Saturday, June 30, 2012

Bicycle Bounty

One of the things that makes my heart sing with delight (sounds like this, "La la la, yo! WHooaaaa YEAH!") is a full bicycle rack. I love seeing them all filled up with bikes. I love it when the bikes overflow and are packed in.

I lived in Kenmore, town of 20,500 folks. Our library rarely has more than two bikes at a time there.

I'm now living in a town of 1,800 folks maximum. Definitely no more than that. Anyways, less than 1/10th of the population, yet, somehow we manage to fill our bike racks and at the library of all places.

I also like biking around town with others. We are... Nausicaä ____________. I forget our name. One thing I like about getting around on foot or with a bike is that it ups the likelihood of running into mates and everyone seems to be your friend.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Two to One to Twelve

Tent. Home. Elise's. Ally's. Lizzy's. Jo's.

This past week has taken me around Haines, quilt in tote, to sleep each night.

I've slept in cabins and cottages.
Tents and trailers.
A shed.

But, tonight I'm moving into a new home. I'll be joining eleven others. Nine short folks and two tall ones. Together we climbed rafters of a barn, ran up and down the grassy hill, greeted the chickies, fired off slingshots, practiced French, told knock-knock jokes, and nuzzled goats in the hour and a half I spent with them. I loved hearing them debate, at the dinner table, about which gender could yield the most goats milk when milking the goats and the interactions between siblings and the love and respect among all.

I'm excited to be a part of a family. Living with Andrew was fine, but I never felt that overwhelming sense of unconditional love from him. You know that feeling you have where you feel like, no matter what you do, someone's not going anywhere? For me, that's the family love I crave. By this family, I already feel loved.

Definitely more to come on my thoughts later. But, oh how stoked I am! It's going to be a very different experience for me. We're starting with just a two-week time to see how things go and play it by ear from there.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Things I Hear Kids Say In Haines

Overheard at the library...

Dad: You don’t have testicles, weirdo.
Little Girl [loudly]: You have testicles!
Dad: Yes I do.

Overheard at the park...

Girl: Goober! This is my princess castle!
Boy: My lab does not look like a castle. It looks like a giant building that smells like... cookies!

Girl [to her older sister to me]: I’m too shy to say this to her, but I want her to see how good I am pumping by myself.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Flop-Flip and Stupid Flowers and Letters on the Way

My brain is so flip flop that I'm posting pictures of these stupid beautiful beach flowers I saw.

I keep on thinking in absolutes to try and make life easier. I try and make it all bad and all good. My friend, Kyle, reminded me that there are middle grounds and that I can't dehumanize anyone and turn them into a label.

Kyle also reminded me that how I was thinking and going through things didn't change his opinion of me at all. He valued me the same altogether, regardless of where I was at.

I feel awful for flipping forward and back. I feel like I'm pushing away until I'm cut off so I don't have to. But, at least, in all of this, I'm me. Comfortably me. I'm back with the same comfortable securities that I'm used to dealing with. The ones that don't bring me down - just keep my feet on the ground.

I'm not going to try and write out the last two months like they weren't wonderful. Yes, I was confused and life was funky, but I was having a blast in there. True, something was ary, but there were a bounty of delightful lil' memories in there that I'm holding on to. There was more good than bad.

I don't know what to think.
But I know what I need to do tonight.

Life update - today was a short two hours day of work, yesterday and tomorrow are around 10 hours each. I walked around town. Wrote letters at SarahJ's. Did that hang out thing at my work. My work is in an old house so there's a giant living room and kitchen area I like to go to to just read and drink tea. Talked to Kyle for around 1.5 hours. I went to Jo's place and hung out with her and Fred and discussed all things lovely. Now I'm at the library and I think next, on my agenda, is to go see Miss Hannah. I've missed her.

Oh man. This life is so real!

P.S. Letters being posted SOO soon to folks like Hannah, Tucker, Sara, Sarah, Devi, Scotty, Eric, Barbara, Bryan, and Marni! I have to make some copies and I'll post them tomorrow.

I Took Time to Think

I spent the past few days staying at the cabin of a dear mate, Alice.

