19 December 2012

full sail ahead

A week from tomorrow The Southern Gentleman arrives.

A week.


The house is in a shambles. The kitchen cabinets are in but I am desperately awaiting the counter top installation. I never knew how very much I would miss water and a sink. But - on a side note - I now have amazingly beautiful new kitchen cabinets!

I need to say something to The Southern Gentleman while he is here. Living this life in limbo patiently waiting for him is stifling me. Quite frankly, I can no longer give him that power over me.

The chemistry between us has always been amazing. Nothing I have ever shared with another man. But I worry that I compare every man I encounter to him. Hence the need to finally push the issue... to free myself regardless the outcome.

The Southern Gentleman always swoops in for a few days, we each get our taste of sublime togetherness bliss, then he promptly drops off the radar as the feelings are too intense for him.

It is coming up on 8 years that we have both been single. Almost 13 years that we first met. I still remember the chemistry from our first meeting in May 2000. Somehow I can say that the initial spark still hasn't diminished for either of us. All this time, so many years, spouses, girlfriends, boyfriends... and "us" still feels new and alive with potential.

Maybe it is a case of wanting what I cannot have. Maybe while he is in my bed and I whisper that he confuses me. At that moment, decisions will be made by words or the lack thereof. But I need to free myself even if he chooses never to go down that path. No matter what, the bedtime whispers will happen and I will set my course accordingly.

27 November 2012

a holiday to see old faithful

Guess who has reappeared?! 

The Southern Gentleman.

A few months ago, he started calling a bit. I ignored the calls as I am very tired of this merry-go-round. A post card here and there. A birthday card that I found insulting but in dumb man world he believed it "witty". The birthday card contained another hint about a trip to Denver to see me. The card also contained many other clues that made it clear that The Southern Gentleman needs his ego bolstered by "Old Faithful" - that's my new name for myself in this situation; only thing is I am done with being Old Faithful. 

Whether it is a geyser or a dog, I am done (and have been for quite some time now) with being the fall-back chick in his world, the girl he can always count on to be there when the chips are down. He no longer gets all the benefits, while he doesn't reciprocate. I go back to this spring when I had the opportunity to work in practically his backyard and he was an utterly indifferent arse about the prospect. 

So when I returned his Thanksgiving Day call on  Friday, The Southern Gentleman eased into end of the year holiday talk. I happily let him flounder for awhile with talk of Vegas and Santa Fe, then I said the words he had been fishing for: you know, you are always welcome here. 

With those words, The Southern Gentleman's pent up ideas and plans came spewing forth at lightening speed. Needless to say, he purchased his ticket early the next morning and immediately forwarded the itinerary. Sunday was a phone call to make sure I received the air itinerary along with talk of what we can do while he is here. 

After listening to one too many episodes of Sex and the City this weekend while painting (that is a whole other story for another day), my dim little light bulb flickered on. The Southern Gentleman and I are Mr. Big and Carrie. The years and years of Big and Carrie's roller coaster relationship sounded acutely familiar. Big can be with whomever he wants but wants to keep Carrie to himself rang through my being as I realized this is us. The only differences are neither of us is as vocal about "our relationship" and we've never had sex. 

The Southern Gentleman has been looming in my universe for 12 years with the last 7 of those years having both of us single at the same time. After years of skirting around "us", I think in my nicest southern way I am finally going to broach the topic because regardless of the outcome Old Faithful needs to get off our merry-go-round ride. 

26 November 2012

when you're having fun


That is the only way I can describe the month of November. Feels like only yesterday it was Halloween and I was anticipating my birthday with great joy... and poof! now the month is virtually over. 

I spent my birthday in Austin surrounded by my wonderful friends. It was truly special. You see, the past three years I haven't celebrated my birthday. Two and three years ago, I was abroad in some exotic land for my birthday. Last year, Lulu was fighting bravely against cancer, so all I wanted was to spend every moment with her, my birthday forgotten because my love for Lulu was so greater. And so to get off the plane and head directly to a group of people who love me for who I am (flaws and all) made my 38th birthday amazing.

I still look at that number, 38, not realizing it is affixed to me now. Knocking on 40's door step. Thinking back to a time when I thought 40 was "old". I certainly don't physically feel old and remind myself regularly that I just ran a half marathon. I look at how much I blossomed in Austin and feel that I am finally comfortable in my skin, so the only was I can go is up! 

I cried a lot around my birthday too. Not for myself but because my dear Lulu left this earth just six days after my birthday last year. My poor darling baby girl. I still miss her so very much. I travel back in time to those roller coaster months and I find myself in awe. If I ever doubted the existence of God, those three months taught me more about the spiritual world than I ever believed possible. 

Now I try to focus on all the wonderful memories of Lulu. To be thankful every day that I had that beautiful little hound girl in my life for over eight years. Remembering the unwavering love we shared. 

While November has moved rapidly, it has been filled with goodness and healing. 

30 October 2012

not the only one

The Halloween party was fun. Rather intimidating walking into a room full of people I hardly know dressed in my Jersey Shore Jwoww finery; being eyeballed by strangers is not something I tolerate well. However upon immediately spying a friend, I breathed a sigh of relief and she did too.

Met a few friendly people as the night wore on. In fact, two of which have true friend prospects. I need to make sure that I nurture those connections. 

Another gal was there who didn't know anyone. We met her upon her arrival, greeted her and spoke with her at length. Later in the evening she came up to me and reported that my friend and I were the only friendly people she met. She was a non-threatening plain Jane, the polar opposite of me, and even she could not easily break through the various cliques. At least my physical appearance was not my sole enemy; these people just aren't friendly. A revelation that has helped my psyche immensely. 

