Sunday, December 27, 2015

Post Paper Tearing Frenzy

On Christmas morning, I nearly wrote a scathing post here about how horrible Christmas really is. How one is forced to be with people who irