A few weeks ago, I took a day trip with my aunt and uncle up to Greenville, Maine. We drove around and had lunch near the lake at a place called the Stress Free Moose. We entered the restaurant and the bar was packed with people. On a Tuesday afternoon! We ate outside and people-watched as people and families walk in and out of the bar. Our server was a natural comedian and made us laugh throughout the meal. I had a BLT with avocado. My aunt killed a bee that landed on the table while I ran away. Afterwards, we drove around the lake and marveled at the spectacular views of Maine in early fall.
Late September, early fall, crisp in the air. Center Pond, Maine, late-afternoon. I sit by the lake with a jacket and boots on, kindle in my hand. The leaves across the way are changing. The slight breeze in the air drops the temperature, but the sun blaring in my eyes allows some warmth to stay. This is my happy place. This is where I’ve been waiting two years to be. I’m here once again. I’ve never heard quiet so loud. I could hear a leaf fall feet away from me. I read a few chapters of one book before switching to another. This is the perfect reading place.
I never realized how quiet plane rides are until recently. I took an early morning flight last Saturday. The plane wasn’t full. All the passengers were told to spread out. I sat by a window and pulled down the shade. A woman sat by the aisle, leaving the middle seat free. I spent the two hour flight drifting in and out of sleep. There was turbulence but I was too tired to worry. The plane jerked around. My body remained in a zen state when awake. My mind didn’t register the movement as alarming, just a normal part of flying up high. The quiet plane ride was a reminder that life doesn’t always have to be go-go-go. Disconnected from the world and my phone, I could sit with my thoughts in peace.
The sun sets behind the mountains. Blue clouds linger before fading into the darkness. The house across the street has its lights on. It doesn’t look real. It looks like a house on a stage or on a set of a show. I see no people in the windows, maybe that’s why it looks out of place. I shift my head to one side, cross my arms and wait. Wait for life to pop up or a light to turn off, any sign that life exists inside those walls. No one comes to wake me from the play forming in my head, People dancing through rooms, laughing, yelling, and loving. Never fully understanding each other living with a little bit of resentment, a dynamic that plays in my head often. I snap out of my daydream and take a photo with my phone, To remember this sunset, to remember this peculiar feeling formed from an offset image.
The other day, I walked around Sunset Cliffs and people-watched. Here are some of the thoughts I had while I was there.
These people on the rocks were jumping in then somehow getting back up on the rocks. I wouldn’t jump in but I watched in awe from afar at those who felt brave enough to try. Everyone I saw jump in the water successfully made it back up.
Walking down here requires a trust in one’s own balance. I do not have that trust,
The people far out on those rocks looked like they were having a good time. I was worried they would slip. But the path to get down there was really steep so it seemed like they willing to take that risk.
People watching a sail boat in the distance while hanging their feet off the edge.
Talking to chickens like they are people. Asking a neighbor to help deal with a bee. Flinging bees out of a pool, hoping they're dead. Sitting on the deck with a tea and a book. Cloudy days. Weekends Saturday smoothies. Marks on my cheeks from face masks. FaceTiming with friends. FaceTiming with my cat. FaceTiming with my mom and dad. Missing my cat. Reading books. Giving up on books. Realizing rereading some books takes away the magic I felt when I read them for the first time. Falling asleep to the sound of Netflix or Friends. Watching film and tv shows about women writers who could be gay in the 1800s. Buying more crystals. Browsing bookstores, leaving empty-handed. Blocking Instagram. Having an idea. Writing it down. Not writing it down. Watching YouTube instead. Writing poetry. Submitting poetry. Enjoying my own company. Remembering to drink water. Remembering to wear sunscreen. Remembering to reapply sunscreen. Taking a different highway home. Driving down roads with palm tress on both sides never gets old.
- New Yorker – Sally Rooney on Labor and Desire
- This tweet from Sparknotes that transported me back to English class in high school.
- Demi Lovato’s interview with Jojo Siwa
- Kate Beckinsale’s conversation on Armchair Expert
- Good Trade – I Just Need To Stop Saying “Just”…Right?
- This adorable photo of a kitten.
- Ashley C. Ford’s Powerful Memoir, Somebody’s Daughter
- USA Today – How we have failed Millie Bobby Brown
- Ed Vebell, 1950’s.
- In case you need to hear it tonight: