birthday, part deux

These photos were taken in Tiburon, where my Aunt Faye is working as a private nurse. It is so, so beautiful up there, I couldn't help but do a silly little dance in this red coat that I bought myself for my birthday. Life is wonderful indeed.

Hope you are all having a great holiday too! xoxo, odessa

"i wish i had a river i could skate away on"

Yesterday was my 29th birthday! It wasn't what I had planned it to be, but it turned out just perfect. I was overjoyed by it all - the presents, the birthday greetings, all the serendipitous surprises. I feel so blessed. And so, so loved.

Here are photos from last night's dinner. I'm showing off some of my gifts - a set of Tibetan prayer flags and a handmade sweater. My cousin dared me to wear a pair of sunglasses and I happily obliged, after two glasses of sangria. Hee.


Also, I started this blog on the eve of my 26th birthday, so that means this blog is now 3 years old! Wow! It is without a doubt, one of the best things that I ever did for myself and for my writing. Thank you, thank you all for coming to visit and for being a part of my little site. And all the best for 2009!

Title taken from the song River by Joni Mitchell

a year ago today

Saavedra, 12.21.07

You came back where it all started
and thought, you were once happy here.

Here, where the ocean carried
your dreams toward distant shores.

Shores you traced longingly on maps.
Maps you folded in neat little squares
and kept hidden in your heart.

Heart now exploding in waves
at the sight of you
here.

(found from my Blogger drafts)

time magazine's man of the year


No surprise here. But these pictures from Obama's college years at Occidental College is such a wonderful revelation of the young man that he was. Its good to see the playful side of Mr. President-Elect. I especially love the picture above and this one of him smiling for the camera. Beautiful.

Photo by Lisa Jack via Time Magazine

always in december



1. The Dream

Later
that now long lost night
in December, beside you, I saw
that the leaves had returned
to the branches
outside my window. Now
that is all that it was: leaves, blowing
in the windy sunlight: somehow,
in spite of the chances against it
occuring, in spite of the critic's wan sneer,
I dreamed this gorgeous thing.

-Franz Wright, 'Four Poems of Youth'

* * *
The photo is from Thomas C. Chung's installation called "Do You See What I See?", taken by Camilla Engman. Last night, I found this poem that I copied in my journal some months ago. I love this poem for so many reasons and thought that poem and photo make a perfect pair. Together, they make my heart ache, in a very good way.

Hope you all have a lovely and inspiring weekend wherever you are.

randomness

Or alternatively titled, "Because I'm too tired but I can't sleep after eating too much at my work's holiday party".

Yes, we had our holiday party tonight. Small and intimate, it was held at a co-worker's home which happens to be one of the most charming homes I've ever been to. I think if Amelie had house of her own, I can definitely see her there. I had to restrain myself from taking pictures of all the pretty vintage pieces inside. Plus, my co-worker has a small wine business, so there was drinks galore. All that + good food makes for such a lovely night.

* * *
Words/poems/images are very much floating in my head but I can't quiet reach them. Not yet. I'm a kaleidoscope of emotions; a swirling, shifting space these days. One moment I am in such a quiet, peaceful state, seeing words and poised to claim them on a page, the next I'm so scattered and restless that I can't even sit still, let alone listen to my thoughts. I'd like to think that its the holidays. But I have a feeling that it also has a lot to do with the fact that my birthday is fast-approaching (I'm turning 29!) and for the second time in my life, I am spending Christmas and my birthday away from my family and my country. Christmas in the Philippines is really, really special and I will miss it so. much.

* * *
Here is a glimpse of my text-scapades with my out-of-state friends today (we're not Twittering yet and I'm afraid to start because I know for sure I'll be hooked):

Odessa: There's a substitute drama teacher here in my school that I'm probably gonna start to stalk. Haha. He is sooooo my type.

Yed: please Lord let the man be straight.

