Saturday, June 14
I kept the promise of an improved night’s sleep and managed to clock in just over eight hours, about an hour and a half more than what I had been getting during the work week. When I woke up, the sun was already strong and penetrating through my silk drapes. I stretched and felt great – no congestion, just clear and happy.
I went downstairs and made myself two breakfast tacos. I heated two corn tortillas over the burner and then divided one scrambled organic, free range egg between the two. I added a low fat Mexican blend of cheeses and topped with a roasted garlic and cilantro salsa. It made for a pretty good impromptu breakfast taco.
After, I cleaned the kitchen - not just the pans and dishes, but I cleared the counters and I scrubbed them down with Mrs. Meyer’s eco-friendly kitchen cleaner. I don’t know. I like cleaning. It’s a kind of therapy, the motions, the progress.
And then I began to plan out my weekend. Whether I would follow it through or not, it’s a little exercise I like to do, like making a shopping list or any other to do list that can rule my life. I am a list maker. I planned for the driving range and going over to the Oswego Boat House later. And then, for Sunday, I listed out going to church, perhaps going to a yoga class and then going to the Writers Dojo.
I changed into a pair of cargo Bermuda-style shorts and an Adidas golf shirt. I pulled out my Nike golf shoes from my storage closet out on the deck, and then with a huge smile on my face, I headed to my car with my clubs over my shoulder. I stopped by Starbucks and ordered a green tea latte with nonfat milk and a small botte of Naked Mighty Mango antioxidant juice smoothie. I drove to the Tualatin Island Greens Golf Center on SW Cipole Road.
I parked, put on my golf shoes and grabbed my bag and headed for the golf shop to buy a large bucket of balls for the driving range. When I made my way out to the mats, I was surprised to find a new friend of mine out there. I picked up my stuff and got settled in the spot next to his. It was nice to see a familiar face.
Anyway, I opened up my golf notebook and reviewed the drills I had pencilled in there last August and September when I took lessons at Trilogy Golf Course up in Redmond, WA. I adored my instructor, a great guy from Oklahoma. Anyway, he turned around my game. He fixed my grip, my swing and gave me all kinds of great drills customized for my game, to challenge me and to keep my swing in good shape.
I did the drills in my notebook and was pleased, over all, with my round at the range. This was my first time out since last September. I think I acquiesced from going to the driving range or golf course because I was afraid I’d mess up and wouldn’t be able to get my swing together, since it had been so long since my lessons up at Trilogy. Luckily, that wasn’t the case.
After my practice round, I went home, freshened up a little and drove over to the Oswego Lake House. It was so gorgeous out – a perfect blue sky, warm sun and so comfortable out I could have napped at my table. I brought my latest issue of Golf for Women magazine, my novel and my writing notebook. While I sat at my table on the deck, right along the edge of the lake, it occurred to me I should write an article for Golf for Women. I ordered a top shelf margarita on the rocks with salt, which was perfectly refreshing. I felt the sun on me, giving me a slight tan.
I ordered a medium-rare burger with no bun and since I couldn’t eat the side of fries, they substituted a side salad. It was okay, but I was still hungry. I had only consumed the two small breakfast tacos and the Starbucks beverages. I needed my sustenance.
While I was noshing on the burger, I flipped through Golf for Women. There was a story about a Spanish actress and model named Ines Sastre, who is my age (34). She’s unmarried, gorgeous and looks happy, healthy and well. She’s an avid golfer and has played in a number of pro-am and celebrity tournaments. She’s even won a few. It’s truly a great thing to see women my age not necessarily married or with kids or living status quo lives. It’s inspiring to see women like Ines living extraordinary, exciting lives – playing golf really well and just doing her own thing. I wouldn’t suggest that women my age who are married or mothers can’t have extraordinary lives - I just don’t relate to them in the same way.
Reading about this interesting celeb-golfer made me want to work on my game and possibly compete. I really need to play more often and I probably should have joined that women’s league I was introduced to a few month’s ago. Oh, well. I don’t think I was really ready to commit to that kind of play just yet. That doesn’t mean I cannot play toward a handicap. We’ll see.
I was still hungry and ordered a fully loaded baked potato and a small glass of Sonoma-Cutrer Chardonnay. And finished up with a ramekin of creme brulee topped with a few blueberries and raspberries and a coconut cream drizzled over the fruit. It was pretty good.
By eight o’clock I had finished editing a chapter of my book and I was ready to go home. I couldn’t get over how beautiful the evening was and how lovey the lake evolved as evening was coming to a close. I finished my water, payed the bill and left before the sun went down.
I segued over to Whole Foods at Bridgeport to pick up some groceries and then wandered over to the Borders. I picked up an anthology of William Stafford’s poetry.
When I got home, the movie The Notebook was on. The last time I saw it, which was also the first time, I was visiting my sister in Chattanooga. I was there for work, doing a three-city stint to include Atlanta and Birmingham. Anyway, I was very sad and, well, when my sister and I watched that movie on DVD, I couldn’t remember when I had cried like that - except for when my most recent ex had broken up with me. It’s not just the effect of a typical, sappy chick flick that makes most women (and supposedly even men!) cry. For me, it was different.
It was this painful pang of living a life of not ever having anyone love me the way the character Noah loved his Ally. I do know there are real love stories like Noah and Ally’s. It does happen – few and far between. But, as cynical as I have become, as cynical as some of my blog posts have at times been, I know this to be true. And watching this film, watching this love story unfold, my heart ached and broke all over again. I have loved almost to that degree just twice in my life. But, I don’t think I have ever been loved back like that. That devastates and worries me. And I was devastated by the same worry when I watched the movie for the first time with my sister. I lost it. And she comforted me. It might sound trite – but she knew exactly what I was feeling.
And there, I had realized my greatest lament and fear about love. I don’t want to end up with someone who just loves me fine. I want to find someone who loves me the way Noah loved Ally – so fully, so painfully that he couldn’t bear to ever lose her – ever. Not in their youth, not after their second reunion, and not in their elderly decline. But, I also want to feel that way about the love of my life, too. It’s not easy to find that, where two people feel that intensely and deeply for another. Few couples really shared that level of undying and unconditional love. Ally’s mother was a perfect example of a person who went the safe route, giving up her own opportunity for that kind of love.
And perhaps I had already lost my chance. I know I have certainly loved and ached for my ex more so than I have ever for another. I never fully understood my connection to him, only that I was deeply wounded twice by our two break-ups (once back in 2000, and then again in 2005). And so, when I turned the television on this evening and this film was on, I felt that sadness that hasn’t quite left. I imagined him, my ex. He has a remarkable likeness to Ryan Gosling, the actor who portrayed the young Noah. My heart broke all over again. Only this time my sister wasn’t here to comfort me.