Thursday, June 4, 2009

all pau

this blog has been fading out for a while, and i guess it's time to admit it's all 'pau' (hawaiian for 'over', 'done', 'complete'). wrapping my mind around all that has happened this year, i am so grateful for the journey, the daily unfolding of surprises, and the place i landed.

i just had another birthday--31 now. i remember last year's birthday, my parents came to visit me in colorado, i showed them my van set-up, we cavorted around the mountains reconnecting our family ties, and i began to relax into my singleness. i'd made it to 30 without any serious commitments, why not use my lightness as a birds advantage and take off into the wind? the seed of my next adventure was planted, i would make one of my big dreams come true--living in a tropical paradise.

fast forward to today. i woke up cradled in the gentle embrace of a man i'd given up hoping for, in a place of unending blooming beauty, myriad birds singing me out of bed and into another day of perfection. i can't remember if i've ever been this happy. i don't expect it will last forever, but i'm going to ride this wave to the shore, and then i'm setting up my home there.

from here on out, it's our adventure. i may end up heartbroken, but i'm ok with that, this is worth it. maybe we'll move back to the mainland, pick up the chateau faded rainbow and rattle off onto the blue highways together, and if so, i may resume this blog. but for now, we are cozily nestled in our island incubator, thoughts of leaving far from our minds, and i feel more like keeping my heart a secret than blasting it into the storm of the internet.

until we meet again, mahalo nui loa to you wayfaring strangers, long time friends, family, and vandwellers....

Sunday, May 17, 2009

settling in

on the first rainy day in may, it's time to envision the next stage of life here in hawaii. i have the urge to dig deep, to commit, to rededicate myself to massage and bodywork. it is my gift, one of them at least, and the one that is most accessible. i have three more days at abundant life, and i've decided after that to work on building a practice, getting an office, and taking a workshop or two, there are so many on this island. massage has been the closest thing to my life's work, and though i don't feel complete in it, i know continuing on is an important part of getting to that fulfilled place. part of my problem in everything i do is that i love to start things, but have a hard time finishing them or even getting to 'level 2'. i am a perpetual beginner. but the wheel of life keeps turning and i am more and more attracted to maturity, longevity, and depth.

on a parallel track, simon is mid-way through his apprenticeship to become a tattoo artist. he's always been an artist, and he recently the opportunity to join up with a local tattoist to learn the trade. he'll be able to start tattooing this summer sometime, but it will take a few years, preferably in the same location, to become truly proficient and build a clientele. i figure, if we're going to be together, i might as well do the same. i think it's kinda awesome that we are both 'bodyworkers' from different angles with similar aims--to help people heal, transform, and enjoy their bodies as the vessels for their souls.

my days of ceaseless wandering may be over. for now.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

liking where i am

i didn't get it. i was pretty bummed, and pouted around for a while, but i'm over it now. i'm actually looking forward to having alot of time to devote to non-work related things. once i'm done at abundant life, i will only be working 3 or 4 nights a week, so my days will be mine to do what i please. and what i please is a new project...see there's this path out our backyard, and it leads to the ocean where there is a cliff and a beach down below, and no one has been there yet because we need a ladder. well, we bought the rope yesterday to make the ladder, and that's just one part of the project. there's a camping spot there by the cliff, a super sweet camping spot, the kind you could see as home with a little cleaning up and a few tarp structures. see where this is going?

i also took a good long look at the yard today, it's amazing. there's so much here to care for, prune, cultivate, enjoy. i'm digging in to this jungle, learning what is growing around me, and relaxing into where i am. i really like where i am.

Monday, April 27, 2009

worky jerky

i'm sitting around with the animals, trying to think of what to write. it's not flowing like it used to, i wonder why i'm so dry. could be a case of work overload--i asked to go to part time at abundant life, but they never did get around to changing my schedule and i've been working 3 or 4 nights a week at the grill. this pattern was about to drive me batty when i threw a wrench in it's works and quit abundant life. yes, it's been a good run, but it's far too much work for far too few rewards. i mined the most valuable resource there, simon, and it was time to get out. the canary keeled over and i felt myself starting to crumble under the weight of hours lost to the drudgery of the timeclock. this is not why i moved to hawai'i, i moved here to enjoy myself, have an adventure, fall in love.

while i'm quite sure i'll be fine with only working at the grill, there is another prospect on the horizon. surprised by a phone call from the manager at the best restaurant in hilo, i had a really good interview with her last week. i dropped my resume there months ago when i was on the hunt, and apparently they found it good enough to hold onto. if i got this job, it would be similar to the job i had in denver, casual fine dining, upscale clientele, good wine and food. if my earnings were comparable to what i made in denver, my life here would be so incredibly comfortable. i could even afford to go to my brother's wedding in europe this fall. i think i have a good shot at landing the job, i'm certainly qualified, i just don't know if they interviewed someone more charming or funny than me. seems unlikely though, really :)

it looks like things could get pretty settled around here for a while. i have no desire to leave, but i do miss my friends who are frolicking on unicorn mountain without me in colorado. i hope they all miss me real bad.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

this place

i feel the whole dynamic of my life shifting, like an enormous swell that has swept me away from the understandable way i was living and washed me up on a foreign shore where i am confused by my lack of efficacy. this could be what i was looking for, the perspective i was hoping to find, but i just don't understand it yet.

i've been doing such amazing things lately--like hiking out to where the lava pours into the ocean, at night, with the moon beaming coolly overhead, the earth beneath me so new my footfalls shatter it's eggshell structure and i feel a part of the process of making soil where life can take hold. the most amazing fireworks display, on display everyday for the past million years or so, a fully average function seeming so extraordinary.

this week is the 'merrie monarch' festival, the largest hula event in the world, hosted by my fair city. i went to the free night before the competition begins when some of the local halau's perform, and it was so moving to see people with traditions, living traditions that are taught to their youngsters and carried on throughout their lives into old age. i envy that. being of white colonist descent has left me lacking in that area.

it's a beautiful day, sunshine and heat lure me out, my daily experience has become much more important to me than this blog. this is good, i am grateful, yet i still want this place to come to and share.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

rainbow flops and freyja mug

those that know me well know this--i love my freyja mug, a hand thrown mug that was hand painted with a picture of my cat holding a red ribbon in her mouth like she does. two dear friends had it made for me and it's traveled with me for about 5 years. i am a fan of hot beverages, and it was my favorite vessel. why am i talking about it in the past tense? because i believe it's been lost, stolen by some trickster force from the mansion. i've been told that if the island takes something valuable from you, it's good luck. i don't understand why, but i hope something good can come from the loss of something dear.

my rainbow flops are also gone. well, not gone, but destroyed, i blew 'em out on the lava. their loss is somehow more appropriate, as if they came home to die.

i wonder if that's it? will i lose any more of my favorite things?

Thursday, April 2, 2009

'i don't know about you, but i came here to ROCK'

last weekend, i took a vacation to the other side of the island. after a long work week, i was exhausted and cranky as hell as we headed out in the wheeler (my little toyota's name given to her by simon). after a few miles, my head cleared, i apologized for being so rank, and as the sun sank slowly behind the mountain, my heart was bouyed by the weekend plans that had come together so perfectly. see, there's not alot of live music here on the island, so when a band comes that you kinda like, you go or you wait another 6 months for something else that may not be as good. the rock n roll station was heavily advertizing the 'journey' concert for months and i decided to go for it. i never had an album, but i know their hits as well as anyone, so a journey to the 80's it was.

we stopped at the wine store in waimea, got two bottles and two crystal glasses, then ate some tacos and headed to beach 67 to camp by the ocean for the night. we found a secluded spot, tucked in the keawe, and built a fire of little sticks just to keep us company. we laid out our sleeping bags under the stars and simon built a windbreak out of a tarp which worked quite well. the wind and the waves played the background to our rambling conversation over a couple beers. gradually we faded into sleep, smelling like fire, sinking into the sand.

