Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Old vs. New

Sorry for the slow posting as of late, I've been busy working on a couple projects that I have in the works and which I hope to show you more of in the next few weeks! Both of them involve working with my hands (and sadly for this little apartment, making a fair amount of mess) and so there has been much lounging on the couch stitching or drawing. I'm also quite behind on responding to comments, but I promise to get to it this week! We finally got some much needed rain this weekend which made it much easier to want to do....anything really. Working on projects, walking to do errands wearing cardigans (!!) and heading over to North Vancouver for the final Under The Volcano festival. The entire city was cloaked in a fog over the weekend and watching it settling around the mountains from Cates Park was pretty magical. Sitting on the damp ground, everything smelled like forest and everywhere you looked was so lush and green. It was an inspiring place to be, not only physically beautiful, but to be surrounded by a gathering of people who were fighting so strongly for, and also celebrating the things they believe in. There was an amazing sense of community and passion that was really infectious. It felt good to be there, soaking it all in.

We're constantly doing things here and there to get ready for our move back home (which is approaching at a terrifying speed), and I'm thus constantly finding myself swinging back from being really excited to leave and really sad to leave. As I was sitting in the yellow school bus that shuttled us out to UTV on the weekend I was thinking a lot about the old me vs. the new me. It's a bit of a silly idea, I mostly don't think there's an old or new me as of course when you're living it growing up and changing is a fairly organic experience. In saying that, the me that lived in New Zealand a few years back would have driven over to North Van on the weekend whereas I haven't driven a car in years. When I first moved in with Richard, I could not believe that I was going to have to function without a microwave and now I can't even really imagine using one, plus I have gotten very good at making popcorn on the stove. The projects I'm working on both involve the use and practice of traditional hand crafts (one with a specific focus on exactly that) and while I've always enjoyed working with my hands, working on these I was struck by how much in the past few years I've moved towards a more minimalist lifestyle somewhat unintentionally and how right it feels. Due to Richard not being able to use loud machinery because of some hearing problems, all of our woodworking and making is done almost entirely by hand and while this obviously takes much longer, the smell of wood being sanded and the meditative act of hand stitching is something I don't think I'd trade for getting it done faster.

I'm fully aware of the irony of me claiming almost Luddite status while typing on a laptop with lilac coloured fingernails and using a wireless internet connection. Not quite back to the land just yet. But still, as much as I'd love a KitchenAid, mixing by hand with a wooden spoon and kneading bread dough on the counter top is something I'm going to hold on to. I guess this is where some of my nervousness about moving home comes from, this old me vs. new me. While I can see the changes in myself over the last few years, I still see them in the framework of who I've always been and things that have always been important to me. That, and that I'm nearing the end of my twenties so the last decade is a pretty natural time of change and growth in ones life. My worry is that I'm going to return home and seem like some crazy leftist hippy (which maybe I am, there are parts of me that feel pretty strongly connected to a earthy hippy lifestyle. And other parts of me, the parts that don't love fire poi and hula hoop, that do not...) and if I'm truly honest, that I won't know where I fit anymore. I am so happy and content with myself and my life in so many ways at the moment, that it is hard not to attach those feelings to this place instead of taking credit myself for developing and growing as person, and becoming more and more comfortable with who that person is.

Hmm, got a little deeper there than I was intending! Here's a mixtape I made you, in honor of my Luddite leanings, some of my favourite acoustic tunes for your Tuesday listening pleasure.

Happy Tuesday, friends!
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