Yes, I am looking at from Zero to 57 spanning the month of April 2011. From hating the idea of blogs and such, to finding (1) it makes me write and (2) I find the use in restarting my freelance creative life a plus. I’ll also have two weeks of downtime later in the month (schools on Spring Break), so it’s good for mental health as well.
The reason for 57 above? In the month of April, between this blog (for the writer/ storyteller part of me) and my more Teaching Artist/performance blog BornStoryteller, I will be writing a total of 57 blogs: 26 here (one for each letter of the alphabet) and 31 on BornStoryteller, one for each day of the month. Will I do it? Will I forget and drive myself crazy…well, crazier? May 1st will tell the tale. Not even sure how I’ll use this yet: just stories; poetry/song lyrics; journaling; true stories; just not really sure what.
So…the letter A: Alexandra
Alexandra was one of those that got away, that I long for now, knowing if we really gave it a shot..I would still have no idea how it would have turned out. Got away, ran away, pushed away, never really was in the way? As above, not really sure, now. Infatuated? Definitely. Love, yes, but still never sure how much. Intrigued by and pulled towards and maddened by and longed for and lusted for…yes, yes, yes, yes..and, oh, yes.
One summer night…Alex was off to the wilds of New England to spend a good part of the summer at a camp. Musically gifted, this was her world she was entering, one specifically for those with real talent and passion, of which she had in full. Gone already for a week or two, this young lady I talked to often, saw not as often as liked, was MIA.
Around 11pm, just off an ice cream binge with my friend Sam (who, btw, introduced me to Alexandra..Alex..Ai) and I were leaving the Howard Johnson’s. Bored, awake, and both of us antsy, we decided then and there to get in the car, drive up to the New England camp and find her. Now, this was way before cell phones, GPS, or all that. We had a map, a name, and some money in our pockets. Off we went.
The drive up was uneventful. Sam & I did our usual talking, goofed around, sang badly to the songs on the radio, got lost a few times, but never once did we talk about what we would do when we got to the camp. That discussion came later.
Hours later, we drove into the town that grounded the area the camp was located. Almost out of gas, we drove around a sleepy, roll-up-the-sidewalk-at-6pm little town, looking for an open gas station. Luck on our side, we found the ONLY place open at 2 something in the morning: a gas station. Filling up, and asking any final directions, we made our way to the camp.
It was an absolutely calm summer night, clear skies, moon shining bright, and not a car on the road except for us. We found the camp, pulled over on the opposite side of the road, got out.. and just stood there. Somewhere, inside one of the shadowed, darkened buildings, under a very starry starry night, was the object of my quest. My Pancho to my Don Quixote said: “So, now what?”
We wound up by the car for quite awhile, talking, looking in silence, and some deep heavy sighing (most, if not all, from me, I’m pretty sure). Whatever bravado or knuckleheadedness that drove us out there, it left as we just stood and stared at the camp. The chicken side of me took over completely. We got in the car and drove off south, back to New York.
There were some other adventures that night, but I’ll save them for another blog letter, maybe.
Alexandra came back to NYC, we saw each other here and there, talked a lot on the phone, and I felt drawn to her when we were together over the next few years, and distanced myself at times (there was an age difference that at times became my own built in barrier). I know we had some excellent times together, I know I let her down more than once, and most likely hurt her (for which I am always so sorry about), and I know we had a love/need/want for each other. Well, I know it from my end.
The letter A: Alexandra. Alex. Ai.