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It is this knowledge that I would like to take with me to my next lifetime. It is knowing that I alone am responsible for my own happiness. It does not have to be grand and lofty, and all I need is a bit of patience and eyes that really look. It gives me great hope that things like the smell of oranges are enough to make me feel joy. Wind playing with my hair. Dancing alone at home, music only I can hear. Chocolate chip cookies with just the right amount of chewiness. Baby laughter. Bliss in small things.
A few years back I was at this same space, at this same time, thinking of a hundred ways to prolong what I wanted to say. In shorter spurts, my thoughts have to be used to being condensed, to being in a tiny space for a given amount of time. They have to be confined to being a glimmer of a part of me, some semblance of organization in this busy life. I would like to remember that it is I who gave myself these boundaries and it is I also who can claim them as gifts or burdens to myself.
I donít feel so far away from my dream life, the kind that I dreamt Iíd be having when I had a younger soul. Back then I envisioned my life as something to be shared with someone close to my heart. That someone apparently loves Archie comics and reading as much as I do. Years later I would realize how simplistic my grandiose plans were, and Iíd be surprised by how close I am back then to having all that in a snap. The yearnings I have now are still the same, except for the Archie part.
Tempestuous weather lately. There's no saying whether today will be a whirlwind romance with my broken down pink wellies, a-splashing in dirty city puddles, or a sweltering hot summer day with just enough nostalgia for beach trips. Sometimes I am afraid of speaking ill about Mother Nature, with her the walls have ears, and I never know when she is in the mood for some loviní or an angry hale of PMS. How I wish we could spend one beautiful day together, watching the changing colors of the sunset while the wind lingers nearby, at our beck and call.
We have to do it all over again, start from scratch until weíve reached the pinnacle of this relationship. What we thought was simplistic tended to be an exaggeration, it really depended on us and our simple, beating hearts looking for some semblance of connection, a part of us in some other personís soul. Isnít this what we looked for in the first place? Someone to tell us yes, yes, that is correct, I thought so as well. But then we reach a point where x for me equals y for you and then the conflict starts.
Friday is my favorite day of the week. Iím a Friday worshipper. Had the concept of time not been invented, Friday would be nothing, but now it is a precious gift in my workplace. The feeling of the workweek ending becomes so exciting that I find myself lovestruck-giddy with more bounce in my steps, and more dance breaks in the bathroom. Iíve even assembled myself a T.G.I.F. playlist for maximum pleasure and anticipationóitís on loop the whole Friday, pasting a silly grin on my face. I feel hyper, excited, but strangely calm.
Do you call yourself a writer? How does it work? Does it matter if you have no readers at all? Would it matter if you have terrible grammar, or is it your personal style? Would you have books published, or is having a blog enough? Do you have to write things people love, and if they hate it, are you still a writer? What if I fancy myself a writer, but never wrote anything special? Does that still give me the license to brag about myself being a writer? Who gets to decide who writes well and who doesnít?
It was a reality that I would have to face sooner or later. I would have to grow up. Maturity isnít evident in age, after all. These years Iíve accumulated are enough to tell me how many days I should have spent trying to be the best me I could. Some blessed beings are able to do that as young as twenty, or even younger. I am grateful for the numerous blessings I have received, and I think they should be noted, how the Universe uses them as reminders of existence. Thank you, Universe for making me see.
I would like to create a story where we are not morsels, where we fly and float and stomp and strut. In this tale we would have the choice of having scissors for hands, sometimes knives and the very rare combs if someone desires it to be so. There would be the normal hands and there would be wings, of course, of course. The choices will vary from translucent shades of glass to gossamer sparkles for added flair. Paws and hooves will be part of our bodies, our vocabulary, teaching us to leap, roar, pounce, thunderous beating of our chests.
The few minutes of traffic led me to question the concept of time and lateness. Where would I have been if I woke up a few minutes earlier? What if I didnít do yoga or pilates today? What would have happened if I ate as quickly as possible? These decisions would have created a ripple in the time-space continuum, which is a word that sounds nice but is also confounding. If, for example, I woke up earlier and left earlier, would I be safe? Would my life be in danger? It really is interesting, this concept of time.
The future approaches me and fills me with mixed emotions. In an hour or so, life-changing moments can occur, what more in a year or five? I try and fit as much as I can in my virtual piggybank, but too often I feel that I should be spending it instead in the things that make me feel the most alive nowóbooks and food and moments to spend with people I love. But here I go, knowing that it is only I that I could trust, knowing that there is only now, yes, but tomorrow is another day.
