12 Steps, Japanese Style | Day 3 of 365 days of stories

August 25, 2010

Stepping Stones, Heian Gardens
Stepping Stones, Heian Gardens

After choosing this way, then this way, and finally, this way, I end up at a beautiful, lily-filled pond. Gingerly, I step onto the first stone. Now I’m precariously perched over water, feeling at once that I’m floating, that I’m walking on water, but that I’m on the verge of disaster. Another careful step taken, and I’m on stone number two. A pause. I enjoy my surroundings and my different point of view. Step three and I must take a picture to capture this new point of view. I feel I am getting somewhere, finally. I begin to feel like I’m going to be okay, and lose my fear. Step four, I weeble, I wobble (more…)


Ghost Town

January 9, 2008

Carousel, Florence, Italy

Yesterday morning the sky was gray – huge, puffy gray clouds provided a few variances in the shade of gray. I had to stop for gas and there was an eerie quiet for a few minutes – which is odd considering the gas station is on a busy street, and I was there during rush hour.

Another one of those surreal, slo-mo moments.


Surreal Moments

September 20, 2007

I started this post 21 days ago – 8/31 at 7:16 AM… amazing how time is still flying, even though the wedding has come and gone.

Occasionally there are moments in my life where everything else seems to fade, to quiet-down, and one subject sticks out, defined very clearly, and overtake everything in that moment. And that moment just sloooooows down time. It’s rather hard to describe, but these moments stick in my head, and they seem so surreal to me. I’m not sure if I’ve ever posted about the tree, the rain, and the Doors in Kentucky… if not, I will sometime. I’ll have to dig around and see if it’s anywhere in the diary.

The thing about these moments – they would make wonderful pictures, but bringing the camera into the situation would break the mood and the experience that’s happening. People often assume that the camera goes everywhere with me, that I can’t wait to travel and take pictures. While it’s true that when we go on the amazing honeymoon my husband has planned I will have the camera in tow, and enjoy that, it’s not normally my preferred method of photographing anything. It disrupts my moments. I’d rather go back, re-create the moment, on another day, after the experience.

The point I’m getting to… During the wedding week there are a couple of these surreal moments, where time slowed and a subject came into clear focus. The first was meeting Raju’s cousin Geeta. I believe in my list I described her as smoldering… fiery, full of life… those things all popped into my head during this one instant — blink of a second really. I was thinking someone else caught this side profile view that I had of her at that moment, but I’ve yet to find the picture. Maybe the smoldering Geeta just burned her image into my memory and that’s my picture.

The other slow, surreal moment was when I grabbed a bit of cool air, drifted away from the party. I was sitting on the ledge, talking to another of Raju’s cousins (he has almost as many as a Southerner, maybe more). Diane had walked away, leaving only Shankar standing below. Again, time slowed and in one instant, a lull in our conversation, I can remember the cool air, the sky above, and the look on Shankar’s face, standing below. No snap judgments this time, just a singular moment in time that is as clear in my head as if I’d taken a snapshot.


I really did enjoy myself…

August 23, 2007

After all was said and done, I’m glad we blended so much of the Indian ceremony into our California celebration. The altar area was beautifully decorated and so many people got to play a part in the wedding. And, it was funny to have the Hindu priest ask us how to pronounce the name “Harrison” (I guess we’re not the only ones baffled by some names). I also got to show off my freshly pedicured feet while stepping on rose petals (seriously, some people pay good money to have their feet rest on rose petals… I think a few did at the nail spa).

Plus, I’ve decided I’m going to adopt my husband’s penchant for exaggerating the truth in order to spin a better story. Instead of “I circled the sacred fire 3 times,” I think I will say, “I performed a death-defying stunt in the middle of the ceremony. I was a daredevil, circling a flaming coconut, each time getting closer and closer, with a 10 foot train on my wedding dress!” I’ll have to let him finish the tale with some out-of-this-world meaning for making it around the fire, as I’m not nearly as good as he is yet… but I’m working on it.



July 22, 2007

I’ve been through LAX before – a few times. I’ve never seen this hallway or one like it.

One word for it, surreal. In this picture, you can see a little vehicle, that was about a third of the way back. So imagine this picture times 3, and that’s the length we walked down this very white, very repetitive hallway. And the entire time, there was beeping eminating from somewhere. Beeeep, beeep, beeep, beeep, beeep… Like something out of a Stanley Kubrick film.