My costume turned out fabulous! My hot pink skin tight dress. My dark self-tanner stained skin. The obnoxious fake tattoo. Hooker heels. Make up. I was quite proud of myself. 

24 October 2012

as the world turns

Life has been rather full throttle here at sleepy suburbia cottage land.

Hence a few bullet points to catch up:
  • Mr. Manners is no more. He went away and I was gone upon his arrival back. Few text messages exchanged but all Mr. Manners' previous positive follow-through fell off. 
  • Went on a few trips to Atlanta. Saw Super Dad, who proceeded to act like an immature 16 year old as opposed to the 50-something grown man that he is. I am not up for being on the receiving end of his punishment. Case closed.
  • Did not train for half marathon while in Atlanta (unless walking the aisles at Trader Joe's counts).
  • Got fairly sick upon return from Atlanta. Out of commission for nearly two weeks; meanwhile the half marathon rapidly approaches. 
  • Decide to give okcupid a try. Not holding my breath but attempting. After all, it's free.
  • Survived the first snow fall. Yes, there was lots of cursing as Austin was in the 80s during that time.
  • Successfully ran a 5k every day the week of the half marathon. 
  • Procured snappy race outfit as I knew my typical gear would not suffice in San Francisco.
  • Suffered massive stroke the morning I was due to head out to San Fran when the airline called informing me that my evening flight had been cancelled. Luckily, I was able to out earlier that same day. Massive stroke immediately adverted and rewarded with wine.
  • Had a grand time carb loading even though my body thoroughly revolted by desperately holding on to each and every carb.
  • Enjoyed spending time with both of my bestest gay friends. Made some new wonderful gay friends and fell madly in love with a three pound short hair chocolate brown chihuahua.
  • Ran my very first half marathon ever. I finished strong. I am beyond proud of myself.
  • Spent the weekend in Austin. Made me feel very home sick this time. 
  • Still trying to learn new job. Frustrated with myself but have to stop being so hard on me. 
  • Met an okcupid date. He had previously neglected to mention that he was separated. Homie don't play that. 
  • Trying to branch out and make new friends. Tough to do out here where people are not very open or friendly. Especially since I am used to everyone in Austin being the polar opposite.
  • Getting ready for Halloween. The costume party won't be like Austin but I will be dressed up any way. 
  • Hoping things calm down a bit so I can continue settling in out here in the frozen tundra.

23 August 2012

grill on

Monday night has long passed and I still find myself in a rather dizzy place. The electricity between us is crazy. From the moment Mr. Manners and I first locked eyes that special instantaneous feeling, inkling I've only ever felt with The Southern Gentleman made its presence very much known, teetering on palpable. 

When he arrived at my threshold, Mr. Manners was dressed casual chic in his jeans and button down with flip flops and aviators. Oh the man can dress. I asked if he'd like a glass of wine before heading off to the store. He immediately said yes as he'd had a crazy day. Following me into the kitchen, Mr. Manners commented that he could see why I wanted to remodel my kitchen. We talked through my plans as the wine opened. I then took him on the grand tour of the house. 

We settled on the couch and he moved to be closer to me. Getting caught up on both of our busy weekends was fun. Off we went to the grocery store to pick up dinner. A few beef kabobs, chicken kabobs, green and red bell peppers, onion, avocados, and ice cream. The man opened the car door for me when we left the grocery. 

Back at my place, I peeled and prepped the avocados as a snack with a bit of sea salt sprinkled on top. He watched me intently. As I had suspected, this date contained several test elements for him. Of course, my poor little single gal's grill was a bit of a disappointment to him as there is no top rack. We worked well together. I like that I don't feel forced to make an effort. Everything simply flows. At least for me, my days of "being on my best behavior" are over; my philosophy is here I am, no surprises, take me or leave me but I am going to just be me. Throughout dinner preparation, Mr. Manners could occasional come over and kiss me. Oh la la. 

We enjoyed dinner al fresco under the stars. Just as we finished, rain began to fall so we went inside where he sat close to me on the couch and we finished our wine. 

We talked about so much the entire evening and I honestly find it scary at how on par we are with each other. Too many of my must haves on my proverbial list have been marked off with Mr. Manners. I find myself conflicted - too early to be bouncing off the walls but trying to keep the harsh cynic contained. Yet another fine line to delicately walk. 

I walked him out to his car where we kissed on the sidewalk like teenagers with raging hormones. The look in his eyes was so sincere the entire evening.  

Afterwards, I spoke with a good friend and she stated that the fact he didn't try to get in my pants demonstrates that he really likes me. When I think about it, I don't remember a man not trying to get it on after one date. We giggled at yet another reason why he truly is Mr. Manners.

21 August 2012

oh! my! God!

Because I am so thoroughly excited, I cannot wait until morning.

Mr. Manners and I just finished date numero tres and oh, kiddos, another doozie.

And we were fully clothed!

He likes British television. He can cook. Loves his wine. He knows a Mercedes is called a Merc.

Honestly (thus far), Mr. Manners is everything I've ever dreamed for in a man. Kinda freaks me out to think that he was actually in my kitchen.

Only up from here, kids.  Only up.

Mas elaboration tomorrow. When I've had a chance to breathe.

16 August 2012

another fab date night

Last night. 

It was fabulous. 

Absolutely fabulous. 

I truly do like Mr. Manners. We have so much in common. Conversation is easy and fun. There is definitely a big bright spark between us. 

Of course, try as I might to be on time, I wasn't. Only about 15 minutes late and there he was sitting at the bar in a suit. Whoa, baby! Mr. Manners was quite the sight. Suit = hot. 

We quickly jumped in to getting caught up on our very eventful day. Oh, the way that man looks at me. Not in a gross sort of undressing me way; his gaze is intent as he takes in all the details. I have never had a man look at me like that before. I could get very used to it. 

As the evening progressed, we touched on some deep subjects. He is passionate about things and I find that so very refreshing. He has dimensions. Again, Mr. Manners was such a gentleman. 

At the end of the evening, he walked me to my car; putting his arm around me. Ah, bliss. Since I parked far away (due to being frazzled when I got there), I drove him back to his car. Oh, the man kissed me goodbye. Several times. Several times. 

Mr. Manners is busy making plans for future time together and I cannot wait. 

14 August 2012


Mr. Manners is living up to his moniker. He is so polite, respectful, courteous.

I saw that I missed two calls from Mr. Manners this evening and there was a voicemail waiting for me. Immediately (and wrongly) I assumed the worst: he is cancelling tomorrow night.

I listened to the message and was delighted that he was merely letting me know he may be a bit late tomorrow night. Nothing serious. Simply being a courteous man.

I called him back and got his voicemail but he called back shortly. We spoke for about a half hour about the fun and games we have going on during the day tomorrow before we meet up. Since August is really busy for both of us, Mr. Manners was already inquiring about my schedule for next week. Woo hoo!!

While I was already excited for tomorrow night, tonight's turn of events have me looking forward to 5 PM even more.

13 August 2012

suck it up

A weekend free of Mr. Manners contact and as such, I was a bit hesitant to contact him today (but way deep down, I knew I needed to). If there is one thing I have come to know about me, it is that I am not encouraging to the male species.

And so I sucked up my courage and sent Mr. Manners a text. Immediate response. Immediate. A little tip-toeing back and forth and then once again, sucked up more courage to press 'send' on "anything exciting this week?" The flood gates opened, with he has his guys trip coming up this weekend followed by "want to try and get together?"

Amen! Wednesday we are seeing each other again. We'll see how things go a second time. For once, I am actually excited. Now, what to wear?!

10 August 2012

i hope you dance

Let's play a bit of catch up...

Potential Suitor #2. He was even more of a pushy, stick-up-his-arse man than I anticipated. He didn't know how to play bingo but he sure knew how to point all the numbers out on my card. Irritated, oh yes I was indeed! He didn't even tell me he was leaving (I thought he was on another smoke break, which I wasn't too excited about anyway). I found a twenty folded in half under his water glass. Classy, kids, classy.

Now Potential Suitor #3 has been in the wings for awhile. We finally made a date to meet this past Wednesday. 

In the meantime, there was a Potential Suitor #4. He was all about text messages and not meeting. Seriously, a girl simply cannot waste that much energy on text messages. Grow a pair and let's meet. So, I haven't heard from him since Monday and I am okay with it. 

Back to Potential Suitor #3. Wednesday night was such a truly pleasant surprise. I psyched myself for one drink filled with graciousness and out the door. He was there when I arrived and when he motioned at me, I almost died because he was better looking in person (and his photos were nice already). He definitely drank me in and filled me in on his online switcho-changeo experiences, e.g., the person looks nothing like her photos. He was perceptive and inquired as to what perfume I was wearing. My obscure French perfume continues to work her magic on men. So we had a drink and split a dozen oysters and he asked if I'd like to join him for dinner. 

We had a lovely dinner at a steak place. Enjoyed wine, talked, laughed. I really did enjoy him. He was also very gentleman old school style. Not only did he open door, he made sure he walked on the traffic side of the sidewalk as we traversed downtown. He thought my slight Texas accent was cute. He walked me to my car, asking me to send him a quick text when I got home; he prefaced this request with "Now I know this is going to sound very old-fashioned but would you please,". And then kids, Mr. Manners kissed me. Oh baby! Oh baby! He said he wanted to see me again too and made that statement several times. 

I did send him a quick message when I got home. He immediately responded and reiterated that he wanted to arrange a second date. 

Yesterday, Mr. Manners sent me a message after work. We exchanged a few but no second date planned. 

Today I didn't hear from him. I should have sent him a message but I was on the fence all afternoon so I didn't.... don't want to appear too pushy. Dating is such a delicate dance. And I have two left feet. 

25 July 2012

the revolving door

Remember the date I was supposed to have with Potential Suitor #1 last night? Well, it didn't happen. Mid-morning I received an email from Potential Suitor #1 where he babbled on about a contemplative weekend complete with decision that he's not ready to date.

While I sent a brief but gracious response, I can read through the lines of reasons he gave me and boy, was it a sentence packed paragraph! The "it's not you, it's me" boils down to he met someone else over the weekend. No reason to sugar coat anything for this girl!

Tonight I am meeting Potential Suitor #2. I did not think he would be game to meet me in a predominantly gay bar but it was an event I was attending anyway. Much to my disbelief, Potential Suitor #2 agreed (quickly too) to meet me there. We'll see what the story is on this monkey. Honestly kids, I am not expecting much.

This will be a one-hit-wonder that I will be happy to have behind me. A cocktail and a pleasant nice-to-meet-you-but-no-thanks. 

Now to cultivate Potential Suitors # 3, #4, and #5!

22 July 2012

theatre nine

More tragedy for the Denver metro area. I don't know how it is outside of Denver, but the theatre shooting is always on television here.

So tragic, those 12 souls, the remaining physically injured, and the rest who lived (miraculously) through such horror. The power that one deranged mind can wield over so many lives. Especially as we know that this effects more than the souls in the theatre, it effects everyone who knows those who were in theatre 9 and beyond.

When Columbine occurred, I was working a project in Connecticut. I never watched anything related to 9/11 because we were consumed working that at the ranch; disaster response was paramount. Besides I knew enough people directly involved that I didn't need to get much closer because it was already too close for comfort. So to be here this time and under non-consumed circumstances makes the experience different.

The television continues to speak and I listen.

19 July 2012

date night recap

I had plenty of runway to get ready and somehow I still managed to be late meeting Potential Suitor #1.

He did an excellent job selecting our venue; reminded me a lot of Austin. As for looks, he was a bit different than his photos. Not good or bad, just a bit different seeing a person in 3-D. He was well dressed from his shirt to his shoes, because y'all know I eyeballed the man's footwear.

Conversation flowed very easily. He was upfront, straightforward, and sincere with me. We laughed a lot and any initial meeting awkwardness did not last long.

It was a wonderful change from my last dance down the internet dating lane. He wants to see me again and told me so last night as we parted ways and again in an email this morning.

And I am looking forward to a next time :-)

17 July 2012

a dress for every occassion

It was another jam packed weekend. Sadly with all the jam packedness, I still found ways to compare this place to Austin and to be reminded of everything this place is not. I know I shouldn't but I cannot help myself. Well, maybe the only thing that helped were those fried green tomatoes and fried okra. Clearly, I like my help deep fried and served with wine!

Tomorrow is my rendezvous with Potential Suitor #1. I have no idea what I am going to wear!? So many dresses, so many shoes. But what to wear? I hope inspiration will be overflowing tomorrow afternoon.

Potential Suitor #2 called again last night. I didn't hear the phone ring. Honest. When I listened to his voice message this morning, I was annoyed. I think Potential Suitor #2 believes he is being funny with his messages but he simply rubs me the wrong way. I should be giddy after listening to a message as opposed to the recoil I experience.

I sincerely hope I am not horribly disappointed tomorrow night.

12 July 2012


disbelief  [dis-bi-leef] 
1. the inability or refusal to believe or to accept something as true.
2. amazement; astonishment

This morning I still find myself in a state of disbelief regarding SuperDad's phone call. While the call itself was unexpected, his approach to the conversation and many of his statements simply blew me away as I never thought he, of all people, would be capable of forgiveness and compassion. 

He proudly shared with me that he's lost 40 pounds, going to quit smoking, physical health issues are nearly gone, selling his home, and getting his beach property. I was happy to hear things have turned around for him in the past seven months. He also shared he had been dating someone but broke it off once she wanted something more permanent. 

Then he said he missed me. That he thought we'd been good together. But he also realized that he hadn't made any effort to see me and he shouldn't have expected me to sit at home knitting every night waiting for something that wasn't happening. Then he said, "I just treat it like a dream." 

Never in a million years did I ever think I would hear anything remotely like that. Never.

But that doesn't change anything for me. Strangely enough, I have no desire to go back there. I simply don't want to go backwards. We can be friends just as we had been for some time, but nothing more than that. I genuinely like SuperDad and I do care about him but purely platonic.

11 July 2012

and hell froze over

Thanks to my little buddy Skype I had a notification that today was SuperDad's birthday.

I debated and then proceeded to send him a simple "wishing you a happy birthday" text.

Shortly thereafter, the phone rang.

The caller ID read: SuperDad.

We spoke for an hour.

I was not expecting that phone call at all.

In fact, I am still in shock.

radio silence

This is the part of attempting to date that I hate: radio silence.

Communication with Said Potential Suitor #1 has been daily. Yesterday, radio silence. He could be busy. He could be dead. But I don't like the fact that I am disappointed. Combined with frustration about another Potential Suitor #2, who feels like he is being difficult and an arse to boot and I am realizing why I retreat into my comfort zone of no-men-is-a-okay-by-me.

I go into that zone due to the frustration, perceived games, inconsistency. I feel I try to be genuine and honest, but get frustrated when I don't feel that in return. It is "feel" that is the operative word, right. My feelings are based on my perception. What if my perception is skewed? What if I give up too easily? Get frustrated too easily? I worry that I let my inner skeptic take control of the reins at the moment any perceived grievance is lodged.

Maybe the time has come for me to put my big girl panties on and not worry about all this. Not to pick things apart. Not to give away my power. Just roll with it. Yes, that will be my new mantra every time the skeptic tries to barge in.

10 July 2012


So you are eagerly awaiting the details of last night's big date, right?

Well, it did not happen. :(

Said Potential Suitor was struck ill; hence a reschedule for next week.

Yes, I was disappointed but some days shit happens. Potential Suitor was very apologetic and sincere, which was a nice change of pace.

Now to wait for next week's encounter...

06 July 2012

and you're not gonna reach my telephone

What a weird week with the holiday plopped right smack dab in the middle. While my pea brain tells me it is Friday, somehow it feels more like a Tuesday or Wednesday to me. Let's simply blame the altitude for it all, shall we?

Things continue on in the realm of internet dating. One guy has proven to be annoying with his texting me to tell me he is calling from his land line. At that time, I was out and away from the phone. He left a voice message; however, he proceeded to follow up shortly there after with a text asking if I was around. Seriously, if I had been around don't you think I would have picked up the phone. That behavior right there has totally turned me off.