(Clearly, my dear friends know the dating hazards of living in this city. Teehee.)

variations of a sunset







Sweet, sweet San Diego. You make me want what I cannot have.

roadtripping


We're off to drive down to San Diego. Its cold and rainy here and I heard its cold and rainy down there too. Right now I'm trying to visualize blue skies and warm weather all the way, and maybe if I try really, really hard it might just come true in the next few days. Hope you all have a happy, happy Thanksgiving!

five things



It's been a hectic week but I'm so glad its the weekend and doubly glad that its almost Thanksgiving break. Hope you are all having a wonderful Saturday. Here are some of the things thats making me happy right now:

~Grass scent from The Gap. Yes, its making a comeback and I couldn't be happier! I love, love, love this subtle scent and was so sad when they discontinued it when I was in college. It will always remind me of summers and those times when all we did was sit/lay on the grass and read to our hearts content. (Hint: my birthday is coming up next month, now you know what to get me. *cheeky grin*)

~My father's first e-mail ever. You see, my parents live in a small town with limited access to internet and are not at all tech-savvy. So imagine my surprise when I got an e-mail from my dad, all lowercase and in text-lingo (e.g. pls col us la8r)! Turns out that he bought a new laptop and is now completely fascinated with it. Who knows, maybe in a couple of weeks he'll have a Facebook account! Haha.

~This lovely blog post. Jo is originally from Mexico City and is now studying in Sweden. Her photos are soooo beautiful.

~Driving down to San Diego for Thanksgiving. I'm not too excited about the road trip but I'm definitely looking forward to the warm weather and some fun in the sun. And oh, possibly meeting up with friends (Dae, Irish, Vanessa - I'm talking about you guys).

~This video (via A Cup of Jo). I think she's so adorable, almost like a little Amelie. Watch it and I promise you it'll make you smile a thousand smiles.

What about you, what's making you happy lately?

(Photo via red aprons & lunchboxes)

confession tuesday

I can't believe we're halfway through November, can you? It doesn't feel like the holidays are coming at all. In fact, it doesn't even feel like fall where I am. Yesterday while driving from one school to another, the temperature outside was 84 degrees. I can only imagine how it is in Southern California, with the fires. One of my friends who lives in L.A. even got sick from all that smoke. I know because I looked at her Facebook.

* * *
So Facebook. I'm hooked. My coworker said its her "drug of choice". I said, "same here". She said, "Really? How about Jason Mraz?" "Oh him too," I answered. Haha. His limited edition album actually came out today and I've been telling everyone to check it out on iTunes. Gotta spread the Mraz love, you know.

* * *
I've finally decided to submit some of my poems to an online literary journal. Its my first time, so my palms are sweating already even though I haven't sent my poems out yet. Last weekend, I went through all my pieces and realized that the ones I like the most are sad, sad ones, written around September-November of last year. Funny thing is, I don't even recall feeling so down in those months, though I do remember having written a lot.

* * *
One more thing: I'm chickening out of my journal submission plan already. Eeeek!

city lights




I took my camera for a walk today and ended up walking from the financial district all the way to North Beach, inside one of my favorite places to be, City Lights Bookstore. They have an entire floor dedicated to poetry! Every time I walk up those stairs towards the poetry room I feel like I'm about to enter a sacred place. I'd come here everyday if I could.

And oh, I almost squealed in delight when I saw a book by Jose Garcia Villa on the table of featured poets. A Filipino author next to Nabokov, Lorca, Robert Haas - how cool is that? It definitely made my day.

just what i needed




Good reads + lots of sleep. And I'm feeling so much better now. Thank you all for your sweet comments.

And oh, aren't these photos lovely? They are from two of my favorite artists, Camilla Engman and Lena Corwin. Their blogs are so inspiring and I can spend hours just staring at all the beautiful photos. Plus, they have the cutest pooches too!

