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When I'm not here, you may find me wandering the pages below. (If I'm a regular visitor to your site and I've left your link off or mislinked to you, please let me know! And likewise, if you've blogrolled me, please check that my link is updated: thisroamanticlife.blogspot.com. The extra (a) makes all the difference!)

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Body: in sickness and in health

I won't lie; this body and I have had our issues with each other for many years. Body image -- sure. Physical and mental overextension -- comes with being a Type A kind of girl. I still struggle with these things, so they show up from time to time in my writing.

More recently, illness, pure but not simple, has added itself to the mix in a multi-system sort of way. And the challenges in figuring out exactly what's gone wrong are many. As problems have revealed themselves in the last few years, beginning with reactive hypoglycemia in late 2008, I've documented them here, partly to gain a little clarity on managing complex conditions but mostly to give voice to vulnerabilities I feel but don't normally share with anyone face to face. Better out than in, they say, right? (Oh yes, humor is one way I deal.)

The links below cover the different angles I've examined (and from which I've been examined) within that experience.

Travel: neither here nor there

When the person you're married to lives two time zones away, you log a fair number of frequent flier miles. And if you blog about commuter relationships, you log quite a few posts en route too.

Since we're no longer in separate places, I blog less often from airports. But we do travel -- together now! -- which is much more fun to write about. So in addition to thoughts on our years of commuting, the links below cover the places we've been as a pair and, in some cases, the adventures that have happened on the way.

Writing: the long and short of it

Why do I do it? Good question. Maybe it's not so much that I like to write but that I have to write, even when the words refuse to stick to the page. Believe me, I've tried doing other things like majoring in biochemistry (freshman fall, many semesters ago). Within a year, I'd switched to English with a concentration in creative writing and wasn't looking back.

After graduating, I taught English for a few years and then worked as an editor, which I still do freelance. In 2007, I applied and got into an MFA program at a place I like to call Little U. on the Prairie. I finished my degree in 2011 and have been balancing tutoring and writing on my own ever since.

The following links cover the writing I've done about writing: process, content, obstacles, you name it. It's not always pretty. But some part of me loves it, even when it's hard. And this is the result.

Heart: family and friends

I'd have a hard time explaining who I am without being able to talk about the family I grew up in as well as the people I've met beyond its bounds. But even with such context, it's not easy! In the simplest terms, I'm a first-generation Asian-American who has spent most of this life caught between cultures. That, of course, doesn't even begin to describe what I mean to, but there's my first stab at the heart of it all.

That's what this group of posts is reserved for -- heart. The essential parts of my life whose influences I carry with me, for better or worse. The links below cover what I've written as I've learned how these forces work within me, for me, against me, in spite of me. They anchor me even as they change me, and they keep life interesting.

Recommended reading

What do I do when there's too much on my mind and my words won't stick to the page? I escape into someone else's thoughts. Below is a collection of books and articles that have been sources of information, inspiration, and occasional insight for my own work.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Be careful what you wish for

About a week ago, D was commenting about how he missed snow and wanted some to make it feel more like Christmas was on its way (Seattle proper doesn't get much of the white stuff, if any, in the winter). Well, this morning, he kind of got his wish.

Actually, last weekend, he had a little taste of it -- just enough to give the trees a pretty dusting:


Fast-forward, though, to Wednesday night. A rather large weather system was predicted to dump about 10 inches of snow on the city by Thursday morning. Sweet, D thought, except for the fact that he was supposed to fly out Thursday afternoon. Hmmm.

So we hatched a plan. He'd get a ride to the airport in time for the first flight out to Chicago and try to go stand-by. His friend, who also had a flight scheduled for the afternoon, agreed to drive him. "You should just stick around and try to get out early," D told him. But his friend wasn't keen on the idea and went back home to sleep some more after dropping D off. D says the stars were still out, the sky perfectly clear, without a hint of any approaching weather.

A few hours later, his friend woke up to 6 inches of snow on the ground with more coming down without any sign of stopping. And the highways were closed.