I am meeting a man on Monday evening. He writes well, has a good sense of humor, or more accurately a sense of humor that aligns with mine. The banter has been quite fun and I have been surprised at how much I have enjoyed being creative while corresponding with him. Of course, the cynic in me is creeping around the corner because on Monday is he going to look anything like his photos or being anything like what he's presented?? Gotta take the plunge, right!

Here's hoping I have positive things to report to y'all on Tuesday!

27 June 2012

today's focus

Operation Clean Baby Clean continues, although I have  not made as much progress today as I'd like. Had a few phone calls throughout the day for the new client, so I was a bit scattered as I realized I know utterly nothing (at least that is how I feel). I totally realize a great deal of it is simply getting back into the game. Once I have the last vestiges of unpacking out of sight, I think I will feel more focused. At least that is the carrot I am dangling in front of my nose at the moment.

All unpacking and cleaning must be completed by Saturday as Cherry arrives on Sunday. The Cottage must look like a bona fide residence.

Dipped my toes back into the internet dating arena. Heart not completely in it but I know I have to start going out and meeting people, particularly men... because well, I haven't been on a proper date in some time. Namely the Super Dad and the Courier adventures don't count. Diversions and delusions do not equate to date.

Not feeling quite as grim today. Must figure out how to make this place work.

Off to finish some sorting so I can reward myself with a bath in my newly functional bath tub! Hooray!

26 June 2012

bodies in motion

Stating the obvious: MOVING SUCKS

Yesterday marked three weeks that I drove from Austin to Denver Suburban Hell. While completing a nearly 1,000 mile drive in one day is demanding enough, the subsequent unpacking, cleaning, sorting have been exhausting. 

The drive was tough but not because leaving at 4 AM is grueling. I have found the earlier I leave is better on the back end, especially when driving through Colorado wilderness that includes highway loving deer. Bambi scares me. I was amazed that I now know that drive cold. More so, I was shocked by how empty the car felt without Lulu. Lulu. My co-pilot, my navigator, my McDonald's hamburger eater. Our stops ate away at me. Our Abilene gas station with adjoining vet office. The Paducah gas station where Lu first learned that the imaginary wall between the front bucket seats and her back seat bench was in fact invisible; she'd stick her long slender nose at me from that day forward through the invisible wall. The Childress McDonald's where I get coffee, Lu gets a few hamburgers and we split fries (and on our last trip, she demanded she get out of the car to inspect the parking lot). Another area that required great investigation by Lulu was the dirt lot near the Love gas station in Boise City, where she damn near refused to get back into the car. Sorta makes me wonder if her bit of stubbornness and crankiness was due to the cancer's presence? Or simply because Lulu had finally found her voice and wasn't afraid to use it. The open roads were littered with memories of Lulu. I'll even admit a few times talking to her in back seat just because I was on coffee-induced autopilot. 

But I made it here. With a sad heart, a bit of hope for my new job at the ranch, and terrible allergies caused by a house full of dust and cardboard boxes. It is amazing the amount of dust that accumulates in an empty house. The miller moths and spiders have thrown millions of parties over the past five years as evidenced by the body count I have sucked up with my trusty canister vacuum. But I am getting close to done. Clean, sort, unpack, clean, ponder where this item should go, clean, ponder some more, unpack in the mean time, clean, clean, ugh! 

In fact, I have to get back to that as my first house guest arrives on Sunday! Yes, Cherry will be here on her drive back to Austin! 

29 May 2012

disappointment has a name

Within the confines of my current company, I had two choices: Southern Gentleman or exile.

I have struggled with this decision. Struggled greatly. Needless to say, everything moved into high gear when my 2-to-3 week prescribed (and typically longer) wait was trumped with a job offer last Friday. Interview on Tuesday. Job offer on Friday. My head is still swimming.

My choice of jobs - Work-from-home or Southern Gentleman-ville. A difficult choice. Career versus life/love. A phone call with the Southern Gentleman this morning made the answer very clear and simple.

I chose work-from-home. Better for my career path, and clearly from Southern Gentleman's lack of enthusiasm, the choice of choices. My career takes precedence over the Southern Gentleman's forgetfulness of telling me the distance to his city as opposed to extolling the distances of Asheville, Charlotte, and Atlanta. There was no "it would be great to see you more often"; no pleasantries afforded a platonic, casual friend. So easily, my career and long-term success takes the lead.

I did not press or cajole.I don't want to try to force the Southern Gentleman into anything. My days of bright-eyed, blind hope are dead; his jacked-up perception has closed our delicate dance.My months of clarity have obviously been confirmed with gigantic bold exclamation marks.

I chose reality and my happiness over trying to make someone else happy. It looks like I have learned a thing or two.

28 May 2012

how do you measure a year

March marked five years since my Austin odyssey began. Of course, I have been overly sentimental about the entire contract-coming-to-an-end ordeal. However, I look back at the past five years and I can't help but feel utter and pure awe.

I grew up in Austin. I grew up, learned who I am as well as who I am not. I tested my limits learning where I excel and where I have no business going. For the first time in my life, I made true friends. Friends I could call when Lulu drama was in full swing and those friends would drop everything to help me. Friends who picked up the pieces when I couldn't. Friends who tried. I also learned the difference between friend and frienemy. I learned what I was capable of. The depth of love and unwavering strength that dwells within me. I learned to conquer my fears, to be okay with me. I look in the mirror and I actually love who I see.

