Wednesday, March 4, 2009


Today is my last day in Santa Cruz. I got up this morning and walked to Westcliff to say goodbye to the ocean - the surfers were out in droves today.

I had a helluva time falling asleep last night - my mind and emotions feel like they're on fast forward. I'm sad to leave, but also excited to have a space where I can really get settled a little more. I don't want to say goodbye to all of the amazing people I've met, but I'm stoked to see all of the familiar faces of people who really really know me. I'll miss the ocean, but greet the rocky mountains.

I can't imagine what the future holds for me back home. I'm scared and thrilled at all of the possibilities.

Sunday, March 1, 2009


Indoor outside sky -
Upright now,
Upright upside down.
Rain falling upwards
to the clouds,
Nowadays, always
Inside out
Sidewalk, walk sideways.
Thermostat, Stat!
Cold air, arid, cold.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The Little Things

Last night, during a midnight cigarette outside looking at the stars - much more clear here than in the big city, I started to think about the little things. When I denounced most of my material possessions and stuffed some clothes in a backpack, it never occurred to me that I would miss any of it - it was useless, junk, meaningless. Then I thought of something I'm fond of saying to other people: "you have to find balance.".

I miss using Tom's old time-y stove top percolator with fake petrolium bi-product cream. I imagined the taste of it... oh how many glorious mornings I began by grinding coffee and brewing a pot so strong it looked like tar. I miss having art supplies around. Of course, I got rid of all that stuff when I left, but it's taught me something very important; I need more than a pen and paper to feel creative. I need to make things, big crazy things with colour, I need to transform things with my imagination. I now have a much clearer idea of what makes me happy. Baths, candles, heart to hearts. Not the snow though. I'm perfectly content with the sunshine, thank you very much.

This trip has been very trans-formative in many ways, but has also reminded me of the things I left behind. The little things that having a "home" affords you. Here, I got over my fear of riding bicycles in traffic, I ride nearly every day now. I've gained an immense appreciation for hugs and showing affection for the people you feel connected to - really, why the hell wouldn't you want to? Why didn't I? I've expanded my knowledge of Mexican food and drink, surfing, flowers, music, card games and organic produce. I understand real community in a much broader sense than I ever did before and it all feels so amazing an fulfilling, yet I still miss my silly computer. I'll be hopping onto the balance beam again soon and this time, I'm not worried.

Monday, February 16, 2009

The Big Race

I was waiting waiting waiting for the rain and now it's here - in droves. The first break in the rain for two days came late this morning and seems to be holding off for the time being, though the gray sky still hangs ominously overhead.

I slept a ridiculous amount yesterday, my body felt very tired and so I stayed home and let it rest. After sleeping in (10 hours or so total) yesterday morning, I fell back asleep at around 7pm last night, sleeping until 7:30am this morning. It weirds me out a little that I needed that much sleep. It makes me ask why - it's not as though I've been loosing sleep at all and I don't feel sick, so I'm not sure what's up.

I've been thinking about plans when I get back to Canada quite a bit. I've decided that for the summer, I'd really like to work outdoors, doing something really physical. One of my best friends works for the city in the "urban forestry" department. She encouraged me to apply last year, but at that point I hadn't yet developed the appreciation I have now for outdoor work, for physical labor. At this time in my life, it feels like a perfect fit. I can't wait to apply.

I'm dreading the weather a bit, but I think that by the time I return, the worst of the winter will be over, plus I left my beautiful hippie-esque wooly winter sweater in storage (aka Jordan's closet) for when I get back. I shouldn't have given my gloves away in SanFrancisco, though.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


It's been a long time since I've really written any poetry - something I passed hour after hour doing back in high school. I've written a couple since my trip began, so I may as well share. The first one was written in Seattle on January 10th, the second I wrote yesterday afternoon.

What could I write that is beautiful?
To the tired and dirty
Human kindness breathes an elegant new life,
unbound - that is beauty.
The joyful street serenade to the pigeons and travelers,
Melodies reaching out beyond crooked yellow teeth.
We are a thankful and lost generation,
As unsure and innocent and beautiful as the last and the next.
"I'm a lover", again and again singing thanklessly,
"I'm a lover"
And so he is.

Though she waits in the garden,
Her flowers do not grow;
Her spiders stalk the morning -
With the locusts close in toe.

The rain has finished falling
When the sun comes out to play
And the wind calls out a warning
That it's just another day.

Still she sits content to listen
To the insects sing their song
And although no blooms have risen,
Their fragrance isn't gone.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Let the chips fall

My second month here is quickly approaching and now that I have my own room without any of the Tannery crew around, I find it difficult to get enough time on these public computers to actually write in this thing. Mid-day during the week seems ideal. And I learn.

