aerodrome 3

The trip from our hotel to the airport started before I would ordinarily be awake, and comprised 30 minutes of twists and turns through busy city. Jaime and his suitcase accompanied me in the airport shuttle even though he needed to go in the opposite direction to where his car was parked so he could drive himself back to his mountains and home.

From the shuttle drop-off point to the terminal comprised another 10 minutes of pedestrian twists and turns through what felt like a parking garage but mostly without cars in it. The route was painted on the ground but was also helpfully signposted with 8 or 10 friendly staff, one at each turning to guide us through the labyrinth. The last three carried baskets and handed out chocolate eggs, in honour of Easter, as well as little bottles of water. Our theory was that this was done to counteract the endless fog of low-grade evil engendered by a building that forgot to account for the fact that people needed to move through it.

I had some time to spare so we had a bit of a sit, I got myself organised, and then Jaime sent me off with a few meaty swats to my bottom. It’s hard to leave, but the tension keeping me there is balanced by the tension pulling me home and back to Wolf.

And, some 20 or so hours later, Wolf was waiting for me at our little airport in his usual spot, and silently gathered me up in his arms in the usual way, smelling my hair.

So I’m home now, and mostly recovered from the ultra-long-haul flight, a handful of time zones worth of jetlag, and (probably) fighting off a 20-hour barrage of viruses in various airports and planes. The length of the days is not so different from where I was, nor the temperature, and I’ve only had one flicker of disorientation from the sun being on the “wrong” side of my zenith. The next time I go to visit Jaime, perhaps I’ll be able to find north by feel rather than calculation.

Wolf is away again for now, and I’m alone in the house until he returns, but this is the last time for a few months at least.

Here I am in the – non-private – washroom of an airport lounge, not quite a year ago. Low traffic, but still required a little more boldness than my usual material.

More photos from this trip (i.e. last year’s, not the one I just got back from) here and here.

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mile high 34

My visit with Jaime is drawing to a close, and I’ve only got one more full day with him. Most of our time together has been spent, very relaxed, at his place and today’s day out in the city — featuring squealing kids, more people than I usually see in a year (it put me in mind of Shibuya at one point), and inescapable noise of some kind all day, indoors and out — reminds me of some of the reasons why I don’t live in a big city. I went into Muji and didn’t buy anything because it was a zoo and the line was enormous — that’s how peopled out I was. By the end of it, we both wanted to put boxes over our heads.

But then, after dinner at a quiet little family-run Thai restaurant, there was a short fireworks show just across the way. Although our view was partly obscured by buildings, we could still see it well from our room instead of having to wade through another mass of humanity, which frankly was beyond us in that moment anyway.

Different plane than last week’s photo, but taken the same day on (I think) the same type of aircraft.

Compare last week’s photo here.

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mile high 33

I’ve been here with Jaime for most of a week now. The travel, as always, was grueling, but I suppose the upshot of not being able to get any real rest on the (very, very long) flight is that although I’m exhausted by the end of it, I don’t really get jetlag. My body will take any amount of rest at any time of the day.

I’ve done some shopping and so far I’ve bought Mongolian felt slippers, a Hmong coat, and a little Afghan carpet. No souvenirs native to this country so far. Oh well.

I’ve also had two spankings, and a profound realisation about some of my sexual difficulties which led, predictably, to a torrent of tears. More on that later.

This was taken while travelling with my mother. I inherited extreme self-consciousness from her and I find myself reverting to that to some extent while in her company. I’m pleased to report that I’m now comfortable enough with my body to pull a stunt like this even when she’s around. I’ve made real progress!

Boobday is a body-positive meme where women share images of their bodies in order to show that there is beauty in all of us. With confidence comes power and with power comes confidence.

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The last few weeks, my busyness level has ranged between hopping and frantic. Preparing for a business trip, then the trip itself. Then the aftermath, concurrent with getting ready for an epic flight to visit Jaime, leaving in a couple of days. And now I have a cold because of course.

