Home again, I put on my boots to shovel the melting ice from the porch steps. The winter quiet and white light make me feel peaceful now, a contrast to the claustrophobia I was feeling a week ago. Stayed away long enough, I guess. Last night, on the bus, I couldn’t wait to be home to see the cat’s sweet faces and funny personalities. My house looked cozy and charming as well. Amazing what a week away will do. When I feel stuck here, I’m immune to the loveliness.
D. and I went to Miami this week, which seemed like a good idea at the time. We stayed at a beautiful hotel called the Setai, where they pipe in ambient music, all hours of the day and night, for the listening pleasure of European travelers and rich white men accompanied by half naked young women. The young women wander pool- side and beach in their high heels, designer bikinis and haughty expressions (in a more compassionate moment, I’d say they were pretending to be glamorous, play-acting). The men are nowhere near as attractive, but clearly have the cash, smug and privileged. D. seemed to enjoy it all, or would have had I not been sulking and complaining for much of the week. But really, come on. I can’t help it if I’m offended by the offensive.
Maybe I’m just unhappy everywhere. I don’t know. I try not to be. I love being with D. I love doing nothing with him. I love our quiet winter weekends in the Hamptons, but I’m uncomfortable in many situations. I know that’s true. Too thin-skinned. It’s always been an issue. He doesn’t tolerate my over-sensitivity well. I guess I can’t blame him. Or rather I shouldn’t, because I kind of do.
I like it quiet. I like to be around the people I like and love. I like to talk about things that matter to me. I like to go to museums and bookstores. I love to read and talk about books. Movies. I love them. Music. I love it, but I hate it too. I’m not a good listener to music that is meant to be background music, and I’m very judgmental about music I don’t like. But music I love, there’s nothing I love more. And playing music is a deep pleasure, a spiritual, emotional, soul soothing experience like no other.
I’m uncomfortable with small talk, with pretentious people. I don’t like the TV going all day in the background. It reminds me of being a kid. My dad watching sports in the den all weekend, room full of cigarette smoke.
In the right mood, I sometimes tolerate well all the things I don’t like. But I wasn’t in the right mood in Miami. I was in the wrong mood entirely. And I’m so happy to be home today in my imperfect old house, in this unpretentious town, Bailey leaning up against me as I type this.
(Happy New Year, my friends!)