Saturday, December 31, 2011

Random Pictures, Last Day Of 2011, Day Of The Iguana

Happy New Year's, Y'all.

Love...Ms. Moon


The little boy with the butterfly eye-lashes is a pistol, that one. He has a little fit almost every morning and his mama has to soothe him. Oh, he is my stand-in for Owen whom I hear has gotten a haircut and who hates it so much that he won't take off his hat.
My poor, shorn Baby Sampson!

I am feeling shy this morning. But I have to get over it. We are going to ride across the island. Maybe go see some ruins. The other side's beach is wild and turbulent.

New Year's Eve. That's what I hear it is.

Today I resolve to try and do what that pool says.

Just Be.

The man has finished raking the sand. It is perfect. Not one footstep has disturbed the pattern.

I would rake that sand every day. That would be enough for me.

The sea's pattern changes with every earth-breath. That too, is enough for me. It is a cradle which rocks my soul gently.

Friday, December 30, 2011


If I could, I would take a picture of the way the moon looks right now over the water. I have tried but it does not come out. Imagine this- silver crescent in smile position over the water, pathway of silver beneath it leading to the Yucatan Peninsula and ending in the approximate place of Tulum.
Imagine that.
Imagine soft air, perfect temperature for human beings.
Imagine water slapping rocks beneath you.
Imagine having had supper in a courtyard with a tree that had a sign on it that said, "Mamay Tree, 1880."
Imagine a waiter who laughed at everything and then brought the girl-child a shot of tequila. Imagine the girl-child kissing her man. Imagine the ride home on the scooter. This part of the ride smells of cigars, this of jungle, this of flowers.
Imagine kissing your own love. Imagine lying down in the darkness and then waking to turquoise made liquid before your eyes, black birds singing one perfect trilling note.

Imagine how, when you dip your face beneath the water, not one of your troubles, not one of your cares is living there.

Imagine riding down the road in paradise.

Yes. It is like that.

Yes. It certainly is.

My Heart. Oh, My Heart

There, there. The legs at the top left. They are hers. Very, very thin lady. I saw her walking to town today. She does everything so deliberately. So slowly. No wasted motion at all.
"Hola, Buenos Tardes," she said when she came in this afternoon.
"Hola, Buenos Tardes," I said.
Vergil and I were waiting on Mr. Moon and Jessie down by the motos to go to the grocery store.
"There is a story there," I whispered to Vergil.
"I think there is," he said.

We went to the mercado today and saw fishes and pieces of animals hanging from the ceiling and plastic ware and so many shoes. We got liquados y jugos de fruta. We met three men in the hot tub from London who were in Cozumel for two hours before flying out to Belize. They were British and droll as British people are. That tiny boy whom I have been heart-fluttering over for days got in the hot tub with us. He and his familia are from Mexico City. His eye-lashes are like black butterflies. He is trouble. I grabbed his toes and pretended to take them off. He put his feet back up in the water for me to get them again. His parents said that I could take him and the other two boys as well. They were joking. But they knew an abuela when they saw one.

We went to Mega which is like Walmart but it is in Spanish. We bought rum and cookies and more coffee and water. We drove home and the sun was setting and I began to cry again.

There was hot water for our showers tonight. We are going to town to meet Jessie and Vergil for dinner.

The bougainvillea is blooming as are the hibiscus.

How can I leave this place? I don't have to yet.

Thank god.


Hummingbirds in the flowers below. Overcast, calm.

I look up to see a boat the size of China silently going by. It is decorated in streamers of colors- fun guaranteed!

We are waiting for Jessie and Vergil who are renting a scooter and we are going to town for breakfast and then Playa Corona, maybe, to hang and snorkel. I have to study my script. I am starting to panic. Why, why, why did I think I could do this?

I keep dreaming of a friend I had once who is, like very, very thin woman, very, very thin. In my dreams she is the music director of a church. She is working at a bar. She is making overtures of friendship.

Very, very thin woman ate her breakfast. I cannot just approach her. You have no idea of the walls she has around her, whether of her making or merely perceived on my part. I am so tempted to take a picture of her but that would be so wrong.

Perhaps she is the mistress of the Mexican president who is on the island with his family. Or so I hear.
Probably not.

When I see her, I smile, she smiles. That's the best I can do.

One of the black grackle-like birds with the huge tail is standing on the rocks below, finding tiny things to eat.

We are all here, at this place in Cozumel. The people, the birds, the lizards, the fish.

The children are here. Children! Ha!


Thursday, December 29, 2011

More Questions

We have been here at Hotel B for all of six days and so many changes have occurred, the main one being that Victor is gone. He was here yesterday morning, then he disappeared. I asked about him today and the man said, "Oh, I am not sure. I think he went back to Canada," which is a bold-faced lie, I am not kidding you.
Something happened.
And since he's been gone, the damn tape has not been changed once and the music is weird Euro-New-Age stuff and THEY NEED TO SHUT IT OFF!
Besides that, all is well.

The people who were eating dinner when we left to go to town are still sitting at the same table and we drove to town, met Jessie and Vergil, had a drink, walked to another restaurant, had a fine dinner, and walked blocks and blocks to the coffee place and had coffee and then walked blocks and blocks back and got on the scooter and came home.

They are enjoying themselves. Yes, they are.

I wonder where Victor is?

Underwater And Above

The sun has set and the moon-smile is peeking in and out of the clouds and people are having dinner downstairs and Jessie and Vergil are walking back to their hotel and Mr. Moon is watching FSU football on the TV which they installed so fortuitously just in time for the game.
We're going to get on the scoot here in a little while and go meet the young people at the clock tower in the zocaro and go from there to supper.
Mr. Moon is thinking he wants a piece of pork at Casa Denis which he saw the other day while we were having our reasonable bowl of sopa de lima. It was like an entire pork leg and he hasn't been able to stop thinking about it since. Casa Denis is the oldest restaurant on the island, supposedly and the waiter at lunch reminds me of both Keith Richards and Honey Badger- he don't give a shit plus, he's pretty old but still functioning quite well. He doesn't even use glasses. I told Mr. Moon the other day that we go to Casa Denis solely for that waiter- his charming and merry personality. Haha!

When I went on my walk this morning, I met Jessie and Vergil strolling up the road and it was a good day. We went snorkeling. Vergil, of course, has a camera which takes underwater pictures.
Here are a few:

Merman Vergil.

Mermaid Jessie.

My favorite species of fish. No, I do not know it's name. The little black one with electric blue spots.

Here we are at lunch. Well, I'm taking the picture.

This SO does not suck. Thai ceviche? Bless my heart. It was good.

Very, very thin woman seemed changed today. She was more animated. I swear, she looked like she has gained a pound or two. She had her hair up and I saw her check her phone and drink a beer!
I was astounded.

I saw an iguana today. I did not have my camera. I'm sorry. I'll try harder.

Time to go get dressed. Time put on my going-out clothes. Time to go eat a half a pig.

Later, y'all.
Love...Ms. Moon

After Breakfast

We have eaten breakfast at the hotel every morning. It's nice but I miss breakfast in town and perhaps tomorrow we shall eat there with Jessie and Vergil. They were so tired when they got in last night. They had driven from Asheville to Atlanta, flown to Cancun, gotten the bus to Playa, the ferry to Cozumel. We were waiting for them at the ferry dock and oh, how good it was to see them! The town was busy, busy, the last cruise ships were still in town, people everywhere but by the time we'd finished our supper, all of those people were gone and it was quiet.
We walked to their hotel which is right down on the main streets of the town and it is very comfortable, very charming. We left them and walked back to where our scooter was and drove home. They are coming here today to relax and enjoy the beach and to snorkel.

