Friday, August 28, 2009

Story I Started

I started this and then relapsed so I never finished it, as you can quickly tell from the XXXXX and YYYYY which would have later been changed to usernames in a revision. No revision means the "place holder" remains. Anyway, unfinished and rough. Enjoy! XXXXX: Hey! YYYYY: here what’s up XXXXX: Did you hear? YYYYY: ya XXXXX: Do you think she meant it? YYYYY: dunno attention whore maybe XXXXX: Maybe. Still. Messed up. YYYYY: yeah i guess XXXXX: You guess? Don’t you feel bad? YYYYY: my mom’s calling ttyl XXXXX: Later. “I feel like I haven’t seen you in forever,” Tyffany said as she pulled Denise into a hug. “You were gone most of the summer.” “I know. I can’t believe the rents didn’t get me back sooner. I barely had time to do any shopping for school.” Tyffany stepped back, gave a quick twirl to show off a new outfit which, if Denise had chosen to be brutally honest, looked like most of the things Tyffany wore—tight and trendy. “You look great.” That was true but Tyffany always looked great. “You do too. Geez, I missed you. Where’s River? What’s taking her so long? I thought I was late.” Tyffany was dumping things from her backpack, cluttering the foot of the bed with random things. “Her mom asked her to do something or other. She’ll be here soon.” As if on cue, River burst through the door, practically tackling Tyffany with a hug. “You bitch! You hardly emailed or anything.” “Don’t hate me. I wanted to write more but we were so busy. ‘Sides, I bought you gifts. You too, ‘Nise.” Tyffany stooped over her pile of things and sorted through, finally pulling up two boxes. “Tada!” Tyffany handed each a box while explaining that they had to open them together because she had gotten them both the same thing. “On the count of three. One. Two. Three.” Denise looked down at the small sterling silver ring, two hands holding a heart with a crown on it. River looked up at Denise at the same time her face a mirror of Denise’s own confusion. “It’s nice,” Denise said, diplomatically because the truth was that the ring was not something she couldn’t have picked up at the mall, at the kiosk where there were all sorts of sterling silver rings, toe rings, bracelets, and pendants. “I bought one for myself too,” Tyffany said holding out her right hand. “You wear it with the heart facing your fingernail if you are not in a relationship.” Removing the ring she flipped it around so that the heart pointed towards her knuckle. “When you wear it like this, it means you are in love.” “Okay,” Rain put the ring on first one finger and then another trying to find which one it fit best. Eventually she landed on her middle finger. Denise was able to put it on her ring finger which is where Tyffany was wearing hers. “Now here’s the plan,” Tyffany continued explaining. “We have the school year to turn these things around. Each of us will have fallen in love by the last day of school or we have to, I dunno, do something really embarrassing.” “Like what?” “I don’t know. I didn’t think about the details. We have all night to talk about it.”

Monday, August 24, 2009

Another Silent Retreat

When I wrote the following, the weekend alone was pretty much set in stone but now it is more vague and indefinite. As a result, I may not do the retreat. However, I am going to assume I shall, as should you who are reading this. Rob is going out of town this weekend which means I can do a weekend retreat again. My last retreat included yoga, reading from Buddhist books, eating simple foods, and time for meditation. I was thinking of doing a retreat dedicated to a particular theme, although I also knew I would want to still do my morning yoga and take my morning walk, regardless of how else I choose to define the time. One thought I had I’ve already set aside as illogical—my hand cramps up when I write for too long and committing the time to drawing all weekend is an invitation to failure because my hand couldn’t handle hours of sketching, etc. So I’m setting that idea aside and trying to choose another. In no particular order, here are the ones I am considering: One: Julian of Norwich I adored her writings when I took my Medieval literature course and I would love to discover that her writings still touch me deeply. Of course, should they no longer affect me then I will have devoted my weekend to a theme that no longer fits my spiritual needs. Two: Yoga I could spend the time practicing various forms of yoga (hatha being the foundation but including a free form practice, a pranayama practice, etc.), meditation (including time spent in chanting), etc. while also reading from yoga texts, including one of the sutras. Three: Thich Nhat Hanh I could say the focus would be on Buddhism but, really, it would be on the teachings of Thay. I have a cd set of his from a week long retreat as well as several books and his mindful movements and walking meditation dvds. I could easily keep thinking of other ideas, other themes, other ways of focusing the weekend, but three seems to be enough. I would like to choose one by Wednesday because, whatever I choose to do, I will want to ensure I have the various things gathered—including texts, cds, etc. I am lucky to have the opportunity to separate myself from the world every now and again and I am frankly looking forward to doing it. My last retreat was cut short because the neighbors decided to throw a party, complete with dogs, children, and even a couple of motorcycles. It was noisy, fun, and intrusive because I couldn’t focus on my practices so I released it. I had enjoyed so much of it already and losing a few hours at the end didn’t seem like that big a deal. Having said that, I sincerely hope our new neighbors won’t decide to throw a party and that this time I can enjoy the full weekend as a retreat.