Wednesday, February 29, 2012

[ ----- ]

Dreams like wispy clouds
Forming and drifting
I wonder if I will catch them
This time

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Ghent, a Portland-y neighborhood of Norfolk

 [I found an indoor semi-farmers market today, which had fresh-roasted local coffee, second-hand cheap books, produce, fish, a cafe and other assorted goodies: Five Points Farmer's Market]
 [Scenic Wonders of America was published in 1973.]
[In the bookshop, paying was by the honor system.]

[Cafe Stella]
 [I spent hours reading, sipping coffee, and snapping photos of patrons. They sometimes have live music here and I was asking the owner about it when I was about to leave. After a lovely chat, he asked if I had tried the Paczki (Polish Donut) and I said no, so he took one out and gave it to me.]
 [Finally after two hours, a black lady arrived and an Indian man. 
But otherwise it was pretty damn white in there.]

 [This guy was some sort of professor and complaining about the Dim Sum options in Virginia Beach.]

 [And then I saw a chandelier floating in the sky.]

[Moving a few blocks away to meet up with a friend.]
 [The Birch Bar, which has a ton of brews on tap, as well as bottled beers.]
 [It did not taste coconut-y.]


I have some big ideas in the works which if they come to fruition will be amazing, but they are to sit under the covers for now. I have to contemplate and be patient and let the road lay itself out in front of me. No jumping ahead before the asphalt's down...

Hampton Roads (the collective name for Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Chesapeake, Hampton) is starting to grow on me more and more over time. Wandering through art & thrift stores, meeting nice locals, I find the area full of decent people and surprisingly enough to do. It's all accessible, and traffic is not bad. I wonder should I stay or should I go.

So with five weeks left of employment, I have some options coming to the surface, and ideas for the future. I plan to stay out East, regardless, but will have to figure on location. I've been asking around for suggestions, and if anyone has opinions, feel free to offer up your advice!  

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Mount Trashmore

Virginia Beach's Mount Trashmore Park is just what it sounds like: a park created from a pile of compacted trash mixed with soil. It's renowned as an ecological feat. Really crazy! I stopped by after work yesterday to have a run. With a temperature of 72, I was not the only one with that idea. One of my friends who grew up here said they used to be able to go swimming and windsurfing in the water, but it's been closed off for a while. 

 [The "Trash Pile" is actually the hill straight ahead.
It seems "Mount" is a bit of a stretch.]

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

[Copying Picasso]

[I love his use of color. Gorgeous.]

I'm taking a community art class through Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art- "Drawn to Experiment," Instructor: Blade Wynne. It's an eight week course, and has included a variety of simple projects which jumpstart creativity. Invariably after my instructor explains what he has in mind for us for the evening, I think to myself, "I don't want to do that. I should just go home!" But then somehow it turns around and I have a good time after all. So far, I have nothing but good things to say for my Wednesday evenings spent amidst paper, pastels and new friends.

Tonight we were told to choose a photo of a painting out of a book and make an interpretation of it. I chose Picasso and drew it sideways (with myself sitting -- usually I prefer to stand). I can see now what was off in my drawing- but art is not about exact copy, it's about interpretation. Of course, learning and practice will improve things...

Monday, February 20, 2012

Sandbar Philosophy

A three-day weekend. Usually means I am in the car. On the road. To some far-off unexplored place. Looking to fill up some spot in my brain that is devoid of information. Geography on the fly. That's the full life. In my mind anyway.

This weekend I was lazy. Just another trip to the Outer Banks. Where I can hide in a cottage by the sea. On a sandbar forty miles out in the ocean. Some parts of the drive you can see water on both sides.

Repose from Virginia Beach. Where the cars exceed 50mph regularly on city streets. Hang on to your wheel, or you're gone. Coming here is like camping in the mountains. Only different.

The beauty of exploring parts of the world. The nomadic life.

Nearly two-thirds way done with my maternity leave coverage job. Reaching out to contacts. Finding prospects in Virginia Beach. Searching for part-time. Flexible. Where I'm needed and free at the same time. Not so different from the type of relationship I seek. It's a general life theme.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

[art class]

Dancing in trees
running along
I can't help but sing 
& wave my arms 
in joy
at my new surroundings
of love & lightness.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Sunlight glinting...

And just when we forget about it and relax, there it is.

Like sunlight suddenly glinting your eye from the side
While you're driving your car.

Warmth pressed
Behind me
As close as the peel of a banana
To its fruit
Melded and almost one

You decide you are just going to plunge in.
Because that is life, living. Not cowering.
Traversing backroads paths.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Men, fallibility in the NYT

"The truest measure of a man, indeed of a person, is not whom he lies down with, but what he stands up for. And when we fall short, as we sometimes will, because humanity is fallible, let us greet each other with compassion and encouragement rather than ridicule and resentment." - Charles Blow


Real Men and Pink Suits

Monday, February 6, 2012

Superbowl Sunday Instruction Manual

How to wake up on Superbowl Sunday, hippie-northwest style:
Roll (fall) out of bed, after staying out to the wee hours two consecutive nights for a Tool concert and bad Norfolk house dance music.
Stumble to bathroom.
Grind Wisconsin coffee beans, dispense into natural filter brew with exactly allocated water.
Crawl onto floor, NYT in hand.
Saunter through pages, savoring Arts, promptly recycling Sports.
Decide you are wound up and want to go through the trees.
Don running gear and drag brick-like legs through the woods.
Feel happy.
Collapse into shower.
Eat leftover tofu scramble for breakfast.
Ready to start the day.

How to watch Superbowl, surrounded by ESL Asians:
Declare that you are uninterested in Football.
Accompanying person wholly agrees.
Decide to eat at Japanese Sushi restaurant which happens to have two flat screen TVs.
Drink sake & miso soup.
Watch Madonna. Wonder how much plastic surgery she’s had.
Notice the game is close in the fourth quarter, and become interested, since they have kindly made it exciting.
Secretly cheer for New England even though you are with someone who lived in Brooklyn for several years.
Unsure why you are cheering for New England but it is what your heart is telling you. You trust your heart.
Secretly enjoy that you are aware of the rules of football, and not completely lost watching the game. 
Think that this is good enough for the next 10-25 years- the next time you are likely to view the Superbowl, based on the interim time between the last time you watched it and today. (You think the last time was when you were about 12 at the Skatium in Minot, ND.)
Decide that the whole thing is rigged and stupid but enjoy the experience anyway.
Happy to be American and able to talk about football the next day at work.
Wonder if you are insane.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

The 40s and the 70s

I love these two old photos, which both feel like they tell a lot more than a simple snapshot.

My Grandma Agnes on the Farm in North Dakota, Lansford. 
I think. Guessing 1940s.

You can tell it was the 70s here at my parent's wedding.