Yesterday I had the day off because I was at a hui in Te Kuiti all weekend; one of my flatmates and I took the opportunity to stack this winter’s firewood and then we went to see my friend Tom speak at
Pecha Kucha. Tomorrow night I am meeting Giulia for coffee and then going to yoga class and then going to this leaving do for a French girl that interned at my work that will, I am reliably informed, involve boeuf bourguignon, some sort of gratin whose name didn’t quite catch, chocolate mousse, and red wine. Thursday I have to skip Body Pump because there’s another leaving do for another co-worker, and Friday I’m going to dinner and a movie and having a sleepover at Alice’s. Saturday when I get back from Alice’s I am cleaning the house and doing errands, and then Saturday evening I am going to yet another leaving do for yet another co-worker, and then Saturday night, after dinner, I’m going to Theresa’s Rubik’s Cube party for which I do not, currently, have an outfit. Sunday morning I’d like to go to the waterfront market but let’s be honest with ourselves here, you know: I probably won’t make it because I want to go to tribal jam at 10:30 and it will be a heroic feat to get on the bus and get into town after coming home late the night before. Sunday afternoon after bellydance there’s a window where I’ll either be taking a nap or going to a late Italian lunch before Skyping for several hours, after which I plan to fall droolingly asleep only to get up six hours later and do it all again next week.
A couple of weeks ago I tweeted or Facebooked or whatever that I wished I could go back to 1990 and tell my fifteen-year old self how…and I hesitate to use this word…popular she would be twenty years in the future, on the other side of the world. I sometimes joke that my (paper, still) calendar is booked out two weeks in advance but actually it’s not really a joke because it is booked out two weeks in advance. I hardly ever get to do spontaneous stuff—which is such a shame in Wellington because you’re always running into people you know and they’re always on their way to something cool–and I’m always texting to say I’ll be five minutes late to my next thing because my other thing was five minutes late too. One time a while ago I had three different people with whom I wanted to have coffee on the same evening and instead of running around Cuba Street trying to meet them all at different cafes (texting to apologize for being late, of course) I just staked out a table in Fidel’s and had them come to me, like, at ninety minute intervals, pretty much like I was seeing therapy clients again.
I like all these things, of course, very much, mostly because I like all my friends very much. They are excellent and I have a lot of fun with them. I like parties and movies and dinners and gigs, and I like going for walks and going out dancing and going for coffee. I also like reading more than one book a week and writing long, richly-rendered-detailed emails and organizing my online photos and baking cakes and taking baths and doing face masks and just sort of indolently slothing around, and there doesn’t seem to be much time to do any of that lately. I am feeling a little dizzy.
I don’t exactly know why this is happening right now, why I’m at this particular point in my social cycle at this particular time. I am trying to remember if I’ve ever had another time like this, full of events and gossip and running around, and probably I have, I guess, but it feels like a long time ago, like maybe junior-year-in-college long time ago. I don’t think I was like this in Seattle–which also feels like a long time ago—not really. Monday night bellydance was sacred to me and I used to go for walks around Green Lake and to book club and out to dinner with some regularity, but I don’t remember things being so full-on and whirly. I feel like I spent a lot of time on my bus commute, and going to Whole Foods, and listening to music. I hardly ever went out, as such: I spent a lot of time reading and writing and having movie nights at the Blue House, before I even lived at the Blue House and could watch movies there whenever I wanted.
And maybe, now that I think about it, what feels sort of unsustainably rock-starry to me—yoga and dinner in one night? You don’t say!—is just sort of business as usual for other people, and really I am just a tea-and-bickies-loving introvert trapped in the body of a (rather mildly, in the grand scheme of life) socially active extrovert. When I first came to Wellington I was very much in that Overseas Experience mindset of wanting to do everything while I had the chance because I was only going to be here for a year. I still sometimes get that feeling, even with my nine-to-five and my residency and myNZ drivers’ licence, like I want to do everything and go everywhere and be with everyone, because who knows how long I’ll be here? Who knows what I’ll have the chance to do?
Tonight my yoga class was too full so I came home early and made pasta, stopping at our local dairy for milk because I forgot to get it at Moore Wilson. I’m sitting in front of the fire my flatmate made with our new wood right now, drinking tea, checking Facebook, talking to her about Old Navy (“it’s like a step between Glassons and Supre,”) and the differences between American English and New Zealand English. My other flatmate is coming home from Australia tonight and I’m going to make her a little welcome-home sign with my glitter glue pens as soon as I finish writing here. Stop and go, up and down, back and forth: here I am in the middle of it all, busy, very busy, always busy, stopping to take a breath every once in a while.