Cumberland Falls

On my way here, I stopped for gas for the last time and noticed that I was at the exit for Cumberland Falls. Why not? I thought. I followed the signs away from I-75, and drove for a long time on twisting mountain roads. Eventually I came to a beautiful stone overlook, so I stopped to get some pictures.

After that, I went on. By the time I finally got to the falls, I was twelve miles away from I-75. I drove past various entrances to restaurants and waterfront homes until finally I came to the park.

First I wandered around the area above the falls, looking at the rocky bed, the surrounding forest, and the beautiful bridge over the water.

Soon I reached a sign that said “DO NOT GO BEYOND THIS POINT”, so I headed off to the right and passed through between the gift shop and the snack bar to the main park area.

And finally, there was the first falls viewing site:

I moved along from there and found several other great angles.

Someday I’ll be as famous as James Archambault ;>

After a little more exploring, I was hot and tired and ready to drive the last 100 miles. I bought myself a souvenir, one of those neat paper storage boxes. My cousin Gabrielle gave me two hat boxes when I was in the hospital (which, of course, were destroyed in the fire); this box is made of the same kind of stuff, except it’s a cube. It’s beige with blue flowers. I also bought some homemade fudge. Then I headed home, fully satisfied with my little detour.


I didn’t do much for most of Monday. After I got up I sat around and watched TV for awhile, eventually deciding to watch Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. I also ate a lot: cereal, more cereal, Pop Tarts, and a bagel with cream cheese. I was in a bad mood when Sean got home around 3:30, so once Chamber of Secrets was over I left the house to go to the Japanese grocery store.

Which ended up being closed.

So I tried to find a new way home, and ended up on Gordon Highway heading downtown. So I went to the Greeneway and took some pictures.

They put a new fence up around the trail closest to the golf course and the Hammond’s Ferry entrance. Also, it is really starting to look like fall, despite the flowers.

It’s a lot longer when you don’t have a bike and have to walk. It was also pretty hot. I didn’t make it very far before I turned around and left.

After that I went to Outspokin’ to look for a new bike, but they were closed too. (Judging from the parking, everyone was out on a ride.)

Finally I headed back towards Martinez. I stopped at Payless to look for some nice boots, but they didn’t have anything I liked. So I ended up returning home empty-handed, save for the pictures.

I guess I was pouting too much, because Cheryl gave me a lecture about depression, and wouldn’t leave me alone about it. She did say that I needed to go see my mom, but I already knew that.

I was more than happy to get up early on Tuesday, pack, and run away to Kentucky.

A name for my new bike

Whenever I get my new bike, and if I manage to get another Fuji Cambridge, I’m thinking I’ll name it Fujiyama, or Yama for short.

I arrived safely

Hours and hours ago, as it happens. I did take a slight detour–I stopped for gas at the exit for Cumberland Falls, and decided to go to the park and get photos. This took me about twelve miles away from I-75. After I hiked all over the falls area, took pictures, reminisced about going there in my early teens with a friend, and basically satisfied my need to reintroduce beauty into my life, I decided to finish the trip on backroads, which took forever. But at least it was different.

I have a splitting headache and I’m very tired. More details and the photos will come tomorrow.



I only really have one home at this point, and that’s my parents’ house. In a few minutes, I’ll be leaving for a visit. I’m coming back on Saturday, because David’s coming into town on that day, but I really think I need this. I think it’ll give me some perspective, and also room to relax. I love my in-laws, and they have been so great to us, but I’m not comfortable here, and I’m tired of feeling like a horrible ingrate. I think maybe if I go someplace where I am comfortable for awhile, I’ll be able to return refreshed.

So, I’ve packed the little old blue suitcase someone gave us, and when I’m done with this post I’ll pack the laptop bag, and I’ll throw some snacks and drinks into my lunchbox and be off.

I’m not strong

I don’t know why I always thought I was, but I’m not. I don’t know how to even begin to get to a point where I can deal with life.


I am realizing that I really haven’t built much of a life for myself.

What do I have that I can call a life? I haven’t owned any experience. The things I cared the most about and put the most effort into were all home-oriented. And now my home is gone. I have nothing else. I didn’t create anything elsewhere.

