There was a line in one of my fave bedtime story books that went, "Song, song, long long song. Goodbye Thing, you sing too long." Just for your entertainment. (I think it was Dr. Seuss, but I could be wrong. Points to whomever remembers the author and tells me in comments...)
Anyway, today began last night. And it has been a beautiful day. Just now I got stung by a stray bit of rejection, but nothing I didn't know was coming... which makes all the difference. But I'm getting ahead of myself.
Last night I just randomly met up with 3 cool people, and we just up and went and walked around Sta. Rita for a while. Rob lives in my building, and his sister Lorraine was up from good'ole Guayama for a visit. Josè Gabriel, they told me later, was another guy they just randomly met. Why? Well I had just knoshed some food and was winding down with an Anne McCaffery when through the window next to my bed I hear what sounds suspiciously like a parranda. Yummy drums and clave. Sooooothing salsa sounds. Hmmm.
Me being me, and being slightly lonely, and not having danced in 2 weeks, after about an hour of this, I decide to stick my head out the door and find out what exactly is going on. But before I do this, I go ahead and change my shirt from what I was wearing all day to another black tank. So I think I felt like I was going out... if the music panned out and wasn't just a bunch of foolery.
Right as I open the door to step out, I see these three peeps headed toward the gate at the end of the corridor beyond my door.
"Y'all know what's going on?", I ask, which starts this entire dialogue -they don't know what the music and all is about, but they were about to head out to find something to do anyways. Mind you, this is about 10:30, which is late in Teacherlandia but normal for the college crowd in my neighborhood.
"Wanna come? Put on some chancletas, let's go!" says the girl (half an hour later I fidn out her name is Lorraine).
I hem and I haw... I have to get up tomorrow...but the music is still playing. I grab my keys, slip on my black shoes to complete my all-black ensemble, and away we go.
We turn away from the music at first, and head down to Vidy's Cafe, where some people with some truly awful voices are singing karaoke. Woohoo. While we're there though, Jose offers me a drink, I refuse, and we start talking about just getting to know you stuff. Where I'm from, what I do here, am I studying... are they studying, what part of the island everyone else is from, what year everyone is, etc, etc.
Later, we're walking toward La Borinqueña, when I'm drawn (worse than a magnet, y'all) to the unmistakable sounds of Los Renuentes playing in the exhibition patio of la Torre Norte. I talk the group into 'just checking it out for a second', and we stayed until the management kicked the group out officially, then until they finished their set an hour later, then until I'd seen Kabo (yeah, it was great to see him) as we were walking out the door.
Finally, we all troop up to the apartment above mine and chill, me all squooshed up against Lorraine on a mattress on the floor, talking about music and such. Burning incense, joking, laughing, watching while the guys played (really violent) video games. *Sigh* Some of the most relaxing and just plain fun time I've had since I got to portareeco.
Now, I had to type all that before I could really touch on the reason I feel so good. I miss feeling loved, feeling part of a group. Last night I felt like there were other people interested in me for the first time in a long time, and I got to hear some great music and dance, really sweat-out, abandonment-to-the-music dance, which makes me feel carefree.
I miss physically being close to people, but yes, especially men, since I haven't really had that in two years. TWO YEARS.
Can you imagine going two years without being hugged? Now, are you an emotionally expressive and receptive person? Because I am, and the way I feel now compared to the way I felt yesterday... it's like night and day, yo. Even squeezing next to Lorraine on the floor brought on this feeling of relief. And happiness. And since I'm being brutally honest, it felt great to be chilling and dancing and laughing and talking with the guys, completely platonic. (AHEM, chastity police: No.Thing. Happened. At. All.) But realizing that they are guys, and that was part of the fun.
Ok. I'm Muslim, 'mixing' of the sexes is wrong, yes. It's also impossible to avoid, and I have serious trouble WANTING to avoid having fun with men. I suppose that's why reflecting on all this is making me feel... hmm. How do I say this? In my thoughts, I know that what my fun time last night wasn't completely kosher. And being the rule-keeper (and breaker), I know it's gonna catch up to me in some way, even if only the reflection that I'm going through right now.
