My keyboard seems too small for my hands right now, my house too tiny, my body too compact to hold everything that's swirling inside. And all in the best of ways. Vacation is so, so good and right after coming back I can never remember what's stopped me from taking the time to just go in those stretches when I feel trapped by work and life and the responsibilities I routinely blow out of proportion just to hear the boom.
Because it's only when I'm outside of all that, the routine of mornings when it's a struggle to even brush my teeth and of evening-time, sense-deadening television schedules that I remember how remarkably capable I am. Moving in the world and interacting with strangers on planes and in faraway cafes in climates so different from the familiar that I remember that I really, really like myself and the planet on which we live.
I like myself in the world where there are no expectations and deadlines, and yet adventure lies in wait over the shallow horizon of the next minute. When I get up earlier than I'd expect even though I don't have to and go to bed at reasonable hours because, the marrow of the day drained, there's no reason to stretch it beyond its natural borders. When food and sleep are well-earned and all the more precious. Beer and coffee nectars, not medicants.
I learned to snowboard and Jessica, let me tell you, it's amazing. Once you get past the falling and the part where you lose momentum on the flats and have to sit down (again) and take your board off (again) to walk to the next incline (again) it's not so bad. If you can get to the part where even when you're sitting (again) and unstrapping (again) and walking (again), that you take a moment to look around at the 14,000 foot peaks you've only seen as movie backdrops or as postcards on other people's refrigerators and at the sky in between that's just as impossibly bigly blue and realize that the air you're breathing is so clean you can feel your molecules expanding to drink it in . . . . It makes "purple mountain's majesty" seems like an understatement. I kept thinking, kept thinking, kept thinking, God I am so lucky. And thank you.
The first day I fell a lot and thereafter fell less and less as I learned to drift like a falling leaf and then to connect my points and navigate down accidental moguls and grades intended for upperclassmen without killing myself. I finally made turns and had the pleasure of floating through powder. I never knew what powder was. Not viscerally. And it's a joy no one in life shouldn't not experience. My vocabulary for snow has expanded exponentially and I want to learn more like I love Fred. (March maybe, please!)
And now I'm home, but I'm still slipping over the snow, maintaining the momentum through yoga and vicarious association. Through my friend Monica, just back from Spain, and through Marta, Paloma and Kelly who live there. Through my friends Chris and Criss in Shanghai. And finally, through my friend Steph and her husband Grady, home finally from Paris who are now on their way to holiday in Africa. In my mind I'm traveling with them. To go to Africa, it would only be three thousand dollars, another two weeks of time off, a few uncomfortable immunizations and one even more uncomfortable conversation with my boss. "I know I just got back, but. . . ." The bigger part of me knows I'm not going along -- though I can't help but add, this time. I will one day. In the meantime dinner and brunch with them and with another dear friend, Allyson, in itself was an adventure of improbable synchronicity and specific connection built (I'm convinced) before we ever met or were even born. And the laughter like powder, a gift from heaven and better than any I've ever been able to hold in my hands.
So I'm back, and yet all weekend long and into this I keep thinking, keep thinking, keep thinking God I am so lucky. And thank you.