All I seem to want to do is have my own home, and to work to make it mine, and to fill it with children and care for them. I have no interest in anything else except returning to Japan. I don’t care about finding a new job. In fact, the idea of finding a new job just makes me feel like a loser. Can’t get a job, and when I do finally get one, can’t keep it. I don’t really want to go through it all again. Especially since I can’t think of one thing–one thing–that I would even want to do.

I’m just stranded, adrift, with nothing but Sean to cling to. And he’s got his own support structure, which, while it includes me, is not limited to me. He can sit in the bedroom for hours and play his game. Meanwhile, I wander from room to room looking for something to occupy my mind, and finding nothing.

Some sort of meaning

Sean said not too long ago that we were lucky that we weren’t living in Japan when the fire happened, because we wouldn’t have had a support structure to help us get back on our feet. I thought that was a ridiculous statement. If we’d been in Japan, the fire wouldn’t have happened to us at all–we didn’t cause it.

It occurred to me today that if we had been in Japan, the fire probably would have still happened, but to someone else. Would the people living in 09I have been home? Would they have awakened? Would one of them have thought to pull the fire alarm?

When we ran out front, there was a guy standing in the yard just staring at the building. I have no idea who he was or what he was doing there, but he hadn’t pulled the fire alarm. And no one else woke up until the alarm went off and the firemen started beating on doors.

The only casualty in the fire was a gerbil. If we’d been in Japan, would people have died?

This is about the only reason I can think of to be glad that we were there.

Yes, I’m up

I’m on my laptop before work for the first time. Usually I watch TV in the mornings, but today Reid is asleep on the chair in the living room, so I’m back in what used to be Sean’s old bedroom and is now the workout room, my laptop sitting on the head of the treadmill. Well, it’s kind of like a desk.

thanks for helping with the picture, Mom

Have you ever seen Return of the Jedi?

You know the part where the Ewoks start worshipping Threepio as a god?

The mini-fridge in here rumbles in exactly the same pitch progression and timing.

I was thinking just now about how I don’t really feel like going to work, and that reminded me of Shel Silverstein’s “Sick”. This in turn reminded me of The Light in the Attic, the collection of Silverstein’s poems that I gave to Sean while we were dating. I took the time to write in the front of the book why I was giving it to him and which poems meant something to me about my childhood.

That, too, is gone.

I get the feeling that I’m going to just keep thinking of things and listing them here. Maybe that’ll be the “scrapbook” that one commenter mentioned awhile back.

I wanted to mention this dream I had the other night

The day before yesterday, I spent much of my free time catching up on Somewhere on the Masthead. Magazine Man’s posts are nice and long and I usually want to give them my full attention (because they rule), and due to how busy/disconnected I’ve been lately I ended up reading about 12 posts at once.

Because I was lodged firmly in Magazine Man World, he ended up in my dream that night. I dreamed that he found out about our apartment fire, and, to make me feel better, altered his subscriptions to some architectural magazines so that they would come to me instead of him. The thing was, the magazines still had his full name and address printed on them. (For some reason, in my dream he lived in Boston, when all evidence I’ve seen points to him living somewhere near NYC.)

This was monumental to me. Magazine Man is a mystery, as faithful readers know. He’s an editor for a huge national magazine, but he won’t tell us (straight out) who he is. At first this was for dooce reasons, but as time has gone on he’s dropped more and more clues, enough that two people have figured out who he is. At this point I don’t think he cares if people know, but he’s maintaining the mystery for fun.

At any rate, to me, in the dream, his revealing his identity to me was the supreme act of kindness. Sure, the architecture magazines were cool, but it was the fact that he didn’t worry about his secret identity when he decided to help me that really made it special. It was like he was letting me in on his secret.

Of course, I guess there’s something like pity in an action like that, but you know what? I want to be pitied. This is just like when I was recovering from cancer and I went around telling everyone about it. It’s apparently how I deal with trauma.

Don’t worry, I’ll get over it.

In the meantime, if it’s getting too depressing for you all over here, check out Somewhere on the Masthead. It’s always good for either a laugh or happy tears (or both).