in the morning, we woke up early and walked out on the lava shore that bordered our campsite. there were several pods of humpback whales spouting and waving their arms and tails at us, so close, i could see their eyes. the day was sunny, the water was crystal turquoise colored, and we had many hours to do whatever we pleased. we broke camp and packed up the wheeler, drove to the next beach over where there is lots of soft sand and an amazing reef to snorkel around. we napped in the shade for a while, then moved to the sun to get some heated motivation to get our snorkels on and go for a swim. out in the reef there were all sorts of beautiful fish, sea anemone, and turtles. we swam around together, pointing things out to each other, sometimes holding hands or putting our arms around each other and swimming like siamese twins. he kept making me laugh which is not good in a snorkel mask, it causes leaks!

we had a leisurely lunch at a toursity spot, then headed to our final destiantion...the hilton. our boss had decided to give the produce department (which consists of me and simon) a bonus because things had been looking so good lately. also, i think she didn't want to give either of us a raise, so this was her way of saying thanks. she got us a night at the hilton at waikoloa, the place where the concert was, and one of the nicest hotels i've ever seen. we walked in the lobby to check in, and there were parrots on giant brass rings on either side with signs that said 'beware, known jewelry theif' hanging on the post. there were huge vases from chinese dynasties basically everywhere you looked. there are no doors in this place, it's all open, like living outside in extreme luxury. we took the tram to our room, but we could have taken the gondola that travels through the massive koi ponds throughout the grounds. the room itself was nice, nothing extraordinary, but comfortable with down comforters and pillows, and art that didn't suck. that's one of the things about this hotel, the art. it's everywhere, in all the walkways, gardens, pools (of which there are many) there are statues, sculptures, ancient artifacts, paintings, furniature. the owner had an unlimited budget when it came to art, it would seem. i've never been impressed by a hotel before, but this one blew my mind.

the concert was only a half mile away, so we walked there, got our tickets at will call, and strolled in past the lazy security check into the waikoloa bowl. the concert was fairly predictable, they played their old hits which everyone loved, and their new songs which everyone hated. trying to stay true to their 80's sound made for some sappy rehashing of old chord progressions. most of their songs being love songs, we smiled and kissed alot at the lyrics, and it was genuinely romantic. the people around us were cracking us up--especially this guy to our right who was there with his wife and a bottle of whisky. he kept turning to us when they started playing one of their hit songs and giving us high 5's, hollering and jumping around. he claims credit for the title of this blog post, as well as many other prime quotes, and at the end of the concert, he hugged simon and said he had an awesome time.

after the show, we went back to our room to fill our wine glasses then hit the grounds to look at some art. we walked around for hours, finding treasures, dance parties, pool parties, and star-lit trails by the sea. it was like a wonderland, warm and welcoming, full of surprises and strangers, stray cats and hammocks. entirely worn out, we slept like babies and woke up too late to get a fancy breakfast, so we had to settle for an overpriced burrito on our way out. simon has some paintings there in the gallery which we tried to see, but it was closed, the only real bummer of the weekend.

we came back pretty much in love, which may be what happens when you get to do everything you want to do, all the time with someone beautiful.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

financial reckoning

time for a finance assessment.

when i left denver 7 months ago (wow, it was that long!?), i was debt free except for my student loans which go on forever, and an outrageous hospital bill from when i had the flu and went there for 3 hours to get gatorade and saline in my vein. i even had 4000 dollars to start my tropical adventure with, but by the time i got here, i was already several thousand in the hole. now that my cat is out of jail, and i have several jobs, i am no longer accruing any debt, and it's time to come out of emergency survival mode and face the truth, i'm in debt again. it's not as bad as last time, certainly, but i marvel at the ease with which i let myself slip into buying things i couldn't afford. the momentum of my adventure took precedence over my desire to live a cash based life. had i not charged my plane tickets and dental work and cat quarantine, i would still be in pennsylvania. not the worst thing in the world, but it really didn't seem like an option. it's too easy to just put my exciting plans on the card and hope for money in the future. well, now is the future, and i'm feeling the squeeze.

it's too soon to tell how much money i'll really make at my new job, but it seems like a safe average per shift amount is 75 dollars, that's not counting the hourly wage of 7 dollars. cutting down to two days at abundant life will net me approximately 120 a week from that job. if i get three shifts a week at the grill and two at ab life, thats roughly 345 a week for 30 hours of work. still only a third of what i made on a good week in denver, but more than i was making in 40 hours at ab life alone. my quality of life has gone up with this new job, but the bottom line is still the same--not enough money. i'm so tired of money.

so the new plan is this--find ways to make a little more cash on the side (market, herb and oil business, massage), keep working the two jobs, cut down living expenses, make debt disappear fast. the most obvious place for me to cut expenses is to stop paying rent. i don't know how i'm going to make that happen, and at least for the short run, i'm happy to be living in a house i can call my own, but i miss the freewheelin' vandwellers life. if only i had my van here! i miss my cocoon bed, my 8-tracks, my tiny closet and my freedom to roam. but i love the island life too, the weather, the ocean, the lack of clothing, the fruit! if i could figure out a way to have it all....

i realized yesterday, while gazing out to sea with an attractive tall dark man beside me, that i've let alot of things slip away since i got here and i want them back. i want a solid yoga practice, i want my music and new music too, i want to read books, i want to write poems and draw plant parts and go wildcrafting with friends. getting my most basic needs met has swallowed all my time for many months, but it's time to step it up and get my life in the order i like it to be in. i realized that my new love doesn't even know the 'me' i used to be, only the 'me' i am right now which in my mind is an inferior representation. i'm unbalanced, grasping somewhat desperately at the side of the mountain, unsure of where solid ground can be found. but, he seems to like me nonetheless. what a dear.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

hilo crazy

there's alot of crazy people that live here and shop at abundant life natural foods. i don't mean like people who wear crazy clothes, or act like jesters, though there's plenty of those too, i mean the kind of nuts that i cannot understand. people whos reality is so far removed from mine that i label them crazy. take this guy, greg nottingham, for instance. he lives in a hotel by the bay, comes into the store, runs a business (sort of), and goes about his day accepted as one of the hilo residents who is just 'off'. then there's the woman who's been stalking my boyfriend for 3 years. yep, she goes through his trash, brings him poems and pictures, and visits him almost every time he works and talks to him like they're best friends. he should be scared, but after this long, she's probably not going to do anything violent, so we just laugh about it. there's the jehovah's witness we call 'shorts' because he wears drawstring shorts that are a little too short, athletic shoes from the 80's, and is constantly singing christian children's songs like 'kumbyah' and 'jesus loves the little children' while he's shopping, as if the songs keep bad thoughts out of his mind. creep. and don't forget the lady that thinks hawaii's governer is a sex addict who hosts swinger parties in public halls, and so are my bosses, and the girl who manages the chill/frozen department is a prostitute, and so on. it's pretty hilarious, and i have to wonder, are they everywhere on this island? or is it just the cross section of people that shop at the store?

i put in my request to go to part time there and that feels soooooo good. it looks like the restaurant job is going to be good money, at least 3 shifts a week, so it was time to cut down at abundo. working this much is insane, i feel mentally dull and spiritually depleted. my creative juices have been dormant and fermenting. i need some space to regroup.

