far too much writing, far too many photos

The work involved in getting this new page on its feet has turned out to be labor intensive in a way I had not anticipated before the fact, in part because all the compiled writings that are accessible through the various links over to the right needed to be coded with line breaks, in part because all existing text links grew underlines with the shift and each little bitty link needs extra code to clean that up. Before the page went online last Monday, I’d spent several days pulling together all the different stuff, prepping it to be plugged into each new page. Or that’s what my addled, na├»ve little brain thought would happen. (HA!!!) Add to that the slow collapse of linkage to the far too many photos I’ve stored at pbase — a slow collapse that seemed to go completely to hell yesterday as the outfit moved to a new ISP, virtually every photo linked to pbase disappearing between morning and evening — and it’s meant a whole lot of fun. Man, talk about slog work.

But it’s my little cyber-fiefdom. When the everything is finally stored here and all the clean-up is cleaned-up, I’ll be obnoxiously content.

Sunday a.m., Madrid — doing the morning paper bit

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A few mornings ago: me, standing in front of the bathroom mirror, scraping my face with a razor. For some reason, thinking about how much I’ve changed in this lifetime. Remembering the childhood me: a sad, dependent, pudgy little guy mired in a strange, cramped existence, yet knowing nothing else, finding myself quietly freaked when thrust into other contexts.

Thinking about the two times I did sleepovers at friends’ houses. In both cases, feeling so uncomfortable and unhappy that I wound up getting out of bed early in the a.m., everyone else in the host homes still asleep. Pulled on clothes, went back to my home, to my teeny bedroom.

I found myself thinking about the one and only time my mother farmed me out, me four or five years old. A morning the ‘rent had an appointment somewhere and couldn’t or didn’t want to drag me along, leaving me at a house down the street with Mrs. Brown and her daughter, Dale, I think a year younger than me. Didn’t know Mrs. Brown well, but knew Dale, got along with her fine. Didn’t matter — something about not being able to go home, about being corraled in an unfamiliar place had me uncomfortable, distressed, counting the minutes until my release.

I found myself thinking about the only other similar occasion, a time my father — a teacher in New York City — had to drag me along with him one day, leaving me in the class of a teacher he knew at his school. Me feeling so uncomfortable in this place where I knew no one and no one seemed to have any interest in me that I began going to the lavatory every half hour or so until the teacher lost patience and chewed me out in front of the class. (An approach that made things feel SO much better.)

Overweight, insecure, somewhat shy. The me of then.

The me of now: a whole different case. Comfortable with myself — more than that: pleased with myself, with my little existence, knowing how far I’ve come. Knowing I’m a work in progress, far from perfect but not bad. With nothing to apologize for. And normally not very concerned about what others may think of me. An amazing, hugely satisfying change, that.

[see following entry]

Madrid, te quiero.

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