Feel kinda crappy today. I’ve been eating way too much, and all the wrong foods…and I’ve been drinking a lot of sodas with caffeine in them. Need to stop that.

I’m supposed to get a new bike at the end of the month, and that will help.

Yesterday I found a nice house: 3 bedroom, 2 1/2 bath, 2 story, with a fenced-in backyard and a patio. It’s all brick and has carpet, vinyl, and wood flooring. This is all from the ad; I really can’t say anything about the interior or the yard because all I could see was the front. But it’s really pretty; it’s got a wraparound front porch, and the brick is kind of a warm brown/orange color that’s rather comforting. It’s on a cul-de-sac, which means less traffic, and it’s in a subdivision near where Sean’s parents live, which means it’s decently convenient to both our jobs.

I showed the Internet listing to Sean and he said, “I don’t have a problem with that.”

Now I just have to hope that it doesn’t sell before next week, which would be the time we could get a NACA-certified real estate agent to show it to us. (I would ask one of the many agents I’ve been referred to, but I don’t want them to feel used if we go the NACA route. They would make no money and I would feel like a heel.)

I don’t know if it’s the right house, but there’s something very nice about it. I at least want the chance to see the whole thing.

Suddenly I’m falling apart

I guess that “delayed mourning” thing is really kicking in…I left the internship early today so I could be alone in the house for a change, and because I couldn’t concentrate and wasn’t getting anything done. Then I pretty much cried the whole way home.

I stopped at Springhouse. They wouldn’t let me into the apartment, of course. I don’t know what I was thinking. That I’d sneak in? I was told to talk to the apartment manager, so I did. She said they wouldn’t know if they could recover anything until the demolition guys evaluated the situation, and they don’t know when that’ll be because they haven’t even made an appointment with the demolition guys yet. She said they’d call. I don’t know if I trust them to do that, given their history.

I feel like I should try to resign myself to losing all my writing. It’s the writing that really got me, beyond even the pictures. I just want my hard drive. But if they can’t even, like, rake the debris out of the structure and let me sort through it…maybe I should just give up now and stop hoping.

I’m tired of these situations. I’m tired of life telling me to give up on my hopes.

I have a horrible headache right now. Earlier I felt like I was going to throw up. Now I just want to turn off my brain and hide from life.

"Delayed mourning"

That’s what I called it when Cheryl asked me what was wrong. It’s about the stupidest phrase ever, because it makes no sense.

“Mourning? Over what?”

“My apartment burned down,” I said. By this time I was struggling not to cry.

Cheryl launched into a speech about how nobody could do anything about that, and she wished she could but she couldn’t. All I could think was Duh, so you shouldn’t have pressed me about it. Why couldn’t you have just left me alone? But I just nodded and did my best not to start wailing in the middle of the stupid driveway. “Why today? What’s wrong?” she said.

“Yesterday they said that people couldn’t go in and get their stuff because it was too dangerous, and I’d been hoping my hard drive would be in there, and everything I’ve ever written was on it.” I was being brief because I was about to burst into tears, especially there towards the end.

“Nobody’s found anything?”

“I haven’t heard anything.”

“Cry, honey, just cry,” Cheryl said. I did not want to cry. She started saying the usual crap about letting it out. Well, that’s great and all, but I want to cry on my own terms. That’s why I was out in the middle of the driveway in the first place. I was trying to move stuff around, to exert control over my environment. I was trying to get rid of the clothes that people had donated that didn’t fit or weren’t quite our style. I had been going to put them in my car, and Cheryl had followed me outside because she’d meant one box for the Abilene Church. And then she’d just sunk her teeth into me until I was struggling to keep from collapsing.

I’m not the type to bawl in front of other people. I’ve done it, but I don’t choose to. I did not want to cry in front of Cheryl. There’s nothing wrong with her, and I love her, but I did not want to cry in front of her. But she kept telling me to.

“I’ll do it later,” I said. She finally backed down and we put the box of clothes in the garage. Then a neighbor appeared and I was able to escape.

I cried a little in the bathroom and in the guest bedroom, but it wasn’t enough. I just can’t cry here. It’s not my space.

Maybe sometime tomorrow I will drive off somewhere private and cry in my car.