Day 31. My quarantine buddy #SOL2020 Challenge #SOLSC

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Today, March 31st, 2020 is the last day I’m participating in Two Writing Teachers’ Slice of Life Story Challenge. I am sad.

As I sit in front of my white screen, I think of the past 31 days, and all the things I didn’t do, or I should have done right in terms of getting my writing done earlier or write better slices, instead of been teetering on the edge of producing whatever came to my mind at the last moment. I wish I had been more hopeful, funnier , or less mono-thematic. I caught myself censoring lots of my writing because I was gloomy or dark. I wish I had been more consistent with my comments in other slices. I wish I had followed the journey of at least one person the entire month. Instead, I just clicked randomly on the hyperlinks that were in front of me. To be fair with myself though, I really wanted to expand my horizons, and read more people, and not just get caught with the one that I already follow and like. Despite all my wishes not getting fulfilled, it’s still one challenge for the book that we will never forget, and will remain in our blogs as a testimony of a very important and literally, life changing period in the history of humanity.

I don’t want to finish the challenge without posting a slice I wanted to write since the COVID-19 crisis started, and the stay home saves lives campaign was imminent in my state.

February 14, 2020, my daughter sent to our family group chat a screenshot of my husband’s Facebook prediction about the coronavirus. We all laugh and made fun of him, to the point that he felt bad and took the post down. Still, he was really concerned that nobody was taking it seriously. A month later in the same group chat we were telling him that he was a visionary, just on the footsteps of Bill Gates.

Steve Corona virus prediction 1

Fortunately, the virus hasn’t taken any lives in our community yet. But it has in many others, so we are following the governor’s mandates of stay home saves lives very serious. The last month has been a roller coaster month and without my quarantine buddy, Steve, I wouldn’t have been able to survive.

First of all, he is the first and sometimes only one to like my slices, and even though he seldom writes me a comment on the blog, he always makes sure to tell me something in person. He is always reassuring and positive which has been crucial.

Being positive. That’s one of the thing that made me fall in love with him. His laugh, his way of seeing the positive side on things and people (despite his apocalyptic prediction a month and a half ago). Latinamericans like me (or maybe it’s just my family) have a tendency to see the dark side of things, so having him around has been a pivotal part of my growth as a person, and to certain degree his positivism has been contagious.

During this month, I was giving him hugs and words of reassurance when he saw his online business in Amazon going downhill since what he sells is considered non-essential. Like many people that have been laid off, it’s hard when they tell you that what you do for living and on top, you love to do, it’s not essential. Despite everything, he still is working alone in his warehouse, preparing his beloved Spanish hand painted ceramics and extra virgin olive oil in boxes to be ready to be shipped as soon as Amazon let him do it. He is also helping once a week in a Food Bank picking up the food that it’s distributed to people every Wednesday, and with some construction work they needed in the Food Bank facility. He donated a bunch of Olive Oil to the Food Bank, and people are really enjoying that treat.

He tried to lure me to go and help him with the packaging at his warehouse. I have done it three or four times, but the weather hasn’t contributed too much. It’s still very cold, and the last time I had such a migraine.that I am more incline to be a couch potato. Some days though at home, I feel I haven’t done anything since I just talked to people over the phone and wrote emails. I need to keep reminding my self that that’s been productive also, and my quarantine buddy knows that.

When we worked together in his warehouse we didn’t talk too much. He just gave me some instructions about what I needed to pack and he went to his computer to fulfill two or three orders and off to build some shelves for his packing materials. He put classical music and we worked for six hours shoulder to shoulder. Those days I felt such a synchronicity with him and my heart full of gratitude for having him to my side.

Now, at the end of the month of March, even though sometimes I feel like Gertrude, and want to start knitting a scarf for my husband, I can’t be luckier. My quarantine buddy has the healthy doses of listening capabilities, the strength that I need when I feel weak, and the tenderness and kindness when I am in need of a real hug. On top of that, he is a fabulous cook and we have Spanish extra virgin olive oil for life.

A couple of days before my wedding, I told my mom that marriage was like a lottery ticket. She told me: Yes, but you know if your are getting the winning ticket.

She was absolutely right.

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When Steve saw this meme, he told me that he was going to hide my knitting needles and yarn, just in case.

Day 30. Spring break is over #SOL2020 Challenge #SOLSC

slice-of-life_individual

Today, March 30th, 2020, I’m participating in Two Writing Teachers’ Slice of Life Story Challenge.

