Saturday Pinot and sunset. Je suis content.

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Tonight’s movie

Heaven Is for Real
Greg Kinnear, Kelly Reilly
DVD release: Jul 22, 2014
PG, 1 hr. 39 min.
http://www.flixster.com/movie/heaven-is-for-real?lsrc=mobile

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Lunch at New Nagano Restaurant

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Sunset 7.21.2014

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My life 1998 -1999

I’ve been going through my old computer files recently and came across my old journal that I wrote from ’98 to ’00.  This was the time when my study abroad in Spain was ending and I spent two years studying at OSU before leaving for France.  After this period my journal writing took a nose dive and never recovered.  I still wrote on rare occasions but instead of a journal I wrote in my online blog.  Since a blog is public I censured myself pretty heavily and only wrote what I was comfortable letting loose on the internet.  The bad news for me is my personal thoughts and feelings were thus not written down and lost forever.  

Rediscovering old memories was fun but it was the long forgotten emotions and feelings resurrecting themselves with such force that kept me reading almost half of the entire journal in one sitting!  I had quite forgotten the emotions that girlfriends caused, the anxiety over passing tests and a fear of closing a very big chapter in my life and facing an unknown future.

It came as a shock to me to read and remember how influential and powerful the relationship with various girlfriends affected my mood!  Many of the entries make me want to reach into the past and smack myself!  Three girls in particular caused such drama that it seems every entry over a certain period of time is about them and they had me strapped into an emotional roller coaster.  

I wish I could send a message to myself as I wrote those entries letting myself know that I’ll win in the long run.  I would say, “Younger me, you still haven’t discovered Asia.  Have patience and your wildest dreams will come true.  Soon you won’t have to put up with bitchy, self absorbed, white chicks anymore.”  It sounds a bit cruel to say but you have to understand that these three caused me a lot of grief and I’m fresh of the reading of my journal where I’m mad at myself for putting up with such nonsense!  

The interesting thing is I still remain in contact with those three.  In fact, I remain in contact with just about everyone.  I treasure the experiences I’ve had and I treasure the relationships that were made.  I often say that “Mateo never forgets,” and I’m certain that the people I say this to have no idea what the hell I’m talking about.  

The meaning of that phrase is I remember my life, experiences and friends exceptionally well.  I not only remember the event but I remember my mindset at the time and pretty much how I felt at that time.  I find that others my age may remember the event but over time it simply becomes a faded memory.  The memory recorded a full featured Imax movie with stereo sound but as time passes the memory fades into a damaged black and white Kodak picture.  

It is quite easy to remember something from the past but it is not so easy to bring back the feelings and emotions and to feel them as intensively as they were.  I find that the smell of a familiar scent weather it be a perfume, freshly cut grass or even an old classroom will bring a flood of memories.  Of all the senses, the sense of smell is the most powerful for reviving memories.  After that I would say sound such as suddenly hearing an old song is the second most powerful followed by sight.  

One clear example that vividly illustrates people my age forgetting their past is simply trying to reconnect with old friends on Facebook.   In some instances it feels the same as though they were strangers and sometimes even more difficult than a stranger would be!  Why is that?  Because they have forgotten the experiences, they have forgotten the feelings and no emotional connection remains to the times we shared.  I feel as though I’m one of the very few who can revive those emotions.  I remember clearly that we were friendly in high school and can approach others as though no time has passed at all.  It is my experience that most will shy away.  Only the outgoing and extroverts will enthusiastically engage in a re-connection.    

Perhaps a reason for their forgetfulness is that they don’t want to remember.  Lives change quite dramatically over a decade or two and it could be that the few who are able to remember the high school or college experience fully simply don’t wish to.  They now have families, responsibilities and may feel uncomfortable remembering youthful, carefree events that occurred before.  I don’t have that problem with it personally.  In fact, I love to strain my memory and try to bring back memories and emotions as clearly as possible.  I find that alcohol and music from those times gone by are an excellent combination to revive old memories.  Actually I’m trying right now with music and tobacco free pouches.  Unfortunately I chewed “dip” when writing in my journal over a decade ago and although I won’t touch the stuff again I thought it would help jog my memory and really get writing if I tried to mimic my habit with the tobacco free stuff.  

But to get back on point, some people may be uncomfortable with their own past.   They prefer to leave what is past in the past.  To me, I find this extremely wasteful and sad.  The experience of being alive is a most incredible event!  Why would one want to purposely forget a very intense, exciting part of it?  I’m referring now to the high school and college days when life was changing very rapidly and with an intensity that most likely will never be felt again.  I find that people who really want to forget their past are equally as likely to want to forget their present as well which of course does not bode well for the future.   

 

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Living a magical life

As I get older and more set into my routines I find that life loses a little bit of luster.  New experiences become less frequent and the activities I’m used to become a little less enjoyable.  

Then I look at my son and see how he is excited about pretty much everything.  Everything is new to him and his curiosity is limitless.  Couple that with Lapham’s Quarterly which current theme is Youth, I find this realization of mine is not unique and has occurred through time and cultures.  

In fact, I’ve touched on this topic before in a post two years ago “Importance of an Open Mind” I realized that it is possible to see the world with “new eyes” and the magic and excitement will come rushing back.  But, without practice it is easy to let the magic slip away and revert back into that mainstream current in which most adults find themselves: bored, going through the motions, sleepwalking.  

This morning, I’m reminded that I do need to work on my own thought processes and bring back that magic.  So, I took a walk in the garden and looked at some of the most beautiful flowers that have just started to bloom.  It had been a while since I took time to really look at them and appreciate the beauty they bring to the garden.  I also took time to see the flowers that rarely get much appreciation such as those yellow flowers that spring from my pumpkin plants and only last one day.  

To really think about it a flower is a most extraordinary thing!  It starts as a seed in the earth and under the right conditions begins to grow.  This tiny plant pushes its way through the tough earth and over time becomes a beautiful, soft object, exploding with color and meticulous in design.  The pumpkin flower graces us with a one day only show, it is best we pay attention!  Then my thoughts to the nature of reality and I wonder about the intelligence/being that designed such a beautiful object.  I’m like the child that never stops asking why.  When one can deeply contemplate the nature of reality life the realization that life and our own consciousness in the most incredible, wondrous thing one has ever experienced!  No longer would one need some particular stimuli to get high, once the miracle of being alive is realized and understood then simply existing should astound one with wonder and amazement.  

I find that religion has robbed a vast amount of humanity of this wonder.  Religion attempts to provide answers for existence and people puff up their chest and parrot these answers simply because it is what they have been told and what those around them also believe.  Often the religious can and do become ecstatic when they deeply contemplate reality and the entirety of existence but they remain within the safety net of their respective beliefs.  

It is much more incredible to contemplate this existence when one realizes that religion is simply a man made attempt to explain the explainable and that we do not know the answer.  It only follows that any theory or belief could be just as probable as any other.  To put more ‘faith’ in one answer over any other is nothing more than arrogance.  

 

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Today’s hike

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Tonight’s movie

The Well-Digger’s Daughter
Daniel Auteuil, Kad Merad
DVD release: Dec 24, 2012
Unrated, 1 hr. 45 min.
http://www.flixster.com/movie/the-well-diggers-daughter?lsrc=mobile

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Tonight’s movie

Her
Joaquin Phoenix, Amy Adams
DVD release: May 13, 2014
R, 2 hr. 6 min.
http://www.flixster.com/movie/her?lsrc=mobile

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The Misty Mountains

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