Archive for christmas

Tropicalia

Posted in 38, family, friends with tags , , on January 15, 2012 by ana
I’ve been struggling with this post. Truth be told  I’ve been struggling with posting in general. The last few months of 2011 were kind of dark for me. There were lovely highlights,  lots of truly sparkly moments but underneath I have been trying to sort some stuff out. For as much as I naturally seek the beauty and the joy in everything, for as much as I see the glass always half-full, a part of me leans heavily towards the blue and nostalgic. The stuff I have been working through has to do at it’s core with trust. There is a conflict of emotions that I don’t know yet know how to put in words. I can’t yet connect it to the narrative of my life. I need more distance before I can write about it. So before everything gets smooshed up I’m just going to post what I’ve got.
I just got back a few days ago from two weeks in Puerto Rico. It was a very mellow Christmas by Puerto Rican standards. There was a lot of crime and violence this past year. More than there has ever been. I think that probably contributed to the quietness of the holidays.  Of course, mellow here could be considered full of reverie in most places. Christmas season isn’t completely over until the feast of San Sebastian, which starts this weekend. That said, after staying in and spending New Year’s eve with my mom, I woke up thinking my days of being wild and young were officially done. (Let it be known they did not go down without a fight.)
This vacation was really good for me. I feel replenished. I feel different than I did before. It’s was good to be home, to spend time with family and friends. It was also the perfect place to embrace all the experiences of 2011 and step into 2012 with an open, valiant heart. It is so beautiful there- breezy and warm. The skies clear and full of fluffy clouds. Cumulus clouds, my youngest sister, who will turn thirteen next week and is now as tall as me, reminds me. There are large iguanas, one sadly dead in the middle of the road, and tiny lizards. Everything is lush and green, and like clock-work at least once a day, if not twice, the rain rolls in and washes everything clean, and then making you aware that you are in an island, promptly rolls out.
Each day home was its own sort of lovely. I took a twenty-four hour Brady bunch-like trip to Saint Thomas with some of my younger sisters, my dad, his girlfriend and her daughters, and went snorkeling for the first time. I walked with my mom to the ocean early January 1st. I went to the beach with my sister and then after drank sweet, cool papaya shakes made with coconut water, cinnamon and vanilla. I went to the beach with Anouk and drank lots of mojitos while we talked about life and love. I bought tuberose on the street and filled my room with their perfume. I ate my favorite breakfast, a baguette toasted on a press and cafe con leche, with my sister Lili, played with my niece, saw most of my cousins, had long, lovely meals with girlfriends that I’ve known almost as long as I’ve known myself, and sat in the glow of multi-colored Christmas lights on my mom’s balcony talking late into the night. I heard lots of Puerto Rican Christmas music, ate all sort of fried things filled with cod or crab or beef, and drank plenty of Medallas, the world’s best shittiest beer, alcoholic water really, and the absolutely perfect thing to drink in the hot, humid weather. I baked for my family, read Joseph Campbell, and got lots of rest.
The end of last year had me climbing walls. Since the moment I decided to move to Paris things seemed to move at a snail’s pace but now that my departure date is getting near time is really speeding up.  I started this week a little heartbroken (more on that later, I think) and jet-lagged but at the same time I felt very light and full of love from my trip. Today I keep getting jolts of excitement and also waves of sadness for all that I love that will stay in LA. As I finish writing this I am sitting on the floor with the entire content of my closet around me. I’m sorting out what I will take , what I will sell, and what I will give away. All the paperwork for my visa is on the bed waiting to be sorted and a long to do list, that includes selling my car, looms somewhere in  my bag.  The coming weeks are going to be crazy but in a good, exhilarating way.

 

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , on January 5, 2011 by ana

I’m back in LA after a really sweet, fun holiday. The ups and downs have become more ups than downs though I suspect there are still some tears stuck inside me ready to spring.

I was gone for two weeks but it felt like a month. I haven’t had a Christmas like this one in eight or nine years. I came home last night and was glad I had moved all my things out of the Koreatown apartment before I left. The stuff that remains, the table, the chair, I’m still not sure what to do with. I’ve come back with a lot of plans filling up my head.

The time spent at home was exactly what I needed. The two weeks were filled by a three hour breakfast with cousins, and long lunches and dinners with more cousins and aunts and uncles. I spent time with dad and watched Pride & Prejudice with my mom. I bought tuberose on the street and visited my dearest friends. There were nights filled with champagne, and nights filled with rum. There were quick, and much desired, kisses after a birthday party at the beach, and auspicious New Year’s kisses as the sun came up on January first. It felt fabulous to be kissed to have a few boys pay attention to me.

It was cold the whole time I was there. I made it to the beach once for two hours and the tide was so high that there were only about 15 feet of sand to stretch out in. But the cold made it sort of special and cozy. I took a long walk in the rain on the first and stared at the beach in awe, falling in love. The sky in Puerto Rico always kills me.

