Early Morning City Lights

Its 6.20 on a Wednesday morning in downtown Seattle. My apartment still feels like a hotel room – a place suspended  in temporary abode. I know it will change once my furniture arrives from SA – all my bits and pieces I have saved and looked after from my happy childhood home in Boskruin Johannesburg, to my own little house in Sundowner with the rambling rose bushes and lemon trees, to the home shared with another –  full of hopes and dreams  in the city of Cape Town, to the cottage in the winelands where my dreams died a sad, slow little death – to my city apartment in Soho with big city lights and an abundance of life – to the place I was the most happiest – my sea facing,  light dancing sea gull singing,  promenade beauty embracing,  Winchester mansion scone and champagne indulging flat in Sea Point. Yes all said in one breath.

Here I am,  now in Seattle – a new life – some more big city lights and abundance of life  – but that’s pretty much where the similarity ends. It’s been two months of sparkling surrealness – from the first pay cheque to sitting with a boy on a rooftop terrace drinking wine… flowers…so many flowers. Seattle’s beauty is so much in the way they bring nature into this modern ever growing ever changing city. I had a buddhist uber driver one day taking me to work – he said he finds a calmness in Seattle he hasn’t found elsewhere – it’s almost bizarre in making such a statement looking around at all these skyscrapers  – oddly I get it. Its smart design – It’s smart living – as I reach over to my phone to select a radio station I think I like for my echo to play , KEXP -described as  ‘Eclectic’ I like that – I haven’t see the word eclectic for quite some time.  Smashing Pumpkins;  Mayonaise-this makes my heart very happy!  I also ask her about the weather today; ‘Very sunny’  I haven’t yet adapted to Fahrenheit…one day.

So the prognosis looks good – sunny day, good music, I’m up at the break of dawn – WTF!

But for the first time in two months – I feel tired – I think the steady influx of awe and newness and stimulation and happiness and excitement is taking a bit of a toll  – maybe another hour of snoozing will do some good!







I don’t want to forget that my Dad always had stamps, always – there wasn’t one weird occasion when I needed stamps and he didn’t have them – he would always buy those charity stamps – I’m pretty sure if for whatever reason I found myself back home and in need of a stamp – he would have one.

I never want to forget that my Mom would sing to me while she brushed my hair; “All I want is a room somewhere – lots of chocolates for me to eat.” In this one ray of sunshine that would hit her bedroom at a certain time of day, next to the Romeo and Juliet balcony with its creeping dark red, climbing roses. I don’t want to forget that bedroom with its soft white carpets, the lit candle on her dressing table when my Granddad died – the little dog in a cup ornament and the white enamel heart that contained all her special jewelry. How I loved that room – its white and pink warmth – the place of safety when nightmares of clowns would have me running into the reassuring sounds of sounds of snores and clocks ticking. Her pride and joy – the alarm clock tea maker, bubbling to a happy frenzy at the allocated time of 6am. My Mom would bring us a tray each. Tea, Weetabix, toast. I would reprimand her for pouring the milk on too soon and arriving with mooshly slabs where there was once crunchy bricks – so she started to bring the milk in a tiny little jug. Spoilt child – devoted Mother doing all she could to get me to eat – I was never a big eater, eating was a chore. I would sit for hours on my own in our linoleum red kitchen staring between the tiny openings of the kitchen door that allowed me to see a slither of TV whilst I sat in front of a plate of cold food I just couldn’t eat. I would feign an upset stomach, call my Mother a darling angel – every trick in the book was used to get off that bar stool and into the coziness of the lounge.

I have never forgotten how my Mom always reminded me of the story of the Ginger Cat who would sit in such a spot of sunshine. I still see that cat in my mind every time I see this gorgeous surprising little ray of sunshine finding its way into an otherwise dark room.