Pan over on your imaginary map to the Midwest. At the moment, we're getting that fun phenomenon known as "wintry mix" -- sleet, snow, freezing rain -- which will glaze most of the area over the next 12 hours and make driving a big no-no. Flying too. D's connecting flight was already canceled hours before it was supposed to take off this evening. Fortunately, he managed to get a bus ticket to his final destination before the slippery stuff started accumulating, so he's safely at his parents' house now. Imagine, though, if he hadn't hopped that early flight ...

So the weather system that blanketed Washington and brought the first snowfall in 30 years to Las Vegas is scheduled to roll through the Midwest on Saturday. I'm now stuck deciding whether to brave iced-over roads tomorrow afternoon, once I turn in my grades, or to wait till Saturday to venture out in snow showers. Neither sounds good. Sunday has potential (still snowy, though less so), and Monday looks best (clear). But Monday's a loooooooooooooong way from this weekend.

I suppose more reading is in order ...

3 comments:

French Fancy said...

Oh I am so sorry to hear of your problem with the weather. How maddening for you and I agree, neither car journey sounds ideal for you.I hate driving in that sort of weather - I know most people do but then they are probably braver than me. It's the light as much as the road conditions- it just doesn't seem to suit my vision.

Anyway, I really hope you manage to get to your in-laws somehow and as soon as you can. Keep posting or I'll worry about you :)

Contemporary Troubadour said...

Hi there, French Fancy! I'm safe and all's well at the in-laws' place. Thanks for worrying about me -- hope you're getting nicer weather in your hemisphere :)

French Fancy said...

Glad you arrived safely. It's lovely sunshine here but quite cold - no snow I'm pleased to say :)

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Thursday, December 18, 2008

Be careful what you wish for

About a week ago, D was commenting about how he missed snow and wanted some to make it feel more like Christmas was on its way (Seattle proper doesn't get much of the white stuff, if any, in the winter). Well, this morning, he kind of got his wish.

Actually, last weekend, he had a little taste of it -- just enough to give the trees a pretty dusting:


Fast-forward, though, to Wednesday night. A rather large weather system was predicted to dump about 10 inches of snow on the city by Thursday morning. Sweet, D thought, except for the fact that he was supposed to fly out Thursday afternoon. Hmmm.

So we hatched a plan. He'd get a ride to the airport in time for the first flight out to Chicago and try to go stand-by. His friend, who also had a flight scheduled for the afternoon, agreed to drive him. "You should just stick around and try to get out early," D told him. But his friend wasn't keen on the idea and went back home to sleep some more after dropping D off. D says the stars were still out, the sky perfectly clear, without a hint of any approaching weather.

A few hours later, his friend woke up to 6 inches of snow on the ground with more coming down without any sign of stopping. And the highways were closed.

Pan over on your imaginary map to the Midwest. At the moment, we're getting that fun phenomenon known as "wintry mix" -- sleet, snow, freezing rain -- which will glaze most of the area over the next 12 hours and make driving a big no-no. Flying too. D's connecting flight was already canceled hours before it was supposed to take off this evening. Fortunately, he managed to get a bus ticket to his final destination before the slippery stuff started accumulating, so he's safely at his parents' house now. Imagine, though, if he hadn't hopped that early flight ...

So the weather system that blanketed Washington and brought the first snowfall in 30 years to Las Vegas is scheduled to roll through the Midwest on Saturday. I'm now stuck deciding whether to brave iced-over roads tomorrow afternoon, once I turn in my grades, or to wait till Saturday to venture out in snow showers. Neither sounds good. Sunday has potential (still snowy, though less so), and Monday looks best (clear). But Monday's a loooooooooooooong way from this weekend.

I suppose more reading is in order ...

3 comments:

French Fancy said...

Oh I am so sorry to hear of your problem with the weather. How maddening for you and I agree, neither car journey sounds ideal for you.I hate driving in that sort of weather - I know most people do but then they are probably braver than me. It's the light as much as the road conditions- it just doesn't seem to suit my vision.

Anyway, I really hope you manage to get to your in-laws somehow and as soon as you can. Keep posting or I'll worry about you :)

Contemporary Troubadour said...

Hi there, French Fancy! I'm safe and all's well at the in-laws' place. Thanks for worrying about me -- hope you're getting nicer weather in your hemisphere :)

French Fancy said...

Glad you arrived safely. It's lovely sunshine here but quite cold - no snow I'm pleased to say :)