Surfing, Parties, Boys. Boys. Boys.

2 of December 2013

Sorry for my hiatus, I’ve been very busy with surfing, parties, and boys. Doesn’t sound too bad, does it? But if you factor in my under-the-weather lethargy, humdrum school days, and newly “forbidden” conversations, you might get an accurate picture of my week.

As I peered around the dull classroom in Tercero de Secundaria at El Papalote I had come to know so well- after all, I’d spent four months there- I couldn’t help but feel a pang of homesickness. It wouldn’t be my locker that could never shut that I’d miss when my time there was up, and it wouldn’t be the panel of wood from the desk with the hand drawn on it that we used to flip people off with. It wouldn’t be the grimy, olive green chalkboard or the windows with the rotting wood shingles that could never keep the torrential rain out. And I certainly wouldn’t miss the ever-wet linoleum floors, white and crusty with hairs and pencil shavings. No, I’ll miss those days when it thundered as if Zeus was throwing a temper tantrum, and we’d all curl up on the floor together- making some makeshift chain with heads on stomachs- while we draw those ridiculous cartolinas for class. I’ll miss the profanity, love poems, and test answers gouged into the wood of the desks and I’ll miss Alex’s gran bisa. Maybe I’ll even miss Malakai’s superior twerking skills and Orlando’s drinking-partner-like personality. I already miss Juan pulling me onto his lap, and Sammy never leaving my side, forever entranced with something about me that I just can’t understand. Most of all, I’ll miss the hours and days and months of showered love I received from people that were mere fantastical figures of some other world to me just nine months ago. A year ago, I never imagined I’d end up in Mexico for my fifteenth birthday, or to celebrate Christmas, to go to my first concert, or to get my driver’s permit in. I didn’t think of Mexico at all, really. It’s a mystery to me- the fact that I live in Quintana Roo. I’m a true, blued, not-yet-tattooed expat, and it’s one of the best things that has ever happened to me.

Actually, I’ve had three phenomenal miracles happen in my life so far, events that stand above all the crazy things that I’ve done and experienced. First and forever foremost: my family’s adoption of our better half (our better 1/4 if you want to be technical) Kanon and Delilah. Those two buggers are our sunshine, our babies, our lovely, witty, whiplash smart five year olds. Second, the day when God spoke to me at my dining room table as the sun went down and Mum made dinner and he told me I had to go to OCSA. I’ve told you about my art school before, but just a refresher: OCSA stands for Orange County School of the Arts, and even though I had to audition per portfolio and in-person sketches, I always knew I’d make it in. In seventh grade, at the time God brought me to tears with his command at that glorious, antique supper table, I was attending a normal public middle school and I wasn’t making great life choices. I was lost, and getting lost-er. When I came out of the audition room on February 22, 2012 at my future school, I was literally tripping over myself with triumph. Try- Umph. My art was volumes above what all the other kids in that audition room were capable of, and if I was that good, I knew I’d better get my act together and do something about it. It took me months to come to terms with myself, but that decision to try out for OCSA sealed the deal and gave me a direction: I’m an artist; it’s something deep-nestled in my heart, and it courses through my veins stronger than any emotion I’ve ever felt. If coming-to-the-realization-that-I’m-an-artist can be an emotion. It made me fall in love with life, with people, with who I am (in a non-narcissitic way). Lastly, and quite obviously- I think I’ve gushed about it enough- moving to Playa del Carmen is my third miracle. After Playa, I don’t know where our expat lifestyle will take us, but Quintana Roo will always be the start of our globe-trotting journey through childhood and adolescence. It wasn’t the beginning of our journey, but it was the beginning of the travels. The beginning of the beginning began when we were conceived in Heaven, I suppose. It snowballed into motion when my parents first laid eyes on each other in Papa’s bachelor apartment, and it gathered speed when technology caught up with law firms just a year and a half ago, allowing lawyers to do paperwork with complete mobility. Our journey plunged into action on that Virgin America plane ride to a place in southern Mexico I’d only heard about. For some crazy, mixed-up, beautiful reason, this is where I am, this is who I’m with, and this is who I am.

Yesterday, December 1, was Liana Kander’s birthday party. We had a lovely time relaxing in the heat of the night and dancing to popish-girl music. I regarded the DJs skeptically. Pop music was never something I really enjoyed, unless it’s old-school pop, like Hall & Oates, but the mood was entirely right for the scene. I believe Liana had a smash as she sang Treasure by Bruno Mars and twirled in a white dress that glanced with gems off the walls. Let me back up though, the Jazz Festival left town the night before Liana’s birthday, after closing their set list with Earth Wind & Fire, the group I was most looking forward to seeing. I grew up  jamming to September, Saturday Nite, and Boogie Wonderland, so I was sad to miss their performance. Mum and I had strolled down to check out the scene on Friday night and I realized that the massive stage set up just two yards from the sand-licking water where the jazz musicians crashed their cymbals and plucked their steel strings was the first concert I’d ever been to. I put my arm around Mum, and as it began to rain, we took the beach-route home to Calle 44 as I eyed the prominent white-caps stretching out across the forty miles of water I could see with my naked eyes. The sand whipped at my ankles, and when I took off my boots that night, a sizable mound of sand poured out. The concert was set up blocks from my house, and yet all I could hear in the deep, velvety Playa night was the chattering of large bugs and the monkeys that live in the untamed jungle lot next door.

Warning: Strictly for teenage girls’ eyes! (yes, I’m sinking down to the level of blogging about boys. But just this once! And only to help you get a scope on what I’m feeling as I go through my journey): I’ve been continuing my escapades with Manuel, a boy who found me on Facebook after watching me play soccer with the Papalote boys. Naturally, as the only girl on the field, I piqued the interest of some of the boys mingling from their previous games, so I wasn’t too surprised to hear from him. We actually play the same position, left wing, and he has an awesome mohawk, but he’s old and I’m not too partial to boy-hunting at the moment. I want to focus on my art and my blog and the things I’m passionate about. The boys at El Papalote should know by this point that I’m not interested in them, but then again, Alberto did give my chocolates and candies today… Justin and I are becoming great friends, which doesn’t make Mum happy one bit. He’s almost twenty, and I’m, well… fourteen, so I know you can understand why Mum isn’t on board with our friendship. But Justin is one of the most sincere, understanding, and intriguing people I’ve ever come across, plus his whole family is connected in the art world. He has an appreciation and a true comprehension for art and music, and we get along in the finish-each-other’s-sentence sort of way. I absolutely adore him, and our friendly relationship is totally doomed. But like I said, I’m focusing on what I do best: art. Music. Blogging. Anything adventurous- I never could refuse a dare. Sometimes I think that may be part of the reason I get into trouble though… Oh boy, can I ever just avoid entanglements? So far, the answer is no, but hey, I’m fourteen. I get to make mistakes still, it’s what will help my grow, and it’ll make a great story for my kids one day. And overcoming obstacles looks really good in inspirational autobiographies on artists’ websites. I guess it makes people feel like they can connect to you, or they just pity you, but either way, they buy your art.

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