Friday, September 24, 2010

Love, Autumn

On the drive to an early meeting this morning, I watched the September Harvest Moon set in front of me whilst a splendid orange sunrise glowed in my rear view mirror. I noticed the trees along the George Washington Parkway are losing their summer luster; they are only beginning to bear the colors of fall.

Later, in the middle of a parking lot far from the tree-lined edges, I found a tiny red oak leaf resting gently on the windshield of my car. So unexpected and dear. A love note from autumn?

I know this sounds trite, but it's true: I love fall. Colorful foliage, cooler days and clothing in layers. It's a time of personal renewal for me as my energy increases and motivation becomes more intense. I accomplish so much more than I do the entire summer. Look for big things in the months ahead!

Dites moi, SVP, what's on the horizon for you?

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Sounds of Fall 2010

Fall officially arrives in two days. I hear autumn approaching with the sporadic sound of acorns plunking off sidewalks and car hoods, very different from what I expect to hear soon in India.

Tracey Jackson has prepared me for some the soundtrack of New Delhi. {Tracey is a NYC-based writer, director, producer, screenwriter whose blog I follow and whom I recently met live and in person. She graciously carved time out of a weekend trip to Washington, D.C., with her husband Glen, to meet for drinks.}

In the courtyard of her hotel in the heart of Georgetown, Tracey told me if we were in a similar space Delhi, we would hear the repeated honk honk HONKs as Indians drive with one hand on the horn. Eventually, Tracey assured, it becomes white noise.

While researching Rishikesh this weekend, I happened upon a blog with audio clips of the LOUD India I am gearing up to visit. The blog is called Field Abuse and its goal is to “reveal the contradiction between the idealistic look of the spiritual western traveler looking for some enlightenment and the reality of a chaotic and quite noisy country.” Take a listen to the sounds of my destination.

So, now I’m planning to bring even more pairs of my pretty in pink earplugs for the trip. I remain eager to immerse myself in the sounds – and sights, smells, tastes and more – of the Indian experience.

Before I do, let me tell you more about Tracey.

I learned about this fascinating woman’s almost daily blog in a recent edition of Town and Country magazine. Her credits are numerous; among her recent creations is Lucky Ducks, in her words, “a very personal film about what it means to raise a child today, how what we carry with us from our own childhood bleeds into our parenting whether we know it or not; and that to fix your kid you really have to fix yourself first.”

She recently posted about embarking on a face to facebook tour, visiting old friends with whom she has reunited online. I was delighted when she took me up on my offer to meet when she came to town. A half hour cup of coffee became two and a half during which we talked about her new book, Between a Rock and a Hot Place: Why Fifty Is Not the New Thirty, India and more. Thank you Tracey, for being so generous and gracious!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

It's Never too Late to . . .

. . . bloom. Consider this Rose of Sharon soaking up the late summer, late afternoon sunlight. Spied yesterday in the 1700 block of Willard Street, N.W.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Laying Low

The dog days. Ah, summer, an unusually eventful time of year for me of late. Let’s recap.

Twenty-four months ago, doctors found and coiled my unruptured basilar tip cerebral aneurysm, saving my life. I spent July and August recuperating and reflecting on my personal miracle. Dr. Wayne Olan, I have no words.

Twelve months ago, I took my first solo vacation in more than a dozen years. During an intensive, week-long course in Soho, NYC, I learned to draw -- see differently, really. (I also practiced yoga at the Jivamukti Yoga Center alongside Russell Simmons(!).)

This summer, I invested in myself with a minor cosmetic surgical procedure that resulted in an unexpected complication called Keratitis. The condition causes the clear covering over the cornea to become inflamed. Have you dealt with it? It was a bewildering and disheartening ordeal. I looked awful and felt worse.

I’d never heard of it, nor could I find information online that would reassure me about treatment and recovery. I read that I could lose my vision. I also read the condition of that blurred my vision might remain.

I found it difficult to maintain my usually upbeat disposition. I downloaded the audio version of Pema Chodron’s book, When Things Fall Apart, Heart Advice for Difficult Times, and listened to it over and over. Pema, I am grateful for your words of wisdom.

Dr. Erica Edell, my ophthalmologist, reached out to every colleague, finally locating a specialist who eased me off of steroids and antibiotics and suggested a non-medical course of treatment that saved my vision and my life. Dr. E, I am eternally grateful.

As the fog lifts, I look back over a quiet period when I disappeared from my life, online and off. I’m so happy to be back.

Dites moi, SVP, how was your summer?