Wednesday, September 3, 2008

A Different Shade of Green

I'm coming to terms with the fact that I'm one of those people here in DC who have to get away from the city for at least a day once a month. Otherwise, I become cranky and slowly become embittered and curmudgeonly.

That coupled with not sleeping well, replaying the events of two years ago as I tried to sleep, trying to sit with the images and sensations, allowing them space to process, the two times I did make it to my mat last week, I was no better than lead weight attempting to move through molasses and some semblance of the asana sequence. Case in point: D had me stop at Mari-C last Thursday after I completely foo-barred the Janu sequence and to be honest, I'm almost positive I missed a couple earlier asanas.

Traveling, letting go, returning to New England, and seeing a different colored green was much needed.

* * *

Saturday morning I woke, bright and early - 4 am so I could catch my cab to National and be there promptly at 5am. Upon arrival, I look at the departure screen and I didn't see the departure time for my flight. I saw the flight number, it wasn't the correct time. I was just going to proceed to the gate, but thought better of it and went to the ticket counter to inquire as to the change. As I walked to the counter, SakaPinda mat bag on my back and small weekend tote in tow, I looked at my boarding pass and it didn't look quite right.

I figured I was just tired.
Then it dawned on me like a hammer falling from the sky.

I was currently supposed to be at TF Greene, in Rhode Island - flying to National. Ha! After
talking with the ticket agent and laying the blame of the ticketing snafu squarely on the shoulders of my secretary (never mind that I am a/the secretary) it would have cost $1,170 to correct this error.

Call me crazy, but I'm not interested in paying that amount of money for what would total, round trip, approx. 100 minutes in the air.

The Mathematician and the Artist checked the Amtrak schedule and there was a regional train leaving Union Station at 6:20am. I could just make it and did. I've always enjoyed traveling by train - save for the Columbia Law student who sat next to me and proceeded to have the same loud drama-filled phone conversation at least 10 times between New York Penn and Mystic, CT where I met up with the Mathematician and the Artist.

The whole plane debacle became a great lesson in flexibility and creativity, remembering that there are always multiple solutions and the initial error, set up for a wonderful weekend. Forcing me to relax on a train as it wound it's way up the eastern seaboard. The weekend was full of wonderful food, from local restaurants with fresh local ingredients and fresh baked goods, to practicing mat to mat at SPY, going to a new-to-me shala for a led full primary class, to catching up with close friends I hadn't seen in ages.

If I had to pick a single solitary highlight to my weekend, I would have to say the time spent with Lady Apollo.

We hadn't seen each other since the Parson's and my wedding in August 2006. Sure, we've talked on the phone but there's something to be said for seeing someone in person. It's an understatement to say that a lot has happened since then. Laying on our backs soaking in the late summer RI sun in the Sculpture Garden behind RISD admissions, she hadn't realized the scope of everything that had happened. Simultaneously, I came to some further realization of how much 5 months of my life, two years ago has affected me and my path.

This was the first time in a long while that I shed tears for Parson and outwardly and publicly showed my grief, my pain, and my passion for living all that life has to offer.

Om Namah Shivaya.


alfia said...

Hi, Portside:
You were married?! I did not know that. Something happened to him?
Sorry, did not want to pry. Feel free not to answer, if it is hard.

Anonymous said...


Yes I was married, to a wonderful loving man who had a tender and quiet side in private and taught many of his/our/my friends how to live life to the fullest. He passed in Dec 2006, just about four months after we were married - a year to the date we were engaged.


CoffeeShop Girl said...

Deep breath, one big step forward. Good girl. I miss him too.

The trees in your backyard look lovely!

Anonymous said...

Hi Portside,

Your story on the airport reminded me of a time about 3-4 years ago in which I booked a trip home in a rush (for the following day), since my father was in the hospital. Went I got to the airport in the early morning, I realized that I had made the booking for one month later!!! In my case, unfortunately, there was no Amtrak to take to cross borders; I had to go back and reschedule another flight for some days later. I was fortunate enough to have my Dad recover, but the experience made me realize how extremely tired/exhausted/overwhelmed I was. My mistake was just a signal of how much I needed a break. So I'm glad The Mathematician and The Artist managed to get you back home in a nice train ride (which I love as well), and that you managed to spend time home watching at the sky.

Thanks for sharing with us about your story. Personally, I feel very touched by its little glimpse. I can only imagine how hard it may have been, but I must say that I really admire your determination to live life to the fullest as well.



alfia said...

Thank you, Portside. Can't even imagine how difficult it must have been. You are strong and brave!

The Mathematician said...

The Yogi Tea thought of the day:

"Love what is ahead by loving what has come before."

Emily said...

I totally understand needing to get out of DC occassionally -- believe me, the same is necessary when living in New York! (Speaking of.....might it be your next escape? I need to make some DC plans too.....)

Thankfully, my Labor Day flights were much less eventful ;)

Thinking about you lots. Miss you.