perfect sign it's time to turn around. 

Mile who knows
Jeez.  I'm out of shape.  These little inclines are killing me.

Hey - it's Matt Lee from work going the other direction!  Hi Matt!  No, I'm not about to keel over, though it looks like it.

Even later
I was just passed by a sweaty man who was at least 15 years older than me.  For shame. 

Am I done yet?
Whoosh - another familiar face.  Was concentrating so hard on pedaling I nearly missed saying hi.

Come on, I've gotta be done
Still not clear on the etiquette of these nifty little trail bike crossings on main roads.  Thankfully, drivers have taken pity on me and waved me across the street. 

Yes, I will walk the bike up the last hill and triumphantly coast into the Clubhaus parking lot.

Seriously, though, it was really quite something to experience that trail for the very first time.  There were little gifts literally around every corner: a whiff of honeysuckle here, a dark and puddle-strewn tunnel there.  I remembered previous lives where I biked around a lake in Madison or with the Alps in the background in Switzerland.  I thought of my dad, who bought a bike and likes to ride around his community in Florida.  But most of all, I just kept marveling that each hill or turn was something I'd never experienced before, and would never, ever experience again in this way.  We all should get that little taste of the pioneer spirit once in while, I think: that little fear of what might be lurking in the shadows (buffalo or pedestrians, for example).  There are too few surprising experiences left in our lives these days.  But for the record, I prefer my pioneering to be done with gears and a helmet, not a covered wagon, thank you very much.