Friday, March 13, 2009


one revolution leads to another, and as easy as the mansion came, it went. see, the owner of the place lives in new hampshire and has recently begun to have a nervous breakdown because the house has been on the market for so long and she is ‘out of money’, or as out of money as you can be when you only get 10,000 a month in alimony. she is a compulsive spender, and has finally run herself into so much debt that she is hanging by a thread. this stress has caused her to lash out at the caretakers of her house, blaming them for the house not selling, questioning their integrity, blowing small things out of proportion. then, her teenage daughter showed up unannounced, and all hell broke loose. why was there a cat in the house? why was someone staying in the master bedroom? i, being somewhat of a bystander, and rapidly wearing out my welcome, decided to pull out. it was fun while it lasted, but free mansion living still has it's costs.

as luck would have it, a house of creatively alive folks has opened it's doors to me. yes, i'll have to pay rent, but not alot of rent, and it's closer to town and the ocean. i've spent enough time with these people to know that we will live together just fine, and there's no lease, no commitment, very few formalities. i came across this perfectly timed situation through the new boyfriend, i'll call him simon, who is living here too. the house is a sweet jungle shack surrounded with fruit bearing trees and plants, a trampoline, a gazebo that doubles as a guest room, and a path across a private hidden bridge that leads to the ocean. it's a few minute walk from town, and there are two adorable dogs, rain and muna, who are rapidly worming their way into my heart. the only real downside--there's only one shitter. it's an older house, and that's just the way it goes.

oh yeah, i got that other job. i'm so tired from working so much that it's hard to be excited right now, but i am really hopeful that it's going to be good. i've worked two training shifts so far, and they went great. i think i'll be taking my own tables on my next shift. it's a super easy serving job, and the prices are kinda outrageous, so it should be good tips. plus, in hawaii, they pay you 7 bucks an hour, minimum! that's more than i made in denver as a bartender, wages wise. i think the end of poverty is in sight. what i hope will happen is i make enough money at the new job to cut down to 2-3 days a week at abundant life, or even eliminate it altogether. at the end of the day, i'm only making about 62 dollars for 8 hours there. i'd only have to make 50 bucks a shift at the restaurant to make the same amount in 4 hours. that kind of math is easy. the only problem is i'm not sure how many hours they will give me at the new job. i was hired for part time nights, meaning 3-4 for shifts, 3-5 hours each. i bet i'll be able to work my way in, becoming indispensable and getting whatever i want. that's the plan anyway.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

the strangest fruit

last weekend i ate the most incredible fruit. it smells like a dead animal, or a propane leak from a distance, but up close it smells sweet and kind of herb-y. if it's smell doesn't deter you, it's skin will try to kill you with sharp spikes covering every inch, it's actually hard to even hold. if that doesn't deter you, the price for one might--the little baby one he bought for me was 10 dollars, a regular size one is like 30.

but suppose you get past all that and take one home. better leave it on the porch so the housemates don't get pissed. then try to open it, carefully so you don't get hurt. inside there are pods of goopy, creamy custard like flesh. put it in your mouth. go ahead, it's not really a dead animal. then, the taste, whoa... it's like musky vanilla tinged with fake banana bubblegum then the aftertaste is like garlic. i swear to you. bizarre! so fascinating! it's called a durian, and it's banned on public transportation in the philippines.

the next day, i smelled it everywhere, and i got sick. i don't know if the two are related.

today i spent all day with my friend luis who is visiting from santa fe. he gets props for being the first to follow through on the 'i'll come see you' promises. we went to the black sand beach and took photos of the sea turtles on land, then drove the whole way around the southern tip of the island and up the other side to hapuna beach where we snorkeled around the reef with his camera in it's underwater housing and got some fantastic pictures of a small sea turtle in the water. it was sweet. we're going out tomorrow armed with fins this time faster swimming. having not been to the tropics since his youth (he grew up in venezuela), he's gorging himself on lilikoi, tangerines, and sunshine in this laid back paradise. it's cool to see this island's healing powers at work.

speaking of work...did i mention i make no money at my job and i work really long hours? well, that might all change soon. i have in interview this thursday at a restaurant in town for a serving job. sometimes it pays to answer the phone when an unknown number calls. this could become my ideal situation where i work a few nights (or mornings) a week, and have plenty of time to work on my things to sell at the market and have fun with my new boyfriend. i'm not getting my hopes up, yet.

Friday, February 27, 2009

when you give up

plans are hatching, hands are holding, and i'm thinking i landed in the right place. twists of fate aren't always this immediately apparent, so perhaps i'm being fooled, but i don't care, fools are always having fun despite the risks.

who is he? good question. i think i manifested him. i'd like to take the credit, but he thinks he's been waiting here for me. either way, it's in the nick of time for both of us. i had filed my desires for a real live right here kind of mate in the 'i give up' department. finally, i had some peace, i would just work on myself, travel, read, and write letters to my caged creature in winterland. i'd lay out my next adventure and plot my solitude like i was already old and wizened. people would wonder what why i never married, why none of my lovers stuck it out with me, but it would seem right, a fitting destiny for an oddity. and hey, for all i know i'll be back on that track once he reads this blog and finds out how contrary i am, but for now, i'm reveling in the possibilities. i'm smiling at the very thought of his eyes meeting mine. i am, for all intents and purposes, enamored.

i think this blog will get juicy again. i think it might get me in trouble sometimes, but i'm going to temper my impulses and think before i post. if you know me, you might find yourself here, that's part of the deal, but i promise to be more thoughtful.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

i'm back

today marks the 83rd day of my hawaiian adventure, a significant day because freyja got out of quarantine and now she is hiding under the bed, though we did some snuggling earlier. it feels like we've been apart for so long, but now that she's here, it's all back to normal. hissing and purring and growling and crunch crunching kibble. i have my sidekick back. or maybe my leader, but either way i feel complete. and i've done a complete 180 from where i was just weeks ago in my lonesome madness. no more do i feel alien, no more do i cry for no reason, no more do i wonder just what the hell i'm doing here... well, almost no more. i guess i've been distracted from all that by someone. and i've relearned that i'm charming, funny, pretty, and my dreams come true all the time.

i remember the day i got freyja from the pound. she was the sweetest, most unique and curious kitten. her markings so soft and symmetrical, sort of mesmerizing. i had never seen a cat like her before, though she wasn't strange, she was my imagination come to life. as we've grown together over the years, she's been like a mirror. those who know us both tend to say we're exactly alike. i guess i can accept that i'm not that nice, i only like who i like, and i change my mind precisely when i feel like changing my mind. it's not a stretch to see that i can act mad when i'm feeling affectionate, like to be looked at but not touched, and tend to inject a little pain into my play. she helps me see that though i'm not to everyone's liking, those that like me do it madly.

in the past weeks, i've delved more deeply into the world of here and now. i've made an important ally, and i have surprising options opening all around me.

Monday, February 9, 2009

one year anniversary

today is the one year anniversary of this blog and i thought i'd peek my head out to say thanks to all the people out there who have traveled with me this year. i am truly blessed to know you in real life and/or virtually, wherever you may be.

i have not given up on blogging, it's been a wild learning experience, but i am not sure how or when i will continue. there is merit to all the suggestions i've received, and i'm allowing those seedling ideas to sprout in my brain.

i miss the reckless abandon of just hitting the 'publish post' button when i've laid bare my thoughts, though i've realized it's not the best thing for everyone in my life. at least, it seems that way now. i've started to hope that it will all make sense later, and we will understand and love each other better for it.

Thursday, February 5, 2009


it was a day of thought, reflection, arguing with myself, and a painful caffeine headache because brilliantly i decided to get unhooked on coffee on the worst possible day of the month. i'm not smart. i am probably dumber due to choices i have made and therefore cannot blame my genes or anything but my own poor judgment. file that under 'lessons learned'.

i took a hot bath, steam rising gently feathering the candle's flicker. i fell into a light trance, drifting around in the ether of emotion and memory. after i cried, i thought 'what the hell is wrong with me?' why do i claim to dislike conflict and then go about creating it at every turn? am i that desperate for attention from my family that i have to go about making trouble just to start a conversation? and the answer, i guess, is yes. sheepishly i had to admit that. i'm involved in a constant battle between wanting to engage with them and needing my distance. i make arguments because otherwise we have nothing interesting to talk about, not all that much in common, and i'm not satisfied with only seeing each other at holiday gatherings and spouting small talk. i also don't want to have to hide what i do and my real feelings about things. i feel like, at some point in life, a person should be able to be their real self in front of their family and not have to fight about it. i've seen it happen in other families, so i know it's not unheard of. but, every time i try i regret it. it's better to stay hidden, quiet, unknown, though clearly i'm no good at that. i embarrass myself constantly.

right now, i'm going into the passive stage of it, pulling back and shutting up. i know the aggressive cycle will come back around again, and i have to decide how to handle it. i know this all stems from wanting to communicate, but i must be too dumb to figure out how to do it without being a total ass.

i'm going to take a break from blogging. it's been a compelling experience to write my life on the overhead projector, but it's getting too hot on this plexiglass, and my mistakes pile up faster than i can correct them. i'm going back to the old pen and paper, i have some things i need to work out.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009


if you've checked the comment section of my blog lately, you'll see much spirited discussion between me and a few of my relatives. it's really got me thinking, and i want to put this out there as my intention.

i want to be a christian if god wants me to be one. that's going to take a miraculous conversion effort on god's part, and i'm sure god is capable, but so far god has not revealed christianity to be the way for me. nothing short of this will do, no emails, no books, no endless reasoning and explanation. i know christians have reasons they believe, but the basis is that they just BELIEVE. that's the component i don't have and can't be given to me by anyone but god.

i came across an interesting website today, a blog of a woman who was converted at age 37 through some sort of god attack. i'm intrigued, and i'll be reading her story.

i am an open person. i do not want to deny or contradict anything just because i don't find it appealing. i don't feel empty without religion or faith, so it hasn't been a real motivating factor for me, but it seems to be an area of endless contention in my family. if it doesn't happen, and i don't end up a christian, i hope they can accept that i tried, i asked and i did not receive. and if christ wins, then we all go out for drinks and celebrate.

