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Friday, February 4, 2011

Lipstick & Flannel

I recently returned from a lovely holiday in the MW to find that I am having a hard time switching gears back into my city life.  The other night I was getting ready to meet some friends for dinner when I found myself unable to change out of my father’s old, worn-in flannel shirt.  Running late, per usual, I threw on some red lipstick and headed out the door.  When I met my friends they didn’t say anything about the shirt, but their looks said it all… “What?” I said, “I’m wearing lipstick.”  Thus, my new blog “Lipstick and Flannel” was born… 

                                           http://www.lipstickandflannel.blogspot.com/ 

L&F will continue to highlight my adventures and general shenanigans, but this time, back at home in San Francisco.  Hope you’ll join me as I dive into the world of online dating, corporate life and the last year of my twenties…this is gonna be good!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Don’t Stop Believin’

Am back in SF and having sufficiently checked out multiple “hot spots” in US, I have decided to set-up shop here…That’s right, I am staying, despite the horrible dating scene, high cost of living and lack of employment opportunities for the monolingual.  And I will persevere…

With prompting from a friend, I decided to bite the bullet and post some pics to my Okcupid account and good thing, ‘cause in the last year and a half that I have had the account, I have gotten no messages or responses to my winks/seemingly witty attempts at flirting (which, I might add, I used to be good at…).  So, after posting a pic a friend of mine referred to as “Beach Bimbo” I got 18 messages in one day!  Granted most were from 60 year-old men or dudes with goatees from some place called Vacaville.  But today finally, I got a message from a nice-ish looking corporate attorney.  He said he thought my profile was funny and well, he’s right.  So I decided to write him back which led to a day full of pseudo-flirtatious emails.  Maybe this online dating thing isn’t so bad… 

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Home Stretch

With everything on my to-do/to-see list complete, I am enjoying a relaxing/occasionally boring last week in Burlington, VT.  It rained the first two days of the week, which fit in perfectly with my belief that when the earth is replenishing it’s self I must do the same.  But now two days in and two to go, I am feeling a little restless…


Ironically, (or not so ironically) as soon as I slowed down, I got sick with the flu that seems to be making its rounds.  Usually, I am not one to get sick, but the combination of my vacation “diet” and the lack of edible-looking produce, I’m sure has something to do with it. 

With a break in the rain today, I scooted off to the grocery store for some last minute groceries to get me through the next couple of days (‘cause the chips and Oreos in my cupboard aren’t going to get me far).  It is funny who you see at the grocery store in the middle of the day…mothers with young children, older women shopping in groups and random teenagers skipping school to pick up their birth control so they don’t have to do it later when they come with mom to pick up dinner. 

With some time on my hands, I biked around the shopping plaza, taking in all the other shops I had missed so far - the laundry mat, the Chinese food buffet, and, wait one minute!  A Dollar Store?!?!?  Nice…

I entered the Dollar Store and to my surprise, it smells just like my 99-cent store in San Francisco.  Ahhhh, just like home.  The clientele was even more interesting than in the grocery store.  As I cruised the aisles eating my peanut butter cups, an unusual thought came to me, “Am I ready to get back to work?” I thought, “Wow,” I decided, “I must be bored.” 

I biked home just in time to put my bike away before the rain started in again.  Luckily, am having dinner tonight with friends and tomorrow night with my roommates which will hopefully make the next few days fly by and before I know it, it’ll be Friday and I’ll be headed home.  To borrow from the musical greats Journey, “oh, I wanna get back to my city by the Bay…”

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Closure


I enjoyed a busy week last week filled with hiking, day trips and a job interview!  Monday was a lovely hike with a dear friend @ Snake Mountain which I have renamed Sugar Hill due to a lack of both snakes and elevation. 

The potential of a week’s worth of income temping at my roommate’s company enticed me to blow my budget and rent a car for a return trip to Montpelier. While the accounting department caught up and will no longer need my services, I wouldn’t trade the trip for anything…

I had definitely missed the best parts of Montpelier the first time around.  After a quick stop by the Capitol building, I made my way up to Holden Park, a 7-acre park on the north end of town.  I climbed to the top of the stone tower and this was my reward…



 Having explored the downtown area the last time I was in town, I ventured out for a drive in the country.  As I drove along the gravel roads, I began to feel nostalgic about my time in the Midwest and the last relationship I had there.  During our time together there were many rode trips complete with gravel road detours and mixed cds filled with songs only young lovers can listen to over and over again. 

I found myself on Horn of the Moon Road, a scenic route with beautiful views of the surrounding hills.  There was a house for sale there…four bedrooms, exposed beams and 75 acres for $399,000.  Now if only I had the money I just sank into grad school…

After a brief stop by Stowe and the local Applebee’s for some chicken wings, I returned home still feeling nostalgic and with a longing to connect with my former lover, which shocked me because the last time we chatted I threw up.  But that was two years ago and I have definitely changed and maybe so had he.  So, I drafted a brief and emotionless email, and hit send before I could second guess what I was doing. Not wanting to be the psycho that hits “refresh” on their email, I turned off my computer and distracted myself for the rest of the night. 

