Thursday, February 22, 2007

pause moments

i experience my own version of those ally mcbeal mental interruptions. qualifying criteria is usually that they are fairly random and nondescript, only noticed as they are happening.

fireflys playing their version of tag around the hedge at dusk.

seeing the white flip flop outlines over tanned, brown toes long after you have returned to wearing socks and "proper" shoes appropriate to the weather/time of year.

being 10 years old in saudi arabia, completely engrossed in 'the little princess' while your best friend from australia is reading her book at the other end of the couch and mugs of steaming hot, sweet tea sit on the coffee table.

driving in a vintage t-top corvette while the sun is setting over camelback mountain in phoenix, az and a beach boys song comes on the radio.

setting off on a long road trip, yawning and barely out of pj's because it's 5:30am and the sun hasn't come up yet, hot coffee is sloshing around in travel mugs in the central console, except it's almost too bitter to drink because the coffee:milk ratio is wrong. the streets and interstates are empty except for big lorries lumbering past with their brights on. bare feet are up on the dashboard leaving greasy toe prints on the window, and there's open road and unpredictable adventure and a long greyhound count ahead.

wal-mart at 2am (is there any other time?) trying to piece together a halloween outfit while checking out all the oddball patrons who look like they're modelling a sneak preview of their costumes.

having all of your favourite people together in one place, oh i don't know, like your brother's wedding for example. these are the ones who know you from the ugly duckling phase of your life and it feels like only yesterday except you don't have braces, giant glasses and a bad 80's perm, but they are more than willing to share all the stories (and photos) with your new favourite people.

the first time you make and eat s'mores around a camp fire at age 25, but you've read about it in stories since you were little.

seeing a NY policeman sitting in his car eating a doughnut.

pushing a supermarket trolley up and down the aisles with your sig. other picking out things to make for dinner like you're an old married couple, but the mundane is so much more meaningful than a "nice dinner out at a restuarant" where the waiter combs your tablecloth for crumbs between courses.

ordering chinese take away out of the flip top boxes for the first time (as you've seen them do on american movies) and settling into your pj's on the couch on a saturday night when most of the other people your age are coiffed and out propping up various bars, while you're watching a bad movie you picked out because it was your turn, even though you were cautioned it was going to be bad because you have a talent for picking them out.

random flowers picked and left for you to find (because you are told the sight of them triggered a thought of you) rather than a delivery "cellophane arrangement".

being at a halloween party that you feel rather uncomfortable and meeting someone dressed as charlie brown's xmas tree, immediately bonding with them over the sticky eyeball table decorations and you begin throwing them at the wall/ceiling/other guests to see what surface sticks the longest (which then starts an 'eyeball war').

having a sleepover campout on the living room floor between and 11 year old and 4 year old (who just drew you an awesome portrait to hang on your fridge) and when you turn the lights off the 4 year old rolls over, throws and arm over you, pinning you down while you try not to move or wake her up and wind up getting no sleep, but each time she moves she still manages to hold onto your hair, hook an arm through yours, or chuck a leg over your now "full at 4am bladder".

seeing size 5 pink flip flops parked next to size 14 "boy" flip flops by the front door.

camping in freezing october and making thin, watery hot chocolate and scalding your fingers on the hot tin mug. not being able to feel your toes, while you burn the plastic soles of your shoes on the campfire in an effort to defrost them.

anticipation as you rip open the plastic holding your crispy, but tasteless fortune cookie to see how right on its going to be again- in bed.

being 9 years old in saudi and walking through giant mud puddles with your jeans rolled as high as they will go (but never high enough) squishing gorgeous, gooey clay through your toes when you were expressly told not to because there might be broken glass in there.

going to the airport to meet your parents who have flown halfway round the world for your graduation and seeing your brother (who you haven't seen in 8 months and said he couldn't come) walk off the jet bridge.

sitting in your pj's at 10am, on the porch, on a weekday, in california, drinking a mug of coffee while watching a suburban neighborhood go about it's routine while 2 little girls terrorize their pet guinea pigs on the front lawn.

the sound of your first pair of expandable wonder woman roller skates on the tarmac in the empty parking lot, wondering why it is that the wind doesn't make you move and sail around effortlessly.

often it's the mundane and routine, but there is usually always someone there to witness it with you after you've elbowed bruises into them hissing "ooh! ooh! THIS is a pause moment!"

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