Have a wonderful weekend everyone! Hope you find inspiration, wherever you are.

ginger chicken noodle soup and sondre lerche


I've been sick for the past couple of days now. In fact, I spent most of yesterday in bed - sleeping, drinking lots of tea, reading Nick Flynn's heartbreakingly beautiful book (more of this later), browsing my favorite blogs, sleeping more, wishing that I'd get my energy back soon. Being sick is so not fun, especially when you have to work.

I felt a little better today and was inspired to make my mom's chicken soup recipe. This is short of a miracle considering that I seldom cook. But I'm too lazy to walk to the grocery store, so there. The soup actually turned out great which made me think that maybe there's hope for me in the kitchen after all. Or maybe all those Ricola throat drops and Sudafed made my taste buds all whacked. Oh well.

So I've been listening to Sondre Lorche lately. He's Norwegian and he's really good. Ever seen the movie Dan in Real Life? Most All of the songs in the movie are his. Plus, he also toured with Jason Mraz in 2003, so that alone makes him awesome by association. Seriously though, his songs are perfect for those lazy, chilly afternoons when all you want to do is curl under a blanket and dream away.

How about you? Who's on your playlist? I'd love to discover new artists.

sometimes a fire

I fell in love with this phrase the first time I read it from Michael Ondaatje's The English Patient. I underlined it a couple of times, copied it in my journal, hoping that one day I'll be able to use it in a poem or something.

The 'or something' came last Tuesday night. Like most of you, like the rest of the world, the results of the US elections had such an effect on me that I fould myself walking around as if lit from within, thinking of this phrase.

It's been so long since I felt this way. I had resigned myself to the idea that all the idealism and dreams of my youth are gone, buried so deeply that there was no way I'd ever see them again. I had come to accept the status quo, thinking that having a job that I enjoy, living in a city that I love, writing down a word after another is more than enough for me.

But it only took one night, one beautiful night, and I remembered those long-ago dreams again.

Sometimes a fire. Yes.

ali baba and the 40 thieves

(for my father, on his birthday)

"Please tell us another story", we'd beg. "One more story".

"Okay, one more. But you have to sleep afterwards."

My siblings and I know the routine. Night after night, its always the same. My father would tell us a story, we'd beg for one more. And we already know what the story will be. We've heard of Ali Baba's adventures a thousand times, each time slightly different than the other, but the ending is always the same.

"Open sesame. Close sesame", we'd chant loudly, as if we really were in front of a magical cave with hidden treasures inside it.

* * *
This storytelling time with my father will always be one my cherished memories. My childhood is not all fairytale and happy, there were times when I'd wish I was born somewhere else, when I'd wish that I had a different family, but those moments with all of us together in the same room, our breaths held in anticipation as Ali Baba tries to outwit and trick the thieves, those precious moments before we'd each go to our rooms and dream our individual dreams, is as close to perfect as it could get.

So close to perfect that even now, years later, I can still see all 5 of us kids crowding in my parents bed, I can still hear our sighs as the story reaches its happy ending, I can still feel the giddiness, the excitement that comes with believing in magic, even when reality tells you otherwise.

Happy birthday, Pa! Thank you for everything that you do for all of us. Thank you for being you.

With all my love, Odessa.

at the corner of duboce and church st.

young woman steps out of a train, young man on a bike -
he looks at her in the eye, she gives him a half-smile,
turns her head to watch him as he pedals into the night.

congratulations, america!


You did it! You voted for CHANGE. You voted for HOPE.
I am so proud to witness this beautiful moment in history.

Photo via Shakesville

here we are


The first time I met Jason, he was singing to me/us in a sidewalk, he was so close that I even touched him on the shoulder, so close that we had a near-seizure attack because we couldn't believe that it was Jason Mraz serenading us on a cold April night while we were waiting in line to watch his show! And he sang to us twice! He said he felt bad that we were waiting outside in the cold so he got out of his trailer and started singing to us. It was such an unforgettable night and I didn't believe any other could top that. Until today.

