Life Begins Over Again


“And so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees, just as things grow in fast movies, I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer.”
F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby

I have had a fucking wonderful summer. Excuse my language, truly I try to be a lady but all things considered (my heart breaking into smithereens and having yet to locate all the pieces or put it back together properly) I have stuck to my mission of becoming who I am becoming. Not only that but I had some incredible adventures.

Now truth be told today started out rocky. I woke up and something about today… the date, September 1st speaking of change including a new season upon us and a new job for me, the dreary rain, the fact that my sister’s boyfriend Kurt was packing up to go back home after being here all summer and delighting me daily with his adventuresome spirit, all of this and more soaked the day in melancholy. As I gave Kurt a hug goodbye I joked that I felt very sad he was leaving and he wasn’t even my boyfriend.

Then I hiked in the woods in the rain for a long while. And got some writing done at Starbuck’s while enjoying my beloved extra extra hot pumpkin latte. But upon hearing this song (which I listened to incessantly while Out West) it made me yearn for Wyoming with a wild desperation. All of a sudden I had to get out of Starbuck’s because all the melancholy suddenly felt like too much. I just knew I had to cry.

As soon as I got in the car I burst into tears. It felt so ridiculous the onslaught of hysteria that I had to question myself. What were all the tears for? And so I answered myself to maybe calm myself.

They were for Kurt leaving and me feeling a little sad because he felt like a little brother now, but mostly for my sister Kirstie, because even if it’s just a move and not a break-up, leaving is always hard.

They were for the start of a new season which suddenly I didn’t know if I was ready for; I had just gotten used to summer. Why was summer over? Didn’t it just begin?

They were for Wyoming. Silly, maybe, but suddenly I ached for Wyoming and felt trapped here and unsure where I belonged at all and I longed for the open West and freedom.

They were a little for DC, who I thought by this time I should be good and over and I am good, but certainly not all the way over. I’d say I have one leg over.

They were for my sister Kia who would be leaving as well to move back downstate in a matter of days and would no longer be my partner in crime every day when I needed her. And it just seemed wrong that I should ever have to be without even one of my sisters.

They were for a friend who I recently found lost his grandfather that I knew he loved so dearly and it just seemed so heartbreaking his loss and there being nothing to be done over it and so I cried for that too for good measure. Well I mean once I was already crying.

And then I decided to pull myself together. And the way to do that would be by sharing my top three summer memories to cheer myself. So here goes:

My birthday. Okay, so that seems obvious, as all who know me and some who don’t know I love my birthday disgusting amounts, but this birthday was quite frankly not one of my favorite because of its painfully close proximity to my break-up, however, this doesn’t mean it was not memorable. My dear best friend booked a night in a teepee for me as she knows me well. Normally this would’ve gone over like chocolate being delivered and spoon fed to me by a bearded man, that is to say, amazingly. Except before we got to the teepee which I would be spending the night in with three of my sisters and bestie, Em mentioned that the area we would be staying in was purported to be quite haunted by Native Americans. And she didn’t leave it at that. She then told stories of the hauntings. Okay fine, I am not that big of a baby that I can’t handle a haunted tale (actually yes I am) but then once we set up our fire, Em and my sister joked about the Native American ghosts who might be in the woods and I very gravely told them they could NOT joke about Native Americans. On their Land. Near their teepee. Seriously I had watched a special in which a man who was warned not to go hiking on cursed Native American land did anyway and he disappeared and then later his remains were found and no one knew how he died. I do. It was obviously the Native American Curse. He was warned people! So naturally I had to be the first to fall asleep so as to feel safe that night, and I was. Because of the exceptionally cold night, we had all doubled up in our bunks except Em. I got my sister Alexa and Sav and Kirst were spooned together while Em was across from us. All was well until I woke up at a time I was unsure of but suspected was the bewitching hour. All I could hear from the teepee were sounds of snoozing from all the girls. Instantly I became frantic that the Natives might be mad that the girls had made jokes and when they came in to strangle someone to death that someone might be me, because what if they got confused and didn’t know it was my birthday, or wasn’t sure where Kirst was, or just decided to strangle all of us to make a statement. Honestly if it was going to happen I knew we had brought it upon ourselves. In a matter of mere minutes I was so wracked with terror and so convinced I was about to be maimed by a dead Native American chief that I shook Alexa up. “What.” she whispered. “I’m terrified,” I said. She insisted she was awake now and it was okay, but I retaliated with the fact we needed to skidaddle. Because we were sleeping in a teepee on haunted Native American land with Native American ghosts who probably rightly wanted to kill us and I didn’t blame them. But I wanted to live because it was my birthday and I like cake. Alexa who knows how much I like teepees and Native Americans but who also knows how much I value my sleep, my life and the power of Native American Curses screamed at everyone to get up because I was scared and we were getting out of there. My other sisters promptly whipped out of bed and sprung into action gathering blankets and asking if I was alright with grave concern while I insisted I was not and we were going to die and needed to leave. Em, the only rational one asked why we couldn’t just stay because now everyone was up and my sisters exchanged glances understanding that was of course never an option. Blankets and phones and marshmallows were thrown into my SUV haphazardly and we drove to a hotel two miles down the road where I happily and safely slept in between Alexa and Kirstie.