I’m looking forward to seeing Jaime, but I’ve too busy anxiously putting out fires at work to be aware of the anticipation. Occasionally I get a stab of anxiety when I remember some key time-sensitive travel task, like ordering currency (picked up today!). And now that those work fires are out (well, reduced to smouldering embers to impatiently await my return or handed over to be someone else’s problem), then I can devote my entire brain to being anxious about packing and otherwise preparing for travel. Hooray! *eyeroll*

I’ve not seen much of Wolf lately. His workload has been heavier than we hoped, so even though he’s close enough to come home on weekends, he hasn’t had the time. He did come back two weeks ago for a change of scenery and a proper shower, but mostly so he could drive me to the airport. The airport that’s a 10-minute drive from our house. That’s devotion, folks.

I’ve not heard much from him either as when he’s stressed he goes into extreme hermit mode and doesn’t have a lot to say anyway. So when we talk, I natter on about whatever trivia is happening for me, and he listens. There’s a distance. Fortunately, the term is over soon and he’ll be returning home around the time I get back from my trip.

I miss Wolf and would much rather that he was here, but even so, there’s a certain comfortableness about being on my own the way I was a few years ago when he was overseas. The devil you know, that’s part of it. But also, being an introvert myself, I don’t mind the solitude. And I have discovered that, for a variety of reasons, I’m not good at knowing what I want — in most areas of my life — so having the mental and emotional silence allows me to listen for my own tiny voice.

As of early this afternoon, Wolf is back in town so we get some time together (coughing and sneezing because we’re both sick now) before he drives me to the airport, once again.

Boobday is a body-positive meme where women share images of their bodies in order to show that there is beauty in all of us. With confidence comes power and with power comes confidence.

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room with a view 2

This week started off deceptively calmly with a day off — at least for me, in theory, but the people generating work for me to do were busy all day so all I accomplished was to fall behind. It didn’t help that I had a reaction to some food over the weekend so my energy and brainpower were sub-optimal, and thus I headed into Tuesday with difficulty focusing. And the computer was acting up so I couldn’t do anything. Wednesday, Thursday and Friday have, as a result, been frantic. I woke up early today because of anxiety and was in tears before breakfast.

As of this evening, I’m no longer behind on work but I’ve still got some personal tasks that are getting very stale and I Just. Can’t. Rest. One of the things to deal with is getting the car moving under its own power again after the battery froze. Ten-minute drives a few times a week aren’t enough to keep it functional in the weather we’ve been having, and suddenly my virtue of being almost entirely self-propelled has become a vice causing all manner of hassle. I don’t have the brainpower for any more problem solving, so if there’s any new problems they’re just going to have to wait their turn. (Think that will work?)

I did squeeze in a 10-minute meditation today and I think it helped, and I have a meditation class tomorrow to help me recalibrate. And no one adding to my pile of work over the weekend (touch wood) will also help. Some of my dance folks are coming over on Sunday for discussion and socialising which I expect to be enjoyable but very draining. I’ve told them the start time and the end time and I’m not afraid to boot people out if it comes to it.

I think I can say without risk of jinxing it that, yes, I’m in a blogging groove again, but it’s a struggle to find time to do the writing and, more importantly, the emotional work that undergirds so much of it. I’m managing to keep up with my reading (there’s a reason why my follow lists are short) and replying to comments here (just), but commenting on others’ posts is beyond me right now, I’m afraid, especially given how long it takes me to compose even a simple comment. I’d prefer to contribute a little more social to my media, but for now I’m just going to have to accept blogging at all as a success.

This hotel that’s well off the beaten track houses well-tended, stylish rooms. Unfortunately, the light is stylishly low and it’s hard to get a good photo.

Get another view of this same room in room with a view 3.

Boobday is a body-positive meme where women share images of their bodies in order to show that there is beauty in all of us. With confidence comes power and with power comes confidence.

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mile high 32

I’m on my own and I’ve now gotten into a groove. Keeping myself well fed and not boring myself to tears with the food I’m making. Learning to improvise meals using staples, the contents of my spice cupboard, and whatever perishables I have at any given time. And not taking all evening to do it. I feel… nascent competence. It’s good.

My workload has calmed from “panic” down to “frantic” and now towards merely “hopping”. The weather has been very cold and I’m feeling creaky because of inherent creakiness plus lack of exercise — the busyness indoors (I work from home) and the frigidity outdoors makes it easy to avoid going out and just park my bum in front of my computer all day.