Alice is wise, vibrant, engaging, delightful, English and I think she’s Scottish too, or at least she’s lived there a lot.

And I let someone else take care of me. I let her make me tea and dinner. I let her give me the giant bed.

It was such a gift to me.

(I am painting out as if my old housemate didn't do things for me which is wrong - he did make me meals, he did help with dishes, he did help out a lot when asked

As was written, I was mentally in a strange place these past months. I needed to take time to get away from social constricts and obligations to develop some concrete ideas in my head again.

My first day I spent wandering the beach, laying on rocks and focusing on the wind, pieceing together dandelions with grass, exploring with a magnifying grass, writing letters, and reading the phonebook without shame.

A fence of dreamkeepers between a cabin in the trees and the sea, with the mountains pouring in on the other side. The perfect, calming warm breeze made me feel safe on the rocks and rushed to greet me each time I opened the door. The cross experience between the air and the cool water as I hand pumped it into a bucket at the well delighted me.

And, for hours, I let my mind wander down paths. I didn’t stop it from going where it wanted to go. Later, I had hours upon hour long discussion with Alice which opened my mind and finally helped me to understand.

I like spending time with Alice. She has a special mind that relates to my own.

Mägi Is Back

I’m coming back! Mägi is back!
My Mägi-self has returned... or is returning.

These past two months have been peculiar. I slipped into a state of wondering where I went and wanting myself back badly. I didn’t know what was wrong and all explanations didn’t fit enough to explain all ends. It was not right.

I didn't write publicly much about it, but I have pages of private text and notes as I tried to figure out what was happening.

I now have answers that at least satisfy, although I can never know if I’m 100% sure.

Upon moving out of the trailer, I’ve felt the same excitement towards life I’m used to. Emotions, once again, take me over completely as I laugh and clap in delight.

I’m back to somersaults mid conversation.

I feel like all the whimsy is coming back, at last. All of the magic.

My life had been in a weird state that felt dark. I felt like I had regressed to an peculi-younger, immature state.

Things are lining up again and my smile is genuine again.

I find myself staring in the mirror, looking myself in the eye - almost saying, “Welcome back, friend, I’ve missed you ever so much!”

I don’t think I ever want to go back. There was nothing there for me. I genuinely was loosing my sense of self and it was a dark place to be.

This Is My June Update

June 21, 2012

Sorry I haven’t been writing much. Life has busy-hectic with 40 hour weeks (this next week I’m working 57 hours, stoked!) and I’ve been dealing with some emotional stuff.

I guess this will just be something of an update post, like I would write to mates.

Life in Haines is, overall, good.

Tyler, Andrew, and I just moved out of the mobile home where we had stayed for two months. At the end of our time there, the general consensus was that we wished we could stay there and buy the place. It was the perfect home.

Home. That’s what that place was, for us. It felt like home. It was where we sat down and ate meals together. It’s where we slept each night, where we returned to after nights out. One thing I loved about the location, and Andrew especially, was that it was right by his work. He liked it because it meant a short commute - less than a minute walk. I liked it, though, because I got to see the gear trucks and buses go by. Andrew works with Chilkat Guides, they do rafting, and the gear trucks are what pull the rafts, paddles, life jackets, boots, and the works up to the put in points on the river. Anyways, I liked seeing them go by because it let me know when he or Andrew might be coming home so I could have a meal ready in time. The bouncy clanking sound of the gear truck is distinct and always got me excited because it meant that Andrew was coming home. I always like having something to look forward to.

It’s weird thinking back to the first time I met Andrew and Tyler. If I leaped back to the first time they asked me to dance and I said, “Yo, you’re going to end up going to Alaska and living with them there and be in a band with them,” I think I would’ve laughed. Then again, that’s my reaction to most things.

So, now we don’t have a home until the beginning of July, when we move up the hill from where we are now. We found a two bedroom basement with affordable rent. In the meantime, we had planned on just all moving around or camping out. Andrew and Tyler are stealth camping and I’m hopping from home to home. I want to camp, but bears are a reality and I’m not sure what I’d do if I encountered one. The other night I was going to sleep outside but there was a bear right next door so I was advised to sleep inside.

