hello somewhat neglected blog. hello space in my life to wake up whenever my body decides it wants to. no jarring alarm required. hello luxury of sitting still and quietly on a sunday morning. making a breakfast of organic 8 grain hot cereal to start my day.
it’s not that i haven’t loved and enjoyed the frenzy that has been my life since the begining of this new year but i am ready to get my life back in order. to have some semblance routine. to sleep at decent hours and not wake up with my jaws clenched together.
the next few weeks i’m gifting to myself. i’m going to be somewhat selfish i guess when it comes to being accessible to others. but i know that my friends understand why my phone may be turned off, why a call isn’t returned promptly and why on a sunday i may not get out of my pajamas because i just want to create art or read or write or think without the pressure of having to see someone, or be somewhere or doing something.
i’m excited to have some breathing room. and as i write this it is all very familiar because i’ve written it before. it seems to be a theme with me: constant movement and momentum and then a crashing and recentering. i guess i need to find a consistent middle ground. or not. perhaps it’s okay to just go with the ebb and flow and not fight it either way.
1. dear bright grass green hoodie from h&m, i adore you. you are never put away for long because you are indispensible. when i am wearing you i feel safer somehow. and definitely closer to spring and sunshine and lying on grassy hills staring up at clouds moving across blue skies.
2. trusty mac ibook, i know you are now practically ‘retro’ at four years old…and i’m sorry i keep eyeing up the pretty mac air. we both know that eventually i’ll have to upgrade to a fierce mac powerbook but this past year you have really been a life saver. silent, dependable and practical you are an essential part of my day.
3. fan in my bathroom, please don’t take it personally…it’s not just you – i don’t like the sound of any fans. and if it makes you feel better i don’t like overhead fluorescent lighting either. that is why i neither turn you or the light on when i shower in the morning. all that unnecessary noise just grates on my nerves. i know you perform an important function and in summer months i would succumb to your annoying sound because i didn’t want to invite mould to come in, take a seat and completely take over the bathroom. but now, in these winter months, i refuse and we are doing fine without you.
4. ipod ear buds that came with my ipod, i need you to provide more bass. now two sets i have purchased have ‘broken’ and there is a minor (yet majorly annoying) buzzing sound when the volume is up too high. i’m sure i could go and get other earphones with the capacity for more bass but i wanted to stick with the theme.
5. grey zip up hoodie with silver detailing from french connection, WHERE did you go? you were my favorite and for the last six months you have disappeared. i have searched everywhere to no avail. did someone borrow you? did i leave you in london? are you mixed up in m2′s clothes? it is such a mystery to me. and i’m trying to be detached – afterall you are just an item of clothing but the problem is i really liked you. it was one of those love at first sight things. i couldn’t not have you – even though you were ridiculously overpriced. i wore you practically every other day in melbourne. and now i miss you. come back please.
6. fridge magnets, i’ve never been a big fan of you and it is probably just a phase (because i’m generally anti clutter) but this year i’ve developed quite a collection of you. i love the square inspirational quote magnets from wholefoods that prop up polaroids of dear friends, a shot of me at 3 years old cutting into my birthday cake and another of me looking out of a cafe window in perth. both pictures show me smiling and happy. a reminder that joy is always a decision. there is a new zealand magnet that makes me smile and together these all collaborate to give our kitchen a point of interest. a collage of things and people important to me.
7. speaking of new zealand, yesterday i received a beautiful mirror in the shape of new zealand COMPLETE with stewart island!) it is so very cool. i am completely smitten by it. as i opened the gift i nearly cried and it’s not hard to understand why when you read an extract from the note that accompanied it – ‘hopefully you’ll look at this and have good memories, and see the New Zealand in you staring back at you, you’re always close to home and those who love you’. *sigh*. exhibit seven hundred and eighty six that i have the most amazing friends in the world.