I am not keeping track of days. I am not even sure what day of the week we are leaving. I don't have to. Not yet. I will not.

The family with the cookies is still here. So are the cookies which are brought out for meals and left on the table for all. There are two little boys and when one of them ran to his daddy this morning and raised his arms to be picked up and then patted his papa's cheeks, I thought I would die for missing Owen. I didn't know I would miss him like this. Isn't that silly? Not that I miss him. That I didn't realize how it would be. The other little boy is wearing his Superman costume today. Just like Owen's. Ay-yi-yi. That boy of my blood.

Very, very thin woman was at table before us and when we caught eyes, she gave me a brilliant smile. How I wish I could talk to her. But I do not think her English is very good and I know my everything-else is terrible. What is she doing here so alone? What are her thoughts? She reads some, but mostly stares into space or sleeps on the beach bed. Is she waiting? Healing? Perhaps she has been ill. She is certainly thin enough to be have been ill. Is she hiding? She keeps entirely to herself, it would seem. Is she in her room when she is not down at the beach? Mr. Moon thought that perhaps she is a dancer but if that is so, she has not danced in awhile. I do not see a lot of muscle there. Mostly just bone. And smile. Sometimes.

Well, I do not know.

The yoga class seems to last forever. I feel guilty that I am not down there, stretching and breathing and being aware. Why do I have to tote my guilt with me everywhere I go? My anxieties are staying quiet, for the most part and what do I have to feel anxious about? Not much, believe me.

I think I will take a walk. Mr. Moon is trying to find the best wireless connection for his poker game and will wait for Jessie and Vergil although I told them not to rush this morning. To come when they felt like it. This is Mexico. Vergil wants to rent a scooter now, I think. These men and their need for a scooter! I want to go across the island to the other side but the idea of riding the entire way on the back of a moto makes me want to die a little. My bones are not as young as they once were. Besides, if we are on different scooters, I cannot point things out to Jessie, to say, This is where we...Do you see this?...Isn't it beautiful?....
I want to go down to Punta Sur, to see the tiny ruin which I call the Alux House. El Caracol, I think is its true name. To perhaps climb the lighthouse, look out over the Caribbean, see the ghosts of pirate ships, of boats carrying Mayan women to come and worship Ixchel.

We will.

There is time. We will. Jessie and I will shop for silver, we will all snorkel, we will have many more meals, we will go down to Playa Corona, we will visit the other side, we will....

Wednesday, December 28, 2011


Resting Day

I am having my resting day. I feel like a new mother on the third day after the baby comes, which is the day the midwives say that the milk and the tears both come in, even though this is the fourth day or is it the fifth? Time. Whatever. And I am not crying.

It IS the day that Jessie and Vergil are coming and I am resting up for that. I am nesting in this room, my fantasy of doing nothing but lying on the bed with the sea in front of me come true.
My belly is a bit achy but I am not sick nor have I had any real gastric distress. I did not get my chicken enchiladas last night but another chili rellenos as the restaurant we had the cab driver take us to in the rain did not have chicken enchiladas (what, what?, what!) but they did have the most delicious white bean soup and there were more local people there than tourists so it must be an okay place to eat. There was an entire table of women, perhaps a dozen or more, and if I am not wrong, they were of the sisterhood, and when I say sisterhood, I guess I mean lesbians, and most of them had very short hair but stylish, also, and wore golden sandals and so forth and not necessarily "sensible shoes," but still...
They seemed so happy. All of them were lit with smiles. I wish I had known what exactly was going on. I am so curious.
I have not seen Very, Very Thin Woman today. Is she still here? I think so but am not sure. She probably needs a break from me trying to observe her from the corner of my eye. Yesterday she was eating breakfast at the same time we were and she ate all of her fruit, very slowly, and when she got her eggs and beans and chilaquiles she had perhaps two tiny bites of the juevos mexicana and that was all but she spent a good half hour, buttering and eating the white toast they bring with strawberry jam.
She is not American.
She was struggling with the beach umbrella yesterday and I got up to try and help her. She has the most beautiful smile and teeth. "It is very...strong," she said and it was heavy, the base of it where it sits, and I said, "We need a man!" and then there was one of the waiters, coming down the steps to help us.
"Thank-you," she said.
I tell you, she is hardly as big around as my one thigh and my thighs are hardly the biggest part of me.
Some people compel our curiosity and some do not. There is not so much to wonder about when it comes to large families and children or to young couples, even if they are of another nationality. There is familiarity there, no matter the language, the tattoos, the color of their MacBooks.
Yes! MacBooks come in red and black, at LEAST! I have seen this with my own eyes. Why are we restricted to no-color? Huh?
Everyone has electronic devices. iPads at the very least. Even I with my Kindle which almost seems like an ox cart surrounded by jet packs. I love the Kindle. I just finished reading Ann Patchett's State of Wonder and hated to see it go.

So anyway, curiosity killed the cat but it has never harmed me.

Anyway, I have sent Mr. Moon off to explore on his own this morning and to turn in the scooter and trade up for a car so we can take Jessie and Vergil around. Mexicans may ride en familia on scooters but Vergil and Jessie and Mr. Moon and I would add up to more than two dozen foot-lengths and no way, Jose. It is a sight, just to see me and Glen on one, his knees sticking way out into traffic. I am happy here this morning, just to lay on the bed and read, to sit here and write this.

So happy. The past few days have been enough to fill me up so full that I need to be still and collect myself. And who knows? I may have picked up a tiny bug but it will pass. Sopa de lima for a late lunch will cure me. I do not feel sick so much as just lazy, my bones and hips a bit louder than usual and it's fine, it's beautiful, it gives me this excuse to do nothing I really do not want to do; this evening I will get my hands on that girl and her boy and I am aching for them, for all of my children, really, and for Owen. Every child I see reminds me of him or of the one to come. There was a chattering boy at the table next to us at breakfast this morning, he sounded like a bird talking in Spanish, his voice rising and rising with the excitement of it all and there was a beautiful little girl baby, maybe six, seven months, her eyes as blue as this water, and she looked at me and Glen with great seriousness and attention and it was all I could do not to scoop her up or at least to reach out and touch the merest tip of her tiny fingers. She had tiny gold earrings in her ears and she was perfect.

I keep feeling like I am forgetting to put things down here - oh yes - the little girl who came running after us in the downtown two days ago after Mr. Moon had exchanged money. She could not have been more than six and her mama had sent her off to find us because they thought we had left a ticket of some sort there. She explained in Spanish when she caught up to us at the church and we had no idea what she was talking about- I know the word for "ticket" but couldn't get more than that and another woman translated as much as she could and we followed her back through the shops (she knew all the backways and short-cuts), her black hair swinging with the sturdy, important stride of her, to make these two Gringos follow her back to the small exchange office where she presented us to the mama and no, it was not our ticket, but if it had been, wouldn't we have been grateful to have gotten it?

I wish I could give you all of this, all of these pictures that are in my head, the tiny children and the tinier old women, the way town had almost shut up last night due to the wind and the rain- a town with few walls must necessarily do so- and this water in front of me, choppy today but as fabulously blue as Tropical Fabuloso, as unbelievably blue as a blue-raspberry Icee.



