On fears // A few years ago I observed a sixth grade science class. The students were using scooters to enact Newton’s First Laws of Motion, “Every object in a state of uniform motion tends to remain in the state of motion unless an external force is applied to it.” The kids would zoom forward on scooters in the dusty hallway until their partners stopped them, which mostly involved them engaging in some sort of clumsy chase, then flopping off the side of their scooters and giggling together. It looked fun.
I feel like January snuck up and sucker-punched me off my scooter, y’all.
It’s been a rough month. Living away from family, my biggest fear is something happening to one of them. I guess that’s a fear wherever I live, but losing Karma (aka Little Girl, Karmy, Karmalicious, fellow family tribe member) so suddenly was like a kick in the gut, an arcane glimpse into the universe, that left me sad and homesick. She was only 8 1/2 and only radiated the sweetest and most steadfast kind of love. Always nearby, always bouncing around, and always up for one of my long walks. (I swear she could sense me even looking for my socks and shoes, hot on my heels as I walked around my parent’s place over the holidays.) My parents were surprised when she didn’t eat her food last Thursday – just like me, that one never misses a meal. They took her to the vet, then immediately rushed her to a specialist that same morning around 11 a.m., but unbeknownst to everyone she had an aggressive form of cancer and didn’t make it. She died by 2:50 p.m. on Friday, 1/23 (that date, it’s something, right?). 1-2-3, game over.
My first response was, “Dammit.“
That’s all I could think over and over…..dammit dammit dammit dammit dammit dammit dammit dammit dammit dammit dammit dammit dammit dammit….
Then: My parents thought she just ate something that upset her stomach. A routine vet visit, and she never even made it home that day, that’s what really floored me.
Then: Why was I always yelling at her to get out of the way when I was trying to take pictures over the holiday!?
Ugh, we were all shocked and heartbroken to say the least. A few blubbering conversations to my dear college friend Marissa, doctor and fellow dog-lover, ended with these wise words, “She was loved. She didn’t suffer. And we gotta get you out of here.”
On Montreal // After waking up at 3:30 a.m. the next day to get six students visiting from South Africa to the airport – you guys, my eyes were so puffy from crying, I was a scary sight in the middle of the night, those poor kids – I drove to Marissa’s. She took me up to Montreal for good food, cheap Chinatown massages, whiskey, my first visit to an Ikea, and a swanky stay at the W hotel.
THIS HOTEL. I was like, whoa, Marissa did good.
The massages (and sauna!) were AMAAAAAAZING and at this weird underground spa at the Holiday Inn in Chinatown. I’m like, “How the f-ck did you find this Marissa?”
The food! We had Lebanese, tapas, grilled octobpus, the best sweet potato frites, lots of whiskey, French petit dejeuner, and more.
I totally bought golden retriever stuffed animals at Ikea. My first stuffed animal purchase for me, ever.
I hadn’t been up to Montreal in about six years and it reminded me of just how much I like to wander around in foreign cities; how alive and refreshed traveling makes me feel. I enjoyed being in an urban city, with hundreds of people out and about, awesome underground walking tunnels, no college hippies, delicious global cuisine, neat architecture, and art everywhere. Woo! And the lighting was so sexy in Montreal at night in the winter: red everywhere –> red bars, red lanterns, red walls. I felt like I fell into an art gallery realm. Thank you thank you thank you thank you, Marissa.
On countless blessings // My mom left for a ladies trip to Florida today, so I sent my dad a little belated birthday/care package this week: socks, chocolate, a baseball hat, magical Vermont hand cream, candle, energizing room spray, wallet photos of Karma, a framed photo of Karma, and a journal that I found in town with the words “SEE COUNTLESS BLESSINGS” printed in pretty letters on the rose-colored leather. <3 you Dad.
Speaking of…..after a year of waiting for new UVM Winterfest mugs, they tightened the rules for getting my favorite mug OF-ALL-TIME, a literal replica of the famous Heady Topper beer cans (#onlyatuvm): only for undergrads. Nooooooo! Tricked out in a beanie, backpack, some Blundstones, and chipped blue/black nail-polish, I totally passed not only once but twice this week. Huzzah.
Two new mugs + two old mugs = four treasured mugs now:)
P.S. In much lighter news, what are you watching? After a hiatus, I’m almost to the last season of Breaking Bad, and I’ll need a new winter TV hibernation fixation. My indecision kicks in big time when taking on a new series….commitment issues, ya know. House of Cards? OITNB (watched a couple of episodes, and wasn’t hooked…)? Game of Thrones (watched the first season, read the first book)? Gilmore Girls (watched a few episodes and liked it but got distracted by Breaking Bad)? Felicity or SATC rewatch (LOVE them both)? Alias? Sons of Anarchy (Charlie Hunnam, HOT)? The Twilight Zone (old school!)?
P.P.S. Obsessed with this song.
P.P.P.S. My friend Eric from Japan – now in Ireland – is coming to America to get a tattoo/visit this spring! (Stop reading mom & dad.) I’m thinking of getting one too. I have two that I don’t like, so I figure I should get a third one that I DO. Third time’s a charm, right?