And somewhere in that two week space I realized that I live too far from home. That I love my life in Los Angeles but I miss the east coast, and I miss Puerto Rico. That feeling was always there. I would often ask Leo if he would ever think of moving but back then it just didn’t seem like a smart career move. For him perhaps but maybe not for me. Things are really bubbling inside me. I’m giving myself sometime to think it all out but change is in the air and it’s exciting.

luckiest girl

Posted in breakfast with tags , , on December 6, 2010 by ana

I have been camping out at my friend’s hotel room since last night.

Last night was a fun and at the same time it was tough. Even if I know why things didn’t work it doesn’t mean it’s easy. It might make it a little easier but it still sucks, and there are many moments of just utter loss and devastation. In the past couple of days I’ve really begun to understand why the man who loves me and who I love couldn’t commit to me. The feeling has shifted from feeling rejected to feeling grounded. The love doesn’t change but I understand more. In some really concrete way I finally feel what I have only gotten glimpses of in the past- that it has really nothing to do with me.

Still, last night while at my acting teacher’s Christmas party I felt really sad. Someone asked me where I lived and I said Koreatown. When he asked me who I lived with I said my boyfriend. It felt funny but I didn’t want to say- with my cousin. Until a month ago I was a grown woman living in an amazing apartment with the man I thought I would spend the rest of my life with. I think the hardest, hardest part of the letting go is the rupture of my identity. I really felt comfortable being in love. I really adored being Leo’s girlfriend. I was pleased as punch about the life we lived together.
Now that all that is gone I feel fractured. And for as much as I want the loss, and love, and anger, and disbelief to change to what it will eventually be, I can not force myself to cherish. It will come when time has run it’s course but I know that is where I am headed.

The party was lovely. Candles where lit everywhere, and there were several fire pits. Big stainless steel pots were filled with sangria, and the air smelled of bonfire and cinnamon. Everyone looked so lovely. Everybody was good-looking. Everybody was at least fourteen years younger than me. I left feeling the magic of the twinkle but also a little uneasy. It was a feeling that followed me to the next party. I was trying to put it in words but I couldn’t quite get it. I think in the end it all boils down to not being entirely sure how I feel about my teacher or my class. I don’t know if it’s me- how vulnerable I feel or that the things I’m working in class have hit a nerve. Everyone is really nice, people do great work but I miss the tight sense of community from my old acting studio, and I miss my old teacher who taught me Alexander Technique. He really saw me. There is something about my current teacher that I can’t put my finger on.

It was a magical evening. I love always finding the magic in things, and it’s easy this time of year with so much festivity. I know that if someone can only see one side of me and not all the wonderful and complex things that I am, well that is beyond my control, that has nothing to do with me. Earlier yesterday, I did a new age kind of workshop with a friend. One of the things that they kept repeating was- what people think of you is none of your business. I know that I’m always concerned that people don’t always see me for me. Some people only see the sweetness or the self-consciousness but I’m really beginning to feel my wholeness more and more. And I hope that this wholeness truly releases me from caring. It certainly is helping me answer a question that I have always felt ill-equipped to answer; who am I?

Who am I? I am a 37 year old woman who loves to cook, and write, and act. I keep notebooks full of collages and photographs. I love clothes, and shoes, and handbags. I love the people that I love passionately be it friend or lover. I am generous sister, a loyal friend, and a thoughtful daughter. I am a giving girlfriend when I’m in a relationship. I am creative, and lionhearted, and lovely. I always remember a face. I pay attention to detail. I love to celebrate and entertain. And I am slowly becoming a bold lady. Bolder than I have ever been. The road has brought me here. And here is Sunday night. I have just had a massage in the hotel, and I had waffles in bed with one of my best friends for breakfast. Who I am is a girl holding aces.

Advice

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , on November 10, 2010 by ana

My dad left this morning. We had such a nice weekend, even if my sister and I were both brokenhearted and sad, it was really magical and special to have him close for a few days. We stayed with him at his hotel, and ate nice meals, and walked around. I love staying in hotels, and I love hotel bars. Maybe that’s why I loved Lost in Translation so much, it really captures that dreamy, fabulous air that sleeping in a hotel has. I bet Sofia Coppola loves hotels too. They are definitely a theme for her-hotels and dads.

I have been crying all day but I also have some happiness inside-it’s the little things. Last night was a really lovely. My dad and I went looking for a sweater for his girlfriend at the Americana, which my dad aptly described as Disney-like. They were setting up their Christmas tree and the air was crisp and full of pine. I loved the joy the crazy fountain show brought me as we walked past it- the water moving to triumphant holiday music and the light making it sparkle. And I loved how cozy and loved I felt grabbing a drink with my dad at an Italian restaurant after, even if I was wishing as I was drinking it that tears weren’t falling into my prosecco. It was a really full night. Later, we drove across town to buy my sister the heels she’s been wanting, in hopes of cheering up her day.

Through the night my boyfriend kept asking if we were going out to dinner and saying he could meet us anywhere. I had told him I didn’t think it was best- it was so hard seeing him those three days. But he kept emailing me that if I changed my mind he was free. It broke my heart a little because I think he’s lonely and because it makes me realize how really clueless he is about this whole mess. Why are men like that? Why do they compartmentalize? In the car I asked my dad what he thought I should do.

And then this morning he called from the airport and gave me great advice- make the decision that will make you happy in the long run regardless of what happens now.