It is a resting day and the sweet, strong breeze blows around me, through me, fills me up even more.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011


Rain on bougainvillea at night. Cozumel, Mexico.

Ah, here I am, all ready for supper, sparkly eyeshadow and all and it is raining, raining and the wind is blowing and of course, we only have the scooter.
Ah well. There are always cabs.

What a very nice day. We did snorkel and I saw a fish eat a fish! I saw skates and an eel. I saw a barracuda slipping off into the deep. They are shy, those fish. They know that there are people who want to spear them. There is something so incredibly soothing about snorkeling. Maybe it is, as one of you dear ones said in a comment (I am reading them, I am cherishing them!) that snorkeling is like a meditation. You breathe in and you breathe out. You can hear your breath, it is steady and slow as you move through the water. Your eyes are focused on the coral walls and the tiny fish swimming in and out of them, the larger fish, schooled up and treading water, waving back and forth with the current. There. That is all you need. That breath, that sight. It is so amazing to me that you can be so close to the surface that you can hear the birds call while being in a completely different world, so very, very close and yet, unless you are in it with a mask, there is no comprehension of it at all. It might as well not even be there.
You are and it is there and there are probably worlds upon worlds we have no idea of.

I took a beautiful walk this morning. Mr. Moon started out with me but he has a blister and had to come back to the room to get a band-aid. On my way home, I found him, sitting on a bench, waiting for me. I was so glad to see him. On my walk I saw men cutting the grass with machetes in front of villas. I saw a woman walking with another woman and she had her beach things in a bundle on her head. She was so straight and so golden that I thought perhaps she was a statue, walking. I saw four very old abuelas, walking together, holding each other up. They wore dresses in butterfly colors. I saw butterflies of red and black and yellow.

We drove down to Playa Corona at sunset time. Would Rogellio be there? The Mayan pirate? Oh yes, there he was, big as life.
"You are still alive!" he said. "I was just thinking of you!" He shook Mr. Moon's hand and hugged me. I couldn't help it. I pressed his head to my lips and kissed his cheek hard. I'll never forget that first time we saw him, twenty-four years ago, standing on the dock. Rogellio does not look like anyone else in this world, believe me. He looks more like himself than anyone I've ever met. I said to Mr. Moon, "Remember when you went night diving with Rogellio? And I was so worried?"
"Is that what we told you?" he said. "Night diving?"
I can't wait to introduce Jessie and Vergil to Rogellio. I have known Rogellio longer than Jessie has been alive.

They are getting in tomorrow, those two. Their plane lands at 1-something in Cancun and then they will have to get a bus to Playa del Carmen and then get the people ferry to Cozumel. I have no idea when they'll get here. I hope we're at the ferry dock when they arrive but our back-up plan is for them to meet us at Plaza Leza on the square if we don't. It's a small island. We won't lose them.

Well, the storm may be abating. It was something there for awhile. Rain pouring and lightening and thunder and the wind howling through the outside hallways. Rain is always a blessing, even if it does interfere with your supper plans.

I really want some chicken enchiladas tonight. I am serious.

Plus- sparkly eyeshadow? Hello, Ixchel? I have been doing my best to worship you and all you stand for. Are chicken enchiladas too much to ask?

Ah-lah. There will be chicken enchiladas.

I am in heaven.

And yes, I miss my children. I miss my grandchild. But oh, I have this man here. He is my love and my friend and we are already starting to read each others' minds. This always happens. And tomorrow Jessie will be here. And Vergil. And it will be different but it will be wonderful and if you think that maybe I am trying to figure out how we could all live here, somehow, someway, you are right. Dreams are good. Dreams are like tiny fish that eat tinier fish in order to grow bigger.

All right. That's all I have to say for now.

Buenos noches.

Con amor...Maria Luna

Who, What? Why? Where? When?

What if? she asks herself.
What if? her mind whispers.

She walks and sees wrecks of cement houses, shaded by jungle, fifty yards from that ocean.

Could I? she wonders.
Would I? even more to the point.

Which is a moot one.

But for these days, all of the questions can be entertained.

Why do we limit ourselves to what should be? Why are we so afraid, even to ask the questions? The what could be's?

The most difficult one:

What if?

Morning Again

I woke up early this morning, thinking I would go take yoga. They do yoga here by the sea and really- why should I miss that?
Oh. You know.
Laziness. Inertia.
But. I was going to. I got up, I turned on the coffee. I came out to the balcony to see the sea and the waiters are setting the tables for breakfast and Victor is already here. No yoga lady. I called the front desk.
"No yoga today. It is for tomorrow."

Good morning. It is beautiful here in Cozumel. It is a miracle of beauty. It is a a Caribbean dream of beauty. It is...almost too much. I feel as if I can't drink it in enough. As if I do not have all of the proper taking-in organs for this beauty.

Oh wait. There are people going down to the yoga place but not the regular yoga lady who is about fifteen feet tall with a crown of hair wrapped up on her head. Who are these people? They are not the regular yoga people I think. I will not worry about them. I will take a walk later. I will snorkel.

We rented a scoot yesterday. It was so easy. Mr. Moon asked down at the desk. The price was good. We agreed. The scooter man was here in ten minutes with it and the paperwork. No bullshit. Listen- the people here are not trying to rip you off. Believe it or not.
I had told Mr. Moon that I was not going to let him rent a scooter. Too dangerous. One cannot dissuade Mr. Moon, however, when he makes up his mind.
When I got on the back of it behind him, I was so glad.
It was another level of "I am home."
We drove to town through some of the nabes. We parked and walked around and had sopa de lima at Cafe Denis. Same everything. Especially soup. Oh yes.
We drove to Chedraui, the super market. They have EVERYTHING at Chedraui including furniture and tires and washing machines and octopus and shrimps and a mile-long row of yogurts. Deli, bakery. Pharmacy. Baby clothes.

We brought the coffee that Kathleen had given us which we have enjoyed so much but we had almost used it up so we bought coffee. We spent fifteen minutes in front of the coffee, trying to read labels. My favorite one claims that it is as hot has hell, as dark as night, as sweet as love. Mr. Moon said, "You're going to buy that kind because of the label, aren't you?"
"No," I said, thinking, why not? We bought some other kind that looks organic. We shall see how it makes up. It is lovely to have coffee on the balcony before we do down to breakfast.
We bought tiny bananas, two mangoes, two limes, more cokes to go with our rum, fancy cookies for Mr. Moon, fiber cookies for me, orange flavor. I cannot buy these in the states. I love them. They are like dense muffins.

We came home, back through the neighborhoods again, then down the sea road to the hotel. We had coffee on the balcony, went down and got in the hot tub for sunset.

Back to town for dinner. A famous restaurant. Famous with tourists. Oh dear. It was fine. Too many people. The waiters were beside themselves. I asked for dos vasos de agua. They hate that. They want to sell you bottled water. But he barked out the order to another waiter. They were brought. Often they just are not. Well, I understand. It costs them money to buy purified water.
We drank margaritas. Perhaps too much? I couldn't finish mine. Mr. Moon did it for me. Then we went for coffee.
Una mocha, por favor, y una cafe con leche.
Margaritas give me the gift of Spanish.
At least I always think so. Probably not.
Families with babies and children sitting in the cafe, drinking yummy drinks. Artwork on the walls. The mermaid you see above.
People seem to stay up forever here, including children. But I see them in the early morning, too. When do they sleep? We are ready for bed by nine, nine-thirty.
Which was when we went to bed last night.