8. j.a.henkles knife set, i didn’t grow up in a household that had a fancy wood block knife set. the khozouei’s knives didn’t really function, let alone match. they were for the most part dull and difficult. being introduced to you was a little life changing and my care for you is testament to this. i don’t put you in the dishwasher because i want to keep you sharp for as long as possible. when certain posessions were halved and removed you were allowed to stay with me because even F could see the attachment that had formed. two or three of you will always be on the countertop waiting to be handwashed because i use you daily. i have never tried sharpening you, even though you came with a tool that i could use to do that. but i’m not going to mess with that. the best reason is that as marabeth has experienced i’m not the most careful with knives and sharp objects, so the chances are i’d lose a digit. and having a nub is no fun.
9. lip glosses, this is an open letter to you all. i keep purchasing you in all your different varieties and now i feel like i might have more lipgloss than one pair of lips could ever need in a lifetime. you are in my car, pockets of my jackets, and all over my room. some tinted, mostly plain. i think i need to stop but then i see you and now you come in pretty decorative tins or have brands like ‘kiss my lips’ and flavors like ‘mandarin chai’. how can i resist?
10. bright electric blue wallet made of eel skin, you have been a trusty companion. i purchased you in melbourne – decided to not be sensible and buy you in black and i’m so glad i didn’t. you are soft to touch and i think you are getting better with age. you have some water stains from the time i didn’t shield you from the rain but i still think you are beautiful. you are my favorite color. the color of the mediterranean in my head. the color that complements bright orange.
11. pink polaroid cool cam, you rock. i’ve had so much fun with you lately and i am so glad you entered my world in all your cool cam glory. i love that it is always a surprise with you. i can’t just hit delete and try again. but somehow every photograph you take is perfect. i wish your film was less expensive and i wish that you were more convenient to carry around. but you will be a life long friend and always treasured.
12. funky white teapot, for a person who is as tea-loving as i am it is odd that i waited all this time to buy the perfect teapot. but perhaps it was because i felt like teapots were only necessary when you needed to serve many when in fact they are perfectly useful for just one. your handle is a work of art, you have clean lines and a beautiful shape. i place tea leaves inside – mixing and experimenting and that way i don’t have to worry about a teabag messing up my tea drinking experience – having to monitor it and watch that the paper end doesn’t fall into my cup. i hate when that happens.
13. harmonica in the key of G, okay i know that i had great hopes for the two of us. i was very excited when i first purchased you. but you ended up being a lot harder to play than i anticipated. i can make noise. that’s not the problem. it just doesn’t sound like the blues or jazz or anything remotely related (read: cool). the sounds that come out are more akin to irish jig music. think riverdance. yeah…not exactly what i was going for. so you sit in my drawer and i still believe one day i’ll take lessons and be a blues harp savant…but not today.
ladan came to visit me last week. her first time in the states and she ventured to nashville. brave girl. i LOVED having her here…it was surreal to be sitting in a cafe with her as it felt like i was back in melbourne. we don’t skip a beat. after a year of meagre communication we just picked up where we left off. the week overflowed with fun, mutual understanding and honesty with a dash of mechanical bull riding. i miss her already.
i’m sitting at my table. i love this table. it is made with bamboo and dark wood. it seats four comfortably but could happily have eight squished around it, elbows rubbing together, sharing in love, laughter, a nice meal. i’d like to do that just once before i leave this apartment. have a dinner party. maybe ‘fancy dress and funnel cakes’ will be the theme.
david gray ‘shine’ filling the air.
it is a beautiful song.
it might be one of the songs that goes on my 2008 soundtrack.
once f made us two compilation cd’s. they were titled ‘soundtrack for the interstates’. he created the covers using ticket stubs and photographs and bits and pieces from our roadtrip together across country. i knew the entire order of the songs on these cds. there wasn’t a song i’d skip. it reminded me of sunshine. steering with knees. feet up on dashboard. breakfasts with entirely too many calories at cracker barrel.
and i wonder, what do you do with these things? the photographs and cards and emails and notes and gifts? the vase you purchased together in new york city. the prayer book inscribed with both names. the tangible reminders of something that no longer exists.
i’ve thought through the options. i’m thinking it all might be gathered in a box. to be buried. that might be the gentlest, kindest resolution.
marabeth just made us her speciality drink. it’s endearingly called ‘nut nog’ and it is heavenly. it is comfort and contentment in liquid form.
hot steamy almond milk blended with natural peanut butter, agave, cinnamon…mmm
sugar free & chocolate free. and yet perfectly delicious.
