Monday, May 23, 2011


A friend surprised me with a gift card to a store that I frequent. Seeing that I had some free time today and a desire to update my swim suit since the latest one he refers to as "grandma" wear. I like tankini's, feel comfortable in them and normally buy them. I have a few and another suit that is worn, semi-transparent in areas, basically unuseable. Yes, a new swim suit sounded like a fine idea.
So, I found the nearest location and headed that way. I walked in and it was chaos. I asked the clerk to point me in the direction of the swim wear since they have many items to look through. As I perused the selection, a clerk approached me, handed me a bag to make it easier and offered to walk me back to the fitting rooms. All of this was good. No issues or delays.
When I walked into the fitting room area, again, I was greeted and assisted. Told that I could only bring six items into the dressing room at a time.
The first three bikini's were okay. Not that thrilled about some of the cuts of the top or bottom. The girl walked through and said, "Is there anything I can resize for you?"
I mentioned that I wanted to change out the items. We switched them out and I tried the on the new pieces. I kept waiting for the clerk, Sara, to return. She had made it a point to ask my name, give me hers and had been extremely helpful until I truly needed assistance.
I waited.
I heard her walk through and talk to other customers.
Finally, I poked my head out, made eye contact with a different clerk and asked her if she could find me a medium since I had grabbed two of the same size. She nodded and I closed the door.
Back to waiting.
Maybe only five minutes, but it felt like fifteen. I put my clothes back on and walked right into Sara.
Her words, "Oh, you are still here?"
I said, "Yes."
Her, "Oh, did you get everything you needed?"
"No," I said, "but I am unwilling to wait any longer. I am over it."
I walked out of the dressing room with a bra that I had selected and decided to walk through the swimsuit area one more time. I liked the top, but felt that I might be more comfortable in one that did not promise to add two cup sizes to my chest. Like I need that.
As I am walking through the area, a clerk approaches me with a top and says, "Aren't you the one that was looking for the top?"
I said, "Actually, it was a bottom, but I got tired of waiting."
She was surprised that I said it and looking back, I think she didn't know how to respond to my honesty. I did mention that I understood that it wasn't her fault, but I was unwilling to wait any longer. I was frustrated with the situation.
At this point, I decide to put the bra back and leave. Why am I giving them money when I am sure there are other locations that would be more than happy to assist me.
It reminded me of the scene from the movie, Pretty Woman, a little. I mean, I am not a street walker or anything like that, but perhaps out of place in this particular location and made to feel like it.
In some ways, I could have spoken up, earlier, let them know I needed assistance. In others, though, there were too many people to allow me to walk out of the store. Communication mishap.
I went to another location and had a completely different experience. No suit seemed right, but, when I am ready to buy one or a bra, I will return to that location. It is all subjective.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

sunday night meal

Sunday night dinner--pasta salad tossed with mint, tomatoes and peas.
Delightful. Initially, I had some concern over how it would go over with my friends. My friend's husband said--well, she might not like the cold pasta salad. You need to ask her.
Not the biggest affirmation of what I wanted to prepare. I took that into consideration and decided that I wanted to make it. If it was unpleasant, well, than, we could order pizza. I felt that we could make it work.
And, I tossed an arugula salad blend with celery, red peppers, tomatoes, onions and egg. If nothing else, the salad would satisfy them or so I tried to convince myself. I am not that picky of an eater. I will pretty much try anything. Well, outside of liver and onions. I will never prepare that, myself, or order it in a restaurant. Undesireable. My parents forced us to learn to eat what was placed in front of us at the dinner table. I remember trying to complain that I wanted a plain cheeseburger. My mom, turned around, looked at me and said--just wipe off the onions and ketchup. You will be fine. We are not waiting for you to get a plain cheeseburger. Deal with it.
Yes, I would make it work. Pasta salad and a green salad. Simple, summer fare.
And, honestly, I was tired from my weekend. Too much play and not enough sleep. I wanted to make something that I could do with little outside direction. Yes, pasta salad would be perfect.
It worked and I know that the next meal, I want to go more extravagant to up the ante. I want to expand my culinary knowledge. Not only do I benefit but so do my friends.
We dined at a local place, last week. I had been there before and had a few nice meals. Nothing spectacular or over the top, but consistent. I agreed to go and knew that the meal would be pleasant. For the first time, I was extremely disappointed. My salad was awful. It was supposed to be mandarin oranges, avocados and greens. Mostly, the avocados were a disgrace. I was surprised that the kitchen manager would allow the salad to be sent out. I made a point to put the brown slices to the side, hoping, that maybe the server would take notice. She didn't.
This is now on my boycott list of places. I am tired of dining out, spending money on crap meals. Especially when I know that I can prepare the item better. Do you ever feel like this?
I will stick to my intention of expanding my knowledge. There is always room to improve, every area of life, right?