But by morning I had almost forgotten about it and was surprised to see that he had responded.  He was surprised to hear from me and had moved since the last time we spoke.  Much to my surprise, he had a job and was still with the woman he was dating when we last spoke.  But even more surprising was my reaction to it all.  Rather than feeling a longing to be with or near this person as I had had in the past, it was simply enough to know that he was all right, even happy with his life.  I had spent the past few years being so angry at him for how our relationship ended that it felt nice to feel the love that was also a part of our relationship.  I basked briefly in those feelings and then went on about my day, not giving the email nor him another thought…

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Geese

Having returned my rental car, I am again limited to the distance just my two feet, my bike and public transportation can carry me.  All of which I am grateful for, but am missing feeling the freedom having a car affords... 


While the Internet reported rain here all weekend, on the contrary, it was the most beautiful weekend (at least weather wise) so far.  I set out on a bike ride along the waterfront path – destination, Oakledge Park in South Burlington.  I arrived to a lovely sandy beach, families’ barbequing and a child’s birthday party going in full force.  Grimacing at their obnoxious presence, I quickly locked up my bike and set out to find a nice, quiet spot far away from the bouncy house fun.  Much to my surprise, it wasn’t hard to do.  The path gave way to a wooded area and upon further exploration, I found large rock slabs that jutted out into Lake Champlain.  The water lapped against the rocks eliminating any background noises coming from the park or it’s visitors.  Having found my spot, I settled in for a lovely afternoon of reading and sunbathing.



For the rest of the afternoon my only distraction was the honking of a flock of geese preparing the head south to their winter accommodations.  The flock took flight, but quickly separated out into small groups, singles and some larger groups, only to return moments later to the lake.  It was as if the group was off reading wind gusts and plotting the easiest route for their journey south.

The chapter ended and I decided to take a little break.  I briefly closed my eyes to feel the sun on my face when in quick bursts, something blocked the rays of sunshine from reaching me, creating eerie dark shadows.  As I opened my eyes to determine the culprit, I discovered the flock of geese where flying directly above me. They had found their “super highway” in the air and now, all together were traveling on to their next destination. 

In the past, I have seen tons of geese, but never had the experience of them flying directly above me. It was exhilarating!  They were such a massive group and so loud as they made their way south.  I sat with my excitement for them, for where they were going and wished them well on their trip.  Inspired, I returned to my book and eventually headed home. 

I have thought about my experience with the geese often over the past few days and even felt moved to share it with a couple of people in my life who know, and maybe even share my interest/fascination with the animal world.  Words haven’t been able to describe my experience that day, until I found (or it found me) today:

"How do the geese know when 
to fly to the sun? Who tells them 
the seasons? How do we, humans, 
know when it is time to move on? As 
with the migrant birds, so surely with us, 
there is a voice within, if only we would 
listen to it, that tells us so certainly 
when to go forth into the unknown."

   Elizabeth Kubler-Ross 

I like to think that I share this inner compass with the geese and that is was that inner voice that told me it was time to leave San Francisco, not forever, but for a little while…  To go forth into the unknown of Vermont, only to return with tales of my adventure and lessons learned along the way. 

I am so grateful for this inner compass as it lead me to Wisconsin for school and friendship, to Spain for adventure and travel, to Madison for love and heartbreak, to Northern California to find myself and revel in nature’s beauty, to Seattle to relax and renew, and now this latest adventure to Vermont which is still making its lessons known. 

It feels great to have connected to the cycles and rhythms of nature and makes me feel better about not having found my mountain man, yet.  And when that time arrives, I hope he likes to travel and explore because I am almost always on the move and making a lot of noise as I do it… J  

Sunday, September 19, 2010

That’s right…


Finally got around to posting an ad in the singles section of the local paper.  Got an email today that they like my profile and want to highlight my page on their facebook.  That’s right, mama got the goods, baby…

So far, one message from a gentleman inquiring about my weekend.  Nice enough, but not exactly the mountain man I was looking for…

Plenty of rural farmers looking for a “roll in the hay,” a few rednecks looking for “little lady” and others who seem nice and might just get a “wink” from me…

So glad all of this is falling into place less than a two weeks before I head home!  That’s right people, this month is just flying by and soon I’ll be boarding a plane back to my one true love, San Francisco.  But, I think Operation Mountain Man is far from over…

Saturday, September 18, 2010

ROAD TRIP!

Am just returning from a week long road trip checking out all things Vermont. 


Things I learned on my road trip:

1)    I do not have the driving stamina I used too.  Since my longest trip is usually 20 - 30 minutes on a city bus, the three hours to Brattleboro was rough!  Thanks goodness rest stops in VT have free Green Mountain Coffee complete with cream and sugar of course, ‘cause I am on vacation!

2)    Wherever I go, there I am.  I thought being in Vermont would inspire me to be healthy, but not the case.  I still wanna smoke cigarettes, eat onion rings (with ranch) and cruise to the corner store for anything made by little debbie/hostess.  In San Francisco, I have rules for this kind of stuff:  junk food on laundry day, mountain dew when shit really hits the fan and cigarettes at night and/or with Jenn.  Here, there are no rules…

3)    I still (and will probably always) love beer.



4)    Having a state mental hospital adds a certain energy to a place.  There seemed to be more people walking around talking to themselves than any other area of Vermont I have visited thus far.  Initially, I chalked it up to long winters and needing someone to talk too, but a quick drive by “Brattleboro Retreat” made things pretty clear…

5)    Traveling solo gets various responses from people ranging from pity to jealousy to inspiration.  The key is to not get caught up in any of them and just have your own damn experience. 



PS  It is really starting to feel like fall!