 

 

Technically, today I would have returned to school from Spring Break. Since I didn’t, I cataloged 32 books that I managed to sneak out of the library before all schools closed March 16th. My heart was telling me that we were going to be away for a long run. I am happy to have them ready. It gives me a sense of hope, and excitement to think of a future when my students can touch them, open them, and read them. In the meantime, I am toying the idea of making a series of videos to connect with students, and read them some of the books. I don’t know exactly what my principal is expecting from me, but surely enough, I do have plenty of ideas.

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Day 29. Slices of music #SOL2020 Challenge #SOLSC

slice-of-life_individual

Today, March 29th, 2020, I’m participating in Two Writing Teachers’ Slice of Life Story Challenge.

 

 

Thank you to all my fellow writers for your best wishes and desires that my migraine disappears soon. Health and science are crucial to our well being, and the current events are a brutal testimony of that.

Music can’t cure Covid-19 but definitely can help us cope with quarantine. Today I saw in Instagram a 20 songs challenge, and I decided to take it. Basically, it asked you to answer 20 questions related to music . I was impressed of how each question put me in a path of remembering or making efforts to decide what to say. At the end, each question encapsulated a little story that I couldn’t convey in my Instagram’s stories.

Music itself has a story, and each piece hides behind a slice of our lives.

1. My favorite song. Heartbeats by Jose Gonzalez. Two years ago I discovered this artist, and I don’t know why I became obsess with his songs to the point that it was the artist I listened the most in Spotify in 2018.

2. A song I hate. I couldn’t find any song I really dislike to the point that I hate. The closest is #11 in this list but I actually like the song, I just dislike in what it became. Hate is a strong word and I can’t hate music.

3. A song that makes me sad. The Well-Tempered Clavier: Book 1, 1.Prelude in C Major, BWV 846 by J.S. Bach. Every time I hear this piece, I remember my mom and when she was fighting cancer. I wrote a slice about it last year.

4. A song that reminds me of someone. Buckin Up Song and Bed Intruder . These two songs are part of my kids’ childhood. When they came up, we were amazed at the creativity that people have. It was one of the first stages of something becoming viral. When I listen to them I can see my children laughing and enjoying the twist. Now these two songs are part of our family repertoire.

5. A song that makes me happy. Bicycle race by Queen. Anybody that knows me, knows that this song combines my love for biking and Queen.

6. A song that reminds me of a specific moment. Bachata rosa by Juan Luis Guerra. When I met my husband in New York, this song was en vogue. We went to the Madison Square Garden together to listen to Juan Luis Guerra. It was really fun. Everybody started to dance everywhere. We even thought of playing the song in our wedding but we couldn’t find anybody who knew or wanted to sing it. I gave Steve a cassette with all the songs and left it in his apartment. The story of what happen with that tape is another story.

7. A song that I know by heart. Alle Vogel sind shon da. I attended a school run by German nuns in Chile. We learned this song at an early age and we have to sing it every year. All my classmates, even the one that didn’t learn too much German know the song by heart.

8. A song that makes you dance. Madre tierra (Oye) by Chayanne. I didn’t know this song until I went to Spain, and I got introduced to a fun way of dancing it when the swimming pool on my town organized an Aquadance. It was hilarious. From that day on, every time I listen to the song, I stop everything and start dancing. Last September, I introduced the song, lyrics and dance movements to all my classes from 3rd to 5th grade as part of celebrating National Hispanic Heritage Month. It was the third or four weeks of school and the kids barely knew me. Probably they thought I was crazy.

9. A song that helps me sleep. Arroró mi niño by  Maria Lopez. I put this a little bit as a joke since I can’t sleep with music. I prefer to sleep with no sounds that distract my brain from resting. This song though is a song that my mom sang to me and I sang to my kids. While searching for it in YouTube. I learned it was featured in the soundtrack of a horror movie called The curse of La Llorona. It was not very successful as you can see in Rotten Tomatoes.

10. A song that I secretly love. Wake me up by Avicii. When Avicci took his life in 2018, I didn’t have the foggiest idea who he was, let alone knew his songs. I started to read about him, and watched a documentary about his rapid success and all the pressure he received. I usually don’t like the trendy music, but Wake me up touched me, and since then I secretly love it, especially knowing the tragedy behind his creator.