Life has changed a lot here as well. People changed, I changed. But the common denominator, if it existed, has made sure our bonds remained strong and intact. While I stay alone, others have married, had babies and yet as life changes radically, our common denominator has remained constant. Friendships growing and changing in a healthy way and oh, how that makes my heart sing!

Thank you, Austin. You gave me a home unlike any other. I found myself here. I learned about me and how wonderful my world truly is. Thank you for both the overflowing joy and the heartbreak that taught me about my capabilities and the capabilities of others. Love. Unconditional. Unbreakable. Pure. Thank you.

Whatever the future holds, I will be ready and able to handle it because Austin gave me the tools I need. 

26 May 2012

because john knows a thing or two...

“I have said that Texas is a state of mind, but I think it is more than that. It is a mystique closely approximating a religion. And this is true to the extent that people either passionately love Texas or passionately hate it and, as in other religions, few people dare to inspect it for fear of losing their bearings in mystery or paradox. But I think there will be little quarrel with my feeling that Texas is one thing. For all its enormous range of space, climate, and physical appearance, and for all the internal squabbles, contentions, and strivings, Texas has a tight cohesiveness perhaps stronger than any other section of America. Rich, poor, Panhandle, Gulf, city, country, Texas is the obsession, the proper study, and the passionate possession of all Texans.”
― John Steinbeck, Travels with Charley: In Search of America

25 May 2012

it's here

Reality hit me square in the face Wednesday evening.

The reality being that the mythical end of the month is here.

The end of May felt so far away and now my departure is imminent. 

My heart is sinking at leaving my friends. I decided I can remedy this by coming home for a long weekend once a quarter.

I am actually ok leaving my job assignment and the contract. My interview yesterday with the other company taking over the contract was terribly painful and I would never work for the man. An hour and half interview where the hiring manager grandstanded about himself and was rather condescending. Half way through, I found myself trying to figure out how to end the interview politely. I know he won't hire me as I have too much experience because he is interviewing people who don't have resumes. But I am glad I endured the "interview" because I have no regrets.

Then we have the other two interview I had this week where both hiring managers told me point-blank that I have a very impressive resume. I am rather excited at the thought of those two possibilities, even though each means leaving Austin.

Maybe it is time for new scenery. Maybe this will simply be a little break from Austin. Whatever it is, I hold tight to the intent that it will be for my higher good.

22 May 2012

yet another option

And today the Universe throws yet another wrench into my plans of Austin-stay-puttedness.

A random internal job interview for a gig in the Carolinas. Of all places, a job I didn't apply for but obviously a result of a VP contacted a long time ago. The Carolinas. The land of none other than the infamous Southern Gentleman.

Years ago, I would have KILLED for a Carolina assignment. Now, it is merely a thought providing pure entertainment value. In actuality the job itself was right up my alley and one of my top two right now.

This could get very interesting...

21 May 2012

where the day takes you

Some days the Universe absolutely amazes me.

Action is key, even if you don't realize you are doing the action that gets the ball rolling... as to keep the laws of motion, well, frankly in motion.

A leisurely glass of wine at the hotel reception tonight meant running into a run-in.

Said run-in resulted in a two hour conversation, which will most likely turn into an Austin based job.

The magic of Austin never ceases to amaze me. 

15 May 2012

the doctor is in


An hour and twenty minutes is an awful long time to be on the phone for a Southern Gentleman who proclaims he hates talking on said phone. 

But alas yet again, he yammered on and on and on. As if to be told I was his confidant regarding an email he received from his ex-wife. Well, don't I feel special? I listened, offered my insight, my ideas. What I should have done was sent him a bill for psychiatric services rendered.

At first I thought Southern  Gentleman's ex-wife's reaching out was the product of her spending some quality time with a shrink of her own. But as the tale continued to unfold, I really believe she is angling to get back with him. While Southern Gentleman told me he'd not entertain a reconciliation, I have my doubts. Serious doubts. 

I feel that we should place bets on the Southern Gentleman's future. I'm going all in on the following notion: ex-wife dumps current husband (the man she originally cheated with and dumped Southern Gentleman for) and gets back on the Southern Gentleman train in nine months time. 

As they say, time will tell, but I am certain I have a winning bet.

10 May 2012

another suitcase in another hall

Adjusting to hotel living has been difficult.

"Really?" you ask.

It is when you move from Stepford into a small studio hotel room with the complete knowledge that this is the end of the Austin road. Of course, the associated downsizing of clothes, shoes, and accessory options does not help my clothes horse heart. Limited choices has truly damped my heart.

No oven and two burners. My ability to cook has been robbed and I miss it. Powered eggs have replaced my organic, free-range brown eggs. Oven roasted vegetables are but a memory.  My days of clean, minimally processed eating are hampered.

I cannot run outside on the street as I am by a major shopping complex; crazy drivers are everywhere and I am very fond of living unmaimed. I tried a lesser road, but the sidewalk stopped half way through the route, so I had to trample through brush. I was leery because brush in Texas piques my great fear of snakes. As a result I have been reduced to learning how to run on the treadmill. I am coping with being attached to the machine, but I certainly do miss communing with nature on my outdoor runs.

On the plus side, I don't have to make coffee in the morning. I just put on some shorts and simply run down three flights of stairs to fetch my morning must. At least the coffee is strong. Sadly that is the only plus.

And another day on the countdown continues...

06 May 2012

the bus at a crossroads

Yesterday as I drove down the highway, I grew melancholy as I passed the exit for RR620. That particular exit, that particular road is where I took Lulu for her internal medicine doctor, the man who saved her life and gave us six more weeks together.

