Coast to Coast

F:  Where are you now and what are you doing?

L:  I’m at home in Cleveland sitting at the kitchen table.  Mom and David and I were hanging out for a bit but they both just went to bed.

F:  What are you most excited about in the next month?

L:  I’m most excited to have my days free to structure them however works best for me.

F:  Tell me about your day of travel. What made it so special?

L:  Oh man, what a day!  I flew to Cleveland via Charlotte and struck up a fantastic conversation with my seatmate, quickly realizing we had much in common.  It was super energizing.  Then in Charlotte my flight was delayed so I sat at a bar to have a drink and charge my phone.  Immediately this super eccentric older man on his way to the York Train Show came and sat down next to me.  Had I been in another mood I would have likely tried to avoid a conversation, but I’d just had such a good experience on the earlier flight that I decided to embrace it.  In the course of one beer he told me all about his thirty year career as a biology professor specializing in parasitology, his experience contracting malaria, the worst sunburn he ever had which he got mowing lawns as a young boy, an academic trip to Costa Rica in the ’60s, his current insect collection which includes hundreds of different types of butterflies and moths, and much, much more.  After he left I had a long conversation with this somewhat gregarious guy who was originally from southern Illinois and now lives in Cincinnati.  He was on his way back from a work trip to Las Vegas, and had won at the roulette table the night before.  He bought me a beer and hugged me when he left.  Then I went to the ladies room and the bathroom attendant complimented me on my hat and asked me where I was headed.  We ended up having a really sweet conversation about her upcoming trip to see her mother and her plan to retire to Fort Meyers, Florida next year.  I walked out of the bathroom feeling like my little heart could just burst with all the loveliness of humanity.

After almost five hours in the airport, my flight was finally boarding.  But when I got to the gate, something had gone wrong with my boarding pass and I was bumped off my flight.  I went to the customer service desk and was told that I might not make it out of Charlotte that night.  I was really trying to keep cool after having had such a delightful day.  Then the customer service agent asked me if I was an artist.  I said yes (why not; I took a painting class this summer).  Then I asked him if he was an artist and he also said yes.  I asked him what kind and he said he is a writer, so I asked him what kind of writing he does, and he said inspirational.  I asked him if he puts his writing out anywhere and he tells me to look up  Turns out he writes all about maximizing your potential and has published a book, “How Do I Reach My True Destiny?: 9 Principles for Authentic Living and Maximizing Your Potential.”  I told him that I’d just left my job of nearly eight years and that the timing was perfect, I will definitely be reading the book.  The whole thing felt surreal!

Roughly twelve hours after leaving NYC, I finally made it to Cleveland, and a day that might have been miserable somehow actually felt pretty magical.

F:  What are your staple items for fall?

L:  I have a black leather portfolio that holds a legal pad with all my life plans, ideas and to-do lists; it goes everywhere with me  these days.  I’m also back to wearing that pair of stretchy, black, high-waisted, acid-washed jeans I bought last year.  They are outrageously comfortable.  Other than that, I have been wearing slight variations on all black outfits almost every day, mostly because I’m not actually sure how I want to look right now.  Give me a week in Cleveland and I’m sure I’ll be adding more color to the mix.

F:  What do you do when you feel sad?

L:  Typically I cry, wallow and isolate.  Being around other people almost always makes me feel better but I find it hard to reach out when I’m upset, even when I know it would be beneficial.  When worse comes to worst, there’s always this 3-step course of action to fall back on.  It’s pretty foolproof.

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