Here we go.
Here we go.
I had my last day of work on Friday. My parents came to the gallery opening and my mom cried maybe four times. She’s real sad about me moving, and I am working really hard to not let it make me feel upset and guilty. I know she will be fine in time, but it’s hard to watch, and it makes something that is already difficult for me feel much harder.
Yesterday I woke up and cleaned and packed for four hours while Skyping with Claire, and then proceeded to watch Catching Fire on the couch. It was tempting to end the day right there, but instead I went out to ride 30 miles. I listened to my ATB playlist. This song was my favourite. It was a great ride, and my legs are feeling it this morning.
I got off the bike and put jeans on and promptly got on my dad’s motorcycle for a little sunset cruise. We shared a banana split for dinner. I wore his XXL leather jacket and hugged his sides while we rode.
I’m spending much of August soaking up my family, friends, sunshine, and the smell of corn fields.
I’m riding around looking at the fields, the turbines. Taking in the chatter of all the kildeer on the road, trying to keep me from their eggs. Feeling the sand on my feet from a cold lake on a hot day. Laughing at a sister who likes to show me how long her cat is and a toddler who just wants to put stickers on things and a small town where both the cowboys and the horses wear reflective vests. I’m taking in the time spent with an old friend, teaching me how to letterpress, appreciating taking the screws from an art show out of an old brick wall, and putting a little more value on some greasy pizza shared with dad.
In ten days I am moving 2093 kilometres away. I am excited about sharing this new adventure with a wonderful human, but I will miss home. Especially the smells that take me home; in the way that smells do.
Mostly I will miss the smell of the corn fields.
In a text post, list ten books that have stayed with you in some way. Don’t take but a few minutes, and don’t think too hard — they don’t have to be the “right” or “great” works, just the ones that have touched you.
I was tagged by LearningThingsIsFun.
I’ve been busy. Busy with a lot of things, things including quitting my job and looking for a new one and apartment hunting and cleaning and organizing and purging. I’ll be moving to Halifax in four weeks. Or at least, that’s the plan. The very exciting and terrifying plan. My leap of faith, as I’ve been calling it.
The long term agenda: a new gallery job with more opportunities to have my voice heard. A body of work and some solo exhibitions under my belt. A master’s degree in fine art. An ambitious and beautiful lady in my life. A solid grasp on how to maintain my best self.
So what have I been up to this week? On Monday Neek, the Fox and I ran 2 miles. On Wednesday I rode 15 miles. Thursday I ran/walked 5k. Yesterday I rode 13 miles after work and today I rode 20 miles before work. I have been working very hard to find and embrace my best self. I’ve been working hard in a lot of ways, and it hasn’t been easy, not by a long shot. But I am here, I am working hard, and I am still alive.
There needs to be a code word or something that means “my brain is fighting me every step of the way today and I feel like I’m going to vibrate out of my skin, so I need you to forgive everything and go slowly and speak softly and lower your expectations.” And then we could all just be like, “I know I said we could go to a movie tonight but… tangerines.” And the other person would nod and squeeze your elbow or rub your head and you wouldn’t feel like a failure.
Yes, absolutely I will hold your treasured and specially chosen pieces of gravel for you while you specially choose more pieces for me.
Ten bicycle miles and skinny dipping before work. Three hours of fishing, rock throwing and Bon firing with these Fun Dip covered jerks after work.
I squeezed the most out of my day, and I feel good about that.
On Sunday morning the Fox and I met with Beachy and Chris, where we promptly put on our matching cotton tees, ate a muffin (tiny cake) and filled our vessels. We left after Beachy tried on our new cycling socks (why so tall on the ankle?) and were quickly (2k’s in) granted a break where we learned from John The Bike Repair Guy that bike tires wear down if they sit unused for a long time. He commended us for our cotton tees as we watched the elite cyclists fly past us.
Once again, to help you with the visual: we wore cotton t-shirts that were spray painted with a wagon stencil. A wagon.
To summarize the rest of the ride, it was a roller coaster of emotions matched in intensity only with the size of the hills. We directed our feelings about this towards Becca, who insisted this ride was “just one big hill at the start and the rest is completely flat.” You can’t build a relationship on lies.
The guy in the sag van tried to get us to cut our ride short because the volunteers were cleaning up lunch. Nope. Our pride couldn’t take a shortcut. We were the cotton wagons and we were miles behind the others and we kept going because we were determined to get our $40 worth. At the final rest stop the sag van man insisted they would save ice cream for us at the end.
(We got lucky because the sag van man never caught us wasting time. He never drove past when we were sitting in the grass being mad. He never saw me looping around to pick up a peacock feather and carry it in my hand for 2k’s. He definitely probably didn’t bust Beachy and Becca trying to pet a cow in a pasture.)
We pulled into the finish, sore and bitter with each other - like a group of best fiends should be after enduring a seven hour bicycle trek through back country Norfolk.
The little cotton wagons that could.
She made us shirts at work and I juried an art opening that had a lot of barns and I drank wine and got mugs and now we are going to set up a tent and sleep in it so we can wake up and ride one hundred kilometres with newlyweds.