Upon being taken back, I started talking to my Lulu. Telling her how much I missed her. Specifically naming the things she did that I so dearly miss. Lulu sticking her head against my knees while I took my first morning pee. Her waking me up at 4 AM and on the weekends at 7 AM too; there was never any sleeping in with my happy snappy morning hound girl. Knocking her nose on the door to command me to open it. Those big beautiful eyes. Her huge loving heart. My baby girl.

A few exits down, I got off the highway to head back to the dreaded hotel. On the side of the road stopped was a greyhound bus. There in unmissable technicolor was a greyhound. A message from my little girl. Of course, I cried until I reached my destination. My girl remains with me.

05 May 2012

well i guess it would be nice

Tick tock. The days are flying by. I continue to live in denial. 

Well, that's not entirely true. 

I have seriously stepped up my bid to find a job down here. Attacking LinkedIn and actually completing my work history on there. Making sure everyone knows that I don't have my next assignment yet. Chatting up everyone I meet and inquiring about positions. Applying is my new middle name, Aggressively Applying.

My new vision is that I will return to Austin this fall. I will not be gone for long, unless some other completely undreamed up fantastic plan presents itself before then. Yes, I have gone from despair to openness. I have always landed exactly where I was meant to be. This time will be no different. As George Michael sang, " 'Cause I gotta have faith. "

18 April 2012

rejection at its finest

Yesterday I finally heard back from nouveau company.

A simple email stating my skills were not a good match.

Cue intense blood pressure spike.

So off the mark. The last interviewer didn't like me, plain and simple. He judged me on some other criteria but my skill set. To be blunt, my name is synonymous with the job I applied for. It is a unique role for which very few people can do it. The Life Sucking Vampire project proved I am elite in my field. The skill set excuse is not valid.

Upon receipt of the rejection, I did send a love note to nouveau company's HR director about the line crossing interview. I may not have gotten the job but the inappropriate interviewer has also been turned in.

At least I was not the only one side swiped by this man's poor decision making skills. There were a lot of angry people yesterday. But I do remain disappointed. I don't want to leave Austin; however, it appears the time has finally come. My heart is heavy at all the things I am going to miss down here. My life is here. 

11 April 2012

pins and needles

My third and final interview was two weeks ago Thursday. Since then, I have not heard a single word from nouveau company. Last Friday, I placed a call to them which has gone unanswered. Today, I gave up and sent an email inquiring if they are still interested. I am so tired of not knowing a single thing. Being kept in the dark may be good for mushrooms, but it is starting to break me.

We'll see what I hear back. The third interview did not go well as the interviewer took the conversation to unusual places. Overall, it was a stark contrast to the previous two. I know I am letting my doubt take over because honestly, they'd be silly not to want me. I have been patient long enough, so today I went with action.

09 April 2012


In ten days, my rental home will be packed, loaded onto a truck, and headed back to the Mile High City. Each day, my dread of the end here grows. I find myself concentrating and connecting with the little things that make Stepford special such as:

  • The geckos that I was once absolutely terrified of but now have a mutual understanding with as we coexist on this little piece of property.
  • The blue jays that spend an excessive amount of time in my yard. Those birds never fail to bring a smile to my face.
  • The hummingbirds who love the red plants in the side yard. I was disappointed when I realized I wouldn't see the hummingbirds before I left; however, this morning, I did see the long, slender hummingbird nectar hunting. It made my heart sing. 
  • The squirrels. Particularly the young squirrel with the thin bottle brush tail who loved playing with Lulu. His tail is unusual and I have watched him since he was a baby. He quickly learned to play with Lulu - more like taunt her so she'd chase him along the fence line. One time she actually tried to follow him up the oak tree - it was quite a sight, this long dog with ears at attention and long front legs stretched up the tree carefully balancing on her hind legs. Oh the routine those two had worked out. The little squirrel would come to the French doors so Lulu would see him and poof, let the fun begin. They both loved it. The little squirrel continues their routine, still flicking his tail toward the window as he hangs down from the tree and comes to the door a few times a week looking for his playmate. For a rodent, he is pretty brilliant. 

I have spent three years here at Stepford. I have never been one to get attached to a house, but Stepford is different. For all the fun I poke at Stepford, these brick walls and concrete floors have been my home and helped to form me, to heal me, to grow me. I never thought I would be this emotional. I remind myself of all the goodness that was born here, the wonderful memories that will sustain me.

29 March 2012

put your right foot in

Here's hoping that today's note from the universe goes down as some excellent foreshadowing....

It's been so long, Pats, I'm quite sure you've forgotten our secret handshake, haven't you?


How about our code for saying, "I love you"?


Then I doubt you'll recall my solemn promise to let you know once you began approaching exactly the right time and exactly the right place, with enough life lessons under your belt to enable you to finally stop struggling, start soaring, and begin living the life of your wildest dreams?

Well, if not, the following might not make much sense:

"You're getting hot! Steaming hot! Really HOT!! Ouch, you're so hot! Smoking, red-hot-chili-pepper, volcano, extremely, DOUBLE-HOT! HOT! HOT! NOW, Pats, NOW-W-W-W-W-W-W!"

I $l%o^v1e you,
    The Universe

28 March 2012

question and answer

Today I made it to the ranch before 7:30 AM. Quite a feat as I have been working from home in the mornings to avoid participating in rush hour traffic. Also, getting up in the dark is not one of my favorite activities. No, I am not a morning person. 

