Thursday, October 23, 2014

Traveling Again

I'm thousands of feet above a mountain scape circling, late, into Denver International Airport. In spite of an immediate future of traversing 37 gates to make my connecting flight, I'm in a very Zen place right now. I have Dillon in my earbuds, have engaged with some seductive brilliance that is the New Yorker, and raised the eyebrows of a twenty-something when my internet browser opened to the last site I was on, Porn Hub. Add a decent bourbon with an appropriate number of rocks and well, here I am: relaxed, amused and ready to begin the next adventure. 

Driving to the airport with my sister, we talked of future plans, things we can do with combined resources. Sometimes, I'm amazed at how just the initiation of travel can remove me from myself and bring perspective. 

I have an idea for a new endeavor, something I haven't had in a good while. I'm intrigued and renewed with just the mere possibility. 

The "Fasten Seatbelt" sign is on, and we are descending into a lighted city, darkened by clouds that can't quite obscure the electric colors of a reluctant surrendering sun. 

In my mind I am that sun, leaving the day with a celebration of radiance and a promise to return again. 

Thursday, October 9, 2014

In Transit

My days of working so hard are numbered, at least for a while. I've only had a few days off in the last six months, literally. I could probably count the number of days off on one hand. The work I've done this summer wasn't hard, but it was constant. It's the commuting time that's beginning to wear on me. Every work day I have includes a minimum two hours of travel.  I really can't complain too much about it,  most of the traveling I do is on the ferry, "the only civilized way to commute," a phrase I should seriously consider trademarking. But, the time spent in transit is still tiresome, so much so, that I actually consider time to cook a real meal or to do laundry as cause for celebration, and have started to think about finding a city room for next season. 

Spending so much time in transit leaves me a lot of time to think. I don't necessarily take advantage of the time that way, but it's there if I need it. I like almost everyone around me, spend a lot of that time looking at my cell phone, posting, commenting, sometimes reading. Esentially, I waste the time. But today was different. I decided to hold up in a local cafe with a cup of tea, and spent some time reading. Like the lox bagel I had, it was delicious. Which led me to this post, where I begin to wonder about my use of time.

In a lot of ways this summer has been a continuation of a self imposed time out. I guess I needed to decide what's next for me. I still don't know, but I m beginning to see that I should be doing a bit more than I am, maybe. 

Monday, October 6, 2014

Summer's End

I've always liked the summers we get in the Bay Area. Growing up summer was always cold overcast mornings that burned off to sunny pleasant afternoons. Even with Global Warming, and drought, I still find NorCal summers to be the best, that is until they come to an end. 

Now, I realize that Fall actually started a coupla weeks ago, but here in the Bay Area we get uh Native American Summer. Typically the last weeks of September and first weeks of October are retched.  And I'll admit that we are delicate little flowers here. We don't like heat. We bitch and moan about it as though it's the end of the world. It's not, at least not yet. It's just how our season ends. 

This year, the end of the season means something else to me. It will be my triumphant return to the Great White North to subject myself to what is promising to be an especially brutal winter. Yay Snow! I've been working hard at working enough to save enough money to get me through the winter up there. I'm still without a work visa but looking forward to some time off. 

I know I'm at a crossroad. I've been living a bit of a nomadic life for a number of years now. It took me off a typical track I had been on for a number of years. I feel that it may be time to decide if I want to return to that track, or start a new one. And if I start down a new road, how long will I want to be on it?  

I admit, that my current occupation is not bad. I float, I open beer, pour wine and make the occasional margarita. I work at festivals and get paid to camp with friends. But as I sit here, on a commuter boat, surrounded by people who go to a grown up job every day, I can't help but feel that maybe I should be doing the same. 

Summer's end can mean a lot of things: less time outdoors, cooler weather, sensible clothes. For me it will be a change of venue. I have everything set to return to these gigs in the spring. They don't pay a lot, but that's OK. I don't mind working hard.  But, I have to ask myself
if I'm working smart. It's a tough call.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Old Habits

I did something I haven't done in a while this morning: I listened to NPR. It's an old habit, let me explain.

I use to be a total news junkie. I could tell time by what was on my local affiliate. NPR was a constant companion to me for years, at work, at home, in the car. I enjoyed the constant influx of information. It was somehow comforting, something I could rely on pretty much 100% of the time. It was a perfect distraction.

But then, my life started to change, and I found that the extra noise was no longer necessary. So, I decided to take a break from depressing news of petty politics, third world strife and things entirely out of my control. And when that happened, I realized I was using the news service as a crutch. If I could hear about the problems of others, I could avoid thinking about my own, or at least push them to the back of my mind.

It was a defense mechanism. I needed the distraction to not become overwealmed. And now, I recognize how others in my life distract themselves from problems. Some do it with alcohol, others with drama, and others, myself included use an abundance of scheduling and activities.

I'm glad to be out of the habit of distraction. Part of the reason I was able to break the habit is that I was able to detract a number of stressors from my life. But, it's a process, that I'm learning takes time and patience. I'm continually trying to simplify my life as much as possible. 

This morning I found myself on the sidelines of tragedy, not knowing what to do or how to help. So, my first instinct was to put my distraction in place and let the back of my brain process the loss of a friend and another friend's loss.

Old habits.