An evening out

Still Life
  • ISO: 200
  • Shutter: 1/125 sec
  • Camera: NIKON D1H

Northport, Alabama

And so this begins the month of living dangerously, I decided. No more nice girl. No more good girl. No more sad girl. No more mouse girl. The evening was rapidly sliding downhill, and in my usual fashion, I was grasping at exposed tree roots on my way down. As suddenly as it began, I knew what the Boston girl would do. She’d go out. Alone. At night. In the rain. In the cold. Destination anywhere.

I didn’t lose my resolve in the fluorescent glare of the dressing room, didn’t lose it when I stared in the mirror at someone I no longer recognize. There are things on the horizon. There is the brand new novel in progress, ambitiously slated to begin today and end one month from today thanks to the annual insanity that is NaNoWriMo.There is a new book to read and flowers on the front porch. There is the latest story for the Monitor, and several more after that. There is the cool new client and the successfully completed project. There is the upcoming trip to Houston and the chance to fly again. There is Darjeeling in the cabinet and Brie in the refrigerator. There is a whisper of smoke and a dash of adrenaline. And then there is fur. And leather. And boots. And gloves. Cashmere and satin and lace, oh my.

After way too many dollars of shopping therapy, I feel very much like a new girl — a Boston girl. I have a dandy new pair of fur-lined leather gloves and a soft fur stole to match. I have a new sweater (grey), a new turtleneck (burnt sienna), a new satin-trimmed pullover (charcoal), and a new pair of pants (black) — all a size smaller than usual. I also have something I haven’t bought in years — a new skirt. It’s daring. A dark sheer burgundy with a femme fatale black lace overlay. The kind of garment that scares me to the bottom of my Timberland-clad feet. The kind of thing my thin alter ego secretly covets but never lets me have.

For this one month, I’d like to give the inner critic a much needed rest. The holidays are coming and there is time enough to be fed up, stressed out, let down, and shut in. For 30 days, I’d like to pretend I’m the girl I always wanted to be. The fearless one. The one who shoots with confidence and charges accordingly. The one who writes hard and plays harder. The one who finds better ways to cope than numbing out with the narcotic of the day.

For 30 days, I’d like to know what it tastes like to live without consequences. To chase dreams as if they might come true. To pursue goals as if I deserve to have them realized. To find the things that make me happy and revel in them. To find the things that make me confident and channel them. To find the things that make me shudder and vanquish them.

I probably sound like I’ve lost my mind, and yeah, maybe I have. But there are only two months left in this year, and I plan to make the most of them. If you’re of a mind to, join me. At the very least, it’ll make New Year’s Eve a lot more palatable — God knows Auld Lang Syne can be depressing in the best of years.

Music: Hung Up (Time Goes By) by Madonna (lyrics)

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