Monday, February 2, 2009

sunday is for play

i have a new friend. she dresses in the brightest colors you've ever seen, has bouncy red hair, is entirely unpredictable, at once self-effacing and self-promoting. in the course of one day spent with her i looked at her many intricate paintings, listened to her poetry and prose, sang comic opera with her, heard her sing and play on the guitar a song she wrote, and exchanged stories from childhood both poignant and silly. she was along for my whole day which started at ecstatic dance and ended at a pagan holiday gathering at a co-workers house. today was 'imbolic' the midpoint between winter solstice and spring equinox when the first signs of spring are recognized. this is the source of our pennsylvania grown 'groundhog day' when punxsutawny phil comes out and sees his shadow (or not).

this new friend, j, helped awaken my playfulness again. i have gone through what felt like a dark period of isolation, and it is over now. i am in the land of the living, meeting people, feeling confident and worthy of my community, and fluttering around the island making connections. and nothing brings out the child in me like the hot pink rubber shoes and purple sparkly eyeshadow j was wearing. i felt right at home wearing my green gingham and eyelet dress from the 40's that makes me look like alice in wonderland. i know when i feel good enough to wear that dress, i am completely inhabiting my body, and suddenly everyone is interested.

i met a woman named eva at the dance who is putting on a burlesque show for valentines day, and i want to audition for it. she said she can put me in the show if i have an 'act'. this means i have to put together an act, and quick. i don't know if i can pull it off, i need some input from my actor friends--what should i do? song suggestions? resources to research? costume ideas? this could be the very thing to bring me fully out of my shell. i haven't performed in years, but i have a strong desire to do this. besides, she was wearing a furry pink kitten bonnet, and has tiger stripes tatooed all over her, of course i want to be her friend.

in blogger world news, i met a fellow nomad recently who is visiting the big island for a while (maybe forever?) i always love it when i meet people from blogland and they are as charming as i thought they were. glad you're here christian!

Saturday, January 31, 2009

excerpt from the familial realm

tonight i wrote an email response to one of my aunts who had contacted me a few weeks ago. she was expressing concern about my life and it's direction. i assume because she thought it was going the wrong direction, they don't usually write things like this otherwise. i appreciate her concern, and i encourage any other family members who are holding their tongues to speak up, let's have it out, i'm ready for ya. do you think i'm in dire straits? or more of a twisted sister? haha. anyway, i'm posting my response for you all to enjoy, laugh at, disdain, or whatever.

aloha _____,
i'm finally ready to put this email together, i've been thinking about it all week. you've tapped into an ocean of memories, beliefs, and experiences that have shaped me into who i am today. i will answer your questions as honestly and completely as i can, and i appreciate this chance to get to know you.

you wrote,
"One thing I have wanted to ask you for a while is - What are you running from? I cannot say that I know the environment in which you grew up in. I know your family and their beliefs, their convictions but only you know the impact your childhood had on you. We each have a perception of things we have been through. My view of my childhood is going to be somewhat different than my brother or my sister. What is yours?"

first, i am not running from anything. i am right here, living my life like any other person, i don't really know what you mean by this. do you mean to ask why i don't live near my family? i love them all very much and enjoy the time we spend together, but it's better for me not to live in central PA, i find it depressing and boring. i prefer a life of adventure, traveling has always been a passion of mine, and i want to live in and experience as many places on the globe as possible. that's why i'm not physically there with them. there are also spiritual differences, though i see them more as societal differences because i have no problem with jesus, i rather like him, but the culture of christianity in this country is irritating to me. most of my christian family has subscribed to a collection of so-called spiritual beliefs that i find absurd. there seems to be much less to do with the actual experience of god's presence and much more to do with constructing beliefs about what other people should be doing. 'spreading the gospel' is more about condemning peoples rituals, actions and choices than about the teachings of jesus, and i find that very off-putting.
second, my experience of childhood was altogether enjoyable. my parents taught me the important lessons of honesty, trustworthiness, fairness, and independence, and i think they are proud of me now. sure, we had some rough patches, but that's normal. they always did their best and stood their ground based on what they believed, and i respect them immensely for that. i gather from your email that you had a very different experience of childhood and i'm sorry for that, i'm glad you found your way into my family, they are nothing if not safe and reliable. and i admit, if my beliefs lined up more closely with yours, i'm sure we'd be closer, but something about my family's set of beliefs makes it impossible for them to accept someone who doesn't believe the same things. they are constantly trying to convince me that they are right and therefore everyone who doesn't believe that way is wrong and frankly i'm tired of it. i've been through enough ridicule and shaming and it's not healthy for me to subject myself to it anymore. i know you'll find that hard to believe, but you don't have to believe it. that's the difference with me, i'm willing to accept that we can't meet eye to eye. the experience of being human is varied, and that's what makes it wonderful. we were not all born to be christians, or muslims, or jews. we are all here on different paths and that's what makes the intricate web of life on earth so fascinating.

you wrote,
"I had actually feared rejection from them in the beginning since I was such a horrible person. They loved me and accepted me. They didn't like our lifestyle but they loved us."

this is not the experience i've had with my parents. when i have been honest with them about my life i have been met with rejection, sorrow and being cut-off from them in many ways. i've decided not to share the details of my life anymore because of this. i want to spend the time we have on earth together in harmony, enjoying the things we have in common, not quarreling about our differences. i knew i wasn't a 'horrible person', i was just not cut from the same cloth. i think your experience was due to the fact that you fell into the range of acceptability by the time they met you--you were straight, loved their son (brother) who had been living on the edge, and were moving in the direction of marriage. i'm happy that you feel comfortable in my family, and now that you're a christian, there's no reason for you not to.

you wrote
"I am telling you all of this to say that everything is your life has happened for a purpose. Nothing has happend by chance or mistake. God has allowed you to experience all that you have experienced for a reason."

i know. i'm not a stranger to god's plan for my life. god speaks to me everyday, it's not some mystical experience, it's all right here right now. just because i don't worship the way you do or call god by the same names, doesn't make me any further from her. i don't believe god has a gender, and calling god 'she' is helpful to break that illusion. i don't like to talk about my experience of god with my parents because they would probably tell me i was doing it wrong. exactly what i don't need someone telling me when i'm sharing the deepest experiences of my life.

you wrote
"God has a purpose and a plan for my life that required me to experience the good and the bad. The same is true for you."

again, i know. it's not news that bad exists in equal proportion to good. it's a law of physics applied to the metaphysical realm.

you wrote
"God has made my passion women and teens. To be able to reach out the the hurting and to understand what they are going through. I have truly been there. I can relate.
I don't know what your view of God is or Christianity but I kinda get that you are turned off by it. I am sure there are good reasons for it. I just know that your pursuit of happiness is leaving you empty."

