There is no other place I would like to be than home for the holidays. After my 6:20am flight out of New Orleans was cancelled yesterday due to the Nor'Easter which dumped record levels of snow up the east coast, I finally arrived home this morning. My parents did an amazing job with decorating the house with all of our jovial christmas decor. I usually like to be a part of the "decking the halls" tradition, but because I was arriving only three days before Christmas, I preferred to arrive home to an already joyful house. The tree is one of the best one's we've had in years, the nutcrackers are proped in their cordially bellicose stance, the porcelin carolers are caroling and the candles are all lighted. My mom surprised me by putting colored christmas lights around the two pillars in my room. In the four years we've lived in this house she has never done that; I guess she really missed me.
Besides hugging my parents and going to the bathroom, the first thing I did when I got home was put mulling spices on the stove--cinnamon, cloves, allspice berries with pieces of orange peel simmered in water--in order to heighten the holiday ambiance. I find it tough to get in the holiday spirit when I'm travelling in a van for hundreds of miles a day far, far, far away from your family. My holiday spirit is slowly gaining momentum now that I am home and by Christmas it should be fully restored.
There is something unromantic about opening up a bottle of wine without having to uncork it. Truth be told, unless you're drinking wine out of a box, the corkless bottle is not a quality demarcation. The only reason a cork is necessary is if you are planning on aging the bottle of wine properly. With that said, the deep plum hued liquid has a bouquette of dark fruits (mulberries, plums, blueberries and raspberries), spicy licorice and earthy notes. Upon touching the tounge, the palate is inundated with more dark fruits, cedar, smoke and pepper with medium tannic qualities and a lingering finish.
My 6:01 AM wake up call turned into a willingly painless 5:20AM awakening. The night before tour always provides a troublesome sleep for a hopeful sleeper. Pre-tour sleep looks something like this: The sheets become gnarled with my sleepless body's frustration as I weave in and out of consciousness as an ungraceful seamstress might with her cumbersome needle and thread. I couldn’t stop thinking about exceeding the 50-lb luggage weight limit imposed on checked baggage. The consequences of such extravagant, overindulgent packing would serve up a $50-$100 sentence. With the extra allocated time this morning, I unpacked much of the contents and condensed my suitcase to assure I wouldn’t exceed the quota.
I was unexpectedly abounded by a morning energy that I would assume was summoned by the zealousness of this tour’s initiation. Now as I sit in row 17A, Washington DC bound, I find my eyes starting to appear slightly glassy with an early afternoon fatigue—redbull? A must.
Airplanes are like time capsules. The passengers float in their own little worlds suspended above the hustle and bustle of the city—the tranquility of the countryside. As they are transported through time and space, on the ground life continues, awaiting for the plane to land, the cabin doors to open and for the passengers to rejoin life.
- Carve a pumpkin with a loved one.
- Take a long walk through the woods and take note of your Five Senses while doing so.
- Go to your local cafe and get a chider (1/2 apple cider 1/2 chai tea) and walk through downtown--holding hands with your significant other adds bonus points.
- Bake a loaf of either pumpkin bread, cinnamon bread or carrot bread. Eating it in one sitting also gives you bonus points.
- Enjoy a lingering morning with a pot of coffee, your favorite breakfast food (maybe even a piece of that fly-ass spice bread you just baked up *hint, hint*), a book and a blanket (or a snuggie if that's what you prefer).
- Wear boots, jeans, a bad ass jacket (or a blazer) and a scarf.
- Do something creative using Autumn as your inspiration. Ex: Write a poem about Autumn. Paint a picture of an Autumnal scene. Write an Autumn song. On your long walk through the woods take a plethora of Autumn photographs (black and white in my book will give you more bonus points).
Folie a Deux
Time will inevitably explain the paths we choose and the reasons behind the paths we choose. The many different paths we're enabled to walk upon are placed in front of us and it is up to the beholder to choose.
Vitner's Collection Chardonnay.
It's the first white wine I have reviewed in this blog. Another delicious Sonoma wine. I put my lips to the crystal glass and the golden liquid licked my lips and allowed its tropical perfume to kiss me. I smiled. I had some grilled Cod in front of me, and its tropical bouquet of pineapple, guava, and even a hint of summer peaches paired beautifully. Toasty oak and vanilla also titillated the palate. It pairs great with grilled seafood, pork and chicken.
"When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it."- Paolo Coelho.
