Friday, April 20, 2007

engaged


engaged
Originally uploaded by stereogab.
look who has something sparkly sparkly on her ringfinger!

of course, it's entirely appropriate that my engagement to leafy green should be made official -- ring and all -- on 4/20. hee hee.

we tried this before, but I wasn't truly ready @ the time, even though i knew B would be the only love for my heart. but, i had to figure a few things out about myself before i could commit to spending my life w/anyone else.

i'm so happy he waited for me. life is going well and i am a lucky and blessed stereogab.
yay!

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Tuesday, April 10, 2007

plantinghands


plantinghands
Originally uploaded by stereogab.
Phew what a time, but oh so invigorating! Can't wait to see the sproutlings soon.

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Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Back from Tulum...w/a longish post

Greetings patient readers and friends. It’s been a while since I chimed in here, but it’s not cuz I haven’t been thinking of it.

What a time it has been! I have been swept up in a major life transition. This was day 3 (is that all?) of my new gig at the glorious Sunlight Foundation. (Check out the site, we’re doing really cool things. Nothing short of revolution.) Somehow, I got invited to the party and I’m still pinching myself (and feeling old at 31, if you can imagine that!)

In between the time of my last online rumination on inverting my perspective (oh, and much as I appreciate anyone who thought that picture actually depicted me in the pose, alas stereogab has yet to get vertical in an upside-down kinda way), I have ended an old job, picked out a new ring to celebrate my commitment to and love for leafy green, gone south of the border to find my inner nudist, (see how leafy found his!) and made to 31 flavors (pass the life savers.) Maybe you’ve seen some of my most recent pix on flickr?

Hard to believe that it was only (already?) two weeks ago when I was drinking copious amounts of water in anticipation of the temazcal I was about to experience. B and I smartly espcaped it all for a week-long retreat in the zona hotelera along the beach outside of Tulum, Mexico. We unplugged from electricity, work, the media, our typical worries beyond where to find our next meal. And we tapped into the natural rhythm of keeping hours based upon the sun and the moon. Glorious!

This vacation was one of the best I can remember in a long time. No commitments, lots of time spent soaking in the sun (but with copious amounts of SPF slathered on) reading, daydreaming, watching the aquamarine-to-green waves crash along the shore, wondering which local restaurant has the best fish taco…

By now, I guess I shouldn’t be, but I was surprised by my catalog of Spanish vocabulary. Words I hadn’t tried to utter before in some years came rolling off my tongue, albeit with more than a twinge of a gringa accent and probably with conjugations and verb tenses scrambled a bit. It helped that the Yucatecans were all very friendly. Especially sweet Salvador, the man who schlepped us to and from the Cancun airport (about 120 km north of Tulum), and who graciously chatted with me in my broken Spanish about politics, his local charitable and political organizing efforts, Bush’s recent visit to Mexico and the purification rituals that followed. I even heard myself telling him about life in DC, including the embarrassment of having taxation without representation. ; )

Maybe the words rolled off my tongue because I am regaining the confidence to speak them. I have my speculations as to why the 5 year-old me decided to give up her bilingualism, but those reasons are all in the past.

But back to Tulum. (Or, more specifically, the zona hotelera or beach town about 4 km away from the Tulum pueblo.) It is a very laid-back beach town full of hippie dudes with long hair and beards hawking beaded jewelry and various talismans. We stayed in a cabaña (which is essentially a hut made out of stick walls with palm frond roof and a concrete floor) that had a “partial sea view” but this view was good enough that I could see the ocean down the hill beyond the beach bar. Most hotels in the area are cabañas, some even more rustic than ours, some quite splendorific with tile floors and electricity.

Our stay at Cabañas Copal was enjoyable in part because of the vibe of the place – with an energetic atmosphere of hippie vendors, panflute players, fellow smiling vacationers and cabaña staff commingling and chatting, along with he scent of burning copal (incense), a pleasantly constant ocean breeze and sound of nearby crashing waves. The sunlight was gorgeous and instantly shook the winter from these bones.

Favorite meals included:
  • a seaside lunch of fish and shrimp tacos at Diamante K, which was well earned after walking madly in the hot sun after visiting the ruins of the city of the rising sun.
  • another seaside lunch of a simple and very fresh platter of mixed seafood for two served Italian style with roma tomatoes and bruschetta at Hemingway’s. This meal was so good, we made reservations on the spot for our Saturday night meal (which was heavenly fresh lobster with linguini and white wine.) Dining at Hemingway’s is like going to your very laid back Italian friend’s home (or rather her mother’s) and asking, what do you feel like cooking today? What’s the freshest thing you just got from the market? Lobster? Excellent! No rush, you and your husband cook and we’ll just sit here in your dining room that just happens to look out at the sea.
  • a weekday afternoon meal of a grilled mixed seafood (see a theme here?) platter for two with a side of plátanos maduros at the lively don cafeto’s in the pueblo.

A bit more on the temazcal. Maybe it’s a completely authentic Mayan ritual, or maybe there’s some new agey magick thrown and show for the turístas, but even if this sweatlodge didn’t follow the exact practice from the ancient Mayans, it was a fantastic and memorable experience. We entered a little dome that was heated with hot lava stones and followed a shaman in chants and intentions for rejuvenation, inner strength, lucid dreaming, etc. I really got into this – playing along with the call and response, belting chants on the top of my lungs, opening myself fully to the experience and even to the possibility of altered states of consciousness and maybe even visions. My vision was of a very graceful crane, flying above me and smiling down upon me as the old, built-up toxins poured freel from my pores. I emerged from the temazcal renewed and excited, looked up through the shadows of trees at the rising moon lying on its belly, and suddenly remembered how my Papi Cesar would go on vision quests in hopes of helping family members get an inkling of their futures.

I wonder about the smiling crane and what she thinks of my future.

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