you just explained how your life was so different than mine and now you say you've 'been there'? been where? to my life? no, i don't think you have, but that's not a concern. you are trying to reach out to me and i respect that, but don't try to turn me into a victim who has been hurt by life. i'm in good shape, and i'm deeply enjoying the pursuit of happiness. no, everyday is not an absolute miracle of joy, but who's life is? yours? that would seem to contradict the 'experience the good and the bad' aspect of life. or do you propose that once one finds god, there is no more bad? i found this part of your email to be a bit contrived, why do you think i am 'empty'? because i don't believe the way you do? that's an old psychological trick (one that's surely been played on you too) to make someone believe they need something that they don't. tell them they are not complete without -fill in the blank-. this is precisely why i am distant from my christian family. they can't believe, in fact it goes against the very nature of their version of christianity to believe that someone can be whole without 'christ'. i don't lack christ, i don't lack anything, i am a whole human being, loved and cared for by the same natural forces that love and care for you, i just don't believe the same myths you do.

i don't mean to be harsh, but this is a tired subject for me. i am not offended by what you wrote, and despite what you may have heard, i am not adverse to having an intelligent conversation about religion, i believe we've just had one. i respect where you are coming from and i hope you can at least accept my position.

i hope to have a fun visit with you when you come to hawaii, and i'll try to post pictures soon, my camera doesn't work right now. it's incredibly beautiful here in the tropical rainforest, as usual i guess!

all the best,

Thursday, January 29, 2009

my bf started a blog!

hey, i'm so excited because my bestest friend in the whole wide world started a blog! he is a talented writer, actor, dancer, singer, and knitter. and i love him so. sooooooo!

moving guide

here's a guide for those who wonder how to move to a tropical island.

financially, i suggest having about 5 thousand dollars to make it a smooth transition. this will allow you to pay for your flight and shipping costs, getting your companion animals here, having a place to stay while you find a job, etc. if you have less, it's totally possible, but you will have to be willing to do things such as sleep in a tent and/or WWOOF on some farms, which are really good things if you actually want to meet people and see what's happening on the island. don't worry about where to go once you get here, that's the easy part, getting here is the biggest obstacle. leaving all your things, your friends, your ability to drive to your mom's house, your job, those are the hard things. trust me, the obstacles once you get here are nothing compared to the mammoth beasts that stand in the way of leaving. and yes, you will miss them, but it will be ok, there are lots of people here (there) who miss things, but we're still happy to be here.

once you land, start connecting with people. try couchsurfing, hanging out at the beach, going to bars, frequenting the laundromat or the coffeeshop. you will inevitably meet people who have access to the things you need like a a job, a place to stay, etc. follow up on all your leads. lots of them will be dead ends, you are mapping out your place in this land, don't expect to avoid all wrong turns, failure is just as important as success in this venture.

island life is different than mainland life--there is no where to run, everyone knows each other, and you will have the chance to meet just about everyone. i used to have anxiety about 'missing my chance' with people who could be my friends, lovers etc, but here it is really unnecessary, unless they leave the island. that's the beauty and the bain of a closed circuit society.

most importantly, if what you need is unavailable, try waiting for a while. patience is the ultimate key because it's all here, it's just not all available all the time. besides, how bad can it be to wait it out on a beautiful black sand beach reading that book you never had time for and sipping coconut juice.

Monday, January 26, 2009


today i met my new friend andrea at her free house (no one pays for housing anymore you know) and she took me up to the ranch to do some work to earn a horseback ride. we roll up to the place which appears to be an enormous tent structure surrounded by a dozen thin horses tied to small trees eating out of buckets. introductions are made, cheeks kissed, and the owner of the place, kelie, asks
"do you ride?"
"yes" i reply.
"neck rein? push with the outside leg?"
"yeah." I say.
"ok, i'll put you on that appy an test you out"

i saddle up a redheaded mare with freckles named marty who seems docile enough as i climb on her, walk her over to where kelie is standing. she points toward the tent and says "turn her that way". i lift the reins, lay them over her neck and she turns, light as a feather. before she gets three steps in, kelie waves and nods, then turns back to her scattered flock of people horses and dogs. test over, passing grade.

everyone's on, ready to go when a mysterious man shows up in cowboy gear looking for kelie. she shrewdly askes him if he does drugs. confused, he shakes his head and they walk off for a private chat. she comes back, mounts her gelding and chirps "traveling", the signal for us to move out.

the first order of business is to move the herd of 'wild' horses from one pasture to another, greener one. this is accomplished with much confusion, galloping, and one horse running through a barbed wire fence. ok, i thought, this is reckless horsemanship, and my senses perked up, ready for danger. after the skinniest horse i'd ever seen was roped and given a de-wormer, we moved the herd into their new pasture and the trail ride began.

picture the deepest blue ocean you've ever seen as your horizon, then paint rolling grass covered hills spotted with cattle leading up to a snow capped mountain, don't forget some puffy white clouds to temper the sun, and a gentle steady breeze to make you comfortable in a sweatshirt. place your feet in the stirrups atop a dashing dappled mare and urge her forward into an easy lope across the lush pasture as you breath in the clean air, smiling because there's nothing else you want to do. this is my winter in hawaii.

after crossing rocky rivers, floating through the downiest evergreens, and riding out the buck before the run, we returned to the ranch for burgers, beers, and story. the people are rugged, the burgers are as local as they get, and the horses are getting by alright. they do this every sunday, and i'm invited. it ain't paradise, but it's pretty good, and i went home sore and satisfied.

it's uncanny how many wishes have been granted to me this week: a comfortable place for me and freyja to live indefinitely, a piano in my house so i can start playing again, horses i can ride on a regular basis, friends who hurt my gut with laughter--i got it all, and i got it all for free.

i've been given the key to the island, and in record time--less than 2 months. this is what makes traveling worthwhile. taking the challenge to find my place, trust the process, and record the memories.

Friday, January 23, 2009

the space of creation

fate has dealt another card on the table and changed what was a doubtful outlook on the flop to a secret smile on the turn, i'm betting with some confidence no matter what the river holds, though i'm still careful to maintain my poker face, it ain't over yet.

my interim living arrangements have solidified and become long-term. yesterday my mansion having friends offered to share their space with me long-term. i had been hoping they would, though i knew if i had to ask, i wouldn't. i would have rather moved into my little cabin than stay somewhere if i wasn't 100 percent sure it was going to be really cool. i am a little gun-shy to say the least.

i had to think it over, i'd already put a deposit down on the cabin, but staying here would pay for the loss of that in a week (it was only 125 dollars). would i regret staying here and not having my own private hermitage? or would i feel stupid writing a rent check every month when i could be paying off the debt that accrued from moving? my vandwelling ideals surged in my veins and the answer after a good nights sleep and some quiet meditation was a resounding yes, i'm staying! with no rent and no utility bills except gas for the mower, and butane for the stove (the house stove is broken, so we're 'roughing it'), plus guest quarters for any of my friends who come to visit *nudge, nudge*, and the opportunity to live with yet another awesome couple who are about to get married, it all added up to an offer i couldn't refuse.

it's become like my unspoken job to be the housemate who helps the couple prepare for their wedding, this will be the third time in 5 years, and i'm pretty dang good at it. this two are perfect for each other, yet another example of true love found. i'm guessing the reason i keep living with people like that is because i'm not supposed to give up on finding it myself. ok, fine.

my job is ok, i like artfully arranging the produce so it looks like a painting. i felt i'd reached a modicum of success when some japanese tourists took a picture of it. i got another raise, but i'm still making only slightly more than 1/4 what i made in denver.

now that i've stepped up my living situation, it's time to upgrade the income. i mailed off the registration for my business--i am now incorporated. i don't know what i'm going to do with it, the market is a less attractive possibility now that my market friends are no longer friends, but maybe it'd be just the thing to help heal the rift, i don't really know. i have a feeling i'd be better off elsewhere, and trusting my intuition is my new law. there is plenty of space here at home to have a massage studio, so i'm considering buying a used table and doing a little networking in that department.

i'm feeling out the possibilities, and things change by the hour, i'm in the space of creation, my eyes still adjusting to the light.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

thoughts on authority

this week has shifted many layers of belief that i've built up over the years, and it's time to reevaluate. i used to think of myself as someone that got along with everyone, and always treated people with respect; now while this is true in some instances, it's not true in others, so it cannot be actually true.

