solo travelin, good for the soul

Solo traveling is good for the soul. A little uncomfortable, a little scary, but ultimately, good for the soul. 

The displacement and discomfort are good for reminding you of what you value, what you enjoy, what you are like. Take away all the comforts of familiarity, and there you are, just you and some time and this new place, getting (re)acquainted with each other in the break from reality, mundanity. 

This elongated weekend in San Francisco has had me strolling unfamiliar streets, in unabashed admiration of the copycat-European architecture, walking quickly when I feel like it, walking slowly when I feel like that. Breathing deeply. 

I’ve memorized Google’s directions to ice cream places and famous landmarks — to be able to walk like a local, no smartphone glow lighting the way for me — taking my time to look into people’s faces and into stores where locals are bustling, to see what it’s all about.

I’ve been heartbroken by the people who sit in the pee-covered curbs finding privacy right there in the open, to sleep, to beg, to do drugs. 
Miles and miles of city blocks in all their upsy-downsy glory, two grapefruits bought at a Hispanic grocery store, one ride with “the best Uber conversation” ever. Which he confirmed. We high-fived on it.

I am reminded of me at my best self. My smiles-at-strangers self. My broad-comfort-zone self. My pondering-while-walking self. My asks-strangers-interesting-questions self. 

I’ve missed that self. 

Thank you, San Fran, for reminding me of her. Of me. 

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the Monday blahs

I LIKE my job, I really do. If ya let me, I’ll gush on. And I LIKE my company. It’s an inspiring place. There are good things happening here. It’s easy to get sparkly-eyed about and at a place that seeks to make society better through the unlikeliest means of “Good,” ever. Cause the moneyz makes it hard to be ethical sometimes, you know?

Why is it, then, that I can’t shake this inexplicable feeling of uselessness as I sit and listen to the work chatter — discussing that “funny little issue” with the “blah-dy blah-dy app” that’s causing stakeholders to “blah blah-la” for the “blah-something program blah”?

Sometimes it all seems to insignificantly complicated and complicatedly insignificant. I know, I know, specialization is all in the details, but I guess I really am a broad-picture thinker. It’s hard for me not to put my discontentment frown on, eyes glazed over, all contemplative about The State of Modern Man And All when I hear conversations about the tiniest little detail about these outermost layers of the infinity of entanglement we have Civilizationed ourselves into. Out of?

And the sad, final punch is that I can’t even put these feelings to words, phrases, blog posts that make any sense at all.

—-ed. 11/17/14 12:20pm—-

Okay, but let’s set the record straight. All the blah blahs aside, I still am daily inspired by this place

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that celebrates National Talk Like a Pirate Day with a watermelon pirate ship at the coffee bar.
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with teammates that bring me assorted snacks from their Snack and Learns, cause they “didn’t know which one you liked”
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and days of post-Halloween candy showing up in the common area, of which I may or may not have stashed bags of sour patches, of which I may or may not be snacking RIGHT NOW. maybe. and peppers.
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with cupcake tantrums that are appeased by the department head with swift, post-department meeting deliveries to the pod
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and the tear-inducingly inspiring mission statement, standing proud and shiny at the entrance of Every Day and Normal.
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and work friends who are now also selfie friends. oooh la!

Praise God for jobs…for cars…for recovering from indigestion…and for all the other little, medium, big blessings of Life Right Now. Seriously.

 

ecclesiastes in the morning: call and response

5:18 “Behold, what I have seen to be good and fitting is to eat and drink and find enjoyment in all the toil with which one toils under the sun the few days of his life that God has given him, for this is his lot.”

work hard, play hard; enjoy the fruits of your labor; do what you do, and do it well.

6:3-5 “If a man fathers a hundred children and lives many years, so that the days of his years are many, but his soul is not satisfied with life’s good things, and he also has no burial, I say that a stillborn child is better off than he. For it comes in vanity and goes in darkness, and in darkness its name is covered. Moreover, it has not seen the sun or known anything, yet if finds rest rather than he.”

stop and smell those roses; enjoy the sunshine on your face, and live every day in the attitude of gratitude that these gifts rightfully demand.

7:3 “Sorrow is better than laughter, for by sadness of face the heart is made glad.”

there is pain in the growth, growth in the pain.

7:8 “Better is the end of a thing than its beginning, and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit.”

…pride and prejudice?? beware of too much sassy, but also, staytrue staytrue.

7:14 “In the day of prosperity be joyful, and in the day of adversity consider: God has made the one as well as the other, so that man may not find out anything that will be after him.”

God is always working — when he reveals the details of how he’s doing so, these are just the cherry-on-top moments of wonderful grace and un-helpable gratitude [a virtuous cycle].

8:14-15 “There is a vanity that takes place on earth, that there are righteous people to whom it happens according to the deeds of the wicked, and there are wicked people to whom it happens according to the deeds of the righteous. I said that this also is vanity. And I commend joy, for man has nothing better under the sun but to eat and drink and be joyful, for this will go with him in his toil through the days of his life that God has given him under the sun.”

all cliches are simple, obvious, WOAH-inspiring truths; take joy in the joyful, but learn joy from the sorrowful.

for man has nothing better under the sun but to eat and drink and be joyful, for this will go with him in his toil through the days of his life that God has given him under the sun.

nothing better. than that which God has given him under the sun.

nothing!

amen!!

enjoy the roses; then enjoy their fallen petals everything enjoyed...ecclesiastically ;)
enjoy the roses; then enjoy their fallen petals
everything enjoyed…ecclesiastically 😉