11. A song that I used to love and now I hate. Libre by Nino Bravo. This song was beautiful until the Pinochet regime in Chile took it as its unofficial anthem.

12. A song from my favorite album. Piano man by Billy Joel. I have many favorite albums but Billy Joel has a special place in my heart. I first heard Piano man in a party when I was in 8th grade and a boy invited me to dance when it was playing. Later,in 1979, when I went to Germany as an exchange student, I went to my fist pop concert in Hamburg, and it was of Billy Joel. It was an eye opener. I thought I was going to see just a guy with his piano and his harmonica. When I saw all the equipment and display, and performance that he put on, I started to understand what a real concert meant.

13. A song that I know how to play with an instrument. Los pollitos dicen. I can’t play any instrument. This is a very popular and simple Latinamerican children song that I can play barely with a flute.

14. A song that I sing in public. La Bamba by Rickie Valens. Curiously this song is universal and can be danced and sung by anybody. I sang it in an intercultural camp I attended in Thailand in 2015, where only I and a boy from Cataluña spoke Spanish. Everybody loved it. More recently I sang it in my first Karaoke appearance at the last Holiday party of my new school.

15. A song I like to listen to while driving Aria (Cantilena) of Bachianas brasileiras No.5f or Soprano and Cellos, W.389 by Heitor Villa-lobos sang by Kiri Te Kanawa. I find this Aria very inspiring. When I was in my thirties, I participated in Chile in a group that we called Cucópolis which was the fantasy city that appeared in the play The Birds by ancient Greek play writer. Aristophanes. We met to discuss things that we were passionate about. By turn we gave a lecture or explanation to the rest of the group of something that was prowling on our minds. My cousin Paula, the same of song #18 sang in a choir and was very gifted. She gave us a presentation of music and how the same piece could be interpreted very different depending of the singer or the director. One of the examples she gave was with this Aria and Kiri Te Kanawa. Since then, I love to listen to this piece, and if it’s in the car at its maximum volume, while driving in the countryside on a summer day with the windows open, the better.

16. A song from my childhood. Salta, salta pequeña langosta by Los Cinco Musicales and danced by Chilean Música libre show from the early seventies. When I was 11 or 12 this song became very famous by a TV show where a group of young people danced and dubbed the top hits. One of the girls in the group was Mera. She had very long hair and wore long socks just above the knees. It was the maximum. I just loved the show and waited anxiously every day to 6 pm to dance barefoot along with Mera.

17. A song that nobody expect I would like. Bailar by Deorro. My daughter introduced me to Deorro in January of 2018 when I needed to direct one of the act of a play by Spanish dramatist, Ramón María del Valle-Inclán. I wanted to give a modern twist to this beginning of the 20th century play. I wanted to set my scene in a Spanish discoteque, so I messaged my daughter and asked her what music could I play, and she sent me Deorro. I enjoyed so much directing the scene, and coming up with an original idea, that started to listen to Deorro more than I thought I would, until I found the perfect song for my scene, and I actually like it.

18. A song that I would like to be played in my wedding. It was already played in my weeding and it was Amazing Grace interpreted by my lovely cousin Paula Siles (in the link is a version by Ella Jenkins). She told me she wanted to sing in our wedding but she told us that she wanted to surprise us what she was going to sing. After our vows she start singing with her beautiful voice. It was magical. She also sang the Ave Maria by Schubert.

19. A song that I would like to be played in my funeral. El derecho de vicir en paz (The right to live in peace) by an ensemble of several Chilean musicians. It was inspired by Victor Jara’s original song that he composed in 1971 to protest against the Vietnam War and the US intervention. The song was widely sung during the 2019  Chilean protests that started in Oct 25, 2019. The lyrics are very powerful, and somehow are resonating all over the world. They should be sound loud and clear.

20. A song that I am currently listening. The Night we met by Lord Huron. This was the first song that Spotify started to play when I clicked on the playlist I follow, Bike Ride Tunes by Christina Waddle. I like to play this list when I work in my computer not when I bike ride. When I bike ride I like to listen to the wind, the birds, and my wheels crunching on the gravel.

MySpotifyWrapped2018 EN
My 2018 Spotify

 

Day 27. Stages of grief #SOL2020 Challenge #SOLSC

slice-of-life_individual

Today, March 27th, 2020, I’m participating in Two Writing Teachers’ Slice of Life Story Challenge.

