Friday, June 29, 2007

Rollercoaster Ride

I remember the last time I went on a rollercoaster. I went with Pedro, an actor at the theatre for which I worked. He was just barely 18, I was just barely 21. I don’t know if he ever had a crush on me (some people thought he was gay, but he never told me he was), and I tried unsuccessfully to have a crush on him. We became good friends instead. He taught me to waltz and I told him he should use Nice ‘N Easy to dye his hair – it would be less harsh on his hair than whatever he was using.

Anyhoo, about a month before I moved away from Salt Lake, he and I spent a fun Saturday at Lagoon. I remember the rollercoaster was my second favorite ride (#1 was the Ferris wheel because of the view and because I didn’t get sick). The rollercoaster wasn’t too motion-sickness-inducing, so we rode it several times. My favorite part was when the car slowly crept to the top of the first peak – the anticipation of soon plummeting down the other side, beginning the ride, was thoroughly enjoyable. Sometimes the ups and downs made me a little nauseous, but I enjoyed the ride immensely. There were curves when it felt like the car was going to go flying off the tracks, and I would grab Pedro’s arm, screaming and laughing with delight. Even when I was a little sick, I was always sad when the ride ended and would want to go again, after my stomach settled a little, of course.

Lately, I’ve started another type of rollercoaster ride. I’m in serious “like” with someone (I think you know who). Yes, it’s true! Right now I’m at that anticipation stage; I know that the ride has started and it’s going to get even better. I realize that there will be ups and downs, and that at times I’ll feel a little nauseous. There will be times when I’ll be scared that things are going off the track and I’ll want someone to hold on to. There will be laughter (there already is lots of that!) and probably some tears. The track may twist and turn a lot, and I may not know where my little car is headed, so it will definitely be an adventure. Right now, I hope the ride never ends. If it does, it will break my heart.

No matter what happens, though, I’m glad that this ride, like the rollercoaster ride with Pedro, comes with someone with whom I can share all the joys, laughter, tears, heartache, and everything else. It promises to be a great ride.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Just Dreaming

I’m starting to think of places I’d like to move if I decide to leave Cedar next year. Nothing is concrete; I haven’t even researched each place to compare costs of living, job opportunities, etc. Also, I’m pretty open to moving almost anywhere. These are just the ones I’m thinking about right now.

Portland. I spent a fabulous week in Portland back in 2004 (holy cow – has it really been that long ago??). One of reasons I enjoyed it was the variety of eating establishments. That week I ate French, Ethiopian, Iranian, Chinese, Italian, Greek, and fresh seafood. I fell in love with Powell’s, a bookstore that boasted several floors full of both used and new books. I could have spent the full week exploring that place. An added bonus was the store across the street that sold fresh gelato. My favorite flavor was lime, but a close second was watermelon. Portland also had a very decent public transportation system. I appreciate that, even though I have a car. If I can get around using buses, I prefer to do so. I spent one day just roaming around downtown Portland and found several interesting shops, bookstores, art galleries, and museums. The weather was absolutely beautiful and sunny, so I have a hard time thinking of Portland being rainy. I think I can deal with a lot of rain, though.

Seattle. I’ve never been to Seattle, but I have a friend who lives there (though not for long), friends who have visited her in Seattle, and family members who have gone there. They all have positive things to say about the city. Also, I just like the idea of the Pacific Northwest.

Chicago. Again, I’ve never been there, unless my layovers on the way to and from Montreal count (I don’t count them). I've heard good things, though, like the dining, the arts, and the activities.

Boston. I went to Boston once, for a temple trip. A guy from my New York ward was going through the temple for the first time, in preparation for a mission, and I bummed a ride with my Institute teacher (that was interesting!). The temple is on the outskirts of Boston, so I didn't see much of the city. It's always interested me, though, especially the historical sites.

Baltimore. I like this city's proximity to Washinton D.C. I don't want to live in D.C., but it would be nice to be close enough for weekend excursions.

Montreal. Okay, this isn't a serious contender, but it's a fun idea. I don't know what I'd need to do in order to live in Canada for a couple years, or if I'd even be allowed to, but I'd like to see some of the sites of Montreal, and Quebec in general, that I didn't get to see as a missionary.

France. An even less serious contender than Montreal! Again, this is just a fun thought, a dream even. Someday I'll definitely visit, and maybe one day I'll actually live here for a period of time, but I won't die of disappointment if I don't (live here, I mean. I'll be seriously put out if I never visit).

Speaking of France, it's #1 on my Places I Want to Visit list. Here's my idea of the perfect day in Paris: I wake up at 8am, get ready for the day, find a little cafe somewhere that true Parisiens frequent - in some quaint neighborhood - that has outdoor seating and breakfast on croissants, fruit, and chocolate - in any form. I'd take my time eating and would read a french newspaper while eavsdropping on my fellow breakfasters. After breakfast, I'd stroll around the local shops, looking especially for bookstores and small art galleries - I may even make a few purchases. After a couple hours, I'd either go back to the cafe or find another and order lunch. Again, I'd take my time, watching people walk by, listening to conversations, and maybe reading my recent purchase of a french novel. Finishing my leisurely lunch, I might hit some of the tourist attractions, maybe. (You see, I plan on having more than one day in Paris and will spend the other day(s) doing the "tourist things".) Or, I'd find a nice park somewhere and continue reading/watching people. Then I'd find a really snazzy restaurant that serves a dinner involving many different courses, taking the whole evening to get through the meal. Before retiring to my hotel room, I'd walk around and catch a little of the nightlife.

