>>> natalie posted a while back about pockets--how little pieces of a specific place belong to you, and how it doesn't matter how long you've been gone or how much you've changed, you put that pocket IN your literal pocket and take it with you wherever you go. i feel like i have little pockets of myself in a lot of different places, and as i go back i am confronted with who i was and who i am now. it's startling how similar the two versions of yourself really are, deep down on the inside. it's empowering to recognize how fundamentally different i am, too. i have transformed my intellect, my personality, my interests, the core of what i care about over the course of these short years. these pockets feel warm and fuzzy. they also make me feel strong.
>>> there are a few pockets of me left around fort collins, colorado where i experienced my childhood. the biggest flashback moment for me is visiting foothills mall, where i bought my first shirt from limited too (an important right of passage into womanhood) and felt, for the first time, a sense of independence. my mom let me and danielle shop all by ourselves at the volatile age of 12, something totally out of character for her mothering. it sounds silly, but i distinctly remember how important that first trip was. the mall is not necessarily significant itself--but rather the idea that i didn't need my parents. i am so very different from my family, and i think that was one of the first times i realized it. it was kind of a 'coming of age' activity for me--manuevering the shops & pretending to be adult without someone telling me not to. this memory, it's a bit of a favorite for me.
>>> coors field, where i spent a lot of colorado summers watching the rockie's play with my family and begging for a bowl of dippin dots--that's another pocket, too.
>>> there's a protestant church at the entrance of utah state campus where the doors are never locked and the candlelight never runs out. my time in logan was full to the brim of change, and my life was just always so LOUD. it was fun and chaotic and hilarious and full of progression and never ending responsibilities and activities and friends. i reached the peak of my single life in logan, and it was incredible. but, i suppose there are parts of my soul that remain timid and need peace. about once a week i would walk up the hill to this church at night (feeling only a little like kevin in home alone) and just think. i would enjoy the quiet and the soft light and just...exist for a few minutes. i didn't have to entertain or impress anyone here, i could just pray and think and weigh things out. those were very spiritual moments as a 19 year old in the middle of finding her groove. that church was my solitude, and it didn't have to represent anything.
>>> i spent some time in tijuana doing service work and caring for orphans. there, i learned to be grateful and to love without reservation. i learned that the bond you make with people in the spirit of service is the strongest bond you can have with another human being. i can't even explain it--i can only say that those people have a big fat chunk of my heart with them.
>>> then there's a few in boise--where jordan proposed to me. it literally catches my breath to think of that parking lot. it's so austere and simple and the sacredness of the moments that changed my life there are overwhelming--it's a place that commands a lot of emotion from me. the rooftop we sat on so many times--that was also a part of that special night--it deserved a mention, too.
>>> down boise/farmer's market--i spent several saturdays there alone, wandering and soaking up sunshine before i convinced others to join me. it was here that i first wanted to claim boise as my own--here i first had the thought, i really love this place. boise has this unexplainable magic about it. it's kinda like this: it can feel like the most home-y, cozy hometown while feeling like a beautiful, exotic country all at the same time--and it's all tied together by the people's passion for the city. everyone that lives in boise loves it, & it's kinda hard not to catch on. when i wander through that market now i think of the countless trips i've made--all made through a stage of really finding myself, of cutting the crap and coming to terms with who i was and what i wanted. it was a very experimental period. i tried a little of everything. and then i met jordan and what i wanted was completely blown to bits--but i still had the 'who i was' part down. i partly have all the deep conversations had with myself while eyeing pottery, listening to trumpet street performers, and purchasing handmade ugandian jewelry to thank for that.
>> our honeymoon in san fran is still such a tangible memory, it almost doesn't even feel like one. i see it like it just happened 5 minutes ago. but man, the world mark hotel just north of union square. that place belongs to us. it's ours. i could kiss the sidewalk in front of it, that place is so freakin adorable. so snug, so intimate, so safe. (although the memory has just the slightest lacing of terror, for me. sex was very scary at first.) that time in SF was the very beginning of our long, never-ending journey together & it was terribly perfect, like a dream world. we fell like alice in wonderland into this impenetrable world of city streets and cable cars and late nights and eating until we were sick and just experiencing. we felt everything together and at night we would cuddle up in our hotel and fall into dreams that, i doubt, were as good as reality. it was magic and those memories started us off on a great foot. when we passed world mark two weekends ago, i wished i could have told my 22 year old self how wonderful the rest of marriage is. i would also tell her to relax as hard as humanly possible on that trip, because life will continuously get more hectic. :)
>>> and now we are finding those pockets in provo--our temporary home that seems to drag on forever, like an old DVD from hollywood video that you want to return but you can't seem to find it. i feel like i'm ready to be done here, but the second i feel that i mentally rap my knuckles & tell myself to appreciate, and not waste time wanting to be somewhere else. we have found a lot of happiness here, though a few specific places stick out.
>>> i love gossip girl, and feeding the ducks at the byu duck pond makes me feel like blair. i love blair so much that we have decided to add it to our baby names list. (should i be embarrassed about this?) the pond is just a few blocks from our apartment, and so whenever we need fresh air, or to discuss something important, or even just to get away for a few minutes, we grab a few slices of bread & head down there. it's just one of those safe places, ya know?
>>> the in n out parking lot. no matter how many times we make plans to try new places, or to make it to a nice sit-down place, we seems to always find ourselves at in n out! we sit in the parking lot, feast, and usually gush about how glad we are that it's the weekend and how we hate having to be apart so often. i imagine that in 10 years, i will drive by that in n out and just be totally slapped with dejavu. it's like the omen of our precious weekends right now.
>>> joe's cafe on state street was shut down for a few months because apparently joe was sleeping with an underage employee (??) but it's baaaack! it is greasy soul food at it's finest, and my favorite hole in the wall find that i lay claim to. joe is from houston, where my husband served his lds mission, so they have a special bond--& that guy has enough personality to fill up 10 cafes! it's our favorite place to share with out-of-towners, like a secret we only let-on to people we like. ;) many saturday mornings have been well spent having a chat with joe over some deep fried belgian waffles. yeah, swoon. they're that good.
>>> writing this made me so antsy to find new pockets in new cities to claim as ours. i love the feeling of familiarity among new experiences, and i'm sure that wherever jordan and i end up--that those pockets, past and future, will hold the indescribable magic that only one who really loves life will understand.