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Dreaming of Manderley.   —   Personal

After a solid month of reading Robert McCammon's, "Speaks the Nightbird: Vol I", I've finally finished. It's a beautifully written novel, rich in character and plot, and the atmosphere is so wonderfully woven you'd swear that you were living inside those pages. I'm taking a bit of a break before going on to Volume II and in the meantime reading Daphne Du Maurier's famous, "Rebecca". The book was written in 1938 and then made into a Hitchcock film by the same name in 1940. If you've never seen Hitchcock's Rebecca do yourself a favor and rent it. It's a wonderful movie filled with gorgeous cinematography, mystery, and quiet terror. It's been over a year since seeing the film and I'm finally ready to read the novel where the story and characters were originally conceived. I'm only 30 pages in and already I'm in love with the language of the author. I'll let you know how it turns out.

On Tuesday I had a few X-rays of my spine taken per my chiropractor's suggestion. My troublesome spine seems to be only further agitated as the months pass rather than quietly falling into a slumber from the pain as it has done so often in the past. If the X-rays show nothing then we'll progress to an MRI. Maybe they'll find a pot of gold near my sacrum. That would be so awesome.

As the days trip slowly by, Portland seems further away than ever. Adam and I grow more displeased and frustrated with our jobs which leaves us lifeless and sullen at the end of a long day. The winter wind keeps our social calendars free from obligation and we are more than content to watch the sun rise and fall from within the warm and pleasant walls of our apartment. I've sunk into a dangerous frame of mind where the threat of losing pieces of my life do not inspire fear nor dread. Instead I feel despondent. Operating on reserves and content to drift about like a ghost.

Even New York City has lost its spark in this gray cold winter that seems to be one long breath being held inside a smoker's lungs. This city seems dead to me and I walk through its carcass, navigating myself through its decaying innards, waiting for the moment that brings me home again. The people of this city are like buzzards flying around inside of its vast wasteland of filth, searching for scraps of anything that will sustain their lives. I am no better and I search just the same.

I recently read a passage in the book, "Rebecca", that struck a chord with me. The narrator, who is also the main character, reflects on past events from her life and speaks of the terror and depression that had once consumed her for so long. And in speaking about those feelings she goes on to say how that now those things have passed, she finally has peace. She says, "Happiness is not a possession to be prized, it is a quality of thought, a state of mind." Which is to say, the fright and sadness that plagued her for so long was like a heavy cloud in her mind, blocking out the sun. That happiness is not tangible. It's only after you clear those clouds that peace can reside there. And it is those words that have echoed in my head for the past few days. Trying to tell myself that happiness does not have to wait for Portland. It is simply a quality of thought. A state of mind.

Posted 2.1.2007 1:01:20 PM

Dad wrote:
From the Poet, Lanta Wilson Smith, " This too shall pass". Time has its ways, my darling.
Posted 2/1/2007 6:26:07 PM
OG wrote:
My question for you is how is moving to Portland (away from everyone you know) supposed to change the way you feel about life in general? I quote "you are not your job, you are not your bank account" happiness is very much a state of mind but it is something you are in control of (eventhough it may not seem like it) to me happiness is focusing on the parts of life that I love and not letting anything stop me (including myself) from staying focused on those things
Posted 2/4/2007 6:07:14 PM
Doll wrote:
A large part of life is the environment in which you live. All aspects of your life are impacted by the community, society, any natural element or man-made element, all of this. New York City is a living breathing influence in everything that you experience by living here. The amazing & stressful physical impact that commuting around this city has on your body. The psychological impact that living among homelessness, poverty, ignorance, violence, and anger has on your psyche. The way the dirt, pollution, litter, garbage & human waste smells affect your senses. The absurd amount of money spent in one week just to eat, commute, live. The never-ending stream of pointless jobs & conformity. All of that impacts my life more than any other aspect of living. I wasn't raised in a city. I may enjoy city life but I certainly do not intend to grow old in one. Leaving New York City was never a question of if, it was always one of when. Portland is a perfect cross-breed of city & nature, and one where the community makes great efforts for safety, cleanliness, and for an environmentally conscience society. I have a wonderful outlook and attitude on life in general. I just wish to improve upon mine with an environment that doesn't go against every fiber of my being. I think it's foolish to ignore the parts of your life that make you incredibly unhappy and just turn a blind eye to them in order to focus on things that don't make you feel horrible. It's like shopping when you're feeling blue. Or eating ice-cream when your depressed. A temporary band-aid on a wound that obviously needs more attention than just a band-aid. My dislike for New York isn't a product of my outlook on life. It is New York that is the reason for my dislike.
Posted 2/4/2007 11:19:30 PM
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