Saturday, June 19, 2010

The Sun Sets in the West

This is why I don’t go outside! I got to the place where I was singing tonight and my mic was set up in the front of the tent facing the crowd – and the sun! It was glaring directly into my eyes for an hour. I was dripping wet from the sweltering 90 degree heat and even a pair of sunglasses couldn’t stop the rays from closing my eyes tightly! I was trying so hard but I was getting really frustrated. The crowd was so appreciative though…from what I could see. After the first set, the sun went down behind a building and all was well again. The cobblestone sidewalk that I was dancing and singing on was reminiscent of the streets of Italy. Yes! It was there that I learned that cobblestone walks and strappy sandals are not exactly a great match. I would’ve loved a pair of sneakers about then – tonight was no different!

I danced and sang as I peered through the courtyard to a bridal party from a wedding in a nearby banquet hall. (yeah…we all know that I have been doing this so long that dancing and singing are second nature! All of a sudden the night will be over and I don’t remember singing anything!) One girl was standing outside in a full-length satin gown with a huge tattoo on the back of her neck with a cigarette in her hand. I thought that seemed strange because I didn’t think that people smoked anymore in this day and age but I suppose that if you’re going to get a tattoo and put on a strapless dress without using a serious amount of coverup, or at the very least a shawl, a cigarette was the perfect accessory to compliment the ensemble! I figured that all that was left for her to do was spit on the ground now. I dismissed the thought and continued singing. Our crowd was drinking heavily. There’s nothing like a hot summer evening, a cobblestone walk and a drunk guy dancing in front of me with a cigarette and a beer spilling over the side of the plastic cup and down his arm as he points at me in a flirtatious fashion with his cigarette hand, that says “ah this is the life!” I can never figure out why guys become so disheveled and point to me? It’s possible that I should start drinking. Possibly there’s an insider view that I’ve been missing all of these years that would become clear if I joined them in the fun! Oh well…not this night I guess. I’d hate to have made it all these years living a healthy lifestyle and then make a conscious decision to become an alcoholic in my 30’s. Of course that’s exactly what would happen if I started to drink now. There is no such thing as moderation in my life….Just then, my thought was interrupted by the bridal party girl across the courtyard as she was being carried out with her head between the legs of her beautiful dress, throwing up as her friends walked her slowly to a vehicle. It was only 45 minutes into the reception! I felt a little badly that I had been wrong about her before! She definitely wasn’t what I had judged her to be! It goes to show that sometimes we make rash generalizations about people from their actions or outward appearance that may not be fair! If only someone would’ve seen this coming!…My mistake!

The evening drew to a close and my feet were officially done. I wondered if there were only a certain number of bounces that a pair of feet could withstand before they had to be retired? I had definitely not been told how many that was exactly, but I was quite sure that I had reached that number tonight. It’s too bad really. You would think that these bodies of ours would come with an instruction manual with a warning on certain parts that will wear out before others. Who knows though? Maybe mothers are issued those instruction manuals in the hospital before they bring us home as babies but they lose them along the way in all the clutter of raising us. I think that when I have my children, I’m going to keep that book with the baby’s hair from her first haircut! That manual seems far more useful than this hair that I have sitting in a drawer from 35 years ago that no one has any idea what to do with.

Table of Contents:

I. Shelf life on feet and knees on your new baby 
a. expected for human who isn’t a gymnast or a dancer – lifetime
b. expected for gymnast or dancer- 37 years

II. What to do when your baby daughter brings home a narcissist in her teens

a. Convince her to marry him when she’s 18. She’ll long be divorced from him in time to meet someone nice and have a life! Just make sure she stays in school along the way! 
Oh well! I suppose there isn’t any instruction manual for life and human nature. That might be what makes it interesting. Besides, how many of us have actually gone back and written one in hopes that people who come after us won’t have to learn the same lessons we have had to learn? For the most part, anyone who would benefit from it would need to write her own anyway. People are so stubborn that way! Maybe that’s why we’ll all be in a retirement home playing video scrabble one day in silence as we sit next to each other and text our thoughts and lol’s to the person next to us! “u cant walk? Lol? Feet only last for 60 years. Didn’t any 1 tell u that?”…nope…lol…

Life is a journey. We jump around, fall down, get up, fall down, have children, they jump around, fall down, get up, fall down…With all of the ups and downs, we’re just lucky to survive it as long as we do! Possibly all of the falls help us to grow and work to protect us from more of the bad stuff so we end up with nothing but good in the end. I’m pretty sure that must be the case. One thing remains true: The sun always comes up in the morning and then at the end of the long day, sets in the west!