Chasing Rainbows

A long walk returning to the office

It is pouring

It wasn’t a few hours ago

when I decided not to bring my umbrella

My shoes soaked

My back and shoulders damp

At least I have a hat

I buy an umbrella

Leave the store

Watch her run trying to avoid the drops

Light blue pants suit

Heels

Purse above her head

Nice hairdo slowly making its way into disarray

I hand her my umbrella

HERE

Oh, no, really, I’m okay

HERE, Take it

She is verklempt

Really?

PLEASE

I walk away

She yells thank you

I walk

Soaked

Happy

I duck into another store

Buy two more umbrellas

Stand in the rain

The drops feel like little kisses on my face

I wait

A man with a nice suit and a brief case on his head

and

A woman with a black dress and a book on her head

Each surprised

Thankful

Me?

Soaked with gratitude

Jumping in the puddles

Squishing feet

Feeling the kind of warm

That only human kindness can kindle

Today: a great day

 

Sebastian is way too good a listener (and repeater)

I live in a small town.
I have a small son.
We drive in a small car.

I am very verbal. I talk a lot. A large mouth.

I stop at the coffee shop a lot in our town to get a large coffee. Not every morning.. lots of mornings. Sebastian is often with me. My neighbors are almost always there – a bunch of guys chatting about the Lions club, the city, whatever a bunch of dudes discuss with such glee.

We always have morning happiness and pleasantries. I love this town.

Well. There is this guy in town who is, well, um, cute. I think I must have pointed him out to some of my girlfriends or something when Sebastian has been in the car. I am a little embarrassed about my behavior, just sing the Mrs. Robinson song while reading the rest of the post. (he isn’t THAT young… probably about 6-8 years my jr.) I don’t leer or cat call at him or anything… I just, well, noticed and I suppose said something .. a couple of times… maybe.

So. Sebastian and I are in the coffee shop in line a couple of weeks ago. “Cute boy” comes in and stands in line behind us. Sebastian says, REALLY loud, “MOM, CUTE BOY IS HERE.”

Okay. Um. I’m SURE no one heard that. He is a 4 year old after all. People don’t listen to the incessant ramblings of a 4 year old before they have had their coffee. I’ll just distract Sebastian with chocolate milk and act like nothing happened. We get our drinks and head out the door.

Right outside the door, Sebastian trips over his shoe string. Ugh. Get me out of here. I start to tie his shoe for him (because he doesn’t know how) and cute boy comes out. Just do not make eye contact… he didn’t hear it.. and if he did why would he think it is about him. It is cool. Just keep doing what you are doing.

He kneels down at Sebastian’s eye level and says, “Tell your mom I think she is cute too.” Stands up and walks away.

My face is RED. He waves at me from his car. Smiling.

I forget about it. It happened a couple of weeks ago. I haven’t seen him since. He’ll forget. It is fine. (NOTE to self: watch what you say around Sebastian.)

This morning, I bounce into the coffee shop. One of the guys comes up behind me and whispers in my ear, “I’m sorry cute boy isn’t here for you today.”

OH MY GOD! Writing stuff on my blog is fine… I don’t care if the whole world knows my stupid stuff… but IN PERSON before coffee… this is just unbearable. Red.  Laughed about it all day.  Then realized….

I’m moving to a larger town. Getting on an airplane at 9pm tonight to check out Norco. I’ll get lost in the sea of humans and horses.

Sigh.

Manhattan(2), a shin and a racing chair

Rushing. To Utah. Tired. A little slow from an evening liver symposium. Forgot my phone, my right shoe and left my coffee cup on the top of my car.  Off a little.  Spinning on some unusual behavior of mine the day before – how I am acting like I am not.  A little freaked out by something I did.   Pointing my finger at myself in my head .. chastising.     My self-critic alive and well.

That kind of morning.

I stop at the coffee shop AGAIN to get another cup of coffee and somehow (don’t judge me) I slammed my SHIN in my car door. Now, you gotta think about that one for a while. Really? Is this actually possible that a person would get out of their car, step to the side just enough, but not enough, and slam their shin in the car door?

Um. Yes. It is true and it was embarrassing. The smokers outside the coffee shop looked at me like I was driving a 1917 Traub or something. And not in a good way if you get my drift. I imagine I let out a cry or something, not really sure because it HURT SO BAD I wanted to pass out.

I hobble into the coffee shop and I notice I am bleeding profusely… two giant egg size welts have perked up to say hello.. oh, and I am in 4-inch heels and OF COURSE a skirt. F.

The coffee helps. I limp to my car. The airport. No time to change clothes to hide the welts. Then I think, EH PIFFLE! I’m a woman over the age of 40 – no one is going to notice my legs anyway. It is totally fine.. just keep moving… …I am speaking in front of a room for of humans in Utah yes, and they won’t even notice the eggplants on my gams.

Security guy. As I walk up, well, limp up yells out, “OH MY GOD, WHAT HAPPENED TO YOUR LEG?!?!?!??”

My face is red.  Everyone in the line is looking at me like I’m Pamela Anderson in a 3D scanner post surgery after the surgery…. it wasn’t good.   I realize I am not going to tell ANYONE about the car slamming thing. It is just too ridiculous and dumb.  He waits for an answer.   I’m red…. and.. um… er….