Very thin alone woman has the room next to ours! She came down to watch sunset yesterday too, but did not get in the hot tub. She got in a hammock and gently swung. She is not just thin, she is a bone. She will smile if you look at her and smile. She is not American. I wonder. I do wonder.

I think today we plan to spend mostly right here. More snorkeling, more reading. They serve a ceviche here which is one of the best things I have ever had. I could live on that and guacamole. With salsa. I think that might be the perfect diet. Not diet-like-lose-weight but diet-like-what-to-eat-to-live.
Maybe with a mango.
Speaking of which, I am the fattest woman on Cozumel not from a cruise ship. I am as fat as an abuela. Oh wait. I AM an abuela.
Oh well.

Jessie and Vergil will be here tomorrow. We rode past the hotel where they have reservations. It is right on the edge of the 'hood. It looks lovely. What a joy it is going to be to see them! I can't even imagine, but I am trying. Again- a concept.

Good morning.
It is beautiful in Cozumel.

Good morning.

Monday, December 26, 2011

These Pictures Just Take Themselves


This place we are staying is very family-oriented and we are actually some of the few USA'ers staying here. There are families of grandparents, children, grandchildren. They swim and snorkel and they kiss and slap backs and this morning an abuela brought out three giant containers of home made cookies and put them on the table for the family and I thought of her, baking those cookies and then bringing them here. She was wearing her bathing suit, a white hat, her granddaughters had legs like colts. They sit at the table for hours, gathering and going off to swim, coming back to sit and talk some more.

There was a woman here for two days whom I never saw with anyone else. She had very long hair and was thin as a knife and she would lay on one of the beach beds and read or just smoke and stare off into the space and every hour or so she would get up and climb down the ladder into the sea and immerse herself and then climb back up and wring her hair and begin it all again. What is her story?

There are children as young as Owen and they play happily from pool to hot tub, always someone to watch them. I saw two brothers play together without incident in the sand this morning for at least an hour, coating themselves and each other with sand like sugar and then building a sand castle with the help of a bucket and shovel.

Families love the hot tub and it is almost always in use, the perfect place to watch the sunset.
The waiters wear black pants and white shirts and the main guy seems to be Victor who is actually from Canada and he works like a dog and has a funny sense of humor.
"I'm sorry the water isn't blue," he will say sadly.
"Or green," I answer.

We walked to town again last night after spending all day here, snorkeling and laying in the shade and reading. For some reason, the walk took about one quarter of the time it had taken the night before. Or so it seemed. I had no idea why. I wasn't really hungry but we found a place for supper and I had some pasta with tomato sauce and fresh cheese and it was good and we watched fire dancers with drummers in the square- not Mexican at all, but Gringos and I thought about what it would be like to be traveling entertainers, spreading fire and drumbeats throughout the continents, passing the hat, trusting on faith. When they are grandparents, they will look back in wonder, thinking, "I did that. I was a beautiful girl who twirled fire, who danced in fire while the drums beat under tropical moons and huge-eyed children watched me, holding the hands of their parents."
It will be something. It is something.

My god. The water is just so blue. It is something I cannot get tired of. I could just watch it all day and yesterday I did when I wasn't in it. Which is better?
I do not have to know. I can choose both.

Today we will walk to town, figure out something to rent to get us around. Sigh. I do not enjoy that part of the trip. Too much bargaining and joking and words.

I have bought two new dish towels. They were in the same grocery store at the exact same place on the exact same shelf as they have always been. They are really mop cloths and they cost about a dollar and they are heavy cotton and last me for years and years. I will bring home a stack of them. The rum was in the same place too and we bought some of that. The rum will not make it home.

I think of home and it's a concept like life on another planet, perhaps.

Oh, the water is blue. And it is green and it is turquoise and it is violet and it is colors we have no words for. Why should we? The water in our country doesn't come in these colors so no need to try and describe them.

My fruit plate this morning had bananas, papaya, watermelon, cantaloupe and orange. I had juevos mexicana with tomatoes and onions and peppers chopped fine and some black beans.

Here I am.

The cruise ships are in this morning but as long as I stay right here, I do not have to even think about them. I can look at them and enjoy the sight of boats as big as continents. At night when they sail away, they are beautiful, like lighted cities floating silently by. They hold a million people but that, too, is just a concept. They come and they go.
I am here.

I am so glad.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Fish Electric, Corals Waving, Purple

We snorkeled today.

I want to be a mermaid as much as I did when I was seven.

Soft Air, Soft Light, Soft Love

You're going to get tired of pictures that look like this.
Oh, too damn bad.
I'm not.

Merry Christmas, y'all.

This might just be the best Christmas of my entire life.

I am so glad to be here. And yes, I cried and sobbed when we flew in. I was sitting there thinking that I didn't even feel a bit like crying. Ah-lah, the magic might be gone. And then it came over me like a fit of being taken-hold of and shaken until the sobs forced themselves out of me.

And thus- I knew I was home again. Or at least, this other home. This home of my woman-soul because I think that is what it is.

We are about to go downstairs and eat our Christmas breakfast. Papaya will be involved. The water is indescribable. The crackles sing their melodious note. The water boils in the tiny bay below me. We walked to town last night and my feet reclaimed this place. We passed the jungle and the huge estate on the water of where El Presidente of Mexico has a home. The walls were huge and covered in vines and giant trumpet flowers bloomed in the darkness.

"Thank-you for coming back," said the man who has been welcoming us to Plaza Leza for twenty-four years. We gave the musicians ten dollars for which they played us three songs. Same faces as forever. Beat-up old guitars, notes coming forth, voices.

The water below me just gets bluer and bluer. And greener and greener. As if it covered emeralds and saphires. I just discovered that spell check here is in Spanish so I am on my own with that. If I make mistakes, forgive me.

Merry Christmas.
Oh, so merry Christmas.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Made It


There's just nothing like getting to the airport at seven thirty a.m. and going to check in and being told that your flight to Atlanta has been delayed because of the regulations about crew rest time which means that you're going to have approximately 15 minutes (if all goes perfectly!) to get on your flight to Mexico which will depart from a completely different county (or, might as well be) and THAT'S THE ONLY FLIGHT TO COZUMEL THE ENTIRE DAY!
So yeah. Who knows? We might be spending Christmas Eve in Atlanta.

You know, I try to be an understanding person but if they have flights scheduled for a certain time it seems to me that they should be able to figure out the crew rest thing. I mean- really.

Oh well. Whatever.
We'll make it or we won't.

I'll let you know.

The stars in Lloyd this morning are as brilliant as diamonds thrown on the jeweler's black velvet.
This is what I know-
I am not running away. I am running towards.
And when our time is up in Cozumel and our eyes are full of the stars of the Yucatan and our hearts are full of the magic we make with each other, we shall come home to this place where our loves live, where we live our love day-by-day with its joys and its work-a-day pleasures and difficulties and we will be the better for it.

My children- I love you so much that my heart bursts.

We'll be back.

Lily- I'll be Grandmother again on Jan. 5. Schedule me in.

Merry Christmas to all.


Friday, December 23, 2011

And Finally, The Wind Ceases

Owen just left. It's like, oh, you know? When you've been in a category four hurricane and then you're not any more?

Yeah. Like that.

When I was putting him in his car seat he pretended to be a lion and scratched me with his mighty claws and roared his mighty roar.

I'm gonna miss that kid.