I realized that watching Jason live, be it in an intimate venue like The Fillmore or in a big setting like the one today at the Greek Theater in UC Berkeley, is always an amazing, otherworldly experience. I remember back in April, in the middle of his show, I turned around to my friend and said, "Ga, Jason is seriously killing me right now." And my friend Dae merely nodded, because what else is there to say? He is just so good, even better live.

And tonight, while he was singing "Beautiful Mess", I closed my eyes for a moment, allowed the song to bring me to another place, and felt an overwhelming sense of gratitude. For his music and how it touched me deeply, for being a part of a wonderful audience who knew most of the lyrics to each song and who sang and danced with wild abandon, and most of all, for the beautiful man in front of us who is so talented and awesome beyond words.

Love.

when it rains, it pours

And it pours hard. I can't even begin to tell you my series of not-so-fortunate events, its just one of those days when nothing seems to go right. There's the stomach bug that's been going on with the kids at school, there's my lost debit card, there's the nagging pain on my right knee, there's the temperamental cellphone who turns itself off just when you have an important call, and oh, there's the parking tickets (yes, that's plural - 2 to be exact, at $50 each - OUCH!).

But you know what, one can either wallow in his or her misfortune or start taking a deep breath and move on from there. I decided to do the latter and focus on the things that I can do instead. Its amazing how just the act of "doing" can turn your mood around altogether. And realizing that, despite everything, I still have a lot of things to be thankful for.

* * *
Today I also mailed this parcel for Sofia's autumn swap:


I can't tell you who I'm sending it to, its a surprise. But basically, the idea of an autumn swap is centered around the theme of "comfort", little things that will make the recipient feel warm and cozy in this autumn season. Here are some of the things in the package (sorry for the blurry pictures, I was in a rush this morning, had to take them by the window where there's some light):



My swap partner is an artist, I've been reading her blog for the past couple of days and thought that she might like the following: a journal for her creative ideas, a book set in Paris, a small letterpress card from a local artist, some underwater-themed buttons by illustrator Jaime Zollars, and a Batik-inspired coin purse. And along with my favorite Ghirardelli chocolates and some green tea, my parcel was ready to go!

Here's more of the autumn swap here.

small stone

Yesterday, my small stone was published over at A Handful of Stones (Thanks, Fiona).
Here is the drafty, unedited version, journal entry 9.19.08:

Soft rain on a Friday night -
People wear their loneliness like a shield
without an umbrella or coat,
shoulders hunched, hands in pockets
while around them the moist pavement
glistens, cars move as if they are learning
to crawl for the first time

* * *
Find out more about writing a small stone and how to submit them here.

details in the fabric



Right now, I'm loving: the colors of fall, even the muted shades of gray and brown ~ watching a movie whilst huddling under a cozy blanket ~ banana nutella crepes ~ dear, dear Jason whose concert I'm gonna see this Sunday at the Greek Theater in Berkeley ~ this song (do listen closely to the lyrics, I find the message so fitting for these trying times):

half moon bay




One of my favorite places to be in the Bay area. We often drive down the Pacific coast on Highway 1 to get here but this time we took Route 92 and the drive is equally breathtaking.

Happy, happy Friday. I'm proud to say that I survived a crazy work week, with a few minor headaches here and there. I should be back to my usual blogging on Monday. Have a wonderful, sunny weekend!

dreaming of the mountains

Dear Mary Oliver, I think I know how you must have felt when you wrote this poem:

The Old Poets of China

Wherever I am, the world comes after me.
It offers me its busyness. It does not believe
that I do not want it. Now I understand
why the old poets of China went so far and high
into the mountain, then crept into the pale mist.

* * *
P.S. I decided to take a little blogging break. Its our parent-teacher conference week and eventhough I'm not a teacher, I also have a lot of progress reports and testing to do. In fact, my list is getting longer every minute. I'll be back next week, hopefully with new poems and pictures to share. Take care everyone!

mask

In Japantown a lady behind
the skincare counter gave me
samples of a facial mask.