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


Productive day or that is what my horoscope predicted.
In many ways, I would agree. This is a productive day--running, appointments, yoga and meeting my friend later to celebrate her new vehicle. She used to be a toyota girl. As long as I have known her she has been a loyal customer. I met her in Tampa, three years ago, and we drove back to Phoenix in her newly purchased Forerunner. I am all for a roadtrip any day of the week. Roadtrips inspire and enable discovering interesting convenience stores and restaurants. We stopped in New Orleans which was the highlight of that particular trip. For her, not so much. She felt it was unsafe and remained uncomfortable the length of our stay. While I would have loved to drive from New Orleans to Phoenix, nonstop, been given the opportunity. Instead we spent a night in Dallas. Just is not the same charming city that New Orleans is. Too new/spread out. I prefer the established restaurants and old world charm found while exploring New Orleans. She has family there and so we spent a night in catching up with her sister and nieces. From Dallas we drove (forever it seemed) back to Phoenix. Our initial thoughts of stopping in New Mexico fell apart when her husband was unable to fly standby out of Dallas. Our first thoughts of road trip was to spend a few days as a girls' trip. When her husband could not locate a convenient flight, we chose to continue the trip back to Phoenix.
Regardless, she stepped out of her comfort zone and bought an Audi SUV. On cloud nine since she found this car. It took awhile to get all of the paperwork, in order. Not to mention they had to order this particular vehicle. Beautiful, luxurious and an upgrade from the Forerunner, for sure. I like all of the bells and whistles. I don't think that I will ever own a vehicle this nice. I will stick with Veronica. She is a great car for me.
Anyways, I know she wants to celebrate this car and so we will find a place later. Prior to that celebration, I will return to the practice of yoga. It is very welcoming to me. I feel at ease and peaceful. Calm, even, I suppose. It is helping putting things in perspective. Yes, yoga is excellent.
I went for a quick run, utilizing this cooler weather. I was thankful that I had held onto a few long sleeve tech shirts. This weather screams to be utilized and enjoyed. Glad that I opted to go even if it was brief. Long run is manana! Focus on that prospect tomorrow and hope that the weather holds.
Enjoy your day however you choose to spend it--being productive, day drinking or neither of my suggestions.

Monday, May 16, 2011


My last visit to Mexico and my friend, Derek, finally introduced me to this amazing eatery. Up til this point, I had dined at their home, their bar and some other tourist spots. I yearned for street fare and made a point to tell him and Jonny that I was interested in tipico fare. I enjoy tourist spots, but prefer the traditional food.

After a day of kayaking, ATV'ing, beachside life, we made our way to Padilla. Excellent. A definite highlight to my visit to Rocky Point.

I returned for another brief stopover. Jonny said I can visit whenever I want. I don't know if he knows this about me or not, but I really believe what people say. If they offer to let me stay, indefinitely, or visit, frequently, I most certainly will. I love traveling, visiting friends and checking out restaurants.

I e-mailed Jonny, mentioned that I wanted to visit and made arrangements to head south. The first night we hang out in his bar and catch up with his friends. We make plans to golf, enjoy the sand rail and beach. The only thing I really had in mind was another day at the swim bar. I thought it was a great concept and a spectacular way to cocktail and enjoy the pool.

After golfing and no my game did not improve much, we chose to go out to dinner. Jonny knew that I was not a fan of this one particular tourist spot. I had been vocal about it the last time around. Imagine my surprise when he suggests this spot in front of his friends that do like it. From our previous conversation, I knew that he was not a fan either.

I couldn't believe that he would suggest the place knowing that I abhorred it. Thankfully, I was able to kibosh the idea without too much negativity being thrown around. Instead, I mentioned that I really wanted to return to Padilla. When I went with Derek we got take-out. We sat at the bar, watched the lady compose the burritos and hand us the finished product.

This time, we sat in the restaurant. The server spoke to us in spanish and we muddled through our orders. We drank a hibiscus juice drink and thoroughly enjoyed the burritos. Delicious is all I can say. I loved the condiment tray. I hope to return for another meal. I really love Padilla.

And, my friend's friends also enjoyed the food. Grateful, for that, so that next visit, we can dine there instead of some tourist inspired restaurant.

June is the intended next visit. There is a show to see and more street fare to discover. Onward and upward, I say.