Doesn't that sound great?

Someday, I tell ya.


Monday, June 18, 2007

My Weekend

I didn't even TRY to come up with a creative title for this post. It's accurate, though, which is almost as good as creative.

I had a very nice weekend. To be fair, I've had a string of really nice weekends. I'm a lucky gal - so why do I long for this weekend with absolutely no plans besides cleaning my apartment???

The weekend started Thursday (unofficially). I had a delightful dinner with my old friend Melissa (when she turns 40, I'll still be 39) at The Pastry Pub, followed by a brownie sundae at Grandee's. I thought of Cassie and Aly, who love those places. Melissa and I caught up with all that's been happening with us and our families over the past 6 months. Yes, we live in the same place and only see each other every few months. It's a shame. At least she blogs now, so we'll be able to keep in touch a little better! After dinner and ice cream, I headed to my mom's house. I hadn't seen my niece and nephew for several weeks, so when I arrived, they bombarded me with hugs and kisses and " me do this...and this...and this". I went with them, my mom, and my brother to watch the Utah Summer Games fireworks. It was a really good show, especially the finale. In addition, we were able to catch a few tunes from Ryan Shupe and the Rubber Band.

Friday, directly after work, I went to my dad's in-laws house where we were swimming and having a BBQ. I didn't swim - I wasn't appropriately dressed, though my uncle disagreed and decided to get me quite wet. Men. Sigh. My uncle, my dad's only brother, was down with his wife and some of their kids for the Summer Games; it was good to see them since I usually see them once every 5 or so years. I'm not close to my dad's side of the family. They asked me all sorts of questions about my life. I didn't mind because a part of me likes being the center of attention. At least, for a little bit, then I'm happy to pass on the "mic". My aunt is my uncle's second wife, and she's constantly reassuring me that she didn't get married until 29 and then proceeded to have 5 kids in her 30's, so I shouldn't worry. I don't, but thanks anyway. She's a nice woman, well-meaning, and doesn't know me at all. :) I made it home fairly early for a Friday night (9pm) because I wanted to work on my talk for church (more on that later).

Saturday, I woke up early to work on my talk (still later), totally blanked, so got ready for the day and went to my mom's house. Everyone was there: my mom, Corey and his family, two of Corey's friends from Alaska, Jason and his wife, Kevin and his son, and me. I love it when we're all together. We ate lunch, played games (I lost every game), and watched the kids play in the sprinklers. Around 4pm, my cousin Ryan and his family (wife and three kids) came over; they were here for the Summer Games. All of us went to the park where we ate dutch oven chicken and potatoes, chips, veggies, and s'mores, and played volleyball, wiffleball, and frisbee golf. It was so much fun! There were a lot of people, but no one was in a bad mood, so we all got along really well. When it got too dark to do anything else, we left the park. I chose to head to my apartment and try again to work on my talk, so I said goodbye to everyone around 10pm.

Sunday, I spoke in Sacrament Meeting. The subject was fathers, since it was Father's Day. I've never struggled with a topic as much as I did this one. Every angle I tried seemed forced, hypocritical, or meaningless. All weekend I prayed that I'd either break something and have to spend Sunday in the hospital or that church would be canceled. Neither possibility seemed very probable, unfortunately. In the end, I finally came up with talk I could live with, but it was only 10 minutes long, 5 minutes shorter than I was assigned. I figured it would be fine, though, since most people tend to be long-winded. Wouldn't you know that it'd be my luck to speak with two people who took 11 minutes combined! He took 7 minutes, she took 4, we sang a rest hymn, then I had the rest of the meeting. Usually, this wouldn't be a problem because I can expound on almost every other subject known to mankind; just not fathers. I tried, I even threw in a couple stories I hadn't planned to share, but I still fell short - my talk took 11 minutes. So, our stake president got asked to finish up the meeting. I'm glad he did because he gave a really great message. After Sacrament Meeting, I was heading out of the chapel and ran into Nolan, my blind date from a few weeks ago! He's in the ward that is combined with mine for the summer. I haven't seen him earlier because I've been out of town since the wards combined. We chatted a bit, he complimented me on my talk, then he walked with me to Sunday School. A nice guy. Still no sparks, but I'm more than okay with that.

After church, I headed to my mom's house again. She treated Kevin and I to a late lunch/early dinner, then the three of us played games 'til Kevin and I went to my dad's house for dessert and some more games (our family really likes to play games). Kevin and I left dad's around 8:30 and went back to my mom's house for even more games! By the end of the night, we were laughing so hard my sides hurt!