Very good she said, her voice
almost a whisper, as if she was
guarding an ancient secret
to youthful skin.

That night, mask firmly in place,
I stared at my chalky white face
in the mirror, imagined

I was a geisha
and the night wind sent
a rain of cherry blossoms
outside my window.

sunlit



ferry ride to Larkspur --
lovers and sun
see eye to eye.

confession tuesday

Not a lot of things to confess this week aside from eating tons of junk food and ice cream. Though I always have "the PMS excuse", to which my cousin Bill often replies, "It's seems like you're PMSing every week". Hee. At least I'm not irritable and prone to mood swings.

* * *
I've been writing. A lot. I finally finished a poem that I've started about a year ago though I'm not sure if I'm ready to share it here (or anywhere else) yet. Have you ever had one of those written pieces that you just want to keep for yourself? To date, I think I have 2 poems and a couple of personal essays that I haven't shown anyone yet. Often, they're the ones that took every ounce of courage that I have to write that when I'm finally done writing them, I feel as though I just went through a very personal, very intense battle, and all I could do is sit down and stare in wonder at how I came out there alive. That's exactly how I felt at 3 a.m. yesterday after the poem finally assembled itself together.

* * *
As promised, here is a photo of my new hair. I also included a "before" picture taken 4 weeks ago, with my friend Rhanee at her Bachelorette's Party. My hair is naturally wavy and has a mine of its own, so its never the same everyday. Growing up in a tropical country, which can get very humid at times, and with almost everyone having stick-straight black hair, I used to hate my crazy-wavy hair with much passion. I even had it chemically straightened when I was in college. Ah, the things you do to conform to society. Nowadays, I really do love my hair, even if it can get 'unruly' at times.

Before


After

almost a love story

Imagine a crowded bar, venue for a poetry reading, dim, noisy, hardly any room to stand. Everyone is anxiously waiting for the poets to read. Luckily, my friend C and her friends T and R came early and was able to secure a small table, one of the 3 tables in the place. Fifteen minutes before the readings started, C and T went out for a smoke. I was left talking to R. Then -

"Is this yours?", a guy-in-black-trenchcoat came up to me, pointing to a small paperback that was laying on our table. I didn't even notice the book until he came over.

"No", I said, shaking my head at the same time.

"The owner actually went outside for a smoke", R added.

"Oh, did she? I'd like to meet her", said guy-in-black-trenchcoat.

"Ah, its actually a he," replied R, hint of mischief in his eyes.

"Ugh, too bad! I would've married her even if she looks like this" *proceeds to blow air on both cheeks and open his arms wide*.

The book, by the way, is Nadja by the French author André Breton. And yes, T, owner of said book, is indeed a he. Guy-in-black-trenchcoat and him finally had the chance to meet after the reading, sharing their love for Nadja.

Much later, over coffee, my friend C said, "Hmmm, wouldn't it be nice to meet someone that way? You know, through a book that you love and majority of the world hasn't even heard of?"

"Yeah, that would be ideal," I answered, mentally scanning my bookshelves for the book.

* * *
So hypothetically, if you were to pick any book as a way to meet "the love of your life", which one would it be? And why?

Mine will probably be Rilke's Letters to a Young Poet. Just 'cause I love it so.

sunday morning


I'm having breakfast in bed, sitting cross-legged with my bowl of oatmeal and tea on the side. I cook my oats the old-fashioned way, sprinkled with a spoonful of Ghirardelli cocoa mix (chocolate hazelnut is my fave), one of the best ways to enjoy oatmeal in my humble opinion.

Every now and then, I check the Chicago Marathon site, tracking (read: stalking) my friend Neeha and my cousin Ken as they run their way all over Chicago. I am equally excited for them as last year's marathon was somewhat of a downer. By that I mean, they were forced to slow down, walk or stop because the weather was too hot for anyone to run. Right now they've passed the 30K marker, Neeha with 3:02:31 and Kenny with 3:08:30 - yay! Don't you just love the internet?

