Art and the Argentinian

Let me say first, I have finally accomplished what I came here to do: I have achhiieevd sunburn.

Also, let me say, that i am using the couch surfer’s wwirrrreless keyboard, hooked up to my phone, so may any mi8stakes of spellling be forgiven.

That nall said, i have to ay that my brain has taken this full entire wek to even BEGIN to shut off. I went to the beach for the first time on sunday afternoon, for a very bief, before dark OH PLEAE LET ME GET TO THE BEACH MOMENT, and as i laid there in the final hours of sunlight, I had what shouldn’t surpirse any of us — thoughts. Thinking, a constant running chatter, that also now included Pema chodron telling me that it was okay that i was having thoughts and to not judge the thoughtmaker or the acknolwdger of the thoughmakings… it got very loud and vry confusing in my brain An this is supposed to be VACATION! i kept telling ti.

My brain does not know what a vacation is. What it knows is that there was a brief pause in”doing stuff”, and so let’s fill it with chatter. Mh, I’m not surprised, and c’et la vie, i take myself whrever I go, doln’t I?

But, finally, and for a few moments, there was stillness, or even, ha! laughter! or even, can it be? joy. A few moments when I would even call it joy

The first few days I was here, I was shuttled around by my host family, which was great, because I got to see things that I wouldn’t ordinarily on my own, like their neice’s 30th birthday party, but, i really felt the need to be out on my own – there is a lot of small talk involved whn you’re withother people, especially people you don’t knw – surprise – and, really, that doesn’t feel very relaxing to me, howevr wondeful they are, and, these folks are.

So on Friday I rented a car, and set out to Hana, on the complete opposite side of the island, the last “hawaiian” place on the iland, so it was billd. Oy. What a siaster. It was raining to hard, and the drive is like Route one, pacific coast highway, but worse, because of the thick jungle. plus, i was alone with myself, which as i’ve said, is a little like being alone with a crazy person. i’d anted to go on that ride, drive, in order to have silence, pace, to get out of my own way, and go somewhr beautiful, and it wasn’t like that at all. By the time I got to Hana, five hours of teacherous road later, it was grey, torential, windy, and cold. SSo much for hawaii, eh?

(i promise, I get to some gratitude!)

i rented a room in what was a little like a cros between a hostel and a motel, and set everything down, just as it was turning dark outside. i went downstairs to the kitchen to heat up some wter for tea, and met two nice couples, one from california, older, one from new york, younger. we ehchanged pleasantries,shared about the horrors of the drive, and hat we were likely to do when there. it was nice. it felt cocooned, and safe. safe in from th storm, safe, talking to other people, and sharing stories. warm for the night.

i went back up to my room, and took out some of the art supplies i’d brought with me on the trip, and drew and colored a postcard to send to a friend. i felt serene, finally. it was warm, uit, i was engaged in doing somthing i loed. really, it didn’t matter where i wouldn have been at that point. hawii, or oakland, or whreveet, would have been the same. i was finally uiet in my head.

there’s more to say about the reest of the trip, but that’ll do for now.

as to the title of this blog, i left an art gallry in paia this afternoon, after a full and relatively (RELATIVELY) brain free day. i’d wandered in, attracted by this large piece of abstract work, all copper and bronze and then streaks of neon that should render the whle thing a “no,” but instead, make it just right. All these lines, lik a foret, vertical stripes, thick, malleable, slops of acrylic. i sat on the bench in front of this piece, vaguely hearinga coupl talk to the gallery manager. they and i conversed a bit about th pieces, and then they left, and i was left to chat with the gallery owner (i later found out). an argentinian.

and i won’t bore you with the chrge of flirting that cut an undercurent below the chat about art marketing and distraction/creation. but, i will tell you that it was tjere. and it was good.

so when i left the shop as he took a call, and handed me his personal card, me, with th sunburned legs, and the wisps of baby hair peeking out from under my bandana, i was smiling one of those mona ilsa smiles, one of those contented, nobody can fuck with thi, becauseit just IS smiles, I askd myself, is it the art, or the argentinian? 😉

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