I follow this girl on Instagram, one of these beachy blonde yoga social media queen types, she has tattooed on her wrist ‘Just Be’  and wears a watch that points at NOW – there is this fashionable trend in life philosophy at the moment – to be in this moment and nothing else.  Just be – but there is a sacredness to my memories that I want to hold onto.

The Take down of Sadness

For a couple of days I was trying very hard to beat back the sadness with a stick. It was a very real battle and I invested a good amount of energy and resources in finding weapons. I wrote, I drank, I smoked weed. I surrounded myself with people, I kissed, I flirted – I danced recklessly with my sadness, trying to shake it off by the sway of my hips and the stamp of my feet.

It was that state, in-between waking up and still being asleep that my happiness returned. It was in a thought. Anything is possible. Anything can happen. Suddenly I believed it, and my happiness returned like an old friend and I remembered the songs that made my heart lighter and I found myself dancing on my own with a smile on my face.

My happiness is now peppered with moments of sadness, rooted in nostalgia and clearly identifiable fears of loneliness, but it’s getting less and less and the happiness is feeling fuller and thicker, like a grandfathers over-worn cardigan – perfect for winter.

Transcending the Mundane

He placed 5 spoons of Ricoffy into his cup, the girl shuffled behind him and said; “Is that your lubrication to help with the day?”

She smiled sweetly and I have no doubt she had no idea of the possible innuendo using the word lubrication.

Benny the security guard is having lunch, he always sits at the same seat and smiles very happily at me. as though he is greeting an old friend whom he hasn’t seen for a while. He reminds me how good it feels to force yourself to smile – even when it feels like your face may crack from the effort.

Galvin looks hard, intimidating – his eyes are sharp and piercing – but he is incredibly sensitive and needy.  He talks loudly to my colleague trying to draw my attention and subtly flexes his muscles. With my eyes lowered I stand up and walk to the boardroom, feeling his eyes on me. I want to make a call that no one can hear. I’m hardly back for 5 minutes before he too follows suit – a backwards glace at me as if to say – I too have secrets! He returns to talk to my colleague, and continues his flexing. I really just want him to shut up!

I’m trying to find some Zen in this space. Rumi – a collection of poems winks at me with its seductive cover and hints of universe secrets between the covers.

An orange poppy is trying not to wilt against the unnatural glare of my three over sized screens and I am sipping some green earthly – blessed by Buddhists – herbal tea!

I have three screens…and I’m trying to find Zen…

There is an argument now about bins been stolen and flexi pants has started mumbling hip hop tracks.

A Swiss engineer walked the boardroom to look at our white board – I felt myself cringe at messy handwritten notes stuck at all the incorrect angles. To my surprise he nods his head and smiles – “What I love the most about this is how low tech it is! ”

I once wrote to a lovely man that we must never lose our childlike enthusiasm. Strange that I was reinforcing the very thing he brought out in me, that through our musings and conversations I felt a sense of the romantic girlishness I thought had long ago disappeared.

I wish it didn’t take another person to bring that out in me – someone to mirror my thoughts – thereby validating the life I want to believe in! Seeing the magic in myself! Then again its happened before –  it would be silly of me to think it won’t happen again!

These precious souls coming into your life to show you bliss – then leaving you once more to reveal the cold truths and somewhere in between the joy and sadness you start to understand the meaning of it all – the juxtaposition of ideas and feelings. The Seesaw of life.

So here I am seeking a little bit of softness and bliss with the aid of an orange poppy in this rather contrived environment with these bizarre characters– but need to not forget that behind each inane mumble there is a heart that dreams.


“I’m on a train.”

His voice sounded hard, defensive. I pictured him sitting there, head leaning back, his eyes dark, shifting uncomfortably. He had tried to put this off, master of avoidance – never wanting to feel the full consequences of his actions…always looking for the easy way out, a safe place, a warm body,  leaving trails of destruction behind.

I tried to keep my voice stable, I didn’t want to get high pitched – the question had to be asked, I needed the book to close.

“Are you living with her?”

“Yes, Yes I am”