life of wallet, celebrated

i bought this wallet in 2002 at a little head shop in plano called retro revolution.  it was a place that didn’t exist when i was in high school, seemed like a big deal at the time. they sold bongs, in plano. and beautiful glass jewelry, i still have a piece i bought there.

the wallet was $10. i bought it because i lost the indigo yak wool coin purse i’d had for only a short time. there was an era of my early adulthood when i lost my wallet all the time. (i think i got the indigo yak wool coin purse at emeralds to coconuts in dallas. it was summertime when i lost it, so i must have only had it a month or two.) my maryland driver license was in the indigo yak wool coin purse,  problematic because i’d moved back to texas. all of this was so long ago, i was a different person then.

so here the trusty little durable velcro hemp wallet is, 11 years later. a little bit worn, but still totally functional. it’d probably last another 11 years if i wanted it to, but it’s time to move on.  i can’t believe it never got lost, that might be more amazing than its durability.

yak

i stumbled upon a tibetan store walking down 2nd avenue the other day. i used to live in the neighborhood, but never noticed it. probably better that way, he’s got so many great things inside. at some point i have to go back to get the telescope and compass, but i couldn’t pass up this coin purse (and a couple of scarves and a magic skirt).

hemp

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don’t worry about it

yesterday morning i was almost to the stairs to go underground when i realized i forgot my wallet. i quickly turned around and jogged all the way down the block back to 41st avenue. i got about halfway back to my apartment where the man sits in the morning on the brick planter in front of his building.

“good morning,” he says every morning when i pass. “have a nice day.”

i always smile and return the sentiment.

i had already passed him on this day i forgot my wallet, and here i was passing him again.

“you forgot something?”

“i forgot my MTA card.”

“oh here, let me give you some cash.”

“oh, no, i can’t.”

“don’t worry about it,” he said pulling out a wad of cash from his pocket.

he handed me a $20. omg.

i thanked him after he wouldn’t let me refuse, told him i’d get him back tomorrow morning, and was quickly on my way back to the subway station.

this morning i left a little earlier and stopped at the ATM to pull out $20 to pay him back. as i approached his building i noticed he wasn’t sitting in his usual spot. i put the 2 10s the ATM dispensed back in my wallet and figured i’ll see him tomorrow, hoping he won’t think i took off with his $20.

halfway down the block almost to the subway stop, i’m somewhere in my head.

“hello, how are you today?” are the words that interrupt wherever i was.

i look up, there he is walking with a newspaper and a brown bag presumably with his breakfast inside of it.

“oh!” i pull out my wallet and start to unzip the compartment holding the cash.

“don’t worry about it, just go to work!” he tells me.

tomorrow morning i’ll try again.

ordinary delightfulness

cleaning up tonight i found a list of ordinary delightfulness from last fall:

puffy clouds

the smell of rain before a storm

rainbows

mochi for breakfast

lounging with a lover

stringed quartet

homemade pancakes

making chocolate chip cookies with my mom

striped socks

socks with stars

socks that climb all the way up to my knees

glittery goodness in the sky

hello moon.

hello magic wand.

the smell of lilies, white or baby pink, roses, gardenias

running into an old but not forgotten friend

a big hug, both giving and receiving

laughing so hard my cheeks hurt

realizing something wonderful has come full circle

exchanging a smile with a stranger

coloring eggs

dancing

the smell of freshly cut grass

reading kurt vonnegut

reading an amazing poem for the first time

finding an umbrella corpse after a rain storm

a pot of brown rice cooked perfectly

the express train pulling up just as i make it to the bottom of the stairs

hearing a story of ordinary magic

freshly laundered linens

candles

a handwritten letter in my mailbox

a dog wagging its happy tail

kittens!

hearing foreign languages on my way to the train stop

falling in love with new york all over again

the smell of fresh pine

camping in a tent under a million stars

finding a beautiful rock on a hike

dolphins

sharing a sunset

witnessing the power of people coming together

a cup of hot chocolate when the first cold front of the season rolls in

having an epiphany

snuggles from a cat

hearing the laughter of children….

i can definitely expand this list, but at least now i can recycle the paper that was sitting around my room.

 

kiss your life just as it is

i passed this walking down lex the other afternoon. such a wonderful reminder.

life

it’s so easy to get caught up wondering about future events. for me, it typically seems to be a question of where will i live? or what will i do to make money?  i could go on and on with my wondering about future events. when i stop to appreciate what i have now, i find all kinds of happy moments. things about my life i really love and enjoy and may not have later…happiness seems to be there always, i just have to let it in. remember that everything is as it should be.