for example, when i was a little girl, age 9 or so, i was on board the bus leaving my very christian school, wearing my puffy pink corduroy coat, when i saw my music teacher walking by and flipped him the bird. there was no real reason that i can remember, only a generalized need to have more free time, a less restrictive education, and of course it was winter so everything sucked a little. i didn't really want to tell the guy to fuck off, and though i laughed when i did it, mostly out of nervousness, the look on his face disturbed me. i knew i had crossed the line, but only after the fact. my subconscious had violently surfaced and overrode my better judgment.

later, at the same school, when i was about 11, i went into the school library with a few friends and we hauled out the unabridged dictionary, looking through it for swear words and laughing. i decided it would be a great idea to underline some of them and put my teachers names beside them. again, i didn't really think those teachers resembled those words, but i was acting out because i felt like a caged animal. i was trying to discover the world in a place that forbid exploration.

these deeds brought consequences, and the feeling in my gut when i was confronted about them was the same feeling i had this week. i knew i did wrong in retrospect, but at the time i was just doing what came naturally. so my pattern when i'm feeling stuck is to act out rudely toward those i perceive to be in authority. now that i think about it, i can cite many more examples from my past of this very phenomenon. this can now become part of my beliefs about myself, and can therefore be circumvented by careful attention. i have a problem with authority, and i mostly don't need to subject myself to it, if i do decide it's in my best interest to go there, i will be vigilant for clues that i'm reaching the breaking point. just being conscious of its sneaky presence may be the key to overcoming this unbecoming trait.

i want to send out an apology into the ether to all the people i've insulted in this way. and i ask the source of my personality to transform this trait into something constructive.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

self help junkie

i am a self help junkie, i love to read books that offer new ways of organizing and dealing with life, and i love to try out new practices that help me feel different about my situation. maybe i would do better to try to actually change my situation, but i don't feel like ever have much success in that department--aside from moving and changing jobs, that i can do. and depending on the day, my mood, and my current self help agenda, i can feel fantastic about the things i've experienced, or feel awkward, sad, and lost. i've come to realize it's more important to feel good about life right now than to always be striving for the things that will 'make me happy'.

my most recent acquisition is called 'finding your own north star' by martha beck, and it's a guide to using your internal sensations and bodily clues to determine what choices you should make in your daily life that will lead you to your destiny. if you find yourself not able to breathe, or clenching your teeth, or feeling sick, then you are headed in the wrong direction. if you feel excited, euphoric, calm or confident, then you are in the sweet zone. it's a users guide to intuition, and it's really easy for me to feel that, but more difficult to actually put it into practice.

it seems i've gotten used to squashing my intuitive knowledge when it interferes with what i planned to do, or if i think it will be 'easier' another way. this sucks because it never really works out, and i just get further and further from the truth of the universe until i'm way off track and have to push the reset button (generally a painful experience). then i'm discouraged at all the time i wasted when i could have been on the enlightened path. this last debacle is a prime example of that cycle. here's what i knew about this place before i came, but declined to trust:

1. it's a magical place where anything can happen. the veil between worlds is thin. whatever you need is abundant, so is whatever you fear.
2. there are the coolest people here. take for example my friend joe who i met here--one of my favorite people ever.

i screwed things up in a number of ways, some of which i can't articulate yet, but the most obvious to me now--i needed friends, and i wanted to be friends with my former hosts, but i always felt like i was walking on eggshells. this was my sign that i was on the wrong track. i should have kept my distance and not gotten involved in their lives, instead i smothered that feeling and hung out with them alot, then ended up acting like an asshole to get out of it. the whole time i didn't even realize what i was doing and that's what i want to avoid in the future. the earlier i catch it, the better. trusting that first signal is paramount. the problem is, i like to be nice, i like to think i can handle anything, i have a hardy constitution that won't be harmed by abuse. but, those beliefs run counter to intuitive living. of course i can oppose my inner voice, i have the willpower to force myself to do anything, but why bother? i just end up making big mistakes. all because i thought i had to hang on to my current situation rather than find a new one at an 'inconvenient' time. well, see how convenient it turned out to be?

so at this time, as i start fresh, i vow to follow my intuition, listen carefully to the guidance i receive, and not compromise even when i want to for the sake of being polite. in the past year i've been rejected many times, so the method i've been using does not save me from rejection, therefore what do i have to lose by choosing another way? my worst fear is rejection, people not wanting me around, and i've had to face it. i won't die from it, i won't even be crushed. trying to avoid it is like trying not to think about it, the more i try, the less success i have.

for those of my readers who believe in god, what i am talking about is god. i don't think 'i' am god, i think that god is everything, and the voice of god can be heard only when i tune in to my internal signals. this is the source of much argument and discussion in religious circles, and i'm sure someone out there is just itching to tell me how i can't believe 'myself' i have to believe 'god', but i'm here to tell ya, you can't have one without the other. i never did and never will believe that god made us so stupid and evil that we can't trust our own bodies, so save your long winded grammatically incorrect comments for another day.

Friday, January 16, 2009

what goes around

i'd like you all to go back and read my last post. try to put yourselves in the position of the people i was talking about and realize how they would feel reading it.
i've done that just now, and i don't like how i feel. i have therefore set the new standard for how i want to write this blog--i will write as if the people in it are standing right next to me, whether i know them or not, because that is the reality of the internet. i really didn't think about whether or not they would read it, and carelessly posted a whiny complaint about them. something i would never say to their face because it's none of my business, and not my place to say, but in my own blog, it felt more like a personal journal entry, and that is the deceptive part of the blogosphere--don't ever forget that everyone is reading!
and so, they being who they are, were offended by my last post. so deeply offended and wounded that the only thing they could do was kick me out of their house. i don't mean they asked me to move out. i mean they packed up all (well, not all, more on that later) my belongings and brought them down to my work, dropped them at the front door and in high dramatic fashion told me how they'd 'read my blog' and i was out on the street! my stomach flipped, i was in total shock, trying to remember what i'd said, was it bad? what did i do?! they thought i had 'trashed' them and their kids. they believed i had talked shit about their girls, and were most angry about that, but all i remembered was mentioning their parenting style and how it differed from my upbringing. when i read it today, i realized they must have thought my saying how the girls broke their toys was a dis on the girls. but really i see that as a direct product of spoiling them, not the girls fault. i think they are beautiful kids, bright, curious, with unique styles who have so much potential.
so there i stood, with my suitcases in the middle of my workplace, my jaw dropped, my heart racing, and they told me to 'stay away from them and their house and their family', jerry springer style. by this point, i really wasn't longing to pay a visit, but it all seemed so unfair. was the crime deserving of the punishment? i looked around to try to gain a hold on reality, but i was still wrapped up in the dark anger world, no light-switch to be seen. my sweet co-workers swooped in when they left the store and assured me it would be ok. i was in a daze, didn't know what to do. i punched out, and went to get my car to load up my stuff, and take a break. i called my boss, crying, and told her the story. she offered her house for the night, and i gratefully accepted. she showed me in, gave me linens, some juice, and a tour. a sanctuary in a time of crisis. i called my mom, i called joe, i cried painfully. i just didn't get it.
and then, with creeping significance, i started to get it. this had to happen, i needed to get out of there, it wasn't safe or wise to live there. the owl had given me a warning, and i finally saw what he meant. i had been stifling my opinions, shoving down my inner truth, and putting a nice gloss over the choppy waters of my better judgment in order to keep the perceived financial benefit of not paying rent. this however turned out to be a totally unworthy pursuit. a pursuit like that which is not aligned with my intuition is bound to be sabotaged by my essential self, and the more i cling to it, the worse the scenario becomes. if i had honored and respected my initial hit that i should not be there, this never would have happened. i've become so conditioned to try to be logical that i pushed aside all the clues that would have saved me this embarrassment and pain. to illustrate what i mean by the toxic environment they called home, here is a quote from the comments section of my blog from a few days ago, posted by--you guessed it--eric, the male half of the couple i was living with.