Though my routine did get shaken up a bit the other day. When I went out to clear the snow off the car (not having driven it for days), the remote door lock didn’t work. I had to actually apply the key to the keyhole and then tried to open the other doors using the unlock button. Nothing. No electricity at all. The battery is completely dead. And I had a physio appointment to get to right away. This was an important appointment so, in problem-solving mode, I called a cab, which is something I never do. Happily, I got to the appointment on time. It wasn’t so far away that walking was impossible but it was a hike: about 30 min to get myself home.

And then I had to get myself to dance class in the evening. Again, I usually drive but walking isn’t out of the question. This was about 25 min. I would have preferred to drive because (a) one of the things I went to physio for was my foot and (b) it eats up rather a lot of time on what is always a busy day due to my dance classes running basically all evening. At least I got a lift home. And I worked out some of the kinks in my legs and hips.

But good news! Wolf is coming home tomorrow! For once we might actually have to decide who cooks supper. But I”m leaving the the dead battery problem to him.

Last leg of my trip home from visiting Jaime, Nov 2017. Do my breasts look tired? All of me was very tired.

Boobday is a body-positive meme where women share images of their bodies in order to show that there is beauty in all of us. With confidence comes power and with power comes confidence.

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mile high 31

I’m feeling very clever for having prepped a bunch of photos two weekends ago. Of course I knew it would make posting easier, but whatever it is that makes it seem difficult to do one at the time I want to post it also makes it seem difficult to do them as a batch. It’s a little tedious and it just takes time at the computer, but I’m already at risk of flattening out my ass from all the power sitting I’m doing while I work more every day than I have in years.

I’ve officially survived 4 weeks on my own since Wolf got that job out of town. The fact that I have to cook for myself is the single biggest difference when I’m on my own. I’ve cooked from time to time over the years but never really got good at it. It was effortful and time-consuming so I’d make a big batch of whatever, and then I’d get bored of it before I finally ate my way through it all. But now I feel like I’m starting to get the hang of it. My repertoire is still very limited, but I’m cooking meals for one from scratch everyday and riffing a bit with flavour.

Sweets are much easier for me, (though the challenge now is keeping the problematic FODMAP carbs under control). Some overripe strawberries in the freezer and some pine nuts and sliced almonds (toasted) turned into some tasty toppings for ice cream. Anyway, I’m feeding myself well and learning to experiment.

The lack of companionship is a drag but it’s manageable; I’m not the most social anyway, and I always see folks at least once a week during my dance class. But I am finding myself a little lonely at times — though not  so much during the day as I’m much too busy with work to notice it then. Wolf is busy keeping his shit together and we’re not in contact all that much. Jaime is available (from a distance) as much as always, which helps. I’m missing my friend Rosa but she’s busy with her new baby. Actually, all of “my people” (including myself) skew towards the less communicative end of the spectrum. Hmm.

A nice big mirror on a nice big plane, coming home from visiting Jaime in Nov 2017. 

Boobday is a body-positive meme where women share images of their bodies in order to show that there is beauty in all of us. With confidence comes power and with power comes confidence.

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mile high 30

Two Fridays ago, I was frantically prepping and packing for a business trip, and last Friday I was in transit for over 12 hours on my way home from said trip. It was good but exhausting (as these things always are) and I’m glad to be home.

A few hours before I got back, Wolf came back into town for the first time since his job started and thus was able to pick me up from the airport. It was late and due to a bit of sleep deficit, the ordinary rigours of travel, and especially business trips, as well as a minor mishap en route (I lost a library book!), I was completely done. Every goddamned thing was irritating: the way other passengers stood in the aisle or put on their coats or walked… so… slowly. The only thing I was aware of was all the things that were wrong, and that was everything.

But Wolf was there waiting for me when I arrived, and held me close, and carried my bags, and got me straight home to bed.

From Nov 2017, on a trip to see Jaime. I bake in a sweater while travelling; cardigans are definitely the way to go.

Boobday is a body-positive meme where women share images of their bodies in order to show that there is beauty in all of us. With confidence comes power and with power comes confidence.

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I think I feel like blogging again

If there’s something that I want to understand but don’t (or at least not as fully as I want to), I keep revisiting it until I have the answer. One issue that’s like this for me is why I slowed down so much with blogging. Yes, I’ve discussed this before, but I’ve discovered some new factors, and I’m feeling optimistic.