 

 

Since my Coronavirus quarantine started 14 days ago, I have thought a lot about the five stages of grief by Elizabeth Kubler-Ross. A friend of mine recommended me her memoir The Wheel of Life when my mom was dying of cancer in 2011. Since then, I always recommend it to people that are going through something similar. During the current crisis I feel that I am participating in a global grief: people are dying, and my own behavior can affect other people’s lives.

The five stages of grief are denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. I think I have been through the five of them already.

 

 

 

 

Day 26. Between the lines #SOL2020 Challenge #SOLSC

slice-of-life_individual

Today, March 26th, 2020, I’m participating in Two Writing Teachers’ Slice of Life Story Challenge. Today is also my daughter’s birthday. I remember with so much longing last year when I was with her, on her 23rd birthday. Love you so much hija!!!

 

Today I participated as a surprise guest in the 2nd Online Thursday of my Spanish friends’ Thursday’s Foam writing workshop meeting (via Whatsapp). Maria, the fantastic person who runs the workshops, receives all the stories ahead of time, and also an audio of each participants reading their story. By 6:30 pm Spanish time, the workshop starts via Whatsapp. Maria sends all the stories in an email and in alphabetical order we read and hear every story. At every time, we comment and Maria makes the most important points and analyses of the story just read/heard through an audio recorded in real time. I am so impressed of her quick grasps of each story, and how she can see (or not) immediately the elements of the homework she had given the group the last week. This time they needed to include 4 elements that drove the actions of the character: Lies-Motivation – Needs – Ghosts.

I spent almost 4 hours listening and reading ten amazing stories, and reading to witty and funny comments that were scrolling fast on my feed.

This morning, at 9 am, I was in the chopping block since I haven’t written in so long in Spanish. The workshop was about to start and my screen page was in blank.  Since my brain can’t write two pieces in one day, let along in different languages, I am going to put here what I wrote in Spanish, and give my best in translating it into English.

Entre líneas

9 am. ¡Mierda! ¡Solo tengo media hora para sacar algo de mi cabeza, escribirlo, grabarlo con mi sexi voz y enviársela a María por whatsapp! Ayer abrí los 1818 mensajes que tenía guardados del chat de la Espuma de los Jueves. Me he pasado siete meses buscando palabras en español. Mentiría si dijera que lo he intentado. La única vez que lo hice fue el  sábado 11 de enero cuando organicé el drive de los jueves. Mientras creaba la carpeta de cada uno de los participantes, y en ella sus relatos, me los fui imaginando en cuerpo presente, cada una de las voces que conocía y la de los nuevos, inventándomelas como si ya las conociera. Me daba tanta envidia que los jueves tuvieran nuevos amores. Ceci, Carmen, Pedro, Maite y que mi propia espuma ya no desbordara del tazón.  No ser parte de esas risas, y esos juegos. Que mi piel no sintiera el sol sevillano, ni que pudiera subir la cuesta de Guzmán con 40 grados de calor, o llegar a saludar a Chema y entrar a un aula blanca, austera, fría que solo los días jueves a las seis y media de la tarde se llenaba de ilusiones, donde éramos capaces de matar la soledad y enfrentar a nuestros propios fantasmas. Esa sola vez, miré con envidia los relatos que iba insertando en cada carpeta. Tan buenos, tan prolíficos, tan agobiantes. Cuando creé mi carpeta, me armé de valor y abrí un nuevo documento. Lo titulé Retomando la pluma. Permanecí diez minutos mirando la blancura de la pantalla. No tenía nada que transmitir. Me había convertido en un café expreso amargo.

Al mes siguiente, lo volví a abrir. Esta vez lo titulé Tinta invisible, y de mi teclado solo salió una frase. Si no vez nada, es porque se te han acabado los poderes de leerme entrelíneas.

9:24 am hora de Oregon del jueves 26 de marzo 2020. Cumpleaños de mi hija Matilde. 18:24 en la provincia de Sevilla.

Fe de erratas: Calculé mal la diferencia horaria entre España y Oregon. Me había adelantado una hora. Sin embargo, la presión me ha hecho romper el hielo y escribir. La espuma de los jueves es mi motivación y necesidad.


