About Me

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Born in the US, raised on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus, lived in Italy, the US, and Canada. Lover of language, travel, colour, and the natural world.

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

On the eve of a new year

The sun is filtering into the sea-facing windows of my attic apartment on this chilly winter's day. It is falling in a long column over the window seat usually occupied by one of my cats, over the back and arm of a moss green velvet armchair on which one of my cats is currently napping, across the brightly coloured, hand-woven carpet, the antique wooden chest that is currently my coffee table, and across my lap where I sit here typing, a steaming hot cup of lemon, honey, ginger and cinnamon by my side.

Outside, the eaves of the historic building I live in are decorated in a heavy fringe of pale blue icicles, the front steps are slippery with a crunchy layer of ice, and the snow banks are turning an otherwise flat cityscape into one interrupted by tall mountain ranges that shift location and shape fluidly, as the snow ploughs mould a new and surprising landscape every night while we sleep.

It has been a long time since I last wrote a blog post. I have been eyeing my blog a lot lately, and trying to decide whether to re-immerse myself in the journey of presence that I began when I started this blog a few years ago, or to begin a new blog. I began it as a way to share my journey with friends and family all over the world, but also to help myself practice presence on a regular basis. When I started it in the summer of 2010 I was in California, volunteering at Soil Born Farms leading field trips for children and youth, and working on developing my writing. I felt uprooted and unmoored. I am an island girl. I gravitate to small, tightly knit communities, a slower pace of life and a daily intimacy with the natural world that I did not feel in such a large (albeit stunningly beautiful) state.

In December 2011, I decided to return to Prince Edward Island, Canada. I had been living here from 2004-2010 doing my Master's degree in Island Studies, and then farming and working on developing new markets for a group of local organic farmers. When I left it felt like the right thing to do, and when I came back, I was certain it was the right thing to do, but returning to a country in which I do not have legal rights brought with the need for a lot of sacrifices and hard work. After finally finding full time work in May of 2011, I have had to dedicate myself completely to my day job, which left very little time for blogging or writing of any kind. I have told myself that I started this blog to remain present in a place where I felt out of place, and now that I am home I am so entirely present that perhaps not writing is alright, but in truth I have missed this blog, and all of my readers tremendously over the last two years.

So I am going to give this a second try. Turn a new page with the start of a new year. There have been many adventures over the last two years, but instead of recalling the past, I think I will focus on the present and future. As I mention at the beginning of this post, I am living in a sweet little attic apartment that I am subletting from some friends. I am also caring for their two cats, Kitten and Miss Mouse. The building I live in is one of the oldest in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, and with that come lots of funky quirks that make this one of the most unique living spaces I have ever occupied. One of the perks of my current nest is that it faces the waterfront--a real treat. In the summertime I can look out and see the sailboats out twisting their sails on the shimmering water. At this time of year the water is frozen over -- a thick layer of ice and snow coating the harbour. In the evenings thousands of crows congregate on the ice. The contrast between the sooty bodies of the crows and the brightness of the ice is breathtaking.

Today is New Year's Eve. I live in the heart of downtown Charlottetown, and preparations are underway to ring in the new year despite the predictions for -34 windchill tonight. A friend who has an apple orchard is sending in lots of hot apple cider to keep those who do go out to brave the cold and take in the ice sculptures and street performers warm. I had planned to be among them, but unfortunately today I am sick, so instead I will be nestled in my cozy apartment sipping tea and dreaming about the year ahead.

I usually spend at least part of New Year's Eve looking through my journals from the last year, and making some plans for the year ahead. My plans usually involve colourful pens and diagrams, ideas, quote, dreams and sometimes drawings. Do you make a new year plan? What are some of your plans for 2014?

It is good to be back with you, friends! Here's to a happy and adventure-filled new year!