Tag Archives: party

Hopeful for the Holidays

I am not a strong person, nor am I a violent one – but if I were, this year would not stand a chance.  It just happens that I am a staunch believer in just punishment…so can one hang a year in effigy?  Give it a little Guy Fawkes taste?   Perhaps there is someone I can talk to about this.

So if I am so disgusted, why do I even bother celebrating the holidays this blighted year?  Because I must – to ignore the celebrations would be despair’s definitive high-five of victory.  The erasure of joy is the key that locks the door and, my friend, just guess which side of that door you’ll be on.

Therefore we must be happy.  Find a way to lift our spirits.  Secure a remedy for petty annoyances. No matter what, there is still so much to welcome and embrace.  For instance, I will be going to a holiday dinner tonight, and I fully intend on wearing my Christmas tree earrings – tannen-baubles – and getting spectacularly drunk.  You see, sometimes it is just the small things that can keep us hopeful.

Is anyone up for a group hug?  Let me know.

Happy holidays, my little ones.


I Lived. So I’ll Tell The Tale.

Boyfriend and I left for Catalina at approximately 4:30AM.  Our boat left at 6:15, which was the sole explanation for that barbaric waking time.  We did, however, receive an unexpected gift for our bravery in facing such a dark morning:  a scarlet sunrise rising beneath the deep and smoky lavender clouds.  The harbor seemed transfixed by that burning sky.

Our zip appointment was for 11AM.  I was nervous as all hell, but it’s really useless to indulge in mindless terror once you’re On Countdown.  When we sat down to breakfast (yes, always hungry) the first thing I noticed was a sign on the wall:  RELAX.  Didn’t work.

If you ever want to do this, you sign up, get your tickets, etc. at Descanso Beach, a little behind the Casino.  Everyone has to Weigh In.  I was so deeply shocked at my poundage that for a few minutes, falling to a messy death in one of Catalina’s hidden ravines didn’t seem so bad.

You get fitted with a harness and a helmet.   There is a 20 minute orientation, 90% of which is spent explaining what to do when something goes wrong.  During the bus ride to the first station my hands were shaking.  With my gear and fear I felt like a soldier being driven to the front line.

Line #1:  500 feet above sea level.  501 feet in length.  I was one of the last to go, but I went before Boyfriend, so he could take my picture.

Hook, Line and Sinker

 I took one step into nothingness and when I felt the harness and cable accept  my (considerable) weight, I tucked into the ‘cannonball’ position – as instructed – and by God, away I went. 

Ready, Willing and Cable

I assumed there were trees beneath me.  An ocean was floating around somewhere over my shoulder.  I was staring at my sneakers in front of me, and at the next station coming at me.  You partially land/gallop to a halt, become unhitched and follow the others to the next line. 

Line #2:  The longest line – 1,045 feet.  About half way through this run, to my horror, a stray breeze caught me and I started to spin.  Thank you, balmy island weather, thank you so bloody much.  Anyway, things steadied, and I continued on.  When I was done here and still among the living I could have allowed myself a handful of confidence, but that would have been foolish.

Line #3:  702 feet long.  This time I was coming in too fast.  I lowered my legs, increasing wind resistance, then tucked back up on my reciever’s instructions, stationed at the next, oncoming platform.  The wind was whistling by me – this might have been the fastest line, when one can propel down those twin cables at over 40 mph. 


Line #4:  892 feet long.  The path shoots over a den of eucalyptus trees which had been trimmed so as not to slice off the ankles of those who prefer to do their hiking while airborne. 

Line #5:  531 feet long.  This was called an ‘easy’ one, so we were encouraged to do a little free-form zipping.   Interpretive zipping?  Don’t think so.

A Grim Grin

And we were finished.  And we were successful.  And we were alive.  And we felt rather fabulous.  And we’ll probably do this again.

That evening, we went to the New Year’s party at the Casino, sharing a table with a rather entertaining couple:  the husband once broke open a champagne bottle with a samurai sword.  I don’t think he said this to impress us, because, frankly, who would want to?

Next morning we had breakfast at a jolly little place which always has a New Year’s Day PJ Party.  I wore my best jammies and to prove that I did this thing, had my photo taken in front of the restaurant.

Toast and Jammies

The object I’m holding is a toy Catalina Buffalo which I bought on the island.  We took it to the party, as we thought it was fitting.  Neither of us ordered buffalo sausage or bacon, just to be polite.

So…Happy New Year.  Face and embrace all that it dares to give you.

Colors Over The Casino

The Silent Party

Occasionally, when I come home from work and before I open my door, I will hear the most disconcerting sounds.  They frolic down the hallway, rambunctious and invisible.

I heard voices, as fragile as silver thread, embroidering the air with affectation and flippancy.  I heard laughter, soaring and birdlike, responding to witticisms that I missed as I tried to find my keys.

There was the sharp protest of glass tables, as jewelry accidently scraped against their surfaces (a sound I know well).  There was the intimate, private rustling of silken sleeves and dresses that dripped with sequins and impudence. 

In equally soft undertones, whispered asides were exchanged like rings – engraved, golden secrets.  These sounds were like dolls – tiny, delicate and perfectly formed – and they winked at me through the keyhole.

By the time I had finally untangled my keys, unlocked my door and burst into my apartment, I was full of questions, hoping for an introduction and afraid that I had arrived too late.

But the voices had stopped, the tables were cleared away, and the party was silent again.

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