Tuesday, March 31, 2009


The other night, as I was lying in bed trying to fall asleep, my mind was going a million miles an hour. Finally, after bouncing from a dozen worries and twenty different subjects, I settled on direction. Oddly, this is a subject I often turn to when I'm trying to get to sleep. Don't ask me where this stems from. It's just a part of me. I like to know what direction I face when I sleep. I can tell you that when I sleep at home my head is facing south and my feet are facing north, when I'm at our usual campsite in Lake Powell my head is towards the northwest, in Ghana I was facing the northeast, and in London my head was facing south. As I was going through my sleeping-direction-checklist my thoughts finally slowed and lingered on London.

My whole life I have had a great sense of direction. Sometimes I call it my "sixth sense." From a young age I could name all the canyons of Lake Powell from Bullfrog to the San Juan, without a map. When my mom would take a group of kids out on the boat to play in the canyon I would have to tell her which way was back to the houseboat. When we go backpacking I can easily navigate to wherever I want to go. While travelling, I quickly, and automatically, orient myself to the layout of our location and the corresponding directions. It wasn't until after my graduation from high school, when my mom took my cousin and I to New York City for our senior trip, that I first experienced directional problems. For the life of me I could not gain a sense of direction. Usually I orient myself according to direction without a thought; however, when I was in New York City I had to work to understand cardinal directions and I failed miserably, finally chalking up the experience to our short visit and the confusion of travel. I thought I was rid of that confusion for good.

To my dismay, my directional problems surfaced once again, this time in London. When I arrived I immediately began orienting myself to the city, my home for the next four months. The Tube threw a wrench into the process. I would descend into the flat light, wander through twisted hallways, enter a train, get shaken up a bit, and then wander through some more twisted hallways before emerging back into the fresh air. I struggled with my directions, a great frustration to me, though I would not admit it unless forced. Multiple times I was the one to get a group turned around, something my friends forgave me for . . . after they received the free gelato. Eventually I was able to orient myself in the main areas of the city in relation to specific buildings, landmarks, etc. But don't ask me for cardinal directions. I don't know. Something about being in a big city, especially one with a constant cover of clouds to block the sun's direction, disorients me in a way that nothing else can.

All this passed through my mind as I drifted between consciousness and sleep, and suddenly it occured to me that I just discovered something that has been a part of me for so long that I have never considered the possibility of its abnormality. Do others care what direction they face when they sleep? Or is this a rare quirk?

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

New Model in Town

Check out my gorgeous cousin at: http://www.layersclothing.com/shop.php !!!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Ode to my Ski

My water ski is beckoning me.
One of the saddest days in the year is the day that the boat goes into winter storage. It is painful to take all the toys to the basement, knowing that I won’t see them for a while. But I can’t bear to part with my water ski. Instead of taking it to the basement with the rest of the toys, I clean it of the watermarks of summer, place it in it’s case, carry it up to my room and place it behind my door—where it is easily seen from all angles of my room when the door is closed. The first thing that I see in the morning, as I reach for my alarm, is my water ski. It is one of the last things I see before I fall asleep. Often, as I lie on my bed and stare at my ski, I update it on the weather. “Soon,” I tell my water ski now.

And we both escape to our happy place . . .
where the air is hot and dry and where the glass was made to be shattered.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Good Intentions and Harry Potter

I grew up in a home where Saturdays were considered "Holy." Saturday was the one day in the week, free of work and school, that we could play as a family. Chores and any homework we had was to be completed on Friday before we could play with friends. We rarely sleep in on Saturdays, instead we are up early and heading to the lake or ski resort to fit in every moment of play that we can. So it is rare for me to have empty Saturdays, something I dread. But this past weekend was one of those Saturdays. Nate and Avery had a two-day swim meet that would keep the family occupied so I determined that I would spend the extra time I had working on French.

School has never really been a challenge for me. True, I work very hard to understand what I'm learning and to get good grades, but it comes pretty easy. French, however, has thrown me for a loop. It has been a long semester of hard work and frustration with mediocre results but I am pleased that, so far, I am still passing the course. I have to keep reminding myself that one bad grade won't kill me . . .

So I had good intentions for the weekend. I watched Nate and Avery in their events on Friday night before picking up Cafe Rio for dinner and heading home to buckle down. (The rest of the family was attending the high school swim team banquet). I turned the TV on as I ate dinner and was pleased to discover that the first Harry Potter film was on ABC Family. However, Harry and Hogwarts made me forget all about my good intentions for the evening. Instead I found myself in the basement watching the second film when my family returned home.

The next morning I decided to try again . . . and I actually got a little work done. However, Hogwarts was calling. Needless to say, the family ended up watching all five movies last weekend. Do you see what happens when we don't get our skiing fix for the week? We turn into couch potatoes. So much for good intentions.