Between the lines

9 am. Shit! I only have half an hour to get something out of my head, write it down, record it with my sexy voice and send it to Maria via WhatsApp! Yesterday, I opened the 1818 messages I had saved from the Thursday’s Foam chat. I have spent seven months looking for words in Spanish. I would be lying if I said I tried. The only time I did it was on Saturday, January 11, when I organized the drive of the Thursdays’ Writing Workshop. While creating the folder of each of the participants, and placing in it their stories, I imagined them face to face, listening to each one of the voices I knew, and creating the one of the new participants as if I already knew them. I was so envious that on Thursdays they had new lovers. Ceci, Carmen, Pedro, Maite and that my own foam no longer overflowed from the bowl. Not being part of those laughs, and those playful days. That my skin did not feel the Sevillian sun, or that I could bike up the Guzmán slope with 40 degrees C of heat, or get to greet Chema and enter to the white, austere, cold classroom that only on Thursdays at six-thirty pm was filled with illusions, where we were able to kill loneliness and face our own ghosts.

That one time, I looked enviously at the stories I was inserting into each folder. So good, so prolific, so overwhelming. When I created my folder, I plucked up my courage and opened a new document. I titled it Taking Up the Pen again. I spent ten minutes looking at the whiteness of the screen. I had nothing to convey. It had turned me into a bitter espresso.

The following month, I reopened it. This time I titled it Invisible Ink, and only one sentence came out of my keyboard. If you don’t see anything, it’s because you have run out of powers to read me between the lines.

9:24 am Oregon time, on Thursday, March 26, 2020. My daughter Matilde’s birthday. 18:24 in the province of Seville.

Errata: I miscalculated the time difference between Spain and Oregon. I was an hour ahead of time. However, the pressure made me break the ice and write. The Foam on Thursdays is my motivation and need.

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Thursday’s Foam – My Spanish Writing Workshop Chat

 

Day 25. Parallel worlds #SOL2020 Challenge #SOLSC

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Today, March 25th, 2020, I’m participating in Two Writing Teachers’ Slice of Life Story Challenge.

 

 

Today I braved the world and opened the 1,818 messages I have in my Whatsapp from my Spanish Writing group. They did for the first time the workshop online. Since some don’t feel comfortable with videos or zoom, they decided to record their stories while reading them out loud and everybody commented each other via whatsapp.

I was in a social media overload crisis when this happened last Thursday, so I ignored the messages until today. I will try not to do it again, since I was reading for 2 hours straight their messages. It’s a fun group though. They share just their own writing and challenges, and tell funny jokes. Groups like this are really appreciated when you are in a very strict lockdown with very limited physical activities. One of the writing challenges that I read they shared was to write something alternating what they like with what they don’t. I decided to give it a try to it today. Very rough. Very difficult.


Parallel worlds

Open the door of my home after a long day at work
get my running shoes on
watch my dog get berserk
Smell the humid dirt that my body spews with its weight.

The lid of the toilet upright
my underwear lying on the floor chewed by Buck
Leaders and celebrities testing their nose
while doctors and nurses are dying because of a lack of those

My dad’s never ending stories
your laugh filling the room
my books spread on the floor
touching the mountains from my window

The permanent stone in my chest
My contained anger that can cut our silence
a dirty car, fleas in a bed,
greediness in somebody I should respect

Your hands preparing food, a coffee or cutting wood
your eyes that can see beyond my anxiety
when you tell me te quiero in Spanish
I love you in English, and Spanish and English

Undone dishes pilled up in the kitchen
running out of milk
stepping on pee with bare feet
or poop in my hiking shoes

My daughter’s care, good humor and sense
my son’s calm voice; his quick responses to a mother’s cry
their projects, their dreams, their good disposition
when they answer my messages, my phones calls, or read my nonsenses in this blog

When the internet is gone
When I lose my work due to a storm
When we can’t hug or kiss at night
When we are confined and can’t meet

The metric system allows me to embrace the world with logic
use fractions,percentages, and measures with sense
the water in all its forms falling in my skin and my tongue
pedaling on gravel, a single track trail, being lost in time

Feet, gallons, pints, pounds, inches, Fahrenheit degrees
how can you assess, visualize with such undependable variables
my feet is 41 or 42,  10 or 11, and I can’t find shoes or pants that fit me
the only thing I can handle are miles especially when lead to the ocean

Love, compassion, justice, fairness,
biking, writing, reading, swimming
peace, health, resilience, kindness
your hand with my hand, together.

Day 24. The unsent letter #SOL2020 Challenge #SOLSC

slice-of-life_individual

Today, March 24th, 2020, I’m participating in Two Writing Teachers’ Slice of Life Story Challenge.