Saturday, May 14, 2011


Yesterday, I chose to walk back to the hood than drive. Trying to be as active as possible, I convinced my friend that five miles in 100+ heat would be stimulating for me. I wouldn't die and I would enjoy the experience.
She only caved in when I told her I had mace.
She had some reservations but dropped me off about five miles from the house. She pulled over, I got out, and then almost immediately, a green Tahoe pulled over.
I crossed the street trying to figure out what the Tahoe was doing. I continued to walk and my friend drove up next to me. Neither of us could figure out what the Tahoe was doing as we watched it pull away. She drove me to the next major intersection since I insisted that I would be fine. I agreed to text her when I was home.
From here, I walked by several farms and multiple dogs that were protecting said properties. Beautiful, glorious day and I was very thankful for the opportunity to enjoy it in the way that I saw fit. Sure, I was hot, gritty, tired when I got home, but also extremely grateful for the time to myself to reflect, consider, contemplate life.
I think I should incorporate a daily walkabout in addition to the yoga, running, hiking. I benefit from all of it. Maybe try to go earlier since than the weather is not such a deterring factor. I am getting more equipped at dealing with the stray dogs, too. Yesterday, I watched one dog burrow under a fence to chase after me. Awesome.
I stood my ground, yelled, and then the dog had no interest in me. Stood there with nowhere to go. His mates were inside the fence and I was no longer considered a threat.
Yes, I am adjusting to the daily walks.
Last week was a complete wash--no running or walking outside of to/from the golf cart. I attempted another 9 with little success. I did have two clear shots that made me proud. Two of I don't know how many. After that I became the "mud queen". My sandals were off and since my golf ball ended up in the water, I became the designated fetch person for my friend's golf balls. It felt like clay and was the color of shale. I think I made five jaunts into the sipping bowl of golf balls. I definitely looked the part of mud queen after that.
I think I earned the nickname pack mule at some point, too. Mexico adventure would not be complete without me being mocked.
I think it all started when I told my friend, Jonny, about my recent flight where this guy chatted me up the entire flight. He told me about his life, his work history, exercise regime, kids. He asked me my name and I told him.
After two hours of conversation, we parted ways. His last words to me were--Destiny, it was really great meeting you.
Really? Destiny, hmmmm....I thought it was funny. I retold my friend, Jonny, and he said, well in Mexico, that will be your name. From this point he introduced me as Harmony, otherwise known as Destiny in Mexico.
Fun times are always had on visits to Mexico. The exercise regime sort of is tossed out the window. Next time, I will rectify it. Run, golf, run, enjoy beach and tranquil lifestyle. Maybe attain a new nickname. Anything is better than packmule.

Friday, May 13, 2011

currently, in my life....

Excessive behavior...ouch!
Yesterday started out in the "right" way. I went running, made some calls, took the dogs for their mid-afternoon walk and then planned the night's meal.
Instead of walking to the nearest market, I chose to walk. Not the brightest move seeing that it was freaking ridiculously hot outside. I carried ample water and set out. I thought the market was three miles away. Nope, try 4 1/2, one way. Gatorade eased the walk back. Yea for G2 and that it was on sale.
By the time I returned, I was hot, dirty and had two blisters. I don't know how that happened since I wear these shoes on a regular basis. Yet, I am now the proud owner of two blisters on my heel.
About a 1/3 of a mile from the house, I notice two unattended dogs. These particular dogs are always out on the loose, roaming, the neighborhood. It is obnoxious that the owner is so negligent. One of the dogs is a pitbull and the other; well, I haven't gotten close enough to determkne what type of attack dog it is. Apparently, the dogs are there to protect the property of the owner. He doesn't seem to care if his dogs get out or not. He just wants to make sure that no one gets in.
My friends have two akitas and the last thing I want to encounter on our walks, are these two particular dogs. Yesterday I was plotting a way to avoid the dogs and make it back safely. I spilled water all over my purse and felt defeated. Hot, blisters, possible dog attack. I had seen better days in that moment.
I managed to elude the dog's notice and returned safely. Shower felt heavenly and my positive mood returned. Turned on music, opened wine and made a lovely dinner. Initially, my friend was hesitant about my entree selection--tortellini tossed with numerous berries, scallions, greek yogurt, garlic and mint. Perfect summer type of meal.
I think I could improve the meal by letting it sit/stew/meld flavors. Next time, I will remember. My friends liked the meal and I believe they would enjoy it at a later date.
Yes, yesterday was a great day inspite of my brief breakdown of negativity. Heat will do that to me. On my run, I had a similar experience. Started out awesome, but then, it was too hot and I wanted to stop. I didn't, but I could have went farther. Must get up earlier to enjoy a peaceful, fulfilling run. Manana.
I feel great about the present. I am happy to be exactly where I am. Happy Friday!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