 

love

caught a thread of two friends exchanging philosophy on love and faith over the weekend. one an athiest, the other a feeling poet. it got me thinking about these two intangible parts of my life, love and faith.

i never really think about faith, although i do have it somewhere tucked inside. faith in what, i’m not exactly sure. sometimes i have faith in humanity, other times it seems lost. i have faith in my self. i have faith in my friends  and family. i have faith things will work out the way they’re supposed to. i think faith is more important than a belief. beliefs change. when they become fixed, they become rigid, thus creating rigidity in the person who holds them. beliefs create attachment.

if by definition faith is a complete trust or if it is a firm belief in something for which there is no proof, then the only thing for which i can have faith is the order of the universe and my self. although hasn’t order in the universe been proven by human observation for thousands of years? we see spirals and seasons, the sun rises and sets everyday. that’s order. but do i need faith for that? the sun will rise even if i don’t.

there’s another definition of faith as in one’s sincerity of intentions, keeping one’s promises. i think i could be described as faithful by that definition. loyalty is another definition that suits me.

i think of it more as trust. trusting the process. trust doesn’t have to be firm. it shifts and bends. maybe strong could replace firm. if faith were defined as a strong flexible belief, i could jump on board.

it seems if love is infinite with varying degrees constantly changing like everything else, why wouldn’t faith be the same way? it can grow and diminish. loving unconditionally is not the same as loving blindly. the word trust seems more open. maybe unconditional trust is faith?

i was in search of a quote last night when i came across this one by eric fromm, german philosopher.

“To have faith requires courage, the ability to take a risk, the readiness even to accept pain and disappointment. Whoever insists on safety and security as primary conditions of life cannot have faith; whoever shuts himself off in a system of defense, where distance and possession are his means of security, makes himself a prisoner. To be loved, and to love, need courage, the courage to judge certain values as of ultimate concern – and to take the jump and to stake everything on these values.”

I’ve learned that courage is movement in the presence of fear. i’ve been called courageous even when i didn’t feel courageous. i do think faith and love take courage. trust takes courage. vulnerability is required. at times uncomfortable or uncertain. it tests and challenges. or is it that it is tested and challenged? maybe both.

just because someone says “i love you” doesn’t mean i feel loved, whether that person is speaking the truth or not. i can have more faith and confidence in the way someone feels about me by the way they interact with me.

a boyfriend once gave me the example of a mechanic and his wife. for valentine’s day, the mechanic took the wife’s car and tuned it up, changed the oil, vacuumed it out. he showed his love for his wife by maintaining her car. she wanted flowers and chocolate. to her it may have seemed that he was showing love for the car instead of her. but to him, he showed his love for her by using his skills to fix something she uses. not what i would want either, but that was how he expressed love. and maybe that would be nice too, but not for valentine’s day! valentine’s day is a stupid holiday, i wouldn’t want chocolate. flowers are nice, but flowers are nice any time. the point is: needs for giving and receiving love vary from person to person. how do you find someone who matches?

i do think it’s important to let people know how you feel, but if your words and actions don’t match, what meaning does it have?

love really is an act of faith or trust. we can love all day long, but people don’t always love us back. or maybe they love us back, but their capacity for love doesn’t match ours. or maybe one loves unconditionally and the other isn’t there yet. tomorrow i could wake up to find the person i love doesn’t love me anymore. or that he loves me, but the timing is off. or maybe i love him, but we’re not in the same place emotionally. or maybe we have different goals. the most wonderful thing about there being only one of us here is that there is enough love to go around, it just takes different forms.

i once asked my teacher how he and his wife stayed married so long.  30 years or so. (many people in their circle have married and divorced several times.) his response was endearing. “because i love her.” possibly one of the sweetest things i’ve heard. ever. about love and relationships. i have no idea what kind of challenges they’ve faced, and i suppose i don’t want to. not now. maybe someday.

right now i’ll just focus on loving myself.

word.

i came across these words written on a picture frame from a writing class i took late last year:

love. love. love.

kindness.

compassion.

understanding.

<3.

empathy.

joy.

laughter.

giggles.

my cheeks hurt.

embrace.

trust.

integrity.

collaboration.

hugs.

connection.

vibration.

<3.

community.

mindful meditation.

silent.

listen.

body.

mind.

spirit.

chakras.

veins.

meridians.

auras.

breathe.

peace.

ki.

<3.

language.

images.

courage.

mystery.

unknown.

invisible.

gracious.

grateful.

gratitude.

cohesive.

wonder.

blessing.

presence.

inspire.

dream.

family.

friends.

animals.

rocks.

trees.

unconditional.