The beach down our street
I am back to Lenox, MA after spending a month on Long Island directing Shakespeare with young people. It was such wonderful, happy month, learning new skills as a director, establishing old ones with confidence, and being with 2 co-teacher gals that are fun and talented. The school we taught in put us up in a wonderful cottage a half-mile from the ocean and I was in heaven getting to walk on the beach 3-5 times a week.
January’s “cottage” on Long Island
Caitlin, Me and Josie, such a lovely team, on the beach down the street.
We shared a company van and every time I got in it alone a song would come on the radio. It was uncanny. It was new to me. It was appropriate for how I was feeling and I enjoyed singing along (Katy Perry’s Roar).
I used to bite my tongue and hold my breath
Scared to rock the boat and make a mess
So I sat quietly, agreed politely
I guess that I forgot I had a choice
I stood for nothing, so I fell for everything
I looked up the lyrics and told my teaching pals that this was my theme song for the month and I sang it dancing around the house.
I got the eye of the tiger, a fighter, dancing through the fire
‘Cause I am a champion and you’re gonna hear me roar
Louder, louder than a lion
‘Cause I am a champion and you’re gonna hear me roar
On my next walk to the beach a storm had just raged through and wiped the beaches clean. I was the only crazy person out walking that day, the waves crashing exultingly, the wind whipping my coat around my thighs as I sang, enjoying my own company on a long stretch of deserted sand. It was exhilarating. Keeping my eyes peeled for shells (see previous post “Aphrodite by the Sea”) all of a sudden I saw a tiny golden animal.
I bent down to look and to my amazement and utter disbelief, it was a little roaring lioness. It was shocking to consider the chances of having that lion waiting there, it’s little jaws open in a roar, being washed in from who knows where. Well, the chances are not only astronomical but beyond any reasonable explanation.
I happen to believe in the impossible and it was confirmation that the Katy Perry song was meant for me. The courageous lion and the determined eye of the tiger will be my muse and inspiration to be more than a survivor. To be a champion.
My days are filled with these brilliant miracles and I am so grateful to see what life holds. For now I am in a wait-and-see-what-is-next mode. Auditions are lined up, I am determined to get back on the stage this year as well as teach and direct more. So…
Now I’m floating like a butterfly
Stinging like a bee I earned my stripes
I went from zero, to my own hero
You’re gonna hear me roar…
“One cannot collect all the beautiful shells on the beach. One can only collect a few. One moon shell is more impressive than three. There is only one moon in the sky.” (Anne Morrow Lindbergh)
I am in love with this photo. I took it last week on the beach down the street. I have it on my computer desktop, I stare at it, get lost in it and feel so pleased with it. Rarely does that happen with photos that I take. I am not a photographer, I snap pictures with my iPhone to document my life, to please myself. I do not labor over taking a shot, but I just point, shoot and move on. Continue reading
(Independence Pass, Colorado)
This world is far from small
And her heart is the center of it all
And there’s a river that runs through hills, and it’s never still
Listen closely to the sky
And it’ll show you how to dot life’s I’s.
And don’t be afraid if the girl decides to run
It’s half of the fun
This song by the Josh Abbot Band hit me right between the heart-strings.
In a hotel parking lot in Aspen, Colorado I met a man who made me feel beautiful and ugly. We had exchanged a few sentences two days earlier in the hotel jacuzzi and now as I was leaving the hotel and loading up my car, out he strolled rolling his suitcase. He asked where I had been, we chatted about our Aspen experiences, he told me I am beautiful and asked for my phone number in case we should ever cross paths again. Continue reading
In 2013…I danced with a 75-year-old Norwegian prince in Sun Valley, Idaho; drank beer with a track-hoe driver in Wyoming; exposed a friend to the ridiculous joys of miniature golf in Wisconsin; rode a cowboy’s horse down Main Street one evening in Colorado; watched the waves of the Pacific coast with the ghost of my ancestors; hugged 700 year old redwoods in California; made pancakes over an open fire with my mom and sister; fell in love with, and in, small towns across the states; mourned the loss of John Denver in Aspen; spent a weekend at a most special niece’s wedding in Oregon; hiked deliciously beautiful mountainsides; was treated to meals, drinks, couches, pillows, and connected conversations with so many friends old and new; taught/directed Shakespeare and opened metaphorical doors for kids from 11-18 yrs old in Massachusetts. Life is wonderful and the song playing over and over on my iPod is Jason Mraz’ Life is Wonderful…
The highlights start with time with my girls…
With daughter, Alicia, at Swingside Cafe, Seatte
Susanna being crowned at Hammond Castle, MA
Exploring Chicago with Audrey
Bundled up against the cold in Rockport, MA
Hood River, Oregon
Dinner at Dreamaway Lodge, MA
The smell of fresh rubber is pungent in my nostrils. I’m writing this post from the lobby of a tire store while I wait for new tires to be installed on my travel weary car.
Chihuly Museum, Seattle
I’m recording another magical night and shaking my head in disbelief. When I am in Seattle, it is home, it is returning, it is my daughters. I spend as much time with them as possible, both together, each separately, whatever I can get of their busy lives, I grab and treasure. Continue reading
Looking up the skirts of ancient redwoods
In August I made the acquaintance of trees older than Shakespeare’s words. I went to Redwood National Park in northern California. After a LONG, curvy drive, the experience of standing, looking up at trees 15 feet in diameter and not being able to see to their tops, was unforgettable. The reverence I wanted to give these living creatures consumed my thought. The forest felt sacred, holy, church-like. There was an awe and hush and even the leather-clad, boisterous biker clan that was on the trail couldn’t dispel the magic. There was a family with kids that made me angry though. Continue reading
It’s nice to be back. I am finished with the Fall Festival residency where I co-directed Romeo & Juliet at a high school with a student body of 2200. It was completely frustrating, completely exhausting and completely fulfilling. It is the kind of work I want to do, it makes a difference, it changes people for the good, it creates dreams and possibilities for youth, it gives me a chance to use my creativity and impulses to change the world I am in. It was one of the most difficult and exhausting experiences as well. But I influenced some of the most entrancing, diverse teens I have had the pleasure to come across.
Our three Romeos and Juliets…
The beauty of autumn in Lenox, MA
I have been neglectful of my blog for very good reason, but the guilt of leaving you in silence has been weighing on me. I have so many wonderful experiences to share from my last travel escapades, but they will have to wait a bit longer. Continue reading
My life goes in themes. As I have mentioned in previous blogs, this was the trip of family, and the ghosts of family.
Driving into Westport, CA
The roads from Napa to Mendocino, California are some of the windiest that I know, and driving them brought back memories of being horribly carsick on our way camping. I also remember being a helpless passenger in my brother’s blue Chevy truck. We would come speeding toward a hairpin turn, where we would see the quickly approaching 30-35 mph speed limit sign ahead. He would look over and shout out to me “Double it? Or triple it?” I would scream “DOUBLE IT, DOUBLE IT!” as I closed my eyes and held on. He laughs a wicked, older brother laugh to this day when I mention it. Continue reading
At Donner Lake
After spending a fabulous few days in Reno, NV, I met my sister and mom at Donner Lake, California. We spent the day kayaking and soaking in the sunshine lakeside. Our reservation was messed up so we ended up in this large two level room where we each had our own bed and probably could have housed a boy scout troop as well! Pretty wonderful. Continue reading