Last night I dreamt of finding even more soulmates through the internet. It was something I look forward to, making new friends, albeit virtually. I woke up at around three a.m., and couldnít sleep despite several rounds of tossing and turning and then back again. It was at the start of dawn that my worries started creeping in. I couldnít relax so I turned on the computer and went to a different, better place. I read about these words people identify themselves with, ideologies summing up what they wanted from this lifetime. Mine is a lofty dream.
The start of a beautiful friendship, you could feel it. Some flower you hadnít encountered before in you, grows, unfurls each petal, blooms gently. There doesnít even have to be a coaxing. When two alike souls meet, everything goes smoothly. There are no awkward pauses, just comfortable, huggable silence. In the span of a day, I have met a kindred spirit, felt lighter and freer, despite being filled with new stories and ideas. The true test happens in that crucial second meeting, after the adrenaline rush from mutual giddiness lessens. Will we still have that spark of connection?
Iím a creature of desire to make habits, if such a creature existed. I am fond of starting projects, experiments, activities that I never get to finish. I wish I could say that I stopped because a better idea reached me, but most of the time, thatís not the case. I do not want to call it boredom because I firmly believe that I never get bored, with the plethora of activities and possibilities before me. The problem is usually my short attention span, the distraction of technology, with its appealing glittery webs and pirated treasures. It's irresistible.
Thereís this yearning in me to exhaustively study genres in music that I love so I can spew knowledgeably when I meet new people about why this genre is different from that. Perhaps this is caused by my meeting a smart young Ďun, so confident in her use of words, unapologetic about her passion. I envy her that passion. Years ago I believed I was like that as well, able to discuss whatever topic is thrown at me using intellect. Now I smile my way through conversations, eyes-a-glazed, wishing I could be alone, no questions to answer.
That Korean grocery is helping me be more adventurous, in terms of food and drink experimentation. There is that watermelon-shaped iced lolly, rich sheer red in color, artificial in taste but really high in aesthetic value. The seeds are nutty brown and taste like peanut chocolate, like that chocnut delicacy that only exists in my dear country. For the rind, a bright green artificially-colored ending, tasting like the sweetest of sugars, a sad finish. But the visual effect of this cold slice of watermelon is enough to make my day, each bite of the choco surprise a delight.
My adventure for today exists in a story. A friend expounded on the wonders of this curious drink they coined "rice juice". Barley? I asked. No, more like..rice juice, they answered. They said that barley IS rice juice, I told them. Is it sour? I asked, thinking of mango juice and pineapple juice. Usually juice means sour, right? But they answered, no, no, it tastes like you took a pot of rice and washed it. A month later, I'll recount this story to a friend. I have some in the ref! She replies. It tasted exactly like rice juice.
Iím still reeling from giddiness. Funny how words from strangers could affect the rest of the day, add some pep to my step. I believe that sometimes the answer to life is this: How our reason for living exists in one big picture only the maker can comprehend, how itís made up of millions of dots, a jumbo connect-the-dot puzzle. The connections we have with people make up the lines, each new connection bringing us closer to our destiny. We may not know it right now, but everyone around us helps up create that big picture.
Her latest wallpaper: A black and white photo of a beautiful cat. The cat is peering at me from a wall, saying so many unspoken things without even having to speak. Each time I pass by that station, I am filled with awe and the warm fuzzies, dreams of having a cat to call my own in the future, maybe one from one of those shelters. I am betting that cat will be spoiled, with numerous toys, catnip and brightly-colored string at her reach. Sheíll feel like a star, with us taking photos of her all the time.
To be alone with you. I think that's what I always look forward to. Call it selfish, yes, but that is what gets me excited, having you all to myself. If you consider our best times, most of them are plain and simple--you and I beside each other in bed, talking and talking about everything we could think of. I never feel down, you always listen and give me insights, interpret my dreams, analyze my problems so you can provide sound advice. Before we sleep I like counting the hours: how many hours can we giggle like giddy teenagers?
We are spending four long years together in a month or so. I am thinking of what I could give you, remember the year-long scrapbook I have been making just for you. This is what I plan: Maybe a picnic? Maybe we can have all the foodie items, have what our heart decides. I have decided to be happy and fat with you, plump and huggable with thighs soft enough as beds for our cats. Beauty lies upon the beholder and beholden after all, and with you I feel magnificent, a lush queen, beautiful and full, a sexy beast.