Tomorrow I have yet another interview with the prospective nouveau company. This will be interview nombre trios. While there is goodness swirling around with my name, I certainly hope this will be the final interview. I want the offer to be made, negotiated, and finalized. 

Change is scary. Leaving the ranch after fifteen years is going to be difficult. But by the same token, I will be going to a pond a fourth of the size of the ranch. A smaller pond where I can shine bigger and brighter. I am banking on it being a land of greater opportunity. 

I have learned so much over my tenure at the ranch. I am ready to leave the nest and finally soar.

26 March 2012


Tonight was the first episode for Oprah's new season of Lifeclass.

After watching the episode, realizations ring through Stepford tonight. Namely, the getting stuck in your story portion of the program. I saw myself when Iyanla spoke to a man about being stuck in his story. As she described the root of the problem, my sirens went off. The current story I am addicted to is Lola's death. Every painful inch from the moment Lola broke her leg until Lola drew her last breath. Lola's sickness, my care taking, the surrealism of the whole situation has become my story and I am addicted to it. Addicted to reliving the heart break, the sorrow, the triumphs, the strength, the sadness, the extremeness of it all.

I need to refocus the situation. But in the meantime, here in baby steps world, I just need to recognize and acknowledge my addiction to Lola's story. From there forward movement to the truth phase of this new perspective.

18 March 2012

don't cry for me, argentina

Oh kids! So much is going on and I am mentally/emotionally fried. I am so tired of living in limbo in EVERY aspect of my life.

My living situation, my physical location, my job, they are all in flux without any definitive answers yet. However, time keeps on moving forward. Hopefully next month, there will be more answers than questions.

Closing down two lives, starting a new one. It is such a tiring business being surrounded and breathing nothing but uncertainty.

Need to get back to preparing Stepford for house guests. Even in Stepford's final days, guests are pouring in. I am certainly looking forward to the arrival of much needed guests.

29 February 2012

winds of change (and rage)

With all the uncertainty swirling around in my life, I started getting anxious about my mountain place. You see, the mountain house served as a dumping ground for my grandmother's house contents. My mother was unable to make decisions (remember my mother is the same woman who shopped for a couch for THREE years; clearly decision making is not her forte) and get rid of my grandmother's things so to save my poor father's sanity, my house became the mega storage unit. 

The storage unit conversion occurred about three years ago. Hence, my panic set in knowing my stuff will be returning and there is already too much of other people's stuff in my casa. I was a girl on a mission so I booked a ticket to officially commence Operation Get The House Sorted. 

I arrived home to hurricane force winds but my trusty little Nissan Versa rental somehow made it through. I surveyed the damage and hoped my mother would be able to part with these things now. As "acting" chief foreman, my mother has been hell bent on having a garage sale to unload the discards. I hail from a different mindset and firmly believe in donating the items to a women's charity, the local Lupus charity is my favorite. Why waste all the time haggling over a quarter, losing a whole day sitting in the driveway, and then listen to my mother complain incessantly that "people want chicken for 50 cents". I'd much rather give because I am lucky to have so much (and take the tax receipt). Clearly in the end, I am the one who comes out ahead on several levels (karma, baby!). 

Five days home and I finally broke my mother down. She saw the light and agreed to donate rather than go through the garage sale charade. While I was happy, I know my poor father was ecstatic because he doesn't have to suffer through another one of her pointless follies. 

I also went through almost every inch of my house to retire items that no longer turned me on. But during this whole-house sorting extravaganza, I found myself getting very agitated and angry. The cause? Seeing all the items my ex-husband, The Leech left behind. I was mortified by how much anger surfaced. After all, it is 7 years since he moved out and I moved on. But, I was livid as I went through his junk and deposited it in the garbage as most of it was literally junk. I was not expecting any anger after all this time but there I was at times shaking with rage as I dealt with his junk. I am hoping the Great Leech Clean-out of 2012 was just as good for removing my lurking anger as it was for clearing the house of the last vestiges. 

My panicked trip was good. The house is several steps closer to being ready for dwelling again and hopefully I am a few steps closer to wholeness too. 

19 February 2012

checking in

Lots has been going on here in my little world. 

I made a trek up north to see one of my very dear friends who moved from Texas a little more than six months ago. I have missed her dearly and really needed to see her. We laughed so very much, ate, drank, and laughed some more. It felt so good. I truly needed that, even though I was frozen and had to deal with snow. 

Work is up in the air. I have to plan my move. Find a new job. Do I stay with my current company? Take a leap of faith and try a different company? Stay in Austin? Go back to Colorado? So many choices, so many decisions and a very short time line for it all. March/April is when it all happens. As in 6 to 8 weeks. Yikes! 

I haven't heard from The Courier nor have I contacted him. I have come to realize that The Courier served a very specialized purpose in my life at that moment. I needed to leave the pseudo-relationship I had with Super Dad; hence, The Courier runs through and shakes things up so I could get back on the correct path. Understanding The Courier's purpose from a higher level has completely changed my perspective. One day, if the opportunity presents itself, I will talk to him about it, but at the end of the day, my part is done. 

In the meantime, I am running again and maintaining clarity to make good decisions. 

15 January 2012


I have been back in the tailspin of extreme mourning. Yesterday marked two months to the day that my baby left. Sadly, it is not getting any easier. The floods of tears continue to roll down my face. I miss her.

06 January 2012


Haven't seen the Courier since Christmas day.

Yesterday many hours were spent texting. Vanilla stuff but hours upon hours.

Tonight a mutual friend (who has no idea of what has transpired) casually mentions the Courier has been dating a girl for almost a year now.


Talk among yourselves.