So it's true. When you decide with your heart and soul that you want something, not just "I would like this/ I would like that" but truly yearning, excruciatingly so, the Universe begins to feel your torturous desire. The Universe works in your favor; it formulates on your side, pushing Chance out the door and introducing Promise to machinate your success and fulfill your seemingly unquenchable thirst. How much do you need to want something for the Universe to separate you from the slovenly? Imagine yourself in a vast desert where all that meets the eye is the insurmountable and unfathomable amount of blistering grains of sand liquefying themselves and becoming one with soles of your naked feet. Imagine further your cracked, sun licked lips and your dessicated tongue. True desire is the need for a glass of water in this situation. It's what you need. You will do anything in your power to obtain this glass of water so the Universe conspires with you; in this situation being lazy will not get you what you want, just as in life.
However, it would be unthinkable to assume the Universe would align things in your favor without you putting in the work as well. This is where the line is drawn between those who obtain the extra Universal push verses those who don't. The slovenly, those who place their cards in the hands of Fate without so much leaving their homes, should not see their desires fulfilled. There are some people like that. Those who sit back and wait for everything to happen. However, then their are others where it's not so much indolence but more so the paralyzing fear of achieving what it is they really want. They may want something so strongly, such as that glass of water in the desert, but they're afraid to make the initial move to set the Universe in motion. They're afraid of taking chances, they postpone decision making, their best friend takes form in the excuses they make to postpone their future. They're afraid that the door they want to open now could inevitably lead to other doors in which behind some of those doors suffering could possibly loom. But the heart should know that the anxiety of suffering is far more intense than the actual suffering and should by no means keep one from achieving their wish. It takes feeling to understand what it is you want, but it takes courage to set the Universe in positive motion.
From the Sonoma county of California, this 2003 Deerfield blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Sangiovese, and Malbec leaves the mouth with nothing more to desire than this passionate briary wine. This wine blend creates for a complex and multifaceted bouquet with great body and long fluid legs. Overflowing with dark blackberry fruits and scents of cedar, the wine lingers on your tounge with its peppery finish.
One of the many books I have read recently (and I honestly forget which book it was, I have read many) suggested that perhaps we has individuals have been around this world before. That we have seen, lived and been apart of other lives before, and that within these lives we have picked up the skills, knowledge, and experience that we currently know and possess.
This plausible dogma of being a soul from a previous life made me think a little further. The first question it made me ponder was, "Have I have met someone before that from first sight, from first handshake, from first motion of greeting I was able to act my complete self"? I answered, with certainty and haste, "Yes". I'm not just describing how one acts with one's friends, I mean how one acts with one's mother. I don't know about you, but at times I can be a somewhat reserved person. Not always. But I can sometimes throw up a barrier in between myself and an unfamiliar person. If I have to you, don't be offended, even some of my closest friends haven't seen me in my liveliest form. Mothers know and see all, which is why I suggested that you are at your most normal state in the company of your mother. They are the greatest eye witness to your behavior and Self.
It's an interesting proposition to think that perhaps if we've been around this world for lives beyond just this one, perhaps we've also fallen in love with the same person we are in love with now before in a previous life. Perhaps each life we live we fall in love with the same person. In each life that we become apart of again and again we would most presumably take on a new form, a new body, a new person. Perhaps the reason why many people say, in regards to finding love, "if it's meant to be, it's meant to be". Perhaps they say that because we already know our lover. Is it "meant to be, cause it's meant to be" because if we're lucky it's just a matter of time until we find them again. Is it possible that we go through years of our lives 15? 20? 30 years before we "reunite" with that lost soul? Is it possible that we get into year long relationships with others because we think that we have reunited with our true love and thus love them, until years down the road we have realized that, "nope, that isn't her" or "nope that isn't him"? Is this possible? Maybe. Is it false? Maybe. Is it true. Maybe. I'm not saying one way or another. Remember, I used to want to be a chef. This is just food for thought. Think about it.
2007 Altovinum Evodia Garnacha
100% Garnacha (Grenache) from the Northern Spanish village of Atea.
With a beautiful inky-purple hue, this red wine is bold in aroma. Its bouquet is bursting smoothly with ripe berries, baking spices and a peppery finish. I am no professional wine connoisseur, but I'm pretty sure I even discovered a hint of peach to round out it's flavor.
I have found, and continue to find that Spanish wines in the $10-12 price range prove to be of remarkable value. This is not a wine to miss. With my amateur wine consumption, I try to always purchase a different wine, never sampling the same wine twice to allow for the greatest expansion of my palate. With this wine in particular, I may have to make an exception.
Why when people get new phone we insist on announcing to the world through social networking sites that "our new iPhone needs numbers", instead of merely saying, "my phone broke, got another one, may I have your number?" It's our ego's thirst for worth. It's this ancillary information, such as the labeling of our "new iPhone" that makes it seem that many of us are not living for ourselves but rather through the eyes of another. Doing flamboyant things to attract attention merely because the life we live isn't enough for ourselves. Those of us who hunger for attention through ostentatious demonstrations sacrifice their true being in hopes of gaining a feigned sense of self value. To gain self value, self worth, self respect is to live in the shoes of yourself, to see through your eyes rather than imagining your reflection in the eyes of another. When we live life for the sole purpose of the Self, that is when we start living.
