Sunday, January 4, 2009

being present


when DH and i were traveling together earlier this year and he asked me why i was taking so many pictures of food....my response was that it allowed me to stay in the moment. this is kinda a big deal to someone who has been making their living on strategy roles for the past few years.

DH doesn't know about the blog and i still haven't told him.

yet, the conversation we had that warm humid southern day is something i recall pretty often. taking pictures and this blog have allowed me to "be present" in the moment. absolutely positively. on a personal front, being present as well as being more open are two things i have been working on for a while now. something that i have realized about myself is that it is very possible for me to be so focused on the ensuring the "future" that i can miss out on some important happenings in the "here-and-now".

now, i'm not saying that i'm going to live life only for the moment and not plan for my future....that would be, well, absolutely horrible as one of my life goals since i was, like, 7 years old was to be financially independent and never be hungry. i very much doubt that i will modify this ongoing goal until it is my time to pass on....and you know what? i'm pretty ok with that.

yet, being so zeroed in on the future career wise and not enjoying the moment is something i'm working on. my thinking about this particularly came into play after watching the angry monk at the roxie on friday night as well as running some errands in downtown sf on saturday. instead of doing my typical thousand-mile-stare on the BART, i decided to really look at people. i mean, really look at them....really see them. those of you who take public transportation on a regular basis whether it be the T, EL, BART, the Tube, the paris metro, the NY subway, etc...know exactly what i am talking about.

there are so many different types of people on public transportation...it is rather fascinating. there were a couple of interesting moments on the BART train...like i noticed a young man who was watching everyone else and journaling....


as well as realizing that there was an interesting shot..literally right in front of me...


things that i would have barely thought about and certainly not remembered a few hours later. yet, now i have immortalized these moments in print and in pictures.

then when i exited the train, i realized that i hardly ever take pictures of the city, despite having been born in SF and lived there for a few years. i think i have more pics of hong kong than of san francisco. odd isn't it? or maybe not so odd...to get so accustomed to the familiar and take it a bit for granted. even things like protests around powell seem everyday. my immediate reaction exiting the powell station and seeing the protest was, "oh great. how do i avoid this?" then i stopped myself and thought "perhaps like being on the train, perhaps i should really look and see what is going on..."





so i just hung out for a while....absorbing the happenings on the corner of powell and market...noticing the series of contrasts....and you know what? it was kind of an amazing corner that day. there was a mixture of so many things going on...there was a political demonstration....where no one was shot, beaten, or killed because of their criticism of governments or expressing their disenchantment or anger.

this is really amazing if you think about all of the countries outside of the US where these sort of demonstrations would not have even been possible. i have no comment on the content of the protest....my commentary is more along the lines of remembering that what we consider a "right" in our country is an undreamed for privilege within others.

at the same time, there are huge amounts of people wandering around doing their post-xmas shopping....



among the guy with the usual "jesus loves you sign" as well as the usual criminal elements that are closer to 5th street. now, i didn't take pics of that element as i think that would be borderline stupid. what dealer is going to want someone to take their picture when a buy is going down? yet, there is all sorts going on in this bustling corner of san francisco.

also, if you don't live in the bay area, did you realize something from the pics? did you realize the amount of ethnic diversity there is on a single corner? again, something else that is so easily taken for granted...and during my travels to the uk, europe, mexico, asia...heck...even other parts of the states...this is not very common.

after i had my fill of absorbing the nuances of the corner, i decided to grab a bite at a local thai noodle joint nearby and just think about the experience. instead of the roast duck noodle soup, i decided to curry rice noodle soup today....


which was rich, comforting, and quite filling. while i was slurping away, i thought about what it would feel like to leave this amazing place. i don't think it would be forever...maybe just for a little while...more of an extended visit in another country. not next year...but perhaps, in the future. see, can't take the long term strategizing/pondering out of me completely....yet, just thinking about it made me realize that i should appreciate what is here and now. so much of this blog....is me being present....trying to record my random musings, impressions, tastes, and journeys. i can only hope that a year from now that i will continue to try to be present in the moment and not take too many things for granted.

1 comment:

Shelley (Pink House) said...

Looks yummy! I was hoping you'd publish the recipe!