Thursday, December 27, 2012


Every now and then, perhaps more often than normal, I find myself passing through places that give me such a sense of familiarity. I'll feel an overwhelming sensation that I've been there before. I'll remember it in my core so strongly, as if my own mind created that place in the first place, and perhaps it had.

Weaving, interconnecting, underground webs of tunnels take me to that familiar place.  Riding the streetcar through Spadina or St. Clair West stations, I'm transported back to that other-worldly time when I was in the dark underground tunnels in my head. Concrete walls slip by outside the window, cut open in places to reveal smaller passages, branching off like twisted memories.

I once had dreams that happened in strange, dark tunnels. Sometimes they were passageways leading to places I had to go; sometimes they were parking garages I felt lost in with my mom and young brother; sometimes they were just the place I was meant to be.

When I ride the streetcar through the aforementioned stations, I'm brought back to these places from my dreams.  Maybe the dreams were spurred by the tunnels themselves. Maybe the tunnels are just reminiscent of the dreams. Maybe there's a glitch in the grid...

Monday, December 17, 2012

Thinking Too Much

It's the end of the year, and I'm on vacation. These two things together tend to get me thinking too much. You know when it's that time that you should be winding down and settling into the holidays, enjoying being at home wrapping gifts? It should be just that, but my brain sometimes won't let that happen. I find myself busy, not able to settle, but not because I have too much to do, it's only because I can't let myself be idle. Idleness brings on even more thinking. So I sweep and I organize and scrub and write and sing and dance to new music, bust out the guitar again which reminds me that I haven't played cello in a while. Anyways, the train in my head goes on and on like that all day, and then the wine comes out.

Trust me, I am not complaining, but sometimes it would be nice if meditation were possible. Ha, but honestly, it's just not. I cannot sit with a quiet head at all. My mediation is walking through nighttime streets, drunk in the snow with music blaring in my ears. The inevitable ringing later a reminder of what I was feeling/thinking/contemplating. Just stop.

For the last few weeks I've been stuck in a circular motion of thought, catapulted by the events I wrote about here. I'm not sure what happened, but things started crackling and sparking in my brain and suddenly it started feeling like my skeleton was too big for my skin. Something wants to come out of me, I wish I could bang it out on a piano, only I've no idea how to play. The thoughts that are in my head are thoughts that shouldn't be there. But at the same time, I don't want them not there. My thoughts make up my being, and I don't wish to change any of that, but damn, it might be nice if I could turn off the old brain for a while.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Little Bits of Christmas Around Home

For some reason, I find myself in bigger holiday spirit this year than I have in a long time, and this makes my really happy! Some years its difficult to conjure up that good feeling, other years it hits me good and knocks me over. This year, I've settled into the holiday spirit quick and super deeply. It could have lots to do with the sadness and confusion around work this month. I guess I had been emotionally wrapped up in a lot of negative and depressed feelings for the past few weeks, so when all things Christmas began popping up all around me, the joy caught me by surprise.

Also, this is my first year living in a place that is not rented! It's my very own home (which I still feel too un-grownup to have) so I've taken to decorating more than I have in the past. Here are a few photos of Christmas around here.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Birthday Dinner #1

I've always felt quite lucky to have my birthday fall within the Christmas season. I think it would feel odd not to have decorative lights, Christmas trees and music everywhere during birthday time.  The fact that I'm getting older is simply making my love for old-ladyish things more acceptable!

If you know me, you'll already know that I often act closer to age 84 than 34 in terms of the things I like. Examples: tea cups, knitted things, early nights, clothing from any era pre-1960, old style jazz music and records on the record player. I was told recently that my 'pop culture' knowledge stops at 1942. Likely true.

So in true fashion, birthday dinner number one was spent with my family at Black Creek Pioneer Village.  Again, if you know me, you'll also already know how I also love pioneer villages. I had never been to one at night though, which was the beauty of last night. We were able to wander through the lamp-lit village after dark which was quite a treat.

It was so interesting to see what it would have been like back in the days before streetlights. Let me tell you, it was dark! The tall, kerosene street lamps cast no light at all, but rather, just guided your path so you didn't walk off the dirt road. Homes looked welcoming, lit with lanterns and burning beeswax candelabras. But once inside, you'd be knocked over by the kerosene fumes that filled the tiny rooms, and subsequently your head.

I had visions of travellers arriving in the cold by horse drawn carriage, wrapped in cloaks like Scrooge himself, and entering a rowdy saloon. I can only imagine that the kerosene in the air mixed with the mead in your belly would concoct quite a state of drunkenness. But not to worry, I'm sure you could find a lumpy straw filled bed to rest on up in the Inn. I love this stuff.

How amazing would it be to experience a week in a village such as this? To dress the part and play the part, and really experience that kind of history? No? Well maybe I stand alone with my thoughts on this one. I suppose huddling up to a lantern to see the pages of the book you are trying to read could be quite challenging.

They did mention yesterday that once darkness fell, most work would have to stop, as you can imagine, because without the ease of a light switch, lighting up your room would be quite the production. There is such a warm coziness created by lamplight though. Everything seems just that much more romantic, and I think I'd appreciate things a little more for having to work harder to achieve them. As we wandered from home to home, we were greeted in warm kitchens and delighted with treats like sugar plums, turkish delight and freshly baked gingerbread.

It proved to be difficult to take good pictures in so much darkness, but I think you get the idea, and your imagination can fill in the rest!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012


A few weeks ago we were in Sayulita, Mexico, which was a dreamy little corner of the world I could easily call home.  Crumbling cobblestone roads cutting through rivers, with wild horses wandering aimlessly and giant green geckos lingering in trees.  The sun shone bright and hot for days above, us lounging on beaches listening to waves crashing on the cliff sides nearby.  I have to admit that I was sad to come home, sad to leave our new friends, and the relaxed vibe of this wonderfully lazy town.  I wasn’t prepared for the cold (both kinds of cold) that would gradually hit me here, back at home.

But maybe this is why I’ve found myself in such a wonderful Christmas spirit this year.  I was able to slow down for a while and take in life as it happened, and the feeling has remained even now.  So this morning I felt pure joy when I walked out into the chilly air, and into a swirl of fluffy snowflakes, falling down from the grey sky above.  If it weren’t for the fact that I live in a construction site, I would have continued to walk looking upwards, trusting my feet to land where they should.  This year, I want the snow!