 

 

I just found a letter I meant to send to my sister-in-law for her daughter, Kathryn, who was attending a retreat in November 2017. I don´t know why I never sent it to her. I think I felt embarrassed. I was living in Spain, and I was not pivotal in her life. I am still not.

Nonetheless, today I want to make it public. I find the letter somehow more relevant now than three years ago. I am searching for answers myself, and to certain degree, I want to connect to her through the world of writing.

Dear Kathryn,

I was uploading a bunch of old photos this week, and came across of several of you, when we spent time together in either Oregon or Seattle. It was almost 10 years ago! Now, when I think about the young adult woman I met last summer, I am totally amazed and impressed. Or maybe I shouldn’t. You come from two amazing parents who have helped you to be funny, caring, strong, witty, resilient, and best of all, a good person. I am very happy for you, and your confirmation goals. Feeding the soul is as important as feeding your body. I really admire people that have strong faith and are consistent with their projects and values. Sometimes it’s not easy. You receive a lot of pressure from everybody, and the most difficult ones are from the people you love or care. Stay strong, keep up with your dreams (I like to call them projects, otherwise they stay in that unreachable realm of dreams), and always feed your spirit. You are a young and busy person, but it’s always important to find the time to get out of the roller coaster, and recollect, think, meditate, pray. It doesn’t matter how old or young you are, that’s something as important as your studies, your future professional career, your job.

Dear Kathryn, I will be thinking of you when you open this humble letter that your momma will put among other more important things.

Kathryn and J.J.
Kathryn with our late dog J.J.
Kathryn and Mati
Kathryn with my daughter Matilde in 2006

Day 22. Random thoughts of a new Sunday #SOL2020 Challenge #SOLSC

slice-of-life_individual

Today, March 22nd, 2020, I’m participating in Two Writing Teachers’ Slice of Life Story Challenge.

 

 

My day was good but long, and despite the fact I was outside, there were very few minutes in which I was not aware we are in a new reality. The highway was empty, the trails were empty, and passing through towns that were filled with tourists two weeks ago, hit me hard.

Reading guru Donalyn Miller wrote a post to launch the social distancing #bookaday challenge. In the following paragraph she eloquently expresses what’s going on with me.

I have never had so much free time to read. Too bad I don’t have the requisite attention span or emotional energy to read much right now {…} Right now, sitting still long enough to read more than a few pages makes me jumpy. I can tell that I haven’t been reading enough lately because I feel splintered a bit—a sure sign that I am too much in my head.
I’m struggling to allow myself the joy of reading.

After a long drive and a hike, I arrived home at 8:30 pm. I had supper and learned through the local news on T.V. that all state parks are closing tomorrow. My boundaries are shrinking, still, they are wide.

My daughter is on a quest of cheering up people via Instagram. She told her friends that if they answer to her story with fire she would choose “the most beautiful photo” in their feed, and publish it in her story. She ended up putting around 40 photos of people that replied, among them me.  When I replied, I wondered which photo she was going to pick from my feed since I have 954 posts. She surprised me. And made me laugh not just with the one she put of me, but with the photos she chose and the witty and funny things she wrote about her friends’ photos. Too bad you can’t see them. She surely fulfilled her quest.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Day 10. Morsel of life #SOL2020 Challenge #SOLSC

slice-of-life_individualToday I don’t have a real slice of life, just a morsel. The blues were gone. The afternoon was warm and bright. I walked in circles with my blind dog while the sun was  going down.I filmed him sniffing around, stumbling in every single rock, and putting his snout down deep in the dirt, like magnifying the lack of his other senses. I laughed watching him, following him, capturing his little ways of maintaining his optimism in life.

I prepared my storytelling for tomorrow at the Public Library. I will tell the story of Martina Martínez y el ratoncito Pérez, according to a version of Alma Flor Ada. I prepared two hats, one of beginnings, one of endings. I have my backpack ready with my sandals, and my storytelling outfit, a black cotton dress and black leggings.

I will go to bed, reread the story before closing my eyes. Tomorrow, on my way to work I will retell it to myself again, and again. At 4 pm I will drive to the public library in Bend, change into my black clothes and tell to myself. You got this, Pia.

Repeat on Thursday, in Redmond. I got this.

 

Clyde
Clyde. He is blind and deaf