Time to finish packing.

I'm so tired I don't even have the slightest idea what I'm doing.

Love...Ms. Moon


How in the world can it be winter? It's about seventy degrees and dense gray skies and it must have rained because drop, drop, drop, heavy drops come off of the trees.

I took my fate in my hands last night and said to Mr. Moon, "I am going to sleep in the guest room because I want to SLEEP," and I did, snuggled down with a book and I read and read and read and then I turned out the light and I just slept.
I will be like a remora on him for the next ten days and it will be wonderful but I wanted one night of my own, just me, and look- we all need and deserve that sometimes and this morning I am actually not feeling anxious so much as excited. Maybe some nervous but nervous is normal and good whereas anxiety is sickening in every sense of the word. It is a dis-ease. Instead of butterflies in the stomach which nervousness brings, there is barbwire in the stomach with anxiety. I don't think I can state it any more plainly than that. Today I have a little bit of barbwire but there are a few butterflies dancing around it.

I wonder what my dreams will be like in Cozumel. Will they be informed by light and water? Will I still dream of the chickens and people coming to my house and needing food and beds? We generally go to bed pretty early in Mexico and get up early too. When the sun goes down there, it does not linger babies. It drops like a rock into lava and the fire flies up into the sky and colors it and the water too. When it comes up in the morning it comes UP, and we generally do too.

Oh my god. Mr. Moon is grinding deer meat in my kitchen right now as we speak. Are you kidding me?

I married a hunter. At one time, I was his prey. Tomorrow I am going to remind him of why that was. Today I am just the wife, the grandmother, the do-er of laundry but tomorrow?

Tomorrow? Really? It's tomorrow that we're leaving?

Lord. I gotta run.

Feed the butterflies, blunt the barbwire, fluff the velvet, paint my nails.

Sharpen my remora suckers.

Going to be a busy day.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Holy Night, Holy Shit

Oh holy night. Owen was just here for a quick three-hour visit while his daddy helped his granddaddy cut up and wrap Mr. Moon's doe from last week. Owen was in go-for-it-mode and he did. He ran around like a caffeine-hopped up rabbit and I just followed him around. Lord, that child. Run, run, run. Jump, climb, go under, ride...whatever, just keep on going.

"Jump, Mer!" he says as he leaps into my arms. That's all the warning I get, too. It's a wonder I haven't dropped him yet. The day I do is the day he learns something about life.

I asked him today, "Who's my boy?" and he said, "Owen!" and I said, "And who is Owen's Mer?" "Mary!" he announced. I can't help it. I love it when he says my name. He's started calling Bop, Boppi, which I think is just charming as hell.
He ate three energy bars without asking permission, two "bits" of dog food ("liscious!") and an apple. When I changed his diaper I called him a Pee-o-sauras and he laughed. When I asked him for a kiss good-bye he said, "Sure," and pulled my chin to him.
I'm going to miss that child.

And boy, do I need a break.

So I packed today. Then I took a bunch of stuff back out so that I could get the suitcase zipped. I'm about 90% done with the packing. Honestly. I charged the camera batteries. I have the Kindle loaded and charged. I asked Hank to buy me a used copy of Lonesome Dove because mine is MIA. I packed sparkly eye shadow and mascara and stuff like that. I figured out what I am going to wear on the plane. Believe me, it is festive, silly, and will be comfy. Velvet is involved. Yes. I am wearing red velvet to a Caribbean Island. So what? It's Christmas. Let everyone else travel in PJ's and cargo shorts. This woman is wearing velvet.

Two more nights.

I'm about to go pimp a frozen pizza. That's all I can handle at this particular moment in time.

Owen's coming back tomorrow afternoon and will be here until seven-thirty. Hank's coming to spend the night and take us to the airport on Saturday morning. I have a few presents to wrap for Owen. I need to make the traditional Moon Chicken Salad before I go for the kids' Christmas celebration.

Oh holy night. Oh holy shit.

Grandma is ready for her vacation.


So quiet this morning here in Lloyd. Until my dogs get the idea that someone is coming and begin to bark. And then the quiet is split apart and my back tenses and if it doesn't snap entirely before I leave, it will be a miracle of some sort.

I was reading the paper this morning and there was an editorial (I do love the editorial section) that made me laugh, be sort of pissed, and shake my head. All at the same time.
It was about Santa and the myth of Santa and children's belief in Santa. The man who wrote it was discussing how his five-year old niece was questioning the reality of Santa. He assured her that yes, darling, there is in fact a real Santa. And then, at school, someone in authority told the child that no, there was no Santa and the child called her uncle and sobbed and accused him of telling her a lie.
So the uncle talked to someone he knew in the educational system and how she responds to children's questions about Santa Claus and she said, "We've been told not to discuss things like Santa Claus with the children. They don't want us teaching children about things they can't see, hear, touch, or feel."

Sounds sensible to me although I don't know why a teacher would tell a five-year old there is no Santa. That's inappropriate for that age if you ask me but anyway, let's get on with our story.

The uncle asked the person who had given him this answer this question:
"How do we raise children to have faith and to become spiritual adults if we're teaching them to be nonbelievers before they even start to believe?"

Haha! Exactly!

He went on to say that if all the adults would just stick to the same story, children wouldn't call it lying.

Yep. That about sums it all up for me. When it comes to religion.
I don't believe I even need to add any discourse on this one.

But, that's just me. I do believe in what I can see, hear, touch, feel. And I have seen things and felt things and touched things that gave me enough wonder to open my mind to the possibility of so much more than I can actually explain. But I don't need to attribute any of that to a faith of any particular sort. Now if you have, then that's fine and I'm glad for you.

But I ain't going to believe something based on a lie even if "everyone" agrees to tell the same lie. This is true whether it pertains to religion or politics. Or nutritional advice, for that matter.

Well, there you go. My thought for the day which is no more and no less valid than the guy who wrote that editorial if you want to get right down to it.

The shortest day of the year has passed, it is now truly winter. The days will begin to grow longer, the nights less so. This is something which can be measured and it is something to celebrate.

Let us do so.


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

No, Really. Siri, Where Am I?

I got a pedicure. I figure I can paint my own damn fingernails. I always choose the same color. OPI's I'm Not Really A Waitress.

It's red. Dark, shiny red. It's like with eye shadow- if you're going to wear it, WEAR IT!

Plus, I really like the name.

I called Mr. Moon today and told him that I thought maybe I should get a bigger suitcase. Mine is just a tiny bit bigger than a carry-on and honestly, it's just not big enough for an extended vacation. "What about that suitcase of your mother's?" he asked me.
"Did we bring it home?" I asked.
And yes, we had and my husband even remembered where it was and it's awesome. An American Tourister and it has a yellow pom-pom on the handle, even. A homemade pom-pom. That may or may not stay attached. Not sure yet.
I really can't tell you how excited I am about that. Thanks, Mom! I will have room for my stuff.