What a brutal ruthless polyanna bitch
this girl sounds like someone who was molested by daddy
truely Scumbag Cunt is not low enough for this piece of dog shit
Attacking innocent children to make herself feel better
what a pathetic semi human being

Kill yourself now and save the world the hassle

after the initial booting me out incident, i contacted them to try to talk things out. i was stunned by their immature, petty response. i thought it wouldn't be too much to ask to have the rest of my things from their house, but the response i got was indignation at the thought that i'd go so low as to try to collect my things, after all i'd done to them. but because 'that's just the kind of people they are', she said she'd bring my food to the store the next day (sounded like a really big hassle), and wouldn't even ask me for the 25 dollars i 'owed' for utilities. i guess all the extra work i put in didn't count toward that, clearly no one even noticed. i may be a bitch, but i'm a fair person, i don't believe in cheating people, or even allowing people to feel cheated. i'd rather just give them what they think i owe them, money isn't that precious. when she came in with some of my food, i gave her the 25 bucks, and the house key back, even though she didn't return my mop, my other jar of peanut butter, my one-cup coffee maker, my laundry detergent, my calenders, or the dress and book they 'gave' me for christmas (a real classy move).
luckily, this is not the end of the story. in fact, it's only the beginning, a rough start to a charmed journey. within an hour of their nauseating public display, i was invited to live in a mansion, for as long as i'd like. free. when a door slams hard in your face, a great big one is likely to open wide right behind you. my new and awesome friends live in a house up on the hill with 360 degree views of hilo and the ocean, a 7 acre property with an enormous lawn, bursting fruit trees, and a trampoline to bounce on and watch the sunset. the house is huge, with 7 bedrooms (one of which is mine with a private entrance, large lanai, cheetah print carpet, four poster king size bed, 4 hundred feather pillows and gold gilded oak furniture), a sewing room stocked with the most elaborate fabric, a grand piano, a massive open kitchen/living/dining room, an ohana downstairs in grotto style with an elegant home theater and sets of french doors opening out on the lawn, all for the enjoyment of us, the people who live here. all utilities are paid, including cable and internet, and all we have to do is mow the lawn--granted it's 12 hours on the riding mower every 2 weeks, but between 3 people, that's nothing. the owner of this house is a wealthy lady who lives on the mainland and is trying to sell the place, but in this market, it's just not that easy to sell a house like this. until then, my friends get to live here and take care of it. and now, so do i. talk about a soft landing from a hard blow. now, instead of just surviving in a cockroach ridden scarcity complex, i get to relax in the lap of luxury until my cabin is ready, or until something better comes along. i'm not ruling out an utterly amazing happening in the next few weeks.
as the days go by, i gain more and more perspective on the situation, and while i know what i did was rude, i don't regret it. i am sad that i am not evolved enough to have prevented this situation by earlier honesty with myself and others. i am sorry i hurt them, that was never my intention. i am still confused as to why this got so blown out of proportion. but i am glad to have a clean break, i don't want to be their friend anymore. i have seen enough.
in the end, i think we all get what we deserve.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

going down south

a lone excursion turned into a family affair, the kids and parents joined my day or rather took it over. it's not awful, but i'd really rather be alone. i am critical of their parenting, lack of discipline, and what i see as general boringness, but there are moments of pure heart, nuggets of beauty in their punk rock mess. i don't know what it would have been like to have parents such as these. i'm grateful for how i was raised, even as i thank my lucky stars i'm not still there with them. solid conservatives, my parents could always be counted on. i never worried about how they would react, never wondered what hell would rain down on me if i got caught, i knew.
this discontent boils down to my not wanting to be here doing all the chores anymore. it sucks to live in such chaos, trying to make order out of it, but not really being allowed to make change. they don't want change, and i don't want to live in insanity. which is why this arrangement works so well--i stay here as long as i can stand doing things their way and when i can't stand it anymore, i get my own place. i don't mean to paint them as difficult, really they're just different. i like peace, quiet, order, calm, clean, relaxing, private. they have two young girls who get and later destroy every toy ever made, play rock band till all hours, like punk rock, and never do the dishes. it's not a great fit, and is therefore temporary.
knowing that i have my own little cabin waiting for me on february first is both wonderful and frustrating. i want to be there now, cleaning, sweeping, playing beautiful music, pulling weeds and growing vegetables. i want to wear prairie outfits, baking bread and blending essential oils. i want to start 'songbird herbs and oils', my new cottage industry, putting labels on little brown bottles and dreaming up ways to put magic in them...
but today, i'm still in this life, and my new favorite thing is is is......snorkeling! we went to punalu'u black sand beach where the sea turtles hang out eating seaweed and sunbathing, and i borrowed a snorkel to get an underwater look. amazing, these creatures are incredibly beautiful, their shells covered in sea moss, they look like moving rocks from afar, then up close they eye you and subtly keep their distance while still managing to not be standoffish. i was touched, her arm a perfect paddling device gently brushed my thin skinned fin, and she looked back, nonchalant, then floated on.
hours passed, the tide rose and we continued on to south point, the southernmost tip of the united states. there were fishermen and fisherwomen, local boys with tattoos jumping off the old boat pulley, 50 feet down into the deep turquoise ocean. california girls doing it too, and climbing up the rusty ladder back to the top to go again. i wasn't so brave, and besides i was too wrapped up in the sinking sun, glittering across the blue miles, making my hair lighter, my skin darker, my heart happier.
on the ride back i nodded peacefully, barely noticing the vog and the asinine lyrics of sublime in my ears.

Monday, January 12, 2009


yesterday was magic. it all started when i rounded the corner of the house in the morning heading toward my little toyota. the mist was just clearing as the sun pushed up through the trees, my shoulders bristled slightly in the 62 degree chill, and i was arrested by the piercing look of a full grown owl resting on the fence right beside my car. i fumbled for some words, an introduction or explanation, anything, but my mouth felt like an obstacle to communication, so i just shut up and stood there. minutes ticked by, my lips parted in awe. and eventually the owl turned his head, opened his wings and took off northeast, dew flying from his feathers. a warning? an omen? a message? i wondered, and settled on a message of a new direction. things would be changing this day, i should be alert for other signs.
as i mentioned in my last post, my social self was born again, my sense of belonging solidified. and then today, a gift was given to me. a place to live, well within my means, on several acres of well tended land, with fruit trees, richly soiled garden beds waiting, and an octagonal cedar cabin all to myself appeared out of the ether. the lack of obstacles astounded me. is life supposed to be this easy? i did not hesitate. the place is mine on february first. freyja's gonna be a happy kitty!
i bought a twelve pack of beer to celebrate. cleaned house, drank, ate, planned a day out to south-point tomorrow, the only place i haven't been on the island. from what i'm told there are turtles galore, dolphins, and quite possibly other more deadly sea creatures about. the aloha has found me, i am here, i am sooooo happy!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

i'm famous

just by working at the 'natch', i've become a fixture in the community. at least it feels that way today. i went to a co-worker's birthday party and brushed up my swing dancing while falling in love with a woman, whoops i forget, but i can't forget her california legs and that long blond hair. i'm making it a personal goal to get in as good of shape as she is by the time i'm her age. i have a good ten years, but it's a long way to go. she was seriously hot, drawing all kinds of attention without trying, and has now become my role model.
the town was abuzz because the electronic music festival was going on and all day i saw kids in the store with their super cute clothes, dyed hair and smiles. after work i saw many of the same kids on the street, and they all loved to say hi to me, the girl who works at abundant life. i was given a ticket to the show, and all through the night people were coming up to me, recognizing me from work, and introducing themselves as if i had some intrinsic value because i'm the produce queen. i even saw some of the vendors i've been working with. it was cool to be noticed. it feels like my social circle is forming, and i'm much more relaxed about the whole thing. no longer feeling weird and alien. i'm just another spider weaving her web.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

