And tonight I discovered that the way to have a great fucking time in icy spring rain is to refrain from getting angry and make a music video instead! It’s true: on my umbrelaless walk back from the gym, sweaty and flushed, I turned up my embarrassing musical selection (an Enrique Iglesias song called “Do You Know?” heard of it? Unfortunately I have, and it’s righteously stuck in my remarkably willing cranium), tossed around my soaking wet hair, stalked rhythmically to the beat and lip synced in a fashion befitting the drama and anguish of the song, all the way down the shimmering dark streets of West Hartford.
Oh. And did I mention that in said music video I was wearing knee high rain boots emblazoned with particolored hearts, navy fleece pants, a very sharp plaid trench coat and a striped scarf? Yeah. That wasn’t an escapee from The Institute of Living you saw on Brace Road. That was me. Rad.
Why so jazzed, you ask? Well, this past weekend I hopped the Peter Pan from The Hartbeat to Nueva York. Though the ride down lasted a good 5.5 hours (that’s THREE MORE HOURS than it ought to, folks! Three! Count ’em!), leaping into my darling Katie’s waiting, rib-cracking embrace made it more than worth it. We did together all the things we customaritly do–eat, cook, engage in punishingly awesome workouts, trail giggling around New York City and generally hug and lavish enough attention and pet names upon one another to produce sufficiently more embarrassment than being caught listening to Enrique Iglesias loudly. In public. Topless. While eating bananas dipped in lard. I mean… I love this girl. L-O-V-E–and even that doesn’t quite accurately express the force of my adoration and apprecation for all that she is. There are few people I know who are more generous, sensitive, thoughful and truly kind than my sweet starboard. I am quite glad at this point in my life to have either healed or expunged from my figurative Rolodex all of the relationships which have historically dragged me down. I find that I’m left, happily, with the people who have never done a thing but support me, be proud of and glad of my success, hug me when I’m down and rejoice with me when I rejoice. I have wonderful, wonderful friends, and Mme. Katie is most certainly one of them.
On Saturday we worked out, made luxuriant fruit and nut laden oatmeal, and took our water bottles, apples and a thermos of mate (my first!) to Central park to lavish in the sun along with the sea of other New Yorkers playing ball, cavorting and worshipping Helios. I, dressed as Betty Rubble (according to Katie’s boyfriend Pat, whom I adore just for that comment) in Katie’s very tiny babydoll dress got an even tinier bit of tan and marveled at the view of the skyscrapers through the just budding spring trees. See below.
Later that night we shopped at an amazing grocery store called Fairway and cooked dinner for our guest of honor–Katie’s new special manfriend, Pat! Pat is a professional swashbuckler, a former fitness professional, a high-echelon Art Guard and, in general, a complete sweetheart. We three drank lots of wine, ate delicious food, bonded over mutual horror at the level of uncomfortability of the new couch selected by Katie’s roommate, and enjoyed one another’s company. I woke up the next morning in his girlfriend’s bed, smiling, and then went with said girlfriend to the MoMa. On the way there, sadly, my jacket was pilfered by some fell subway fiend. That amazing tulip-collared, bright fuchsia jacket from H&M de España is no more–or perhaps is, but not on me. I am very, very sad, and it was a cold day in New York city. I could be angry, but instead I’m choosing simply to hope that whomever tugged the jacket from my backpack very much needed it and is now warmer owing to my accidental largess.
At the MoMa, Katie and I saw an exhibit on the photographs of the American West. Though it was the main reason we went, my favorite exhibit was one called “Tangled Alphabets,” and featured the works of Argentine artist León Ferrari and Brazilian Mira Schendel. Studying the works, composed of paper, ink, wire, photographic cut outs, resin and–yes–birdhshit!, in those three rooms I felt my brain come a little alive again. I wonder: what happened to my artistic side? As a child, and in truth up ’til the age of 14 or so, I was defined as the girl who drew and sang better than anybody else. My singing voice has been robbed from me by vocal cysts, but drawing? Painting? General studio-arty creativity? I must somewhere have the latent, dusty ability. Perhaps I should try to start drawing again? Then again… perhaps I shouldn’t. (: Anyhow–the moral of htis paragraph is that if you are anywhere in the New York City area, I firmily believe that the $12 student admission fee is worth it simply to see this exhibit. If you don’t believe me yet, look here:
And if anyone knows where I can get prints of Ferrari’s work, I’d be inestimably grateful if you shared. (:
After the MoMa, I bid my Katie a sad adieu and metroed to W. 4th Street, where I met an old, old friend for lunch. I have not see Dan in something like three years, and the last time I did it was through a haze of tears on a subway platform in Hamburg, Germany, and not under the best of circumstances. I’m happy to report that the bloke has changed little, save for longer hair, and was full of enough good cheer and retroactive affection to take a train in from Princeton to introduce me to a bangin’ vegan restaurant called Red Bamboo. We had–get this–vegan buffalo wings, complete with wooden dowels as stand ins for drumsticks! I ordered the bourbon “chicken” and Dan the Soul “chicken,” and we swapped cuts of fake meat to compare flavah. Let me tell you–this shit is beyond convincing and beyond good. I left that restaurant feeling full in ways I remember only from my days as a carnivore.
Obeying the siren song (or harpie cry!?) of his doctoral lecture one state over, Dan left me to the Village, where I ambled about in the hazy city sun, munching on dried pineapple rings and poking in shops as I pleased. I had a few really shimmering examples of comfy conversations with strangers–one of them from whom I purchased a beautiful little handmade gold necklace. The artist selling them, upon seeing the wallet from which I tendered my cash, exclaimed a shocked “Morocco! Morocco!” gazing at me in something very near to alarm. Have you been, he asked? Why yes! I replied with a smile, and thus began my lovely interchange with a Berber artist who’s lived in New York City for a full seven years now. My necklace is, by the way, totally beautiful.
I rode the bus back to Hartford tired, happy, feeling relaxed and loved. I’ve closed some chapters quite well in the recent past, and reopened some other ones. I’m feeling very good about the point to which I’m drawing near as June 30th and my stint at Middlebury races closer. I’ll have educational debt, sure, but no regrets to leave behind here, and no lingering bad juju toward anyone. I will, however, miss my Katie.
More tomorrow–especially focusing on the little kids with whom I played (and was snotted on) on the bus to work!