I admittedly have a reasonably sized hang-over today, as the last two days were spent celebrating Dustin's birthday. House party potluck on Saturday, the biggest game of asshole ever last night. Things got a little out of hand towards the end of the night, though given the amount of alcohol consumed everyone came out OK today, I think. I've chosen to spend my day by myself and in retrospect, though my ability to over think almost everything is very much alive and intact whether alone or with company anyhow. Either way I have to be up early for work tomorrow, so the rest from social mayhem is needed.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The Flower Girl

Today has been quite eventful. I got up and made breakfast for a couple of my current hosts at the Tannery. We drove to the farmers' market and met "Bill the bulb baron", a man who has a flower farm just outside the city. He agreed to let me peddle flowers and work on his farm when he has space. He was going to put me to work this afternoon, but already had several pairs of eager hands at his service. He reminded me of my old boss (the positive aspects of him anyhow) in a way.. it was a little weird.

We then drove up to meet Glenys, a woman whose elderly father has a place with two spare rooms not too far from downtown. I've been trying to find a sublet here in Santa Cruz for February for a couple weeks now - the rent here is generally obscene and it was looking as though I wouldn't manage to get anything for less than $700/month. I was discouraged until I met Glenys and her dad. The place is mine. I pick the key up on Saturday. $350/month, everything included. In case you don't know rent prices in California, that my friends, is a friggin' sweet deal.

So, I'm here for another month. With my own space. With some work. Outdoor work. I have most assuredly scored.

I worry about life back home. I think about the seclusion that comes with the snow and the cold and how it can drive you mad sometimes. I almost feel bad sometimes talking about the fullness of my heart, the warm air, my ocean visits and the relationship I've formed with the world at large. I wish I could put it all in an envelope and send some home. I wish, I wish.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

The Vortex

All week people have been warning me about "the vortex" that is Santa Cruz. People get stuck here. I'm beginning to see why. My week of experiences here has given me a new outlook on everything. I find myself coming out of a shell that I didn't know I was in for the most part. It feels good. It feels weird. I want to know what's on the other side of myself.

I had a plan the other day to "introspect". I took a walk to a local cafe in the sun with a notebook and pen and nothing came. I sat and tried to go inside my heart and my mind and figure out where the thoughts and feelings fit into the desire of my soul. Nothing. It was just so beautiful outside. The coffee was delicious. I was just "being". Holy s*&t - I'm just being! The soul doesn't require action on my part. Action is secondary. I'm finally beginning to get it.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009


My travels find me in Santa Cruz, California at the moment. Beautiful weather, beautiful people, I love this town. It still hasn't hit me that I'm on "vacation" per se, I suppose partially because I'm staying with locals, doing local type things; weeding through clothes at the thrift store, grocery shopping, long walks and all of that. I'm pretty overwhelmed and unsure of how to describe my feelings. I feel "full" here, it that makes any kind of sense. Full seems like the right word right now. I met Dustin, my youtube friend a couple days ago, however because of complications with his living situation, we've been staying with his best friend, Kai. They're both amazing people, I couldn't have dreamed of better tour guides, or just people to hang with. It's gonna be tough to leave here.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Hasn't Hit Me Yet

Woooooah. Sunday again. What did I say about Sundays? I have a wee hangover after a birthday/going away party last night. It was fun. It was worth it. Totally. I saw a friend I haven't seen in many years - really cool and kinda weird. I started to get a little choked up when some people were leaving, finally coming to the realization that I may not see them again for a long time... then again, maybe I will. I guess that really sums up the point of the trip I'm taking: not knowing. There is something so wonderfully frightening and exciting about not knowing.

I think many of us spend our lives with a distinct plan in mind. When "things don't go as planned" people get upset, angry, confused. I've spent my life that way, really. At 28 years old, I'm finally in a place where it's OK to not know, it's exciting. Don't get me wrong, it also scares the living bejeesus outta me, but that's OK too.

I'm starting to miss people I haven't left yet. "Daniel"... I miss him already, despite our ups and downs and disagreements, he's my very favorite scrabble partner, lover, friend. Regardless of what happens I hope he is always my friend above all. Damn, I get all teary even writing it. Jenny of course, my god she's amazing. My friend of nearly 10 years who knows me better than almost anyone. She carries such a beautiful air about her, I hope I can carry it with me all over the world.

I'm supposed to have dinner with Jen and her sisters and their "partners" as well as "Daniel" on Tuesday evening. I hope I don't cry to much. But hey, what better company to cry with than the people that you love?