today this stuff happened

today i got up before the sun, quietly put on clothes and made a hemp protein and maca (an amazonian superfood) shake, grabbed my leftovers from 'the garden snack club', a exquisitely delicious and tiny thai place where i ate last night and headed out in the cool morning to work. i have a regular schedule now, tuesday through saturday starting anywhere from 6:45am to 8:30am and getting off eight and a half hours later. i sort of like it. once there, i'm nearly an old hand, everyone greets me and lets me go about my business. i guess they trust i know what to do, and in a relative way, i do. i place the order for the mainland produce, i receive deliveries from local vendors, i stock the produce case and make it pretty, i rearrange the walk-in cooler a million times. i talk to customers about herbs and colon cleansers and (yes, this is true) the fact that there is no supplement that can replace the need for water.
on my lunch break, i intersected with a character i couldn't quite believe was real. a pirate. he was about 80, one regular leg, one peg leg--not wood but modern materials like steel and rubber, a golden hoop earring, a tattoo on his forearm, and a parrot, yes a parrot on his shoulder. he struggled to get out of his SUV but managed to heave himself up on the curb and then turned to me and asked if the tattoo shop was open. i said i didn't know, but i'd find out and knocked on the door. it was ajar, so i opened it and he thanked me as the tattoo guy came on the scene. the fact that he didn't have an eye patch assured me this was no costume. real talk.
when i got off, there was still daylight left so i decided to go for a run, but first i checked my po box and found another letter from my jailbird love. i was surprised because it was only a few days ago that i received one from him. i parked beside the huge banyan tree by the federal building and went to read my letter in the privacy of it's many folds. i want to quote a passage, but in fairness to him, i won't. it is enough to say that he wrote this letter as the year began, looking out on his barbed wire view, his cavernous heart poured out on the page for my pleasure. oh yes, he does stimulate my dramatic side, it's fundamental to romance, and this is by far the most romantic 'thing' i've ever had.
i went for a run, i did all the dishes, and then i cooked a breadfruit--one of the awesome things that grow on trees here. i'm tired, i'm working, i'm dreaming up my next incarnation.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

i hit a clearing

i know a place where the wind is as strong as the stillness, where the sun is fierce as if always threatened that the night sky will outshine him, and the roots don't run deep, they just cling to rocks. time ticks slowly and everything is old. plants grow defensively, holding fast to their rations, daring nocturnal creatures to risk their skin for a sip. where footprints disappear along with laws the further out you go, and a soul is laid bare like the bleached bones of cattle left to sink slowly in the shifting sand.
whatever jungle or city or mountain or forest i race to explore, though beautiful and absorbing, never calls me back like home. the desert, that howling dog, always haunts me.
my father and i had a conversation not long ago wherein we conjured a relationship between ourselves and plants, asking which plant best represented us. i came up with a scrub pine for him, because he stubbornly grows year after year in harsh conditions simply because he wants to and he likes the place he's planted. (my mother calls him the mighty oak, but she's in love with him you know). for me, he said, the tumbleweed, riding winds to new locales just because i can, never knowing where i'm going. at the time, that seemed obviously appropriate, and now even more so in a broader sense because the tumbleweed can go anywhere, yes, but where does it belong? and where does it grow and reproduce?
i was told this hawaii trip was a vision quest, a mountain to climb from where i could see my path with perspective. i'm only a little way up the mountain, but already i can see things invisible just weeks ago. i will continue to climb knowing my home is not at the top of the mountain, but can only be realized in the journey.

Monday, January 5, 2009

i have an idea

ever get weirded out in your own skin? i feel like i'm coming out of a really strange episode where i didn't feel human, more like an unknown and hated alien. like all my past mistakes were obvious to everyone i met and i couldn't find the redeeming value in my life. i should have done better, i could have been someone amazing. now i'm thinking back on the last week and wondering if i'm crazy? what makes me think i'm so unique and awful? aren't we all having an unknown and uncharted experience here in our earthly bodies?
anyhow, i'm in the light now, wiping away the tears and seeing with my trusty eyes. i may or may not have made an ass of myself to friend A. i just got macked by my housemate. i feel dead sexy because i've lost 5 pounds since i got here. it's a grab bag of nonsense these days.
i went to visit frey today in her quarantine closet. she's doing fine, it seems, and i wonder if i'll have a place for her when she gets out. i don't want to stay here in this house for long, it's not a tidy issue. what it boils down to is this--no one makes money on this island from a "job". it takes an entrepreneurial spirit to succeed, and i have an idea! i am going to open a booth at the farmer's market selling essential oils, herbs, and mini spa/massage treatments like facial steams and foot baths. i see a niche to be filled and i'm tired of working for peanuts. i may not make alot at the market, but it only costs 25 bucks a day to set up and i will be my own boss, it can't be worse than working for 9 bucks and hour. this is how i'm going to take island life to the next level. i'm thinking about what kinds of oils, tinctures and tonics i'd like to carry and i'm creating an inventory list. next i'll make a menu of services and in a few weeks i should be ready to get started. my very own very small business. yay.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

out with the old

in with the new. 2009 smiles on me, though i'm hungover and tired.
i found the perfect outfit to wear to the pirate themed party, on the day of the party, at the local farmer's market, from an awesome local designer, for a very reasonable price. you can't plan things like that. i drank a cup of kava, my drug of choice, before heading out to meet my new friends. smart thinking, i felt invincible, jamming to 80's tunes and ready to party. i arrived at the house of friend A, met a guy from latrobe (the town in PA where rolling rock is brewed), had a beer and assessed the attractiveness of friend A. we left for the party in one vehicle which smelled like crayons, drove up a gorgeous winding road cloaked in the secrecy of night to a place called hawi, at the northernmost tip of the island. the house was subtly magnificent, an old plantation house made of wood with many doors inside and out, broad windows, spacious enough to house a canoe containing a skeleton in the livingroom/dancefloor. music comfortably pumping through the large but simple rooms and spilling out three doorways into the soft grass covered grounds. the people greeted me with broad smiles, a handshake and a kiss on the cheek, a charming custom in these parts. i was not a stranger for long. before i located the bottle opener on the wall, i was trying to open my beer with a spoon when a tall drink of water saw my attempt and attempted to save the day. i let him. dimples kill me, i cannot resist them and why would i want to?
since i didn't understand the dynamic with friend A yet, i returned the flirtatious smile to my savior and lingered when he flashed his eyes at me. a brief exchange confirmed he was pleased to make my acquaintance, then i walked away to give him something to chase.
i met all kinds of people, a brit who rides triumphs, two sisters who were couchsurfing, a dog named guiness, a quirky dance partner, and some girls who were dressed for a mardi gras party. i felt like i had seen the house before, and when i found out the name of the host, it all became clear. when i visited the island last year, i had lined up a couchsurfing stay with him, though i never made it to that part of the island. i recognized the house from the pictures and description. how very small this island is.
the midnight hour arrived and friend A offered a kiss, though it landed more on my cheek, he was noncommittal. it did make me think that perhaps he was interested after all.
then the party really got rolling, and my savior was hunting me down. i would talk to him for a while, then walk away, he'd follow. he was kind of innocent which surprised me, and i couldn't deny there was chemistry happening, though something about him made me feel like i was 16. not altogether bad, but not where i want to be at 30. at one point he lured me out on the grounds to a garden shed with two other people who mysteriously disappeared. he kissed me in dramatic fashion, told me about his broken heart and how he just wants to be loved. standard issue young adult novel material, but i was tipsy enough to entertain him and just ate it up. i didn't want to disappear from the party for long, i needed to leave with friend A to get back to my car, so we wandered back. he asked me to stay, he offered to take me home, he might have even pleaded, but i had already made up my mind. i gave him my number, remarked offhandedly that he'd never call, and left with friend A and guy from PA.
once we were back at his house, friend A made a move. he was cute, it was late, and apparently his ambivalence dissolved. we embarked on an intentional kiss. i wasn't too sure about him, and i wasn't too sure about anything. i went to bed unsure how things would look in the morning. and sure enough, i'm still confused.
friend A regained his ambivalence, i went home and pondered the events of the evening, and then my savior called. from his parent's phone because his got shut off. he lives with them at age 25. again, not the worst thing in the world, but perhaps a sign of his immaturity. maybe he's not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but he certainly is pretty.