On light days when I don't have that much to do, I find myself doing a little happy dance. My body feels freer, my limbs more fluid. Sometimes the music is there, but most of the time I have a joyful little jig in my head. I skip to the loo, I hop to the pantry, I twirl when I pass by a friend's desk. I have extended dance breaks in the W.C., inspired by 30 Rock's Tina Fey. When the big bad meanies are at bay and your body's uncontrollable, it happens. Sometimes you just have to dance.
Today found me a bit more relaxed than the usual. I found myself laughing at my own private jokes, singing in my cube, learning the lyrics to a song that I want to master in French. My projects are out of the way, for today, and I savor minutes of precious time the way I want to. I hear the trickling seconds of the clock and can't wait for the afterhours. I plan on indulging myself more, maybe a nice dinner of takoyaki with beef floss, some more for my love at home. Notebooks from Booksale, ready for these thoughts.
Cats are truly magnificent creatures. I'd like to have one to call my own, whisper my secrets to. A chubby fluffy tabby, a sly calico for luck, an existential scottish fold making birthday wishes, a dancing garfield, playing with strings. I'd like to have more than one, actually. I've seen this documentary about this woman with a forest filled with cats, one was slinking near her head while she was being interviewed. I would like to be a certified cat woman, be in the know when my cats are happy, see them playing and romping around, learn about their quirks.
Some time after she bought than pen, everything seemed to be magical. In her world her pen was a knife, cutting open worlds and words. This time she can see better, things becoming even more clear. Each and every thing became a subject. Like in art, she saw the beauty in the every day. She is of the belief that with her new pen came magic, the power to give names to things. This is happiness. This is freedom. It was like being given a new pair of eyes, washed clean by naivete and the willingness to try, start anew.
I have been studying my taste in music recently. Remember when I was a fan of rock and roll? How I headbanged with the rest of them, moshing along with the sweaty, adrenaline-filled crowd? I remember not being able to decide which tickled me pink more: Brandy or Monica? How does one become a Spice Girl? Which boy band is the most and least talented? How can I have a copy of that song, way before youtube or torrents were invented? I used my hands. They knew how to start the rec button, how to use tape for protection.
Four or more days late. I am procrastinating, the weekend left me a bit overwhelmed and underwhelmed at the same time. I opened several pandora's boxes of memories and nostalgia. This is what happens when the emo fairy drops by unexpectedly. I used to cry my eyes out when I saw things reminding me of you, of what we had. Now my eyes are just itchy from the dust, assaulted with reminders of you as home. Now in the future, I look back and feel--nothing. I have reached a certain point where you hold no more power over me.
The long weekend hath come and gone, too fast for me to capture in my hands, too fleeting for me to take an accurate photograph. Instead, this is what I have with me: Cramped up in the backseat with dozens of bags beside me. I try to distract myself with memories of a pleasant summery afternoon, try to find a song that perfectly describes how I feel in my heart. If left at home, I would probably be filled with a painful longing for a vacation, yet somehow I experienced that strange sensation of wanting a vacation from my vacation.
What I'd do if I had more time, I always tell myself. I'd be organizing my books in a neat, easy to access system, maybe I'd photograph them, color code each shelf. I long to have those shelves I see in home magazines, filled with knick knacks and not just books. A toy here or there. A precious ornament or precocious artwork. An intimate portrait or so, displayed proudly in a frame. I would label all my art supplies and organize them by usage, so I could use unused stuff more. I could have them side by side, waiting, anticipating.
When you think about it, we really live in such a small world. The other day I was swimming by my lonesome and decided to park myself in the enticing black plastic raft. This I did, staring at shapes in the clouds, vaguely conscious of my suit riding up my butt. Two teenage girls shyly tried to ride atop the raft with me, and I smiled at them in welcome. After some time we began talking, first about their ages and their schools, finding out how they're our neighbors back home. What a small, awesome world, filled with vast circumstances.
Years ago, I was at this same virtual spot. Another month named August, another chance for me to reflect on what makes up my day in 100 words. In 31 days I've felt what I felt like years ago--elation, satisfaction at having set out a goal and carrying it through till the sweet, sweet end. Years ago I was a culinary reductionist. I talked of desire in the form of gustatory pleasures, raving about my ideal "burger" or second helpings of imaginary "desserts". I would like to see how I've grown since then, how my desire has taken root.
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