thoughts of today

Running enables clarity.
Last week, I took a brief hiatus. Mexico. That is all I am saying. It was easy to find justifications as to why I could put it off until the next day. Four days later and still not one successful run in. Fail.
Very wasteful. I was two blocks from the beach and from my previous visit, I was familiar with a route that I enjoyed. Yes, definitely wasted an opportunity to run and enjoy beauty. Next trip for sure.
Moreover, I fell down a few stairs and now have a gigantic bruise on my right hip. The night it happened, I blocked it out. Insisted I was fine and enjoyed the rest of the evening. The next morning I woke up and my first thought was--wow, I slept terribly on my hip.
Got up, walked around and saw the bruise. Since then, I have been sleeping poorly trying to adjust to the hip factor. Naturally, I sleep on my right side. I try to lay flat or sleep on my left hip, but it doesn't work for long. I wake up, realize that I am sleeping on my right side and try to stretch out the hip without creating too much stress on the side.
Yes, sleep has been interesting the last six days.
I think I have tweaked my hip through overcompensating for the pain. I feel a smidgeon of hip tendonitis. My friend suggested a chiropractor. I would love to see her chiropractor but know it is a question of stretching not adjusting. I am not physically out of alignment. I need to stretch. I experienced this similar injury last July while beginning training for the Vegas Marathon. I suffered through the lopsideness of walking til I could no longer stand it. I booked a massage, hoping, that that would ease the tension.
Finally, I sought out a chiropractor to hear the words--this is question of stretching. Your tendos is too tight. I cannot adjust you. I can show you how to stretch. Here, this is what you do.
As such, I am taking a day off from running and seeking out a yoga class instead. I miss yoga. I think I will greatly benefit from the class. Spiritually and physically provide more clarity of the present moment.
I feel fantastic. Finally released some emotions from my past. I do feel fantastic. I choose happiness.
Quick side note...I love the show Glee, even before it became mainstream/popular. Last night's episode was great. I was thrilled that they brought Jesse back for an episode or two. Great song between he and Rachel.
Yes, I genuinely choose to be happy today.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

happy birthday, JENN!

I feel better. I do.

I feel peaceful in my life and continue to be thankful for my amazing friends. As such, I want to wish my friend, Jenn, a very happy birthday today.

I hope it is excellent. Enjoy the dip duo at CCG or have a glass of Rapture. You deserve it!

In other news, I have managed to kick start my running again. My venture to Mexico, albeit brief, halted my training. I had every intention of going, but somehow, managed to find excuses to altogether skip the necessary activity.

Beautiful day, clear skies and possibilites are boundless. Celebrate and enjoy!

Acceptance or forgiveness, I suppose.....

I would like to believe that people change. Some do. Most don't.
Yesterday, I reached out to someone that has hurt me in a way that only few people are capable of. I had avoided contact--phone--for over two years based on an incident that occurred. It was extremely painful to get past. Still, I would send christmas, birthday and other appropriate cards to acknowledge this person's presence in my life.
I had talked to my sisters, friends, other family about it and how I felt that I couldn't allow the pattern to repeat. Basically, it goes like this--huge fight, no contact except for maybe hate mail from both sides, finally we must confront each other due to familial obligation and then she acts like nothing happened. Move forward, do not talk about what happened. Huge fight. Repeat cycle.
In the past, sure, we have done this. It seemed easier to live in this. However, as I get older, I realize that this is not the relationship that I want. I do not want to be guilted into anything or manipulated.
I had sent her a card with photos. Two years is a long time to not talk to someone that helped shape your thoughts, mold your belief system and teach you the beginnings of love. I sent her photos of me and two of my sisters. I knew that she hadn't seen the three of us together in some time due to the fact that it seems we only see each other once or twice a year.
She called me to thank me for the photos and left a message. While I am in Mexico, I turn my phone off and have no access until I return to The States. So, I missed her call until I returned.
I felt ready. I did. I miss her.
I called and she seemed relieved to hear my voice. Initially the conversation was pleasant but I could tell that she was not going to addess the incident from two years ago. Instead the focus would be on the photos and perhaps my current state in life. Eventually, she said--well, I really don't know what else to ask you.
At this point, I could have concluded the conversation. It would have enabled both of us to leave the conversation alone. The cycle would have continued.
In six months, something else would happen to halt our communication, again. I was unable to let it go. I said something along the lines of, I was hoping we could talk about the last time I saw you.
From there, the conversation became a colossal waste of time. I think I started seeing red, my blood was boiling. I became furious and sad. Really sad knowing that she won't change. She is what she is and I know this from experience. I should leave it at that.
What I am learning is that I cannot change her or have any expectations of what our relationship should be. Right now, we don't really have much of one. I love her and likewise. I just cannot continue with what she is offering. Glossing over some really awful words and not apologizing.
This is her.
I am letting it go. I must release the negativity in order to move forward. I tried. I did. I cannot change her. I can only accept that this is what it will continue to be.