I say:  “That isn’t my real weight on my driver’s license.”   He laughs- hard.   I walk away.  Thank god I always have humor to distract….that is acting like me.  😉

After my presentation in Utah.. I’m RACING to get the 5:07 flight. I have 20 minutes to get to the gate. I take my heels off and start running… limp running.. I’m in pain.  I don’t care.  The next flight is at 9pm…. SLT airport is long.   My gate (of course) at the end. I run alongside the moving walk way FAST and a wonderful soul pushing an empty wheelchair. He runs along side me and yells “GET ON … I”ll get you there!!!”

He runs along side me for a minute and I hesitate. “Ha ha… you couldn’t push me faster than I can run…”

“HEY.. I medaled in UT Track baby… GET ON!”

“Oh, nah,  (pant pant hypervenilate run) that (Wheeze)  is okay(pant)…”

“LADY GET ON !!!”

I do.

It is absolutely side splitting. We are racing around to my gate.. he’s making all these crazy emergency announcements and swerving … I keep looking up at him and he is laughing so hard as he runs.  Me too.  Total bliss.

He dumps me at the gate. I make it. We high five. And then we just stand there for a minute.. looking at each other and laughing out loud.  The man is sweating profusely and can barely breathe… I can’t breathe.  The entire lobby is looking at us like we are insane.  We realize what a spectacle we are and laugh some more.

It is just one of those precious moments that make me believe our world is a beautiful place.

Did I have that fabulous moment that I will remember my entire life because I hit my shin?  Was it my limp that made him ask if he could help?  Did I hit my shin because I was out of my body thinking about the thing I did that wasn’t like me that freaks me out?    I dunno.  I’d like to believe that it all is beautiful once we know the whole story.  All these moments knit loosely around to make a life.  Even the ones where we feel bad, ashamed or hurt.   When we make a mistake or do something in a moment that isn’t fair or right.  If we just give it a minute, forgive and be who we are……

and, here is the thing.  I almost didn’t get in that chair.   I almost let that chair roll on by and stayed running and limping and NOT being me.   Another example of me not being me.   I like to play.  I gotta play more often. I have gotten WAY too serious….

Yes.  I have been acting in ways that are just not me.  Why?   I do not know.   What I do know is play and fun and being unapologetic for the strange ways I need to be in the world to feel safe and happy don’t work for everyone.

The real person is far more interesting than anything we can fabricate.  When we can all lighten up on all the ways we are supposed to be… be who we are..  and be kind to ourselves when we mess up… and just get on a moving chair once in a while….

I arrived home at 7pm to my cat and an empty house.  Alone, something I rarely ever am in my own home.  Had a magical evening of a quarter moon, painting,  and a midnight walk. .. the limp gone completely.

Thanks running chair man,  (he asked me not to use his real name) you gave me more than a lift.

Flaming unicycles

Scare Grove. Nice.
Jeremy: performer
Picked an 8 year old out of the audience. Handed her a torch that was 1/3 as tall as the kid.
Lit the torch.
The parents in the audience looking at each other. A mixture of, is this safe and how neat.
She lit his juggling batons and he lit is unicycle on fire.
I’m hoping we are taking a turn in our society. Allowing a little more risk and less fear of lawsuits.
I asked him about it after… “I trust kids more than adults.”
Me too.

Maureen knows Napa

I am often asked about Napa and Wine Tasting from friends.  I am so out of the loop in terms of Napa, so I asked my friend Maureen Birdsall… GODDESS that she is.  Here is what she wrote.  From now on I can just send folks to this little post…. yay!

1) To stay: I like the Sonoma Mission Inn – they have a great spa & are pretty reasonable. I also like the romance of downtown Sonoma. If you eat at French Laundry, the Vellagio is right there in Yountville: http://www.villagio.com/villagio/home.html

2) Love Auberge for lunch (don’t miss their scallops). Great view & menu. They are very expensive to spend the night. BUT… if you do, get a couples 4 handed massage (ultimate in luxury & romance). If you do go the Meadow wood route, make croquet reservations (need to wear all white)

3) Wine Train = touristy & $$, but really is a fun way to spend an afternoon

4) Castillo de Armorosa: http://www.castellodiamorosa.com/ It’s an actual CASTLE – so very cool

5) Bubble Room = an amazing flight along with paired foods:

http://www.jwine.com/VisitUs/BubbleRoom/

6) Duck Horn (one of my favorite reds) has a nice tasting: http://www.duckhorn.com/DuckhornDNN/

7) Don’t miss stopping at Dean & Deluca and perusing their gourmet items

8) Call ahead to CSJ & request a private tasting on the patio. Simply beautiful:
http://www.chateaustjean.com/stjean/index.jsp

9) Napa Valley Grille (a napa staple) http://www.napavalleygrille.com/yountville/about.php

10) Sonoma Side: The girl and the fig: http://www.thegirlandthefig.com/html-sonoma/index.html

11) Bouchon (must het the tomato soup en croute): http://www.bouchonbistro.com/