jen jack rabbit has been by my side since saturday noon. i love the fact that on friday we talked about the possibility of her flying in for the weekend and the next day there she was. twinkling eyes, four inch red heels and all. it’s been so great having her here. the three of us spent practically every evening together when we lived in haifa. now, nearly eight years later, the dynamic has not changed at all. complete openess, love and tender care. we are soul sisters. fluid and easy. conversation flows. silences never awkward. actions never premeditated. like the blood in my veins these two women are intrinsically part of me. part of my journey.
ladan flies in tomorrow night. i am already looking forward to curling up on the couch and catching up on the twelve months since we saw each other last.
you say you’re proud of me.
i’m not entirely sure why.
but everytime you say it, i believe you.
thank you for your words.
my heart felt better afterwards.
i have decided that it is okay to spend money on things i love. like the journal i purchased over the weekend. it was perhaps overpriced but had a soft suede green cover with silver embossing. it is so beautiful that the words i will fill it with do not do justice to it’s exterior but that’s okay. when i look at it i see beauty. i want to fill my life with more beauty. it is coming. candles were a brilliant start. more to follow.
i would like a book to get lost in. or a recommendation of a book i can get lost in.
a good story.
please submit ideas :)
tonight jen drew a bird. the operative word being ‘drew’. she never claimed to be an artist. and let’s face it, birds are not easy to draw on the best of days. but anyway her efforts in rendering a bird caused me to laugh so much that my stomach hurt and tears spilled down my face. this weekend also had me lying on the floor of a dressing room in a fancy botique trying to do up a pair of jeans that were definitely a size (or three) smaller than what i needed. i looked up into the faces of my two friends laughing with me and i didn’t want to be anywhere else, doing anything else.
moral of the story – laughter is good. need more of it in my day.
• Tea bags bursting open when I pour the hot water in resulting in tea-leafy-tea.
• Folding up all laundry to find that one mateless sock. I know this must be the most generic pet peeve but it happens to me all the time. WHERE does the other one go?
• The phrase ‘pet peeve’. It’s just sounds awful to me.
• For that matter I’m not a big fan of socks either.
• Making a spelling mistake on a birthday/greeting card and having to figure out whether it will look worse to cross it out or cover it up with white out (“twink” – oh New Zealand lingo how I miss thee).
• Ordering an extra hot latte and it arriving lukewarm.
• Lukewarm food. I want it scalding hot.
• Burning the roof of my mouth because of the aforementioned need to eat only scalding hot food and beverages.
• Voice messages where the message is just “hi. it’s me. call me back”. If you called me your number will show up on my phone and so I will call back. If you leave me a voice mail with that redundant message I might procrastinate on the call back because of my intolerance for such messages.
• Chocolate cake in the staff room the day I decide that finally today is the day I’m cutting out sugar
• Missing the mail man and getting one of those notes that you have a parcel but you have to pick it up during some designated hour at a post office that you didn’t even know existed. It’s heartbreaking to me.
• Leaving water running full force while you brush your teeth. I can’t handle the waste.
• The fact that ‘I before E except after C’ has exceptions. I always get this wrong.
• When my seatbelt has a mind of its own and doesn’t move with me and so strangles me as I turn to look at the ‘blind spot’
• Blind Spots. who needs ‘em?
1. my MRI results coming back normal. no tumor in my brain. let’s celebrate.
2. all the friends that called/sent me texts to make sure i was okay. i am sorry to have worried you. thank you for thinking of me and for being so wonderful.
3. hot water bottles. so comforting. i hate cold feet in bed. when we were little we were obviously raised by parents too frugal to purchase multiple hot water bottles so my mum actually made us hot water bottles using 2 litre coke bottles, filling them with hot water (that would sometimes melt the plastic) and then wrapping them in old woolen blankets or socks. they served a purpose i guess but in the morning they would be cold hard bottles of water at our feet.
4. the ‘safety glasses man’ icon on skype. and the person who always uses it when we chat.
5. hot water with lemon and honey
6. agave. (honey reminded me that agave is my new favorite sugar substitute).
7. h20. in general. in all forms. ocean. water i drink every day. rain. especially rain storms. clouds. waterfalls.