I took care of Owen for a few hours today at his house. Lily set us up with the TV to watch Toy Story 3 and all was well until the screen got some message on it about the fact that things were about to end and I'd have to readjust the settings for the movie to continue.
And sure enough, the damn thing stopped and I had no idea what to do. None. There's another TV in Lily and Jason's room and Owen needed a nap. Believe me. And he didn't take to the idea of Mr. Peep and back-rubbing but said he'd lay down with me if we could watch a movie. Do you think I could figure that out either? Haha! No way. Owen got so frustrated with me.
"I can't do it, Owen. Mer doesn't know how to make it work."
"Maybe!" he said desperately. He was shoving DVD's in drawers, trying to show me how.
Lily called to check on us and told me how to play a DVD, which I did and Owen laid back and watched Franklin's Christmas or some such shit. Turtles do NOT walk around on two legs wearing their shells like a backpack. They just don't.
Whatever. I read a book and kissed Owen whenever he'd let me and Zeke cuddled up next to my leg. It was fine.
I made the mistake of telling him that Bop and I were going to get on an airplane and fly over the ocean to Mexico.
"Owen come?" he asked.
"No, just Bop and Mer," I said.
Oh boy. That was a mistake. There were tears galore. The promise of presents meant nothing to him. Nothing at all.
When Jason got home and it was time for me to go, I crept out feeling like the most inept grandmother in the world. I failed at technology, I failed at taking him to Mexico, I failed at everything.
He kissed and hugged me anyway.

And this is exactly why I need to go away. 
Look- I do not love with part of myself. I love with ALL of myself. I love that boy and my children so much that my soul can't keep up with it all. Does that make sense?
It's not work or living in a place I don't love that I need to get away from- it's the overwhelming sense of needing to be the best, best, BEST that I can be for these people.
I need to go somewhere where all I need to be is Mary who loves her man and who can spend hours doing nothing but watching the sky and the sea and waiting for the cooks to start grilling the damn garlic.

Who can wake up and say, "Where's my coffee?"
Who can say, "It's ten o'clock in the morning. I want my nap."
Who can say, "Look at the beautiful children."
And need to do nothing for any of them. Who can hold my husband's hand twenty-four hours a day if that's what I want.

Three more nights.

I'm cooking brown rice. Time to go tend it.

I'm not really a waitress. I want to wear silver. I want to be in a place where if you asked Siri where I could get a margarita, she might explode.

Three more nights and Cozumel is waiting for me.

Tomorrow I pack. Here we go. Yellow pom-poms and all.

Room for my clothes and my smooshed-up pillow and my make-up.

Jessie and Vergil- are you ready?

I am. I am so ready that the walls between my realities are shimmering like eye-shadow, like the doors between perception, like the air over the grill where garlic is cooking and the sun is setting and the Maya are speeding home in boats over the water like the gods of the sea they are.

Oh yeah. 

Siri- Where Am I?

I woke up to rain this morning which around here is a good, good thing. I came out to the kitchen and said, "Morning, baby!" but no husband was around.
I said to the walls, "Husband?"
No answer.
So I put on my hat to protect my glasses from the rain and went outside and there he was with an umbrella and the paper, smiling to beat the band.

Husband. Soul.

He can hardly keep his hands off...the new iPhone. This delights me. We are getting old, you know, and it is a good thing when we learn new things, whether lines or technology. There was an editorial in the paper today by a guy about our age who got a new iPhone and he can't figure out shit and he was bitching about it. I understand. I bitch about technology all the time- especially the functions on clocks and ovens and coffee makers. They're STUPID. But the iPhone- SO not stupid. It has occurred to me that although the iPhone is probably marketed mostly to the youngs, it may end up being a godsend to the olds.
Just as we are forgetting everything, we suddenly have access to this auxiliary brain.
"Did you know," Mr. Moon asked me as he was playing with his phone this morning, "That I can say, 'Siri, remind me at ten to call John,' and she will?"
We can literally ask Siri where we are and she will tell us.
"You are in your yard," she will say. "You are going to feed the chickens."
Okay. Maybe not quite but maybe.
Here's another thing I love about that device, especially for my husband- he has always been intimidated to write although I cherish the letters he has sent me over the decades with all of my heart. They are beautiful letters. And here he is- plugging away with the texting to Jessie and to Lily and with every little thing he writes, he will feel more comfortable. In a way, it's astounding to me that we're depending so heavily on texting these days. It's a step BACK in communication, right?
Ah. Not for those of us who love words with all of our hearts.
And no, a text is not a poem or a story or a novel but it could be.
I don't know. I just think it's sort of a crazy miracle, this device. Twenty years ago if you had said, "You're going to have a tiny computer that will fit in your pocket and it will take pictures and movies and allow you to communicate through voice and written word and it will answer your questions with a human voice and it will give you access to encyclopedias and dictionaries and movies and it will tell you where you are and how to get anywhere you want to go and it will tell you the time and the weather and it will keep track of all you need to do and when everyone's birthday is and you will be able to point it to the stars and it will tell you which constellations you are looking at, and, and, and..."
We would have said, "SHUT THE FUCK UP!"


It's just something to think about on this morning in December. I've let the chickens out and two hens are sitting on nests already. Mr. Moon has taken Siri in to work. I wonder what she looks like in Mr. Moon's mind's eye. I bet she has big breasts.
I wonder what my Siri will look like to me.
A goddess, maybe. The goddess of information. Will she tell me what to cook for supper? I hope so. I sort of wish that Mr. Moon and I did not have to eat at all before we leave for Mexico. I am so weary of coming up with things to cook. Frankly, I am not even interested in eating at this point. My belly is a bowl of nerves and I go all day and then suddenly realize that my blood sugar has dropped to a bad point and that I have to eat something RIGHT THAT SECOND and that never works out very well. I am tired of salads and vegetables and I am tired of beans and of meat, both. I am tired of anything that my hand has touched to prepare.

I think I am a bit weary of everything right now and what I am looking forward to most of all about Mexico at this very moment is lying down on a bed with the doors to the balcony open and being able to hear and see the water and sky. Just that. Being in a place that is ours but not ours, everything open to us but nothing required.
Yes. That.

Why does it take so much energy to get to the point where you can relax? I do not know.

But I better get off my ass and start today's busyness in the direction of that relaxation.

Would it kill me, do you think, to get a manicure and pedicure?
I am going to consider this.

And you know what? I apologize for my posts lately. They are pretty darn worthless. I realize that I am doing some fairly serious disassociating and my mind skips along the surface of things like a stone over the water, touch, touch, touch, gone...and it shows here. I know it does.
Well. So it goes.

In just a few days I hope to have mind and body firmly back in the same place, eyes looking out, everything I am seeing, hearing, feeling, tasting, smelling, doing all feeding my one soul.


Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Just Bloggy-Blog

I just got back from rehearsal and it was a good night. Things are going to fall into place, I can tell. It's one of our actor's birthday in a few days and so Jan had brought a cake and we all sang him Happy Birthday and he blew out the candles.

We are a family of sorts down there at the Opera House. Judy and Denise are going to be involved in this production too. Judy is stage-managing and Denise will do costumes and props. This is another reason to be part of this play- to get to see those ladies whom I love so regularly.
I really am the straight woman in this play. I don't get any of the really great, wild lines but that's okay. I'll do my best to make it a very fine part. It's a fun part. We have a new actor with us for this production- a fourteen year-old girl who has never acted and I can already tell that this chick is going to steal the show. She's adorable and funny and has the knack. She wore Tigger slippers tonight- we all fell in love with her a little more for that. She is very quiet offstage, but when she gets up there, she is sassy and sure of herself and is already figuring it out. She's smart, that one. She's soaking it up.
Yeah. This is going to be fun.

So I girded my loins and applied the L'Oreal.
And I got about $7.00 worth of color, meaning that no one has noticed because there's hardly any change at all.
Well, at least it didn't turn orange or anything.
I should have just bought a damn bottle of Sun-In to take with me which is my favorite way to color my hair. Spritz-spritz, play in the sun. Done.

