Don't get me wrong, I loves me big giant helpings of Internet - blogs, twitter, Flickr and such - but when the weekend comes, it's time to cut the cord, baby.
Friday night, I dragged my lovely low-maintenance house guest, Laura, to see the IMAX film, "Living Sea", at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science - my new favorite hangout. We were such late arrivals that my free tickets (with membership) were no good to them. ("They are about to close the doors, just go!" said one flustered usher.) Incredible footage, breathtaking beauty - all with a fitting Sting soundtrack. I'm pretty sure I watched the entire thing with my mouth hanging open uttering the occasional, "Wooooooooow!" or "Neat-O!" Unfortunately, some of the aerial shots made Laura nauseous so I guess we won't be seeing "The Alps" anytime soon ...
Saturday morning, I dragged Laura up to the barn to meet my horse friends. She tagged along while my friend, Bob, and I turned out Bob & Ben, who gratefully rolled around in the dirt and raced one another around the new ring, occasionally stopping to sniff our pockets for treats. I tell ya, watching horses run free has got to be one of the most beautiful sights on God's Green Earth. I even snuck in a quick lesson with Beanie while Laura ran around petting the barn cats, Albert the Dog and feeding carrots to the rest of the equine gang.
On the way home, I drove her past Red Rocks, by far, THE most beautiful outdoor venue in the world. Since Laura is moving to Denver from Chicago (that's her at left, with my cat, Simone, who is helping her pick out cool neighborhoods) come May, we are already making a list of places we'll go and things we'll do; it'll be a Dr. Seussian Summer. I've known Laura for a full decade now and it'll be swell to have an old buddy around.
Once home, we cleaned up and headed to Circle, which is a seasonal gathering of fabulous women (mostly from Mississippi) who kindly brought me into the tradition. We get together to talk, do readings and group meditation, to honor one another, to listen, to craft and then ultimately, to dance, smoke and party HARD. I recall going to one Circle that lasted 12 hours at two locations. I warned Laura that she may have to drive us home and I was right. I mean, what is the point of being so healthy all the time if I don't have the freedom to trash myself once in awhile?
So, after a very blurry episode in the Good Times drive-thru,we arrived home only to bust out more crafts. I worked a bit more on my Sin Box (which holds candy, cigarettes, the phone numbers of ex-boyfriends and certain recreational substances) which I'd begun last summer. I cut images and phrases out of magazines while Laura got busy decorating a box with paint and glitter. Drunken crafting, wheeee!
The next day, I slept in and Laura was highly impressed that I did not feel like ass. What she didn't know is that I felt like Ass Squared but I put up a brave front cuz I was raised by Midwesterners and that's their specialty. I moved pretty slow and sounded like an 80-year-old bar hag but I mustered enough energy to take her to Boulder, a town she had never seen before. We walked the Pearl Street Mall and I pointed out The Flatirons. Funny, but showing her around made me realize how much I have learned about my new home - a nice feeling.
We headed back home and Laura left to catch her plane. Somehow, miraculously, I scraped together barely enough energy to head up to the barn again for an exhausting three-hour lesson that involved me flying down the road in full canter with Beanie racing alongside me yelling, "Heals DOWN! Toes FORWARD! Use your left pelvic bone but DON'T LEAN! Hands QUIET! Sit BACK! BACK! LOOK UP! THERE YA GO! GOOD! GOOD!"
How I managed to stay on a speeding horse (Ben, a "hot Arab" meaning he spooks easily) while nursing a throbbing headache and trying to make individual body parts do separate things is impressive even to me. Still, I cannot BELIEVE how exhilirating it is. Honestly, it's like my heart just opens up and takes the world head-on. Of course, it's also fucking scary - don't think I notice that part too but it is liberating to do it anyway.
(Months ago, I'd said to Beanie after one spectacular ride, "Wow! That was fun!" and she responded, "Yeah, it's always especially fun when you don't die." This sums it up perfectly.)
I finally made it home, took a long, hot shower and made a dinner out of the pile of food that Laura left behind. ("I love eating. Eating and sleeping. Those are my favorites," she says.) I then wrangled my budget into something resembling reality and met with Gins via phone so she could scare me into a healthy retirement - cuz that is her job.
I finally got to sleep around 11 feeling exhausted, sore and very, very blessed knowing that when Monday dawns, it'll be time to plug in all over again.