I am so out of touch these days. For all of you who've been concerned: I'm Okay! Really!
I miss writing here when I don't do it, but sometimes, real life takes over. At the forefront of my activities these days is my job search. Obviously, time is of the essence, and although I don't want to jinx anything, I may be headed back into the workforce very soon.
I have incredibly mixed emotions about rejoining the nine-to-five world again. One part of me feels the need for this structure and productivity and (most importantly) INCOME, but the other side wants to run into the woods with nothing but my dog and an internet connection. Okay, so let's be honest, I'd also need a generator for my blow dryer and a free standing shower. And my cell phone.
Okay, so the woodsy thing is a bad analogy.
As it is, I'm spending a lot of time just plain old unplugged, often with a beer in one hand and a pool cue in another. I've cut my hair (traditional bob that is very short in the back). I found some really cool cowboy boots by the side of the road that just happen to be my size. I'm obsessed with wearing them everywhere.
A generous reader of this blog made it possible for me to finally experience a few Lush products first hand and from what I can tell, it's all as good as it looks. Most notably, I've happened upon their Big shampoo. If you have fine, limp hair? You owe yourself a jar of Big. Trust me. I'm only slightly less obsessed with Herbalism, a facial cleanser I received as a sample. It's a little like washing your face with gritty guacamole with extra herbs, but the results are yummy, smoother skin that's not the least bit sting-y or irritated (quite a feat when you're as sensitive as I am).
During the glorious weather we enjoyed last weekend, I took a little trip with FurGirl to Giant City State park where we hiked a trail and spent time perched lazily on a high, smooth rock contemplating nature. I've said it before and I'll say it again, there are places in the Shawnee Forest that will make you swear you can't possibly be in Illinois and Giant City is one of them. The topography there is as far removed from flat, symmetrical rows of crops--what I at least associate with Illinois--as you can possibly get short of an actual mountain range.
After the hike, we came home by way of Carbondale in order to make a stop at the Neighborhood Co-op Grocery, the closest thing we have to a whole foods store in the region (as far as I know). I browsed through their collection of essential oils, tinctures, and herbs, all of which made me contemplate possible new Bizzy Fizzy scents and ingredients.
I took another side trip earlier this week to Murray, Kentucky to visit Jasmine, a Thai/Sushi restaurant that I keep hearing buzz about. Located in a strip mall on 12th Street, Jasmine definitely has the more upscale Asian look going on and the clientele was surprisingly, happily without the WestKY vibe I sometimes dread (probably due in large part to the college).
It was a lunch visit, but I nevertheless ordered up a big pile of food including Pad Thai, Tom Ka soup, and a shared sushi appetizer. I'm sorry to report that I found the Pad Thai so drowned in an overly sweet sauce (and nearly devoid of any other ingredients) that it was nearly inedible. The sushi, however, was perfectly acceptable and the soup...THE SOUP! Heavenly. I had only ordered a small bowl, but found it so delicious and perfectly flavored with lime juice and real live galangal root and lime leaves that I would have been more than content to have only ordered that and a huge bowl of it. Next time? I will order just that and be grateful it is to be found a mere 45 minutes from my front door.
After lunch, I took a drive down Olive Street in search of a little music store I used to frequent back in the eighties called Terrapin Station. I didn't have much hope of finding it, since it had been so many years since I'd visited. Back in those days, the shop was a comfortable groovy sort of out-of-the-way place in a little house in an older residential neighborhood. You could trade albums or cassettes and browse their eclectic collection in a fog of incense smoke.
And in fact, just as I suspected, Terrapin Station was no longer to be found on Olive Street. I was disappointed, but not surprised, and so I decided to just take a leisurely drive around town, maybe find a book store.
I made a few lazy turns in my usual disconnected reverie and was driving down a busier road when I noticed an older strip mall to my right that I turned into on impulse. I drove past a few stores and was contemplating my next move when I looked up to find myself directly in front of ...Terrapin Station (noise) in what turned out to be their new location which I've now learned is 920 S. 12th in the Bel-Air Shopping Center.
I sound calm about it now, but I assure you at the time, I was so surprised to have unknowingly driven directly from Olive Street to the new location utterly by accident that I nearly shat myself. After I got a hold of myself, I parked in the conveniently available FRONT ROW parking space the cosmos had clearly reserved for me directly in front of the store, and strolled in.
The new location is obviously larger and more commercial than the old, but the vibe was comfortingly the same: something Grateful Dead-ish drifting from the sound system, incense wafting from the back room, and a new staff of hemp clad hippies greeted me from the cash register.
Although they do still offer some record albums for sale, the Terrapin Station now trades primarily in CD's both new and used. Of course, they do sell tie-dyed tee-shirts and now offer a line of cool cloth purses made entirely of recycled materials and a small but astute collection of high quality new and used books. LOVE! I picked up a William Burroughs novel in honor of the occasion.
Otherwise, we are all here in Western Kentucky currently hunkered down in our homes trembling with fear that snowflakes MAY FALL from the sky AT ANY MOMENT. (Please note: they haven't yet despite dire predictions that the blizzard should have begun last night.) Nevertheless! Residents of the area are observing the law of the predicted snowstorm and continue to scour the shelves of local grocery stores in search of french toast ingredients: milk, eggs, bread in the Great Tradition. Don't ask me why. It would seem more reasonable to me to lay up a supply of nonperishable food items in case we are socked in until spring.
But hey! What do I know?