And I got out my suitcase. And I started putting some things in. Oh boy. This is real. This is really, really. Three more nights and then we're leaving. Airports make me crazy. Well, I'll tell you what really makes me crazy- Mr. Moon. He does this thing where we wait for boarding and he always wants to be like the last person on the plane, which is fine, but then, right as they're boarding the last rows, he takes that moment to decide to hit the head for one last pee before we board.
I always think we're going to miss the plane and by the time he comes ambling out, I am practically screaming at him. "Come on! Come on!" and we slip in just as they close the doors. Mr. Moon on a plane is not a happy man. His legs are twice as long as most people's and I am not even exaggerating. His jeans come up to my bosoms when I fold them. And since there's not enough leg room for a normal person on flights these days, he is generally miserable. He always asks for front row seating or emergency exit seating and sometimes we get that and sometimes we don't and I can't tell you how often we have been separated in flights because at the last minute he'll score a seat where he can actually sit without his knees being in his ears and I'm stuck back behind him about fourteen rows.

Also, the last time we went to Cozumel, his bags got selected to be searched in Tallahassee. They gave off a "suspicious" gas. Turned out to be his shaving cream. But damn if they didn't go through every thing in his bags. And I sat there and babbled like an idiot to the woman doing the searching and kept telling her how anxious I was, blah, blah, blah, and she finally said, "Look, God will take care of you."
Hoo-boy. She didn't know who the hell she was talking to, did she?

The flying part doesn't bother me unless the weather is really bad and the flight attendant pulls out a rosary WHICH HAS HAPPENED TO ME! I was worried on that flight. Yes. I was. The lightening and the thunder and the wind and the turbulence and the bumping (it was a tiny plane) were bad enough but when she pulled that rosary out of her pocket and pretended to read while closing her eyes and holding it in her hand...
That was not a good moment for me.

But hey! We lived! God took care of us! And so did the pilot.

Okay. Breathe in. Breathe out. Make tomorrow's smoothie. I have to go to town tomorrow to run to the library and get a few things. Razors. I have no razor blades. Okay. I do have one. I think I've been using it for approximately six months. I might as well be running a Popsicle stick over my legs.

It's been a good day. Owen was mostly sweet and he hugged me a lot and we walked to the post office holding hands. This was a first. He wasn't in the stroller. He was a good boy and held tight to my hand and he opened the door of the post office for me and he twirled the knobs on the other boxes and he held my hand all the way home. Except for the part where he said, "Hold me," which I did, toting in on my hip, that old hip which has toted so many kids and which by now must feel like a well-worn sofa. Although it's not quite that big. The hip that if I move a certain way pops and snaps.
It's okay. That hip was designed to carry babies on and as long as I have breath in my body and can stand upright, I'll be using it for just that purpose.

Night, y'all.

Love...Ms. Moon

That Man

Bop and Owen are out there doing something manly with a hammer and here I am, sneaking a word in.
That boy got here at 5:30 this morning! He was holding a plate of cheese toast which he had saved the whole long ride to eat at Mer's house. His daddy told me that while he was getting ready this morning Owen was saying, "Come on! Go!"
And after he ate his toast, he wanted to go back to sleep and so we all did, Bop and Mer, and Owen.
When I carried him into the bedroom, his grandfather said, "Hey buddy," and Owen said, "Bed! Talking!"
Haha! The talking bed.

My head is better today but my body feels as if someone hit me all over it. Just sort of hard, with a board maybe. Those anxieties can sure beat you up. This is true. Last night, Mr. Moon asked if there was anything he could do to help me and I thought about it and I said, "Could you rub my feet?" and he did and it was the best, sweetest thing he could have done and it put me down like a drug, put me out like a light.

That man.

He's the best and I know it.

Eating Oatmeal With His Bop

Monday, December 19, 2011

Star Light

So my advice to you tonight is to go to the local CVS and buy a string of changing-color star lights. I've had a string up in my kitchen, plugged in continuously for a year. They are still lit and changing color but I went and bought a new string today for when those someday fail.

See? Here I am, being helpful as shit.

I went and got my hair trimmed and had a very nice chat with Jesse, the woman who does the trimming. She's such a nice woman. And it's such a Steel Magnolias sort of place. If it's not her kids who are coming in to talk to her, it's one of her dogs who is peeking around the corner to see if anyone wants to give them a pat and a scratch. You can't beat that. I don't even know if my hair looks good. I haven't even really looked. I hate looking in the mirror, especially at the hair salon. I have the roundest face. It is quite like the moon, in fact- that round. I try to accept that as "my" beauty but it's hard. I don't know why.
I do like my lips, though. I have nice lips.
My nose? Never have liked that. Eyes are fine but hidden behind glasses. I keep thinking about the possibility of getting my eyes fixed next February and it seems like a sort of miracle. No, not a "sort" of miracle- a real one. Not because of the vanity of not having my eyes hidden but because I have no idea what it's like to wake up and to be able to see. No idea what it's like to not view the world through glasses or contacts. I know I'm not alone in this by any means. When I made up my mind to go ahead and make the appointment to see if I was a candidate, I read a letter to the editor in the local paper a few days later and it was written by an eighty-year old man who'd always had horrible eye problems and when he finally went to get his cataracts removed, the doctor was able to do the laser surgery on him to correct his vision as well and he was blown away. Eighty-years old and he was so grateful and amazed that he wrote a letter to the editor of the paper about it.
Can you imagine?
I'm hoping I'll be able to imagine. I'm hoping.

Well, my husband is home. He called me awhile back. Okay, he had Siri call me. Is that her name? He just got his new G4S phone and he's pretty excited. My phone may or may not be in before we leave. Whatever. Does Siri speak Spanish? Does she translate? Does she do foot massages? I feel like I have a new sister-wife. Siri. Well, that's fine with me. I can use all the help I can get around here. As long as she doesn't get into bed with us, I'm cool.

Do you ever think about the fact that there is no phone book for cell numbers?
I do.

Owen's coming tomorrow in the very early morning again. I am looking forward to snuggling back into bed with him and his Bop. I hope he's in a happy mood.

All right. Go to the CVS. Get you some star lights. You will not regret it. And if you wait until after Christmas, they'll probably be half off.

God. I'm like Siri of the blog world.
Not really. I doubt Siri EVER says, "I don't know shit."
Because in fact, she knows everything, as far as I can tell.

Siri- what is the meaning of life?
Don't mean shit.
Oh wait. That's Mr. Natural. I got them confused for a second there.
I can't believe I've lived long enough to know who both Mr. Natural AND Siri are.
And yet I have. With my round moon face, my changing-color-light stars.

Ms. Moon- what is the meaning of life? To love one another and to create.

That's what I know.

And that it's time to warm up soup and make a salad.

Let's get some sleep tonight, y'all. I mean it.

Fly Juice

Walk and sweat and yes, that helps and I do know it and in fact, it is a measure of how anxious I am of how easy the walking is. The more anxious, the less difficult the exercise. The mind-body connection, as we all know, is so very strong. The anxiety prompts fright AND flight and gives the body the adrenalin to fly, or at least walk the miles.

And now to clean the chicken nests, now to water the plants. Now to realize the truth of the matter of how the mind does not always realize that a long-ago threat, sharply remembered, is not a present threat. Isn't that odd, the way it happens? Is it a glitch in our cerebral evolution or is a good and sensible reminder of that which threatened us before may indeed threaten us again? Probably made more sense when the threat was starvation, prompting one to gather and dry more berries, kill and smoke one more beast.

