Viva Mexico!

People, we have a destination. So far all the rambling on this blog has been of the verbal vomit variety. Well, as much as my ego would love it if that were the case, I’m guessing people stopping off in this tiny cobweb covered corner of the internet aren’t looking for the answers to the ultimate question, as drummed up by me.

(spoiler alert: the answer is 42)

So, in keeping with the spirit of this whole endeavor, I will be hopping across the border and into Mexico to visit a gorgeous spot called Canyon de Guadalupe.

“Where is that?” you say? Well, actually, your fearless traveler over here will be heading to an oasis.

Yes, you read that correctly, an oasis. Complete with resplendent palm trees and cool waterfalls.

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photo credit: bglclub.com/

 

As well as natural hot springs, with mineral water filling the pool of your own personal hot tub.

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photo credit: guadalupecanyonoasis.com

Yes, there’s one at every single campsite.

… where it just so happens some amazing and talented people will be throwing a festival.

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I know it will be tough, but I will do my best to make it through.

I’ll report back with more photos, pictures, and stories of adventure after this epic event at the beginning of May.

Ramble on….

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A good reason for heels

Previously I posted here about how excited I was to go see Wynton Marsalis in concert. Now, I am not the type of gal who enjoys getting all gussied up in heels and gowns, but this particular occasion called for just that.

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It was absolutely worth it. Every single musician performing with the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra ensemble was phenomenal. Our seats were all the way towards the top of the balcony, but if you have not been to the Balboa Theatre, then let me assure you, there is not a bad seat in the house.

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(there was a strict no cameras rule,

…so naturally I waited until the show was over to break it)

When I was just a tiny little rambling machine, my Grandparents would take us to see the symphony downtown, so it was endearing and a little bit nostalgic for me to see so many elderly folk, dressed to the nines, enjoying one of the greats play music from their heyday.

The $9 drinks were less endearing, but at least available prior to the performance.

If I were a more daring and inconspicuous operator of my cell phone camera, I’d have shared with you the guy who could pass for Colonel Sander’s stunt double audaciously sipping from his flask, right there in the lobby. …but I’m not. 

I’ll work on that. 

Until next time, ramble on people.

On doing what I say, not as I do….

I consider myself to be an excellent advice giver. I can tell you just what you need to do in order to fix your problems.

Relationships woes? Pfft, piece of cake. Work trouble? Simple fix. General feeling of malaise and an overwhelming sense of depression, with suicidal thoughts to boot?

… 

Actually, that may be the one time you SHOULD listen to me. Despite staying at a job that often leaves me infuriated and isolated, and making many of the same mistakes in my romantic entanglements, I can dish out pearls of wisdom on those subjects that are genuinely useful. See, I KNOW what I ought to do in those cases, but that doesn’t mean I have the balls to follow through. (…yet)

The one part of my track record that actually does endorse the hippie bullshit likely spewing from my mouth is in the depression department. I recently reached out to a friend with whom I am no longer close, after he had posted publicly on social media that he was dealing with serious demons. A constant accident/suicide/murder whatever-ends-with-me-dead video loop running through his head.

Severe depression is debilitating. You may not be able to get out of bed, even when you know you must or face consequences. Things like cleanliness and eating fall by the wayside as you remain trapped in your own head. When this is the case, by all means break out the big guns and fork over whatever your copay is to the pharmacy.

But like functioning alcoholics, some people learn to live with their depression. Every day you hear the lies your sick mind is telling you. (Your friends don’t like you, you’re fat, you’re unlovable, you will never amount to anything) It sucks the joy out of life. Things that ought to make you happy, that you are positive make you happy, just don’t pull the trigger internally. As my friend described it, something similar to Stockholm syndrome occurs, and you begin to think of your depression as *who* you are. The bleak outlook on life you cart around with you becomes as much a part of you as your sense of humor.

In that moment things may look hopeless. Your choices consist of the pills your over scheduled doctor throws at you, because he has a total of 15 mins to figure out a fix before the next HMO patient’s appointment starts, or the status-quo.

I have been there. Daunting doesn’t even begin to describe it.

But you have a secret weapon. The same powerful tool that is tormenting you can be turned on itself. Our brains can be manipulated by things other than chemicals packaged by big pharma. You must be diligent in silencing the voices in your head tearing you down all the time. When you hear them begin, say aloud “STOP!” Look yourself in the eyes while saying out loud and facing the mirror the opposite of whatever insult you’d been saying internally. … yes, you will look a little crazy. Then again, if you’re running around with a one man reenactment of the Final Destination franchise projected on the inside of your eyelids, you might already.

Stop and truly look around you. Go outside and look at the clouds, or the sunset. Try and actively notice little things that make life beautiful, like a scraggly little dandelion poking through the sidewalk, insisting that it too gets to live. The next time you take a step on the stairs, stop and focus your attention on feeling gratitude for your ability to walk. I find something every single day to be grateful for, even if it’s just that my sinuses are finally clear. (Screw you flu of 2013)

Meditate. Exercise! (A LOT!) Let your body’s natural happy pills wash over you as sweat drips from your pores. Be mindful of what you eat, and how you spend your free time. Most of all remember you must decide to be happy, and work at it. 

… So all of that sounds pretty good right?

As I walked with my friend along the cliffs up above the waves I realized I had forgotten how much power we have over our own personal reality. I stopped, glancing around me at the million dollar views, and let a wave of gratitude wash over me. Seemed like pretty good advice.

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and all that …

Next weekend Wynton Marsalis is playing in San Diego, and I am beyond excited to be attending the concert.

There is something about jazz that gets down deep into the emotional parts of me so often closed off from the rest of the world. A delicate piano riff can bring tears to my eyes much faster than any spoken word. Music is powerful like that. It has an express lane bypass right past the parts of your brain responsible for logic and language. A direct line to your soul.

If it is possible to put emotion down on paper, then it is done using bass and treble clefs. An alphabet made up of quarter, half, and whole notes is punctuated by an emphatic fortissimo in place of the far less expressive exclamation point, while rests stand in for the oft overused comma.

To be able to see a master like Wynton take the role of narrator is a privileged. I may be born too late to have enjoyed tickling my eardrums with the sounds of Duke Ellington in some speak easy, but this weekend I will be in my own personal time machine.

 

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*** If this news is exciting to you, check out the link at the top of this post! The tour extends far beyond San Diego…

What are you doing here?

ram·bling

ˈramb(ə)liNG/
adjective
adjective: rambling
  1. 1.
    (of writing or speech) lengthy and confused or inconsequential.
  2. 2.
    (of a plant) putting out long shoots and growing over walls or other plants; climbing.
    “rambling roses”
    • (of a building or path) spreading or winding irregularly in various directions.
      “a big old rambling house”
    • (of a person) traveling from place to place; wandering.

That pretty well covers it.