Doctor, Doctor!

The failure of the Kickstarter campaign has hit me pretty hard. I had not anticipated failure.

I’ve been reading some quotes “Failure is the condiment that gives success its flavor.”~ Truman Capote.. I’m not so sure, but it helps.

My summary of failure.. There’s always something to be gained by failure.. in all cases, it has either made me smarter, tougher, or more willing to take another chance… 

Since that, I’ve made it to the other side and am looking forward to making a new push next year.. with new tools, new friends and more energy.

I’m not going to kill you with the emotional roller coaster this thing has been… I will tell you that all kinds of stuff is happening… along with the preparations for my solo trip.

I met a girl…. actually, I met a couple. One was fun but fizzled, the other and only one that I spend time with now was/is a totally unplanned surprise. I met her at a Jazz club in DC over a month ago.Screen Shot 2013-10-28 at 10.48.29 AM

Cathy, who I met on Match.com invited me to the club… we had been there one time before. There weren’t any sparks, but she was strangely interesting and liked good food and music. She wondered if I would mind if she brought another friend from the dating site with her… I thought it sounded awkward, but in lieu of a better plan for the evening, I agreed to go.

I was late but the band hadn’t started playing yet. I found them at a tiny table near the stage. I smiled at Cathy, and turned to her friend…

I introduced myself but had to look away quickly.. I could feel my face flush. I was afraid to look at her… to make a scene of looking. Robin is handsomely beautiful, short salt and pepper hair… something strongly feminine about it though. She excused herself for a minute.

I leaned over the table and hissed.. “WHO the Hell is THAT??” Cathy laughs, shushes me and says she’ll talk about it after the show.

I spent the next hour and a half studiously avoiding Robins eyes.. actually, that general direction of the room. I knew trouble lurked there. I’d been looking for something casual and fun… not heart stopping desire. I could feel her smiling at me.

Show over, we exchange numbers and plan to meet the very next day. We all say goodnight.

Monday evening, we meet for a walk. Her house is large and airy and the estate has miles of walking paths carved through old second growth forest. It is elegant and comforting.

IMG_3198We stroll and talk. We don’t know a thing about each other and make the usual inquiries, politics, religion, smoking, hobbies, exercise. Polyamory… wait. Huh?

This tall, dignified, family doctor has multiple open relationships. It is her lifestyle… has been for over two decades.

I remember trying this out on a couple people I dated but there was something.. missing. It didn’t work. Actually, it was a disastrous jealousy fest that had at times made me fear for my personal safety.

Our conversation lasted hours through her collection of books, women, dogs, activity, and kindness.. I still struggle with details of her lifestyle.

I can’t imagine having the energy to bring meaning to more than one person.. To me, a relationship is more than sex and dinner and bank accounts. It is a pledge we make to each other.. and it is simple.. I’ll help you if you help me.. and it seems important in our “fend for yourself” culture… How many heart attacks and broken bones, birthdays, anniversarys, weddings, promotions and tears can one possibly be present for? How many lives can you hold in your hands.. your heart?

I feel like I have enough love for more, but not the time.. To be sure, I barely have the time for one.

So I ask myself questions..

Have I fallen into complacency with general acceptance of social norms? Is what is expected of us correct and healthy? How many other people engage in… and are happy with this lifestyle?.. What personality craves this behavior?

I wander to my own odd history, of why I do what I do. Why I’ve exempted myself from my culture, why I choose a nomadic life, why my address means little, because it changes from month to month.

I find myself lonely quite often… my mouth spends more time on the rim of a wine glass than touching a lovers lips… until now… Which is .. to be sure.. confusing and distracting… and delightful..

Instead of planning, I find myself searching for ways to build a stable life, to make a place for myself to meet friends and create community…

I scour the real estate pages late at night, usually after the second or third glass of Malbec.

But it is with the knowledge that I am leaving on my moto in just over a month that I feel this search is futile.

I know with each molecule in my bloodstream, I must explore, connect and record at least one extraordinary journey. I will find my tribe, the people that speak my language.. that of speed and wind and air and freedom. Those of us either running away or to. The ones that seek to wrestle fear and complacency, to replace rules and walls with wonder… experience. In a way, it is childish… In a way, I’m glad it is.

I hope she will still want to see me when I return… but I don’t hope in the way I did when I was 19. I hope in the way of a woman with 40 years of relationship wreckage.. of a woman that has grown too hard in a mans world, who has made a strange and interesting life for herself.. full with the knowledge of my tenuous hold on even that… but still, it is hope.