I posted a lot in 2015, my first year. I had a lot to say, and while I was suffering with undiagnosed depression, the fact that I wasn’t able to work much ended up giving me more time to write, and fortunately I had enough brainpower for it. Wolf came back that summer and in the fall I started teaching dance more than I had been. In 2016 I posted somewhat less.

I think the original causes for the slowdown were depression (starting in the fall of 2016) and the fact that my sex life was cooling off so I had less to write about. No doubt the depression affected my sex life, but it was also cooling off for its own reasons, not yet fully understood (this is something I’m working on now). Then I went on antidepressants, which basically doused what embers of libido that remained. I strongly suspect that the antidepressants also muted my creativity, so even if I had something to say, it was hard to give enough of a shit about saying it to actually write and publish. My many, many unpublished drafts speak to that issue. In 2017 I had half as many posts as 2016.

I was feeling better by December 2017 (yay, depression essentially gone!) but stayed on the antidepressants until spring on doctor’s orders. I felt my cognition rekindle; it took 3-4 weeks but when the change came it was pretty sudden (yay, I can think!). And that was over six months ago, so where has the blogging been? In 2018, I had half as many posts as 2017.

The way I had originally defined the scope of the blog has become limiting to me. I think this is key, and it’s taken me a few months to really absorb it. I kept having ideas of things to say but I felt like I wasn’t allowed to say them here. Weird, since this is my blog to say what I want, but it’s taken me a while to give myself permission to talk about other things beyond the original scope of the project. I’ve felt limited by the name of the blog (which I chose four years ago when things were different), but I don’t have a better name yet, so fuck it. For now, it stays. I intend to revise my About page to reflect the new scope, in bits, as the mood strikes. If I tell myself it all has to be done in one go, it becomes overwhelming and doesn’t get done at all.

I’ve just become aware of a few other factors – less significant, but they go some way to filling in the remaining gaps. I might have mentioned before that I have a new(ish) laptop and I’ve found it difficult to adjust to. The keyboard is different and I get typos more often than before. So that’s annoying. Also, the screen is smaller than I’m used to so editing photos is less fun and more hassle. I have a nice big monitor for my work computer, which spoils me for the small one.

In addition to this, I have few reasons to turn on the laptop, and it being off is a barrier somehow. I don’t really know why, but it’s definitely a thing. I’m much more likely to putter on the blog, and especially reply to comments and comment on other people’s writing, when the laptop is already on.

Wolf has been gone for a week now and I’m rediscovering the routine I had while he was away doing his doctorate. During the day I like it quiet. No music. No talk radio. No TV or Netflix or YouTube. Just silence, other than the sound of a bit of traffic outside and sometimes the wind. (Actually, a lot of wind lately.)

OK, this isn’t really any different from when Wolf is here. But in the evening, it changes. I now have to do the cooking and dishes, and I want music on while I work around the house. When I want music, I go on Soundcloud, which I do from my laptop because of technical reasons. And lo, now my laptop is on every day, and I can just decide to write a little something or do other blog maintenance and it feels so much easier.

Brains are weird.

mile high 29

So Wolf is getting settled in his new job in the other city (the other place, but not The Other Place, if you see what I mean). And I’m getting settled into my new solo routine at home. I have to get used to being on my own again (including cooking for myself, which I find difficult and stressful), at least for a few months, but there are significant differences this time. For one, Wolf now has a cell phone so it’s easier to be in touch from a distance, whether that’s by phone or text. We’re also in the same time zone so our cycles still mesh. And the distance, while inconvenient, is near enough for a weekly commute.

Except that we only have one car and the public transportation situation here is dire. But my mom will be away for an extended period — almost the exact same length as an academic term, as luck would have it — and she has offered to lend us her car, which will simplify things immensely.

But for now I’m now communicating with both Wolf and Jaime largely by text, which gives me a stronger sense of my menfolk; I’m more conscious of maintaining two relationships now that I’m alone in this house and they each have a specific text sound and call schedule.

From the last leg of my trip home from Europe in April. En route from Jaime to Wolf.

Boobday is a body-positive meme where women share images of their bodies in order to show that there is beauty in all of us. With confidence comes power and with power comes confidence.

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