Tuesday, October 03, 2006

A tribute to my senses.

Today is one of those days that makes being here worth it.

Woke up this morning just like any other morning. Telling myself how to get rid of that anxiety that I wake up with every day by saying that I will make today better than yesterday.

Well, today, unlike most days, I actually did it and it is only 12:47.

So I got up and took a business call. Was anxious, but it went way better than expected. I didn’t meditate as I had intended, but instead decided to go forage in the kitchen.

I pulled out the package of bacon and fried it up in a pan. Decided that toast with strawberry preserves sounded delightful, only to find out that the vehicle for the jam was growing penicillin. Then I remembered that in one of my more anal homemaker moments, I had frozen baguettes in little serving sizes precisely for moments like this. So I chucked a freezer-burned baguette in my favorite gadget, the toaster oven, and proceeded to flip the bacon and boil the water for my coffee.

I made the entire package of bacon because I thought that it might lure my room mate out of her room. Things have been kind of tense around the house since we had our first blow out a few days back. I began to smell the wonderful crispy bacony goodness when I heard a girly voice say, “bacon?” so it worked. She came into the kitchen and picked up a piece, exchanged a few words, and just like that, over a strip of charred pork fat, the feud was over.

I finished the wonderful breakfast and appreciated the sweet silkyness of the strawberry jam. Strawberries cooked up with some sugar and pectin. So simple. Yum. Then I decided to be bold and ask the room mate through IM if she would hit some balls with me. She graciously turned me down and I didn’t take it personally.

So I decided to schlep over to Golden Gate park and hit some balls by myself. It is a beautiful day to be out. So I don’t know how I am going to pay my rent next month or anything else for that matter. I don’t care. I was happy to be outside. I arrive the court arrange my stuff and start to hit balls. I blamed the cheap balls for my poor performance, but didn’t let it stop me. After hitting about 20 balls outside of the court and into the vastness of the park, I decided to change sides where there were less holes in the fence for my balls to fly through.

I had been hitting poorly when a 90 year old guy entered the court from the left holding a ball that I had hit over the fence. He brought it to me and then proceeded to pull out his own racket and balls and set up ball-hitting-shop right next to me. On MY wall.

Ok, this new zoning development would force me to hit the ball in a limited area, which required more skill than I thought I had. I began to hit and to my very fat surprise, not that I am fat, just the surprise, I began to hit with a beautiful stroke. The stroke that my friend has been trying so hard to teach me. Yes, siree, I was hitting every ball with Federer precision and I hoped that everyone in the neighboring courts was catching a glimpse at my beautiful form. I am sure I didn’t look as good as I thought I looked.

Meanwhile, to my right, stood the really old guy who hit one ball to my 10. I wondered if he had been a huge tennis star in his youth. So he hit and I hit and I looked over at him occasionally and felt so grateful to be outside on a beautiful day like today and next to a really old guy who could just as well be on an IV in some convalescent home.

So it was time to go. I walked up to him and yelled..
"hi, do you come here on Tuesdays?", And he said that he was there all the time, but that he couldn’t play tennis anymore because he had a balance problem. I asked if he could hit with me sometime and in his red baseball cap and brown polyester shirt and pants said, “if you see me then come up and we can play.” His name was Mac.

So me and my sweaty pony tail decided to high-tail it out of there, but not before I made a pit stop at the Conservatory of Flowers. Today was the first Tuesday of the month, so it was free. The scene was out of a movie. Blue skies, people on bicycles. A cool wind blowing through the wet hair above my neck. An old asian couple doing Tai Chi in the park. The smell of trees, grass and of my own sweat. Not gross, just real.