ciao bacalao

December 6th, 2018 § 0 comments § permalink

I started this blog in the summer of 2013, when I was making the transition from land to water, coming undone and floating away. It has been awhile because these past months have been consumed by thoughts of return, rooting and rebuilding. On land. Not so planktonic.

I left the boat in October, left Panama, started a new plan. Since then I have been in Florida, Georgia, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts and New York. I spent a week in a Buddhist temple, I participated in a 5-week writing workshop, raked leaves, and shoveled snow. I am seeking out friends and family for conversations, meeting the whole entire children that have been created since the last time we met. Catching up but also remembering who I am in their reflection.

Temple offerings, Kadampa.

Something happened out there on the boat where I lost myself, somehow ran out of me. It is hard to nail down what thats like with a tidy anecdote, I know it is still unfolding.

Neighborhood Print Shop, Braddock PA.

Right now I am in New York City, walking around, researching, writing, archiving, and working. In the next season, I will start on some new path which is still emerging. From the outside looking in, I should probably be freaking out, worried, stressed. But I am somehow feeling very calm, moving slowly but moving forward. I am held and cared for by friends and family – even getting a bit fat.

Wonton Soup.

One thought, a radical outcome from my time on the boat, my one message to you, dear reader, is to consider needing much LESS. When your needs are simple, they can be more simply met. Having your needs met offers freedom from fear. Imagine a version of your life with no fear.

Shell collection, NYC.

Like anyone, I have moments of late night rumination, I go on social media and immediately feel sick with envy. But for some reason – I wish I could see it more clearly, and maybe in time I will – for today, the sense of nourishment and gratitude is just MORE.

Documenting art collection, NYC.

Right now F is out on the boat alone with Beta the cat.  I am watching his dot, and getting to know the experience my parents have had, waiting for news, watching the weather. Shore team.

I am taking a beat and looking back on my time as a planktoneer. I have savored these posts, working on them, sharing them, and returning every once and awhile to remember. But after five years adrift, I am taking root…or becoming sessile? Like a barnacle?

home

July 5th, 2018 § 0 comments § permalink

I am home for the most patriotic of holidays and a cluster of July birthdays.  What a better time to test out a new lens (literal and metaphorical) on my hometown and family.  Here are some test shots of fireworks up on Mt. Washington with my folks!

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mi pueblo

June 15th, 2018 § 0 comments § permalink

Living abroad, I introduce myself in the following way…

Spanish speaking person:
Where are you from?

Me: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (phonetically spoken, “PEETS burr geh, pen seal BANE yah”). Do you know it?

Spanish speaking person:
This is the Steelers?

Me: Yes, also, the Pirates.

I rarely get into New York, Colorado, my stint in Texas, up and down the east coast, Italy, the boat… So many words. I don´t have all that vocabulary, and who has that kind of time? When I am being asked this question, I assume people are just looking for a general “what type of gringo are you” answer. Something that helps them know how to deal with me, not a dissertation on my journey through life.

I was in a market in a pretty remote area and I saw this guy across the checkout area with a Pirates t-shirt on. I was just smiling and waving him down like we were dahn the Iggle or something. (We were NOT. This was a stranger in a strange land.)

Nonetheless I went over and was like hey man, I am smiling because that shirt is from mi pueblo. Which, could be a confusing statement on its own, so I generously went on explaining about how the Steelers, Pirates and Penguins all have the same color combo – Black and gold! See? –  and how seeing that gear so far from home makes me happy. Either that story was a real stunner, or my new bud was just letting the clock run down until F got through the checkout and came to collect his girl. And you know, standing in silence with another person takes real grit.

F sees this – high key talking to strangers in combination with wandering off –  as a genetic trait passed on from both – BOTH, I say – of my parents.  In the simplest telling of the story, its just the way of mi gente.