I love my family. Sometimes I complain about them and about how much time I'm "required" to spend with them, but I really do love them. I've really missed them the past few weeks - I've been going all over the place so haven't played with them for a long time. I love that we get along quite well, most of the time, and that we enjoy being around each other. We laugh a lot. Yeah, I love 'em!

When Confusion Reigns

I'm so confused! Nothing in my life seems to make any sense at all; nothing is concrete. I try to believe in absolutes, but life sure is sending me a lot of curve balls, "possible but not for sure"s, questions, and doubts that make it hard to think in definites. Just when I think I have something resolved, something comes up that changes everything. So, I make a decision based on the new information, and something else comes up that changes everything again. I feel like I'm in a fast-moving river and every time I grab a branch to help me out of the river, it breaks. I need someone who has a strong grip and a firm hold on solid ground to fish me out of the river.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Don't Expect Anything to Go With Anything Else

Sometimes I feel like I have things I want to write about that wouldn't be enough to fill a full post. Times like this, I decide to write a "bits 'n pieces" post.

Good Advice
1. Awhile ago, Adam reminded me that it's okay to dream and to pursue those dreams. He gave me a fantastic analogy about Tarzan and uttered the inspired words, "At some point you have to let go". Inspired, I tell ya. My heart hurt as he said it, and I knew it was what I needed to hear, and what I'll need to do in time. I was in a coma, a dream coma, where I was kind of numb and a little lost. I thought pursuing my dreams was irresponsible and was scared to try. Now, I'm finally waking up from the coma and am ready and excited to start living life, pursuing my dreams, having adventures. Yeah!

2. Last night, Cardine compared deciding to marry to being in the pre-existance and deciding to come to this life. When we made that choice, we were told that there would be tough times, miserable times even, to go along with the gloriously good times, and that in the end, if we continued faithful, the reward would be inconceivable. I admit that, more often than not, I tend to focus on the scary, tough aspects of marriage instead of the good possibilities and the end reward (eternal life with the person I love more than anyone else). Cardine's analogy put a few things in perspective. Who knows, someday I may actually choose to get married! Maybe.

Thanks, you two. I love good analogies and both were perfectly timed.

My Apartment
Sometimes I wish I were more of a photo-taker (NOT a photographer - there's a difference). I wish I had pics of my apartment to show those of you who haven't been graced enough (or in town) to visit. I'm also not in the mood to go into too much of a description of it; I just want to say...

I love it! It's teeny-tiny and the kitchen is practically non-existant (though better than when I moved in, thanks to a hutch my boss gave me and a kitchen cart I bought), but it's mine! All mine. I don't share it with anyone. If I decide to leave my water bottle on the end table when I go to bed, I know no one else will see it (it will be taken care of when I wake up - I can't stand a mess!). I can roam around sans clothing, and I have full use of the refrigerator. Full use.

My mom asks me everysooften if I get lonely. No. I don't. Not at all, in fact. When I want to talk to someone, I use my handy-dandy cell phone. When I think the apartment is too quiet, I turn on the TV (PBS) or the radio (one of the two country stations). I read a lot, I cook, I entertain visitors, I watch TV, I sleep. I don't have time to get lonely!

HP 5
I saw my ex-crush, Anthony, yesterday. He came to have me retube his hearing aid. After I had done so, we talked about movies coming out this summer, or that have already come out. He asked me again if I wanted to go to Harry Potter 5 with him when it opens. Of course, he said this just as my boss was coming into the room. My boss is obsessed with finding me a boyfriend and has always given me a hard time about Anthony. Anthony verified that my cell phone number hasn't changed and said he'd text me (he can't hear on the phone - remember he's totally deaf in one ear and has profound hearing loss in the other). My boss was about to die with glee. Sigh.

I almost hate to mention this, because who knows if anything will actually come of it...but, sometimes I'm a glutton for punishment. Just please don't give me a hard time if nothing comes to fruition. Anyway, I want to write a novel; I've wanted to since time began, but have never attempted it. Right now, I have a general idea about a storyline and am getting a good grasp of the main character and some of the other characters. I can picture them and have an idea of their respective personalities - I'm writing everything down, too, which is more than I've ever done. We'll see if anything comes of it, but don't be too shocked if nothing does. (I'm such a pessimist sometimes!)

Last weekend I went to Kanab to see Adam. We hadn't seen each other for months, and before that it had been over a year. We've talked a lot on the phone lately, but it was tons better talking to him in person. Some of the highlights: he treated me to a private concert - he's quite good on the piano and has a great singing voice - and he didn't even charge me an entrance fee! After eating at a local diner (I had a delicious turkey 'n avocado wrap), he took me on a driving tour of Kanab and showed me some really cool old houses. His sister and brother-in-law had us over to their house for rootbeer floats, then Adam and I watched Over the Hedge (very funny). It was a great weekend.

Hmmm. I think that's all I want to say. Hopefully, you're feeling all sorts of uptodate-edness. (That sounds like something cjane would say - I hope I didn't plagiarize!)