Still, part of any true feeling of 'comfort' for me is wrapped up in men. I'm used to being around guys, all up in their space, hugging, touching, laughing, breathing the same air as they do. I've got two brothers and a father, not to mention most of my oldest and best friends have a Y chromosome.
I feel so good! AlHamdulIllah!
Yah, so since I didn't leave Rob's apt until like 2:30 , I didn't wake up until Ms. Wolfe called me to say that she'd be arriving late to the school at around 8. Then I had to wait AN HOUR for the bus, at the stop.
Didn't mind though, because for the first time in a week, the sun was shining! The sun is like my personal drug. Going a full week without seeing not one ray was killing my butt. Depression was kicking in something fierce. So even though I was late, the good feelings continued. Ah, sitting in the hot sunshine. (BTW, the sun ended not too long after that, the clouds reinstated their reign, so it's as well I was late or I wouldn't have seen the sun, I'dve been indoors with the kids' grades, grumpy. Funny how that worked out.)
After work today, I went with Miss Wolfe to borders and finished reading Alisa Valdez-Rodriguez's Playing With Boys. I love that Mrs. Valdez-Rodriguez's work. I really enjoy reading her. Her characters speak to me and the situations I find myself facing, every time. Get it, girl! I cannot wait until her next book, even though I understand her second one came out not too long ago. So I left the bookstore feeling great because I finished this awesome book, but also reflecting on the issues presented in the book that I see all over my own life.
Which brings me to the rejection I mentioned a while earlier... indirectly. See, in both of her books, there has been a principal character who gets caught up in some dude, then has her heart broken, but really in part because she builds up nothing into something. Cases of expectations exceeding reality, to get to the quick of it.
I have done that way way way way way WAY too much. I quit. Just now. I keep saying that, but a combo of faith, the novel I was reading, and what a great, honest friend told me earlier has me meaning it for really real.
I'm getting into why. Gimme a sec.
I finished the book and caught the 21 to the train home, and just as I'm walking in front of Las Torres thinking about 1) what a darn good time I had last night, and 2)Mark hasn't called me (he lives in/around la Torre norte), when my eye is caught by this funky looking silver car that pulls up in front of the tower just as I'm passing it on the opposite sidewalk. The car lets someone off.
It's the Irish-Rican Bustop Cutie!
I'd kinda lost track of him, so I cross the street and give'im a hug (there goes that physical contact again) and we start talking about I forget what...lemme see... (anyone else realize that people rarely actually talk coherently in conversations?) The 'where ya been, missed ya' convo turns into us going into whether or not Sex and The City was a feminine or girly or womanish, if you will, show. He says no. I say definitely. We go from that into feminism in general (he's a feminist... I said, "that has not a lot to do with this"), and the article <--- over there in specific. He told me the link to the article isn't working, which reminds me that I have to check it.
Then we start discussing his writing, and he goes upstairs and brings back this whole book of his short stories which I'm going to tear into just as soon as I get done with this LONG BUTT BLOG.
At the end of that convo, though, we get around to... how I'm going to get the book back to him.
"We'll find each other, no worries. We're good at that," David says.
"Yeah... well, Mark has my number. Although I don't think he's gonna use it", I say. I'm looking right at David, he's not looking back.
"Well. No. I don't think he is. I put in the good word for ya, luv, but... well, good friends are honest. I have to be honest with you."
I told him I appreciated his honesty, but went back to my basic philosophy, which is: "well, if I give you my number, and you can't call me in 3 days, then I forget about you". Contrary to Toto's and Miss Wolfe's advice, I pretty much gave up after all.
"Good policy, luv.", he said. Then we did the whole despida thing and I came here to write about it.
Now, I have maintained before that if God really does have someone in store for me, then He isn't gonna have me being distracted 'round here with some sub-quality discount version of his real thing. Which means I have to quit with the games. The man is coming. The man is coming. Mr. TwennyTwo is on his way. The less I look for him the better off I'll be until he appears insha'Allah.
Meanwhile, though, I won't feel guilty about getting my fix the best way I can. I feel good, and I've made a ton of new friends. I can't seem to find any losses on that tally sheet... insha'Allah it'll stay that way!
thanks for reading.