The Meteor Shower. So there was this incredible meteor shower up here that I was dying to see a few weeks back. I think this was also during the Super Moon, but the moon might’ve just been full and large, but it definitely lit up the whole sky, almost taking away some of the stars glory. My sister, her friend and I made our way down to one of our favorite beaches around midnight to catch the show. We had my sleeping bag and a bottle of pink champagne for the occasion. The night was a cool sixty degrees and it seemed cloud cover was moving in over the stars but we were hopeful. As we sipped champagne from our plastic flutes, suddenly my sis jumped up and insisted she needed to skinny dip. She wasted no time in de-robing and running into Superior. Now I am all about Superior all summer long, though most sane individuals are not. But on this cold night, taking a dip in Superior’s frigid depths, much less naked, seemed a dicey choice. But when my sis came back out seemingly exuberant and slammed the last of her champagne and asked if we were coming in too, it seemed I couldn’t rightly back out. She was younger than me and being this bold, I could hardly be the unadventurous one. So I undressed too and ran in. We all did. And our teeth chattered in the water under the moon and soon-to-be shooting stars. After getting back out, getting dressed and cuddling close the girls saw multiple shooting stars while I only spotted one, but one was all I needed to feel truly and wholly mesmerized and to make a solid wish, which of course I can’t share or it won’t come true.

Wyoming. Sweet Wyoming, there are so many words I have for you (you deserve a whole blog post and will probably get one) that I don’t rightly know where to begin. But I’ll begin with the cowboys. And the horses. Oh mercy me, these two things alone made my summer visit here one of the greatest in recollection. I joked with a friend that the state was so filled with cowboys and horses that I was certain if I moved there I would be given both a cowboy and a horse as a welcome. Wyoming filled my soul with such grandeur, such drunken adoration over the ever changing landscape: wide and winding rivers, fly fishermen, mountains that were green and blue and red and grey, valleys and rolling open land, that most times I was just speechless while others I wanted to throw a tantrum over how desperately I didn’t want to leave. I wanted to stomp and fling myself into a moustached cowboy’s arms and beg, don’t let them take me. I am yours now. I belong to you! Honestly, I didn’t want to leave so badly that I applied for a job there in hopes of staying. Hence why I wept over Wyoming today. That place really got ahold of me.

While I obviously had so many more incredible summer memories with sisters and friends and family alike, I said top three and I have already been wildly verbose, so I will leave it at that. But, see there, I’m reminded that if summer was this sweet, I certainly no longer feel like crying and instead feel warm and magical over what this new season has in store for me.

Dreaming of Darcy


Recently I have developed a crush on this rugged sir. He is tall, dark and oh so handsome. Oh and um bearded. Duh. As if I would waste time with a clean-shaven man. So the other night, my sister Savvy and I had our friend Dana over for a girls movie night in. We watched the movie Austenland where the heroine is so obsessed with Jane Austen that she goes to a Pemberley-esque estate (if you read Jane Austen you would know this is Mr. Darcy’s luxe home in England) to re-enact Jane Austen novels including balls and suitors. I love Jane Austen and Pride and Prejudice is one of my favorite books. So is it any surprise that I kind of want to learn all the fancy, somewhat complicated looking dances they do for… oh I don’t know my wedding one day? Or is it concerning that I sort of want my future husband to maybe dress up like Mr. Darcy and talk to me in a British accent just for kicks? Or am I just like every girl (including the fictional one in the movie) who has an undying love and appreciation for Jane Austen secretly hoping she finds her own Darcy one day and then that will be that. Perfection.