Last night I was at Elise’s. Tonight at Ally’s. And then, the person who is currently renting where we’re moving to said that I could take the spare bedroom in that house when I wanted. So, I might move there a bit early and settle in.

I love all the letters I’ve been getting! Sara, Scotty, Hannah, Alex, Marni, Melanie, and Tucker. I am writing back, I promise! I feel horrible it’s taken me so long. Quite a few are ready to go. I’ve just been super busy with work and band practice.

So, emotional stuff? I made a huge mistake at the beginning of my time in Haines and am now paying for the consequences. I’m not going to go into details. However, it did get bad enough to the point where I was loosing my appetite, had headaches and stomach aches all the time, and wanted to go back to Seattle. Andrew said that going back wasn’t an option, though, so I’m still here. As he put it, “You can’t leave. You love Haines and Haines loves you.” Something like that. He was kinda right -- I love this Haines place... a lot.

I’ve only been in Haines for a little over two months and I rather like the town. No, it’s definitely not the Seattle I adore, but it’s a pretty rad place. I’m finding people to connect with and adore my job. I love the size and how easy it is to get from one place to the other. I love how well it takes care of me. I mainly miss the Seattle dance scene. Oh how I miss it!

I just calculated, yesterday, and it seems that at least eight mates of mine will be visiting me in Haines! Alex, Scotty, Eva, Emily, Pam, Bill, Nate, and Kurt will all be here at some point in July or September.

My boss at my job just asked if I wanted to work full time. I’m currently still in the process of considering it. I think I might. The thing is, they want me to commit to staying here through November and I’m not yet sure if I can, or want, to do that. I just crunched some numbers and it looks pretty ideal. With that money saved up, I could easily spend a year traveling around. I could go to Scotland, easily, for three months and live there. I could visit Switzerland and the Netherlands. I could go to the east coast and explore around.

This is insane. I am living in Alaska.

I never really wanted to live in Alaska - Kentucky, Maine, and Austin sooner caught my eye. I never even really thought about what that would be. I never thought through what Alaska is. But, then I stare at a map and realize I’m quite a ways from home. Besides insurance, I am 100% independent (isn’t that how it should be?). It’s a relief to not be a financial burden on my parents any more. They don’t have to pay for my food. They don’t have to worry about me at night (although, I know they still do). Once again, they have an empty house, just as they did for three months in 2009 and four months in 2011. I am working to create a “financial cushion” so I can get myself started in another city or wherever I might want to go. I want to be prepared for at least three months of living, before I go someplace. In Seattle, I was making only $120 a week - not enough to save up much. But, at his point, I will definitely be ready to leap around as I wish. Maybe go from contra dance camp to contra dance camp. If I find a place I like, I can stick around. Or, in the long run, perhaps I can save up enough to afford university.

And just as abruptly as this began, this post is over.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

I Can't Grow a Beard

Sometimes I get jealous of dudes and the fact that they get to have facial hair.

That stuff is great. It's textured and fun to feel and varies so much from man face to man face.

I also am intrigued by how much it can change a face.

From lumber-jack-esque to creepy to scary to friendly to responsible to bizzare.

I remember the day my fiance came home from Whistler with his gruffly face shaved into a creepy handlebar mustache. You know those times when you react and it's pure reaction - you don't have time to come up with something to do. Well, when he came home, I believe I shrieked and hid my face. Was not expecting that at all.

Changes in facial hair can be rather dramatic experiences....

Let me leave you with a song from my high school years by Natalie Portman's Shaved Head. I now present to you...

Oh man. Those high school years. I definitely remember singing this one... a lot.

Look at my facial hair
(Oh man, hot damn, it's everywhere, Where'd you get that beard?)
I grew it
(How do you keep it so clean?)
I shampoo it

I really wish I could grow a mustache (Why don't you?)
Well, frankly, I don't have the cash 
You gotta take care of your facial hair 
Otherwise it gets scruffy and bare 

Trim it, cut it, comb it, style it 
Clean it, and scent with violet 
Love it, but don't get violent 
Rub it, but not in public 
Eat with it, but don't get messy 
The only rule is keep it classy

Oh goodness... high school. Did any of the guys even have facial hair back then?
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