Tuesday, April 24, 2018

baja at 29

Nearly one year ago, on my golden birthday, I woke up to the Pacific Ocean. I was taken aback by how familiar that body of water has become. My 19-year-old self would've been astounded to know I'd been in Los Angeles for nearly three years at that point. An hour or so later, we drove to the border. I was unreasonably hungry (because we never do grow out of some ways of being) and nervous–what with my last name and the current President. The passport exchange was somehow more painless than previous drives from Canada; we found roadside churros also. Back in California, I turned my cell on to a cascade of happy 29th wishes via texts and voicemails. After a refreshing three day weekend in Mexico, I truly was. Happy, that is.
Happiness hasn't been something that's come easily in my twenties. I'm too learnedly cautious, or, as some may say, cynical. Whereas I desire an incredible amount from the world, I expect very little. I think that's why I've ended up inhabiting four cities in the past ten years. Submitting to one place requires a a reckoning with mundanity I've been far too intimidated to take on. And there's pressure in the choosing. And that's before considering the people that will matter there, the vulnerable investment true bonds require...
Clearly I'm still fearful. But I've also been ruminating over something my mom once said, about how 34 was her favorite because it was the age she fully embraced who she was and felt wholly satisfied with life she was creating. Even then I found the concept so beautiful. Now, I dually appreciate the courage that made it true. Living that sentiment might be what I'm most looking forward to. (For the record, I also intend to refute the claim that time's running out to visit these destinations. Are you kidding me.)
When he'd asked what I wanted to do for my birthday, I thought back to my 28th. I fondly remembered that Mexico has a wine country. We stayed by the water and dined in courses amongst the vines and made time for horseback riding, and ocean-front reading, and margaritas after a farm animal meet n' greet. We tasted a delectable array of smoky, sophisticated wines. It was such a privilege to satisfy so luxuriously; magical even. Here's to accepting more of that into this wild and precious life. Next month: 30, (Paris, Greece!).