Monday, May 9, 2011

This is the story I told.....

Last week, I opted to visit my friend in Mexico, again. He seemed lonely and in need of a positive force of sunshine. Or as I would like to think I can be at times.
So, I descend on his life. I show up with little notice and take over his guest bedroom. Sun, beach, beer, rum...yes, life was grand. His friends invited us over to dinner at their house in Choya Bay. Gorgeous home. I completely understood why they sold their home in Arizona to relocate to paradise.
We opt to view the sunset from their deck. I am almost obsessed with capturing that experience on a daily basis. Regardless we climb the spiral staircase to the balcony and view the awesomeness of the sunset.
Eventually, I realize that I should head downstairs to use their facilities. Big sandals, cocktails imbibed, narrow staircase lead to what happened...I fell three steps (at least). I stand up, insist that I am fine and continue on with the night. Really, I blame it all on the sandals. Alcohol was a small factor (in my mind).
The next morning, I wake up, and am super stiff. I feel that I slept poorly on my hip, forgetting the tragic fall. In my mind, the hip issue was attributed to my decision to sleep on my side.
I shower and still pain persists. Finally, I decide to look at my leg.
OUCH...holy cow, is there a gigantic bruise from my fall on the steps.
Yet, this is not the story I retell.
Instead, I let people assume the worst of my friend, Jonny. He is more than happy to suggest that he smacked me for disobeying his crazy whims. He actually insists that I show people my bruise so they know he means business. He claims that if I don't do his laundry, tomorrow, he will hit the other side.
If only, I had a photo to illustrate the bruise.
We went to a swim bar and these two couples saw me walk away., that is some bruise on your back....what?
I was confused. I thought they saw the bruise on my leg.
Nope. I had a crescent shaped scar on my back as well. I feel it is necessary for them to view the bruise on my leg to fully understand the fall or Jonny's abuse.
We do a shot with this foursome and depart.
Two days later, I run into them at the Chili Cook off with Jon's roommate, Derek. I think it confused them. I realize that if I was out with one of the guys, immediately, the assumption was that I was "his" girl. Why is this a normal practice? Can't single men and women be friends?
Seriously, everywhere, I went in Mexico, I had a "chaperone" of sorts. To me, it was nice to have someone to talk to. To others, it appeared that I was spoken for. Very confusing to split my time between guys or so it appeared based on people's expressions in the community.
Or, perhaps they were confused by who actually gave me the lovely bruise on my right hip. Sometimes it is fun to give people something to talk about.....

Monday, May 2, 2011

eggplant delights

Successful Sunday dinner #2.
Penne pasta with eggplant tomato puree. I think the mint was a wonderful addition to the recipe. It added a lovely hint of brightness to the dish.
I doctored the recipe by adding more garlic and tomatoes. I am a fan of eggplant, but I wanted the dish to be more colorful. Plus, garlic always makes me happy. I think I could have added more and it wouldn't have offended any of my friend's palettes.
I tossed a basic green salad with a mustard vinaigrette. Cucumbers and tomatoes added texture and it suited the meal nicely. Salads are always a welcome addition to my creations. I figure if the entree lacks, at least, we can fill up on salad and wine. Never forget the alcohol factor. Always an asset if meals are heading south. Instead of ordering a pizza, drink more wine...
Last night, we drank a bottle of Powers Cabernet. The other day we discovered this wonderful bottle of wine while enjoying happy hour at a local wine bar. The bartender suggested this wine since it was new and she had just sampled it. She mentioned the name and that it was from Columbia Valley.
Immediately, my friend realized that it was her in-laws winery. She asked to see the bottle and then called her husband to confirm it. Since then I have drank the wine on a few occasions. It was a lovely addition to our meal. I keep pushing for them to reach out to their relatives to secure a few cases of wine. That could sustain us for a few more Sunday meals.
Originally, I thought I would cut up pineapple for dessert. That idea got lost in the mix of wine and conversation. Next time, I will execute a dessert as well.
Overall, I am happy with the turnout of meal #2. Onward and upward, I say....