Friday, June 22, 2012

How to Enjoy a Cariboo Summer Day

Sun. Summer.
Try not to look over your shoulder at the lurking rain clouds the wind is blowing in...
Hot days here are fleeting and should be savoured.
Smile at the audience as sweat runs down the inside of your costume-
enjoy the fact that there IS an audience, a large one for a change.
Put an extra bit of bounce in your step, more gleam in your smile.
Sing loudly.
Make a dramatic curtsey at the curtain call.
Hug some kids and your best friend outside the theatre while the audience takes photos. 

Get outside for lunch-
Go and sit near the creek and listen to the wind ruffle the firs.
Talk to someone else in costume and love the fact that yours is off and the breeze can reach your legs.

Summer is
an apple's cold crunch against your teeth
a new bicycle waiting for you in the parking lot

Being here is knowing joy, from time to time.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

This is what I look like today. 
I have a cold. A cold is such an insignificant virus, and yet it makes life so hard. I want to sleep all the time. I've hardly been on my bicycle in a week. I snuffle and glower and lurch through the day. I save any energy I have for the 2 shows we do daily. 
I am thoroughly grateful that this is happening now, and that I should be getting better by the time we have our gala opening in 5 days. And fully mended by the time my sweetheart arrives in 2 weeks. I am covering myself in oils and ointments from Barkerville's Chinatown, until I smell like a Chinese herbalist's shop; of camphor and mint and eucalyptus. The town cat actually dry-heaved when I petted her today; she hates my smell. I like it, or rather, I would if I could smell it.
There are moments of grace though. We had the day off Sunday and I probably should have slept all day, but instead I went to Barkerville with a co-worker and we did tourist-y things for a few hours. Oh, and I played the church organ for morning service, a ritual I enjoy even if I don't believe in all of it. I bought plants at the town garage sale and went to the place I work even though it was a day off and then we came home and made pasta noodles, from scratch, and ate them- four of us- and there was a lot of laughter and modest amounts of red wine and it was so great to enjoy eating and living with the same people I have to work with all day. It's such a blessing.
I am realizing that I can be a VERY impatient person, and that it can choke me with frustration and rage from time to time, so I am trying to learn to breathe and exercise through this and find some equilibrium. Alone-time helps. Also running and biking (and the occasional glass of red wine).
I am also learning as I get older how much can change in a year and how often I want to say to my year-ago self: Just relax. Focus on all the good things. This too shall pass. One year ago I was newly single and recovering from an operation and I was spinning. Spinning dizzily through change and heartache and freedom and obsession and joy. I don't think I would change too much of that, because it was all useful, but I wish I had been more joyful and less certain that the world would end if someone didn't look at me the right way. 
So one year later, I write a letter to my sweetheart and I say: This is new to me. I'm still learning, but I like it, this romance and writing. I feel like the Victorian miners who 'waited on the mail' and sent letters home to distant lands. Vancouver is my distant land now; we have emails and phone calls to sustain us until this month's end and then we will learn each other all over again. 
And I look at the person who caused me so much heart-searching over the past year and smile politely and try not to plot scenarios where he realizes how wonderful I am and feels like a tool bad person for spurning my advances. Because although exercise and joy and deep breathing all have their place, sometimes there's nothing like making up a good revenge scenario in your head.