“Will liked to live so that no one could find fault with him, and to do that he had to live as nearly like other people as possible.”
“We are like children building a sand castle. We embellish it with beautiful shells, bits of driftwood, and pieces of colored glass. The castle is ours, off limits to others. We’re willing to attack if others threaten to hurt it. Yet despite all our attachment, we know that the tide will inevitably come in and sweep the sand castle away. The trick is to enjoy it fully but without clinging, and when the time comes, let it dissolve back into the sea.”
Brother: I read your blog about healthy eating. Those are my favorite kind, the ones that are short and relatable.
Me: Thanks for reading my blog. I don’t always know when you read it.
Brother: Yeah, the ones about swimming too, and the one about the beach.
Me: Beach? Which one are you talking about?
Brother: The one with the couple having sex on the beach.
Me: What? I didn’t write about that on my blog.
Brother: Yeah, yeah you did. And there were like Pokemon Go players too or something.
Me: Wait… Do you mean the story about the blind man and his wife at the marina, the one where she’s describing to him what she sees?
Brother: Yeah!!! That was the one.
Me: HAHAHAHA I can’t believe those were the two stories you mixed up.
Me: I mean, I did tell you a story about seeing people having sex on the beach. And I guess both stories involve water and a couple.
Brother: I’m sure they were at two very different stages of their relationship.
So yes, there was one time I saw a couple having sex on the beach. And no, I don’t mean the cocktail.
It happened about six months ago. They were on the side of a sand dune, right by the entrance to the beach. The audacity. It was a cold day. The beach wasn’t crowded, but people had still come out to see the sunset. Several people honked at them, others yelled, and a lucky few were oblivious to the live performance.
I had been a part of the few in ignorant bliss. That is, until my other brother told me, “Hey Evelyn, did you see that couple having sex over there?” Because that’s what you do when you see people having sex on a public beach:
You tell your little sister so she can be scarred for life.
If you liked this post and would like to keep up with Make the Welkin Dance on social media, please like my Facebook page and follow me on Twitter @WelkinDance. Who knows?!? You might even get free coffee! Okay, probably not from me, but each day carries the possibility of free coffee from somewhere…
O beautiful for spacious skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties
Above the fruited plain!
God shed his grace on thee
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea!
America, The Beautiful Lyrics by Katharine Lee Bates – 1913
Every now and then, my father will tell me a story about my grandfather that will surprise me. Like how he got shot once, fled on horseback, and even though he reached safety, the bullet was never taken out. It’s moments like that one when I realize my grandparents had a very different life than I do.
I tend to reflect a lot on my family history, mostly on the vast life differences between generations. I especially thought about this during my college graduation. As I sat on the metal chairs facing the commencement stage, among all the other graduates, I kept thinking: How did I get here?
“‘Fat’ is usually the first insult a girl throws at another girl when she wants to hurt her. I mean, is ‘fat’ really the worst thing a human being can be? Is ‘fat’ worse than ‘vindictive’, ‘jealous’, ‘shallow’, ‘vain’, ‘boring’ or ‘cruel’?”
I always felt like if I didn’t mention it that maybe people wouldn’t notice. Or it could just be this sort of polite secret, like, open secret that we didn’t address, because it felt so shameful. It just felt impolite to talk about, like me not wanting to burden you with my failure. […] Yeah, and just give me a little more time. Let’s not talk about [my weight], and I promise I’ll fix it. […]
The way that we are taught to think about fatness is that fat is not a permanent state. You’re just a thin person who’s failing consistently for your whole life.
—Lindy West on This American Life “Tell Me I’m Fat” with Ira Glass
A couple months ago, I stopped by a local gym to get membership prices. I had heard it wasn’t too expensive. Plus, the gym had an indoor pool, which was a big selling point for me since I didn’t want a repeat of last year’s crazy tan lines. (They were pretty bad, like random-people-stopping-and-staring bad.)
Calvin: Why are you crying mom?
Mom: I’m cutting up an onion.
Calvin: It must be hard to cook if you anthrpomorphisize your vegetables.
― Bill Watterson,
One of my goals this summer is to learn how to cook healthier. Like most things in life, this is easier said than done, especially when my culinary knowledge is severely lacking (e.g. I can name more works by Charles Dickens than I can herbs and spices).
Thus, following a recipe takes a lot of private consulting with Google, YouTube, and my mother. I’ve been humbled through the process, often having to step out of my comfort zone of cereal and milk. And I mean that “stepping out part” literally; I’ve spent much more time walking around in a daze, up and down grocery store aisles in the search of strange, obscure ingredients.
In there, his silent words lived and breathed as stories. They could think and seek and grow and give off heat.
~Haruki Murakami The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle
Over the eucalyptus and behind the moon, the stars like silver pomegranates glimmered before an infinity of darkness. No wonder the angels had picked a place like this to exist.
~Helena Maria Viramontes Under the Feet of Jesus
Today, Make the Welkin Dance turns one!
Unfortunately, Denny’s only gives a free birthday grand slam breakfast to living, breathing human beings with I.D. cards. Sigh…
But at least I have all of you to celebrate with! (And now you have a viable excuse for eating ice cream cake today! Woo-hoo!)
One year of blogging might not sound like much, but I think it’s important to celebrate the little victories in life. When I started this blog a year ago, I didn’t realize how much I would experiment with form, humor, storytelling, and playing off authors I’m currently reading. And I’m excited to continue doing so! Ain’t that great.
For me, the joy of writing is never complete without an audience. My words can only come alive in your mind’s eye (that is, until I write a book and Hollywood knocks on my door). I hope this blog has been a delight to you as much as it has been for me. Thank you for reading and commenting on my posts! It seriously means so much to me! (so don’t stop.)
Today, I’m re-posting my very first blog post. Last year, I spent a lot of time fussing over what to name this blog. I’m glad I’m still a fan of what I chose, and I hope you are too after reading the story behind it.
But first… a little toast…
Here’s to recalling late night adventures in Buenos Aires (I Can Still Hear Them Chanting).
Here’s to thinking deeply and laughing often.
Here’s to making the welkin dance.
Omnes vulnerant, ultima necat.
Every hour wounds. The last one kills. —Popular Latin inscription on sundials.
She woke up with a pounding headache, and slowly, the memories from her dreams the night before start trickling in.
A woman on her deathbed. Her eyes are bleak, and her skin clings to her bones. An eerie, gargle-like sound escapes her lips—the “death rattle,” they call it.
It was a beautiful day for swimming, so naturally, the pool was packed.
While I waited for a lane to open up, I decided to do my warm up in the open area of the pool, where all the swim classes take place. As I would learn soon enough, sometimes it’s better to wait on the sidelines…
“Music. Wine. A cigar. The small luxuries of life are how we survive what the mind can’t fathom.”
Mark Sullivan, Beneath a Scarlet Sky: A Novel (p. 90).
Pino got a faraway look in his eye, and after a long hesitation, said, “I’ve never told anyone about my war, Bob. But someone very wise once told me that by opening our hearts, revealing our scars, we are made human and flawed and whole. I guess I’m ready to be whole.”
Mark Sullivan, Beneath a Scarlet Sky: A Novel (p. 502).
It’s been a long time since I’ve read a book about World War II, but the first time I’ve ever read one from an Italian perspective. Mark Sullivan’s Beneath a Scarlet Sky is based on the true story of Pino Lella, an Italian spy for the Allies. When he was 18, Lella became the personal driver for one of Hitler’s top men, a Nazi named General Hans Leyers. Crazy, right? It’s really no wonder that Beneath a Scarlet Sky has risen to number 3 on Amazon Charts this week.