Julianne’s Blog

this is my blog. this is the only blog there will be.

New kid on the block, again 8 February 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — Julianne Dodds @ 7:28 AM
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I wrote this post back in August and never published it for some reason. Well, better late than never. Tomorrow Jason and I are packing up the Volvo for the drive back to New Orleans, where we’ll be until the end of March. See you all soon!

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I’ve been back on Wilson Drive for a week now, and it’s been wonderful. My neighbors here are simply amazing! I’ve always known that they are all special people, but since I’ve been back in NOLA I’m continuously amazing and humbled by their openness and generosity. I am so luck to be surrounded by such wonderful people! Of course, I also love my apartment. There isn’t much in it now, but it’s all mine. If I want to have a crazy awesome dance party with my iPod speaker, well then it’s on, and there’s plenty of space for jamming but no room for embarassment. Luckily my upstairs neighbor seems cool. We’re going to put an access hatch with a rope ladder through my ceiling, although we haven’t quite decided which room it should go in.

I’ve come across a new job, and it’s wonderful. Galatoire’s doesn’t accept reservations, so on Fridays rich people pay people like me to wait outside and hold a table for them. All I have to do is give the maitre d’ the name of my party and then sit in a lawnchair in front of the restaurant on Bourboun Street for 3-4 hours until my party shows up. I walk about with $60-75 cash and a lovely sense of self-satisfaction. This past Friday I ran into my third grade teacher Ms. Covington out to lunch with her husband, the principal of my elementary school Mr. Theriot. It was pretty cool seeing them again after so many years, and they seemed impressed by my schmoozing.

Just about every day I run into and old friend. I’ve reconnected with school chums, some I’ve known since 1st grade, others who I met a couple years ago at UNO. At the same time I’m making plenty of new friends, and there’s always my regular buddies to spend time with. I have a great time on the town, but I also love being in my home, alone and mellow. I’m so happy with whatever I’m doing and it doesn’t get old.

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Something old and something new 27 August 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — Julianne Dodds @ 12:28 AM
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Another Katrina survivor

So here it is, the end of August. It’s inevitable to remember August 2005 as a landmark in our collective memory, but I had my own personal hurricane in August 2008. A year ago I had a job I loved, was plowing through my last semester to my degree, and, most important to me at the time, spent my time with someone who filled me with so much happiness and love that I always sped up the closer I got to home in order to see him a few seconds sooner.

Now I’m a year older and I  feel I can say that I’m at least a year wiser. My heart got stomped on, I quit my job, sold most of my possessions, finished school, traveled around Europe, met Rick Steves (that’s become a mantra to me), and eventually found my way back to NOLA. I feel like I’m living a richer life now. Not financially of course–the painting is going OK but I’m going to have to work very hard to make it pay off. I whir up the Singer sewing machine at least 4 times a week. I see at least one friend every day and go out with other friends several nights a week. I go on dates and while nothing looks very promising I’m thoroughly enjoying myself. When I first returned Kaden had forgotten me and was afraid when I tried to hold him, but now we both enjoy walking around the neighborhood and smelling the flowers.

My pillowcase from Budapest, the bed we built, and a photo of my Grandma

My pillowcase from Budapest, the bed we built, and a photo of my Grandma

I am so happy being in my home, because everything in it tells something about my life. It’s like living in my own storybook with no set ending. Everyday I make a choice to stay, not because it’s easy but because I always find a new reason to be happy: introducing friends who come to eat redbeans with me, hearing palm fronds scrape against a car roof as I ride my bike down Esplanade, seeing my dishes gently drying on their wooden rack. That last one has always made me happy and I hope in 30 years I’ll still be satisfied with it.

In a couple days I’ll be heading out to Burning Man. I didn’t go last year but somehow this party in the desert has been responsible for most of what’s happened in the past year. I can’t help but be nervous about how actually attending while effect my life. But at the very least I will be appropriately dressed in my teal and green spandex bodysuits.