So with all this lead up I think it’s no surprise that I had this dream:

I was at my parents house helping them when I found out that they knew my crush (the tall dark and handsome one, to be called T.D.H from here on out). My parents were doing a home repair project and had to go and consult with T.D.H about it. I ever so coyly decided to go with them so I could bump into him. When we got there, I realized I was only in spandex shorts and a sports bra (throwback to my Biggest Loser days perhaps? And how I would not have realized this before leaving the house is beyond me, but dreams, who can figure?). We went into his house without knocking, (it looked like a smaller U.P. version of Pemberley) and while my parents searched out T.D.H I took one of his curtains and fashioned a rather fetching grey dress that looked very Grecian, very posh, very fit for a ball perhaps?

When Tall Dark and Handsome saw me he looked surprised. Not that I was wearing one of his curtains, but that I coincidentally was in his home. I could tell the difference, even in my dream. It wasn’t a look of why are you wearing my curtain, it was ooh, here you are, what a happy accident. Does anyone smell the scene of a rom-com happening here? Yes, that is exactly what you smell.

There were a few people over his already and more and more people kept arriving, flooding the living room like a party was going on. And T.D.H was in a tuxedo. And he looked good, real good. His beard was in top form and he told stories to the room, captivating everyone’s attention and making them laugh. Because besides having a beard, he’s also funny and charming, this crush of mine.

I sat down on a long sofa near him and sat rapt, while continually catching his eye so he would know my affection for him. At this point the crowd began to mix and mingle with each other as apparently this was a full-blown soiree and my parents forgot all about home repairs and so did I. Suddenly my crush leaned in and brazenly whispered in my ear, “admit it, you find me attractive.”

Now normally the heroine of a Jane Austen film would scoff and be completely put off by such arrogance. I however, have never been that good at indignation. And besides once I am crushing hard, I can’t really think of much else. So dream me was ecstatic that he had picked up on my not-at-all-subtle clues of showing up at his house uninvited and then smiling inanely at him all evening. Besides, this man was allowed a little arrogance. A little is okay.

After this proclamation he turned away as if he wasn’t even interested in the answer, he already knew. But I stared at his profile for a moment waiting for him to turn back to me and when he inevitably did, I nodded: yep sure do find you mighty attractive my nod said. Then he whispered, “come with me.”

As if it weren’t bad enough that I initially forgot to wear clothes to his house, instead of just running off with him, stupid, uncouth dream me asked if I could first use the bathroom. Rookie. In the bathroom, something seemed to be wrong with his pipes as a mixture of toilet water and shower water started to explode all over me until it looked like I peed my pants. But lucky for me, it appeared that T.D.H did indeed have something in common with Mr. Darcy and he had a maid, decked out in old fashioned servants clothes and all. She sensed my distress and ran in to assist me and make me presentable again so that T.D.H wouldn’t know that not only had I turned one of his curtains into a dress, but that his toilet had exploded on me.

But again, unlike most heroines who would love that everything worked out with none the wiser, I refuse to be that suave. As soon as I got in T.D.H’s perfect old fashioned truck, I confessed the whole thing, because I thought it would make for a funny story. Of course he laughed and laughed, like he thought I was just a delightful little goose. Because my crush is cute like that and is not only funny but thinks I’m funny too.

Then when I suspected a kiss was about to happen, I got too excited. So excited that I could feel the dream slipping away from me, like stupid fickle dreams are wont to do. Also as he leaned in I panicked because I hadn’t brushed my teeth. As if it weren’t bad enough that I was wearing a curtain and had been peed on by his toilet, I also had to have bad breath? Well, my crush didn’t get to find out a thing about my breath, because I woke up. Agitated I stormed to the bathroom to brush my teeth. But secretly I was still thrilled. T.D.H and Mr. Darcy. They were deliciously intertwined. Of course it was only in my dreams, but I for one think it bodes well.

Sure my brain probably just latched onto my crush and placed him in a Jane Austen-esque dream because of the movie and because of my wild and romantic imagination. That might be the logical conclusion. But… there is the possibility that I do have a Mr. Darcy and maybe he’s my crush and maybe he’s not. But why rule out wild and romantic possibility? Why would I ever do that? And until I find out, I am content letting my imagination be wild and romantic, even in sleep.