So I went to the "one and only" Lit Crawl last night and spent 3 hours walking up and down the Mission, in and out of cafes and bars, listening to writers read. Some readings were great, some not-so-much, but what amazes me is how every year, again and again, I feel exactly the same way. Something akin to this. Its good to be reminded of why I write and how much I love the written word.

I'm still undecided on what to do after my breakfast - go to Bernal Heights Park (pictured above) or drive up north across the bridge and spend a quiet time in Marin? The good news is, I have the entire day to figure it out.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend everyone!

get your poem on

Read Write Poem has a swanky new look and I'm inspired to write a poem. This week's prompt is about dinosaurs. Here's my contribution, dedicated to J and all the kids that I work with:

At the Doctor's Office

They watch him line up
toys and stare at wheels
of plastic cars as they go
'round and 'round

They shake their heads
as he rocks his body gently
back and forth, making sounds
like an old, clamoring train

They noted how he doesn't
respond when you call his name
or look at you in the eye

They say he lives in a world
all his own, a world that doesn't
allow him to make friends
or say a word or two --

They will never know how
he loves to swing so high
and pretend his feet
can touch the sky

Or how his face opens
in a smile when he sees
pictures of dinosaurs.

forgive this pseudo-fangirl

louis garrel for hedi slimane

louis007471vn1

I just about swooned when I saw these photos of Louis Garrel. Can you say scorching? Between these and this clip of him from the movie Les Chansons d'Amour, I'm definitely smitten. *sigh*

Notes after A Sacred and Profane Poetry Reading*

I just got back from a reading at the Grace Cathedral and my head is still swimming with words. Not to mention, I'm also nursing a cold and terribly tired from a long day at work. But for some reason, certain words and phrases from the reading are stuck in my head, and so now I can't even go to sleep. Hence the scribbles. These will probably not make sense tommorrow (or ever), so consider yourself warned.

October. How I long for a break between seasons,
Or is it just transitions that I am wary of?
The slow quivering of this autumn night forces me to go forward
Though my mind keeps going back to the summer, and the summers
before that -- backfloating on a sea of turquoise glass,
the sure sting of salt on my tongue ---


*This poetry reading is a part of Litquake, San Francisco's annual week-long literary festival. You can see the full schedule here.

confession tuesday


Photo by Lisa Barber via {frolic}


Right this moment, I'm wishing for just a little more days where I can sit under the sun and enjoy a picnic with friends. Indian summer, please stay awhile. I'm not ready for autumn yet.

The sudden chill in the air + kids at work getting sick makes me feel a bit under the weather. I'm definitely stacking up on my Vitamin Cs because I tend to get sick during the months of October-December.

These shorter days are forcing me to "go inside" more, literally and figuratively. Its during these months that I get a lot of writing done. Walking amongst the fallen leaves will definitely inspire some introspection.

On the upside, my camera is back from traipsing all over India for two weeks (my cousin borrowed it) and I can't even tell you how happy I am! And um, also a little jealous that my camera got to see the Taj Mahal and I didn't.

Which reminds me, I meant to share that I had a haircut a couple of days ago and it is short. The shortest that I've had since grade school. It was just one of those random things that I decided right after work, I passed by this salon and said "Why not?" It was long overdue. They had cut 6 or 7 inches off and I think I look exactly the same like I did in 5th grade, its surreal. Or maybe I'm just not used to it yet. I'll take pictures of my new hair now that my camera is back and post them later.

How about you, any confessions and new things to share?

best friends

(for k.b.)

inside a bookstore,
she sits on a stool
skimming a book.

outside the window,
he waits on a bench
playing with his dog.

why i love rilke

Moving Forward

The deep parts of my life pour onward,
as if the river shores were opening out.
It seems that things are more like me now,
That I can see farther into paintings.
I feel closer to what language can't reach.
With my senses, as with birds, I climb
into the windy heaven, out of the oak,
in the ponds broken off from the sky
my falling sinks, as if standing on fishes.

