Hard to believe but I actually do these things and forget to post them. When I remember, it’s a week too late – even more – and so the posts just sit in draft mode. But I’m hoping to do it this week, which will probably be the first for 2016.
Yes, it has been so long because I took almost six months off wandering the halls of Facebook trying to be a romance author marketing her books (it was horrible, thank you for asking – I have to come to realize that I am primarily a blogger).
So, where was I? Oh, right, Share Your World, Week 26.
What’s your most memorable (good or bad) airplane flight?
It’s probably a tie between sitting in First Class on a flight to New York next to a retired violinist who worked with Isaac Stern, and years later, on another flight to New York, sitting in Coach next to a neurologist (“I’m a neurologist, not a urologist”) and talking about recent studies he was doing on the correlation of migraines and temporomandibular joint syndrome (TMJ syndrome) among people who used to wear orthodontic braces when they were younger, and he was open to exploring the benefits of massage therapy on said migraines and TMJ syndrome. Both of them made me wish the flight went longer than they did.
How many bones, if any, have you broken?
Knock on wood, none.
If you had your own talk show, who would your first three guests be? (guest can be dead, alive, famous or someone you just know)
Neil Gaiman, the late Frank McCourt, and the very late Charlotte Brontë
Make a Currently List:
Reading: A cozy mystery ARC (advance reader copy) of Drop Dead Handsome by M.C. Scott.
Watching:Game of Thrones Season 6 finale
Listening: My 6-year old telling me a story he wrote
I think I’m in love with New York, always have and always will. While a part of me will always love the wide open spaces of Southern California, there’s something about the energy of New York that I love – if you don’t include rush hour at the subway, that is. I’m sure if I were to live there for a period of time, I probably won’t be saying what I’m saying, but as an adopted daughter of New York, I like visiting the city that never sleeps as much as I can.
Last week, I did just that and it shocked me to know that it had been ten years since I was last here, staying in Ocean City for training and then a skip and a hop to the city and then back again.
This New York trip was different though. My brother planned majority of the itinerary, and whenever my brother plans an itinerary, expect no rest – I mean it. An example of my brother’s itinerary would include a trip to the Frick collection in the Upper East Side, and then to the Whitney Museum of Modern Art in the meatpacking district, by Greenwich Village, and then back up to the Midtown for the Lincoln Center by 8 pm, to see The King and I. My feet were literally killing me (and his, too) and by the time I straggled home, after delays on the subway, it was 1:30 am and I was grumpy. Actually I was grumpy because my phone was dead and I could have written down so many ideas and because I had brought along the smallest purse I had, it meant no little black book where I could have written something down. Not even a kindle to read something!
I also missed my car.
Oh, and did I say that we visited the Big Apple in the middle of a heat wave? With temps rising up to 94 degrees, it was hot and humid. Hotter still down in the subways where we were stuck waiting on platforms and then squeezing into already-packed subway cars. We’d have combusted if someone farted.
But one thing I noticed on this trip was that while the Californian in me was busy complaining, New Yorkers never did – or if they did, they did it as quietly as I did. Instead, they lose themselves inside their white headphones, chewing their gum and just minding their own business. When they arrive at their stops, they get up and go on their merry way.
On this trip, one of my cousins wanted to check in to just about every touristy landmark. And when I say “check-in” I mean, literally, just check-in, ala Facebook speak. She could just be at the entrance to the door of the Empire State Building and that was good enough to check in on Facebook that she was there. Was, being relative. But as long as it worked for her, that was fine with me, though it meant that we ended up in touristy places I’ve never really been to – like Times Square.
If I have been to Times Square in the many many times I’ve stayed in New York, I must have wiped it out of my memory because I can’t remember it. Or if I did go to Times Square, it wasn’t as crazy as it was when I went this time. There were topless, almost naked painted women with pasties covering nipples and the colors of the American flag their only “clothing” charging money for pictures with them. There were the Lady Liberty impersonators and horrible versions of Spider Man and Mickey Mouse. One day after our visit, the mayor wants to regulate said topless women and a debate is on. Anti-woman, pro-woman, that kind of thing. If the naked cowboy can walk around in just a hat and his underwear (and his guitar), then why not topless painted women. I do have to say, they got themselves some pretty good knockers…
One thing that made this trip more fun for me though was my iPhone. How I wish I had an iPhone back in the day, when I was much cooler – like hip and cool kinda cooler. These days, I’ve packed the pounds and the years, I don’t think so now, have been as kind as I thought. Next to my aunts, I look just as old sometimes, and it’s glaringly obvious that I am so not cool enough to be allowed entry into places like the Top of the Standard, even if I tried, like, really hard.
But back to my iPhone. My phone took amazing pictures and between my brother and I, I think we did pretty well. And then there’s social media platforms like Instagram and Twitter, where every recent picture is posted, though while I did post mostly my brother’s watermarked pictures, I waited till I was finally home to post mine.
Unfortunately, because of said iPhone, I probably spent less time talking to my relatives, even if I wasn’t alone in checking my Instagram feed every few minutes, or uploading latest pictures of some building or landmark. I did, for the first time since I’ve owned an iPhone, ran out of battery three straight days. That’s how packed our itinerary was, that by 3 pm, our phone batteries were dead.
But it was still fun. Hectic, but fun. And tomorrow, I’m buying one of those portable charging thingies…
Today I found your boarding pass tucked in an old book
Along with a receipt that told me how much you paid
And as you smile at me and give me that look
I remember it rained that morning, I remember the love we made
I remember how I wished you wouldn’t leave
I still remember every promise that you said
You told me not to cry and instead to believe
That tomorrow you’d be back again, warm in my bed
Fifteen years ago now since you made that promise
It’s been fifteen years since you returned
Every day since then you’ve been my solace
Every moment with you is a moment earned
For sometimes we have to fight for what we want
We have to take a stand no matter how afraid we feel
Fifteen years ago today, the memories still taunt
Fifteen years ago, we found the strength to heal
So I found your boarding pass tucked in a book today
It’s a reminder of a time so long ago
When we almost let our hurt take full sway
Before we hung on, held on, then let go.