Well, whatever, it is what it is and I have no beasts to kill and butcher and dry on a fire for winter's cold days; my freezer is full of beasts.

And my hen house is full of shit, which most assuredly, I am as well, albeit of the metaphorical kind.

High Anxiety

I was awake a good part of the night, lying still as a corpse, worrying.
Worrying about everything.
I doubt I'll get a decent night's sleep before we leave. I feel as if I've already ruined our trip by all the worrying. I feel sick from all the worrying. I am exhausted from all of the worrying.
I hate this.
It sticks to me, even in the morning light. I get up heavy with the worrying. My back curls forward to ward off the worrying, my shoulders up by my ears.
I worry about specific trip-related things, non-trip-related things, every-related-and-non-related-thing.
My suitcase- how can it be big enough?
Am I a fool to take my laptop?
How can I memorize lines on a trip?
Do I have enough clothes? When am I going to pack? Why haven't I started packing?
How can I leave Owen for ten days?
And then there's whole other layers, other UNIVERSES of worrying that are so ridiculous that I can't even begin to relate them here. One must not let certain things out of their bolted boxes.

I always do this. I comfort myself with that knowledge. I always do this and yet, I survive. Well, let us be honest- I try to comfort myself.
It doesn't work.

So. The very thing I need to sustain me- sleep- has been rudely cut away from me. When I do sleep, the dreams are so busy, so exhausting in and of themselves that I am no better at all for the sleep I do get.

Another thing to worry me.

I need to calm the fuck down. I need to go take a walk. I need to make that blanket. I need to go get my hair trimmed today. I need to start figuring out the packing. I need to


It's a vacation. A real vacation. I'm not going on a journey to be tortured. No one is going to care what I wear. Everything will be fine and lovely.

Hell, one time when we went we lost our tourist papers. They still let us leave.
One time, we left our money at home. We still managed.
One time, we got to the airport a day late. Life went on.
One time we got pulled by the police on our way into a park. They just wanted a ride.

And it's not even worries about things like that. It doesn't really have anything to do with suitcases or lines. It's just me, being crazy. I can feel it, when the crazy comes on. It's like I'm coated in a film of crazy and I can look through it but I'm still inside it, encased in it, hindered by it.


A million years ago, when I was a five-year old girl, it was just about this time of year, maybe right after Christmas, when my mother plotted and made her escape from my father with me and my little brother to Florida. She managed, with the help of good people to get us away, to get us to safety. It all happened in the middle of the night. There was real threat from my father. He had a gun. He was a bad drunk. Being five, I could only know the very fringes of all of this, but I remember. And the worst thing for me was that my mother forgot my blankie. Yeah. I had a blankie. Hell, I NEEDED a blankie.

And when we got to Florida, my mother got so sick she had to be in the hospital, meaning that my brother and I were being taken care of by my grandparents whom we knew not at all, who were very old, in a strange place. And there were whispers and there were worries and there was no joy and it was a very, very bad time.

Okay. I remember all of that and it makes sense to me, suddenly, why I get so apprehensive before a trip. Why I practically make myself sick.
Will it help, this knowing?

I doubt it. Right now I want to reach back in time and hold that little girl and tell her that she is very brave and that things will work out so very well. But that she has every right to be scared. I would like to explain it all to her. Tell her in words she might understand that none of this-NONE OF IT- have to do with anything she did.
Because no one, in those days, tried to explain anything to children. Or at least, in my family. We just soaked up the fear and the worry and kept our mouths shut.

Well. There you are. There you have it.
Ms. Moon is psycho-analyzing herself again. I'm sorry. That's the way it is some days.

Shake it off. Bleed some of it out. Forgive myself for my crazy. Cry some if I need to. Okay. Yeah, I do. Need to.

Get on with life. Take that walk. Start a blanket for a grandson who is so loved, so well-cared-for that he doesn't NEED a blankie. Doesn't suck his thumb and will never, I hope and pray, have to be spirited away in the night to safety. The idea itself is absurd. Remember that I am not five years old. I am a grown-ass woman who has a life of unbelievable richness. That whatever comes is going to be okay. That I am going to Mexico for fun and love and joy with my husband, not fleeing a drunken man with a gun who is my father.

Man. No wonder I hate Christmas. No wonder I am so very anxious before I leave for a trip. No wonder I worry about whether or not my children are okay, okay, really okay in their hearts.

No wonder I love my good man of a husband so much. No wonder I love routine and safety. No wonder I am amazed at the very fact I am still here.

Wow. I feel like I owe myself an hour's worth of counseling fees.

Okay! Well, that's my Monday morning! How is yours?

Jesus. I need to go back to bed.

With my blankie.

Love...Ms. Moon

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Peaceful Sunday Night

Another rehearsal and I was made painfully aware that I am going to have to study lines in Mexico. Yes. Seriously. I HAVE to. There is no way for this old brain to cram lines. It can't be done. It is a process. A slow, painful process.
Well, I made the choice. And it will be fine. It can't possibly be as hard as Steel Magnolias, right? Of course not! Except that it's a 90-page play and there are only four of us in it. No, no, it's going to be fine. Just FINE! I can do this! And it's good for me. Good for the old brain to have to flex and stretch. Yep! I'm not worried one little tiny bit.


I got out the old sewing machine today and did some mending that I've been putting off for years. Quite literally. And tomorrow, I hope to make Owen's name blanket for Christmas. I have made all of my children blankets with their names on them and now it is Owen's turn. He picked out dinosaur flannel. I'm looking forward to that. I'm going to go see my lady in Monticello too, to get my hair trimmed. See? It's all working out lovely.
Now. If I just don't ruin my hair with the L'Oreal color I bought. Jesus. Why did I do that? Because it costs about a hundred dollars to get it done by a professional and the L'Oreal hair dye cost $7.50. Kathleen offered to come help me. I should let her. I used to do it all the time back in the olden days. But I'm not as brave as I used to be.

I had a friend once, an African American woman who asked me why all the white women she knew kept on dying their hair blond even into their older age. I thought about it for a moment and then I said, "Because so many of us WERE blond as children and we think of ourselves as blond always and so, we just make it happen."

She said, "That makes sense." But I think she thought it was pretty ridiculous. Well, it is. But women of all races do ridiculous things to our hair to conform to some ideal of beauty. Let's face it.

Well, I'm not going to go into THAT rant. I just want lighter hair for my trip. Ain't no sin. Ain't no sin at all.

And that's about the biggest thing on my mind tonight. I've been thinking about Keith Richards all day long. It's Brad Pitt's birthday too! He's forty-eight. And Stephen Spielberg's as well. He is sixty-five. My, my. December 18 must be a fortuitous day on which to be born.

All right. I'm going to go make ground-venison meatloaf and bake some potatoes. Sounds like a fine cold-night dinner to me. Mr. Moon just cut all his hair off and he looks like a different man and so I'll be dining with a stranger. Not really. He's so handsome. A guwt-lookin' man, as we sometimes say around here in Lloyd where driving home tonight I saw folks standing out and talking in their yards, saw the sun crazy-beautiful in the west, saw orange leaves shining like copper and gold in the setting sun as I drove that curvy black-ribbon road to where I live, to where the chickens were pecking their last morsels before bed, to where home is, to this place I love to call home.