--R.M. Rilke, translated by Robert Bly

* * *
One of my favorites of his. When the busy world tends to overwhelm me and I am groping for words, I read this poem and I am filled with so much hope. And the last line - oh, the last line is pure beauty!

i'd rather dance



With the recent Wall Street crisis, I thought we could all use a little inspiration from this lovely song. I also watched an old French movie this weekend called The Young Girls of Rochefort and one of the characters is a ballerina, so now I am loving all things ballet. You must admit, the dance moves in this video are precious!

something i've never done before


Fairfax-Bolinas Road is the most challenging two-lane automotive path in Marin. Viewed on Google Maps you see twists and turns that only belong in an MRI of your digestive tract. But even this is deceiving because it’s only in two dimensions. Fairfax Bolinas hugs the topography surrounding Mount Tamalpais so tightly that often you’ll exit a hairpin turn 20 or 30 feet higher or lower in elevation than when you entered the parabola – contending as much with up and down forces as with lateral g’s.
--taken from AudiWorld

Note to Self: Never drive on a road you don't know anything about without consulting Google Maps first. My head is still spinning thinking about all those blind curves and turns on this 20+ mile drive. Sure, there's a lot of breathtaking views along the way, but I'd rather walk, bike or let someone else drive here, thank you very much.

a little note

to the man strumming his guitar on Dolores Street:
a glimpse of you, sitting on the front
steps of a tall Victorian house
while I walk past up, up the hill
thinking, I could turn around and ask you
to marry me, or I could just let you be -

head bent, eyes closed, long fingers
poised on strings, one with your music.

friends

Thank you all for your kind words. I feel so blessed to have such good friends, both in the virtual and real world. I wish I could tell you what I'm going through right now but everything is still up in the air. Just know that I am truly grateful. There's nothing like the love of family and friends in these rough times.

Here are some candid shots taken from last weekend's get-together with my college friends. Looking at them now is enough to make me smile.



keep calm and carry on

.
Photo by Camilla Engman via sfgirlbybay

How quickly the winds of change blow. One minute I was having the time of my life, celebrating with friends, some I haven't seen in years, and the next minute I received a news that could potentially change my life forever. The last two days were spent taking deep breaths and trying to talk myself into staying calm when all I really want to do is curl into fetal position and stay there until someone tells me that all this is just a humorless dream I'll soon wake up from --

Say a little prayer for me, will you?

bike rides and a glorious sunday

I used to ride my bike everywhere when I was little. And this weekend, I rediscovered my love for biking when my friend Monica and I randomly decided to bike across the Golden Gate Bridge towards Sausalito. Here is a visual diary of our 9-mile ride.


We rented our bikes from Bike and Roll at the Fisherman's Wharf.


Biking along Chrissy Field, we saw children chasing kites. Such complete happiness in their faces.
I could stay there all day and just watch them play.



I may look excited here, but I can tell you that a part of me was a little nervous. I haven't biked in a long time, and to go from not biking to biking along the hills is well, kinda crazy.
But it was all worth it when we were already biking on the bridge. Too beautiful for words.


Here is Monica on the north side of the bay right after crossing the bridge.
This part of the ride has the most breathtaking views. And look at those little ducks in the water!



Our last stop: Sausalito. We had lunch at a seaside cafe and gazed across the water
towards the city and its hovering fog. Mostly we marveled at how we were able to bike
all the way thereand still made it in one piece. Then we took the ferry ride back home.


Sending warm and sunny thoughts your way,
~Odessa

just what the doctor ordered



Things are a little hectic right now and haven't had time to catch my breath yet. But I'm excited because I will watch this French movie tonight. And its Friday! Looking forward to spending time with one of my favorite people in the world and going to the beach on Sunday.

How are things with you? Any special plans for the weekend?

Photo via filmmovement.com