You’re embarking on a yearlong round-the-world adventure, and can take only one small object with you to remind you of home. What do you bring along for the trip?
I’m not religious. I’m what you’d call a lapsed catholic who knows way more about Buddha and Celtic beliefs than how to recite the Our Father (if they ever stop updating it!). But if there’s one thing that I will bring on a year-long adventure to explore the world, I’d bring the rosary my mother gave me before I left home for good.
It smells of roses and is supposedly made from rose petals shaped into beads. Someone who went to Italy gave it to her and when I noticed that it still sat in the same container year after year, unused (she’s a lapsed catholic, too), I asked her if I could have it. I remember how she thought I’d choose jewelry, but no, it was a simple rosary for me – I’m low maintenance that way.
This little thing is the one thing that reminds me of home. I can’t even recite the rosary but I like feeling and smelling the beads. I like lifting it out of its circular container and then putting it back down, hear the soft sound that the beads and their the metal findings make against each other and the plastic.
If there’s anything that reminds me of home – the home where I grew up where we didn’t grow any roses for my mother and stepfather preferred orchids, it’s this simple rosary that after all these years, still smells of roses.
In this week’s photo challenge, share your take on the idea of room — it could be an actual room in your house, a favorite gallery in your local museum, a cubicle at work. You could also take this challenge in a more abstract direction, and show us where you feel like you have room — or lack it.
This was my first ever brand new car, and I drove it everywhere! It took me places I never thought I’d go and actually enjoy myself (you know, for a city girl), like up in the mountains of the Sierra Nevadas where you saw all the stars at night and hear the deer munching on the apples outside your window.
To me, the world was wherever I found myself in. If all else failed, there was always my mind palace…
Which takes me to the next picture I took while sitting in LA traffic right by the take off and landing strip at LAX. Though it might be a bit constricting inside that car, I always knew it would take me anywhere I’d want to go (within driving distance, of course).
The next picture is of the Taos, New Mexico skyline. I have so many other pictures of the skyline but this was the one I could grab quickly without having to reduce resolution in another program. This was in the outskirts of Taos, where people lived in earthships outside of the grid. All around us are sage brush and at night you heard the coyotes howling.
Another view of the sky, although this one has been cropped to center the walkway with the cross. Writing often means I’m cooped up indoors the entire time so getting outside is really important for me – even though I don’t get to get outside of the city as much as I’d like. But when I do, I go for places where I can see the sky and smell the trees.
One of my favorite rooms that I wished I could have spent more time in was this master bedroom at the Phoenix earthship, also in Taos. I loved the red adobe walls with mica that glistened.
It was so cool, temperature-wise, inside that room because part of the area where the bed is located is bermed against and partly under a hill of sorts, to keep it cool in the summer and warm in the winter. And oh, the bed was divine. I could have just written in that room all day – oh, and do other stuff, too, of course.
Is the sky much bluer over there
than it is here?
Will the wind still whisper its secrets
in my ear?
Do their smiles ring truer
than the ones I’ve always known?
Is the world really so different
now that I am grown?
Is the view more beautiful
from above than it is below?
Does the sea smell as glorious
as you keep telling me so?
I wish I could bottle it all up,
take it back home with me,
treasure it, remember it
carve it in memory
For as the years have gone by,
I seem to have forgotten
all the beauty life once showed me.
How could memory be so wanton?
So show me those places again,
take me there with you
I wish to see it all again –
the world I once knew.
I’ve discovered a few more blogs that interest me during this month of blogging A to Z. We’re almost on the home stretch and one more week, and we should be down to Z! Q was quite a challenge for me, that’s for sure, but as soon as I usually find something to write about, I then have to stop myself from writing a novel!
Anyway, which bloggers have I discovered today so far? Well, quite a few!
If Only I Had A Time Machine
For her A to Z challenge, she tackles historical events and a few of them are my favorites in history – from the Black Plague to the discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb!
Storey of Stories
Keith talks about the places he’s lived or visited for his A to Z Challenge.
Dianne posts about make believe fairy tale characters for her challenge, another one of my favorite topics!
So there you have the five bloggers participating in the A to Z Challenge who have caught my interest this week! It’s amazing all the places we get to visit, people we get to meet and things we get to learn just from visiting other people’s blogs!
If I were guaranteed not to fail at all, I would pack my bags and go on a grand adventure throughout Europe. I’d start with England, as this is the country that I’ve always wanted to go to since I was a little girl and after reading everything English in grade school. Then I’d be off to Ireland and Scotland.
Then I’d traipse through Spain, France, Germany, Denmark, Switzerland – goodness me, the list goes on.
Now I wouldn’t be backpacking through these countries though – nuh-uh. I’m not a backpacking kinda gal, as my friends have discovered each time they’ve tried to take me on such trips.
I can pitch a tent, yes. I can cook, if I really have to but I can’t start a fire if my life depended on it.
That’s why I’d really like to do this multi-city trip with some accommodations already set up. It doesn’t have to be five-star hotels every time. Little bed and breakfasts will do. In fact, I love them.
How long this would take and how much it would all cost I don’t really know.
And I guess those are probably the reasons why I haven’t done it yet. Because leaving a three year old at home so you can explore the world isn’t exactly an acceptable thing to do…
What about you? What would you like to do if you were guaranteed NOT to fail at all?