8. mac products (not the make up line – though that is pretty cool too). have you seen the new ‘mac air’. swoon. i want one.
9. my mixed tape maker mm. so much good music has entered my world in the last two months.
10. road trips. these are essential.
11. american idol auditions. okay i know, i know…this is like the lowest common denominator form of tv. and this coming from a girl who heckles people that watch ‘lost’ or ‘heroes’…i have to admit i have a weakness for the auditions…no matter how contrived.
12. air travel. which will bring me my friend ladan in a handful of days. i have to figure out what we will do for her week in nashville. so far my plans consist of finding a place where we can go mechanical bull riding. yikes.
13. brunch. it’s just such a great meal. not breakfast. not lunch. leisurely and delicious. brunch at marche is top of the list. they make their french toast with croissants! how can you go wrong with that?
14. fruit. which reminds me, did you know you can get freeze dried mango? mm sent me some and i’m swiftly becoming obsessed with astronaut food.
16. fessenjoon in a jar that i found at the persian food store.
19. hot air balloons. i really want to go on a hot air balloon ride this year.
20. second chances
22. getting to live and work with one of my best friends
23. my new zealand citizenship
24. music and the people that create it.
25. being adopted by other people’s parents since mine are too far away.
26. most of all, at 1.26 a.m. i am grateful for the abundance of hope and happiness i feel right at this moment.
today i had my first (and let’s hope only) MRI. it was not a good experience. i am not claustrophic. or at least i wasn’t before i had the MRI, but perhaps now i am a little. i had to stay very still. i tried to block out the loud noises and the cold steel. i don’t understand why the process involves the soundtrack to ‘construction work on a busy street’ but that is how it sounded. a cacaphony of clanging and jarring drill sounds. i closed my eyes and tried not to focus on the fact that i needed to sneeze. you can’t ‘out think’ a sneeze i guess. so i did sneeze and in doing so slammed my forehead against the cage that surrounded my head. unpleasant.
today i did not know who to write as my ‘emergency contact’. that moment was probably the one of the most lonely moments i’ve ever felt.
today i read your short story and it made my heart heavy because i received a glimpse of what you are feeling. the weight of it all. the chance for error. the desire to do this right. the hoping and praying that it will all be resolved. that hearts can be mended and hurt healed. i thought it was a beautiful piece of writing. thank you for sharing it with me.
today i decided not to eat any more sugar.
tonight i shared a slice of triple berry almond crust cheesecake. it was delicious.
so much for that decision.
today she asked me if australia has beaches.
i tried not to be annoyed by the question.
but i was.
today i realized how much i miss healthy touch.
the spa treatments that mm organized for me were exactly what i needed.
i felt loved and incredibly grateful.
it was the perfect gift.
today i was deeply touched that you asked me to call you next week to let you know the results.
i would happily adopt your family as my own.
today i saw your bright blue eyes and was reminded of how much fun we have together. and how easily we make sense to each other.
prague. possibly one of the most beautiful cities i have ever explored. it was like stepping inside one of those old hardcover children’s story books that are beautifully illustrated, full of detail and color and gold leaf highlights, and then walking through its pages. the buildings were elaborate, the streets lined with trees and cobblestones. castle in the distance. we kept spinning around wondering if it was real or some fantastical stage set that if you peered behind you would see was held up by scaffolding.
to this day we could both order for each other. that is habit i suppose. you look up for a minute and i tell the waitress what you want as the words escape you momentarily. and there is symmetry and beauty in that single act. and as i order hot water in a mug. miming the word ‘mug’ you repeat it. and it’s like we didn’t miss a beat. another restaurant. another meal shared. it could be any night in seven years.
we talk without pause. always a very even exchange. both interested in what the other has to say.
it’s always been this way. your eyes cast different light however. something has been released. some fire or fury.
the genuine care we have for each other is palapable and makes this. even. harder.
we both have hope. and we talk of futures and the day it will all be official and whether it will feel any different to the day before.
“i didn’t want it to turn out this way”
i can only mouth “i know” and look away.
confusion over how it came to be like this. and you wish clarity for me and i truly wish it for myself too.