Anything that provides us an imperfect comfort is a mere means to distract and deceive us from achieving what it is we really want for ourselves. We are disillusioned in believing that what we have currently is sufficient enough. Brainwashed. One may pick a particular comfortable career out of fear that the true career he wants he isn't worthy of, the career isn't attainable, or too much effort is required to make such a change. He is more comfortable with a more assured, fundamental path. Comfort does not mean joy. Comfort could be a word which we use to make ourselves feel content.
Person one: "Are you Happy?"
Person two: "...I'm comfortable."
Comfort thrives on simplicity. Simplicity is defaced in the hands of a challenge—anything that has a prospect of impeding us. Should you stay or should you leave? Comfort would have you stay as leaving requires stepping out of your gate of placidity. I would assume that most of us truly want to live that "perfect" life. So, wouldn’t it make sense then that the desire for such perfection would push us along out of a discontented comfort allowing us to attain the closest proximity of joy and happiness--perfection? One would think. However, there is a force called Resistance which sinuously wraps itself and aims to constrict us and crush our fantasy of such a lively perfection. Resistance is the counterforce of ambition and drive. While ambition and drive are positive in their power, Resistance acts upon negativity. Like a force of gravity, it brings us down. Like sprinting against the wind, it pushes back; only the strong persist and defeat this opposition to reach the life that’s waiting for them on the other side of such an obstruction. We all have the power for happiness. We just have to fight for it.
We wake. We live. We sleep. A circuitous motion. Day after day. Four seasons change and if we're lucky, we still wake, live and sleep. Within these moments of consciousness there is a multitude of people who use their livelihood to seek perfection. What is perfection? The absence of a mistake obviously. But what is a mistake? A flawed form. In many forms of art what some might deem a mistake by one, is often written off in a lauditory critique of "soulfulness"; “brilliance”. In singing? A note gone slightly flat--that's blues, baby. A sung note cracking at the seams from ravaged vocal cords--soul. A grisly and gravelly timbre--vast in soulfulness, representing the scars carved into one’s Self. In painting different brush strokes could be seen as less then perfect. Take the Van Goghian characteristic of impressionistic strokes for example. While some disapprove of such flawed and nonrepresentational figures--many see it as beautifully abstract, soulful. Imperfection is perfection in the arts.
In my dream I was traveling in a lithe, agile, and stealthy built submarine. The color of this vehicle was unknown and thus unimportant. It was spacious yet claustrophobic, darkly lit, yet the interior was relatively plush and thus hospitable. I was traveling with two or three other individuals; there faces were blurred, unrecognizable and thus seemingly irrelevant. I recall having a dislike for the running water that was provided inside this sea vessel—it was rather bitter, almost lemony but far more acidic and crude to the human palate…at least to mine. In fact I remember when we surfaced our vessel in a port I would buy mass amounts of water bottles and store them in my pockets to assure myself that I wouldn’t have to imbibe this alkaline liquid (perhaps this was based on watching Lost only a few hours before tucking myself into bed).
To my analysis, the importance of this dream was not the magnitude of the details. So what is such a dream doing creeping inside the depths of my sub-conscious. Perhaps trying to analyze the depths, angles and shades of a dream is an inane and inconsequential objective. Or perhaps it can give one a further sense of their multifaceted mind. So I dug through some dream archives online to discover a relevant breakdown. I took those breakdowns and added in my own interpretations to maximize on an accurate analysis. Perhaps my desire to write this and do the research is merely me resisting doing my REAL work—but that will be a discussion at a later time.
A submarine as we know is a powerful sea vessel which propels itself through large, deep bodies of water—in the dream world, large bodies of water such as oceans, lakes, and seas are often noted to express that of the unconscious or the unknown. The submarine could be symbolizing the way I am navigating or chartering territory through the unknown (life)—whether this is relating to my music, creativity, love, or a real broad sense of the direction of my future. A particular analyis suggested that the strength and aggressiveness of the propelling vessel could suggest that I am feeling “strong and prepared to aggressively deal with concerns and emotional issues” that are to be dealt with within my life. The future is unknown much like the symbol of water suggests. We aren’t clairvoyant and each step we take forward on our journey we must take with care—keep in mind that taking steps impetuously does not mean that you aren’t carefully taking these steps. In the past blog it merely means that you are listening to your heart over mind. I will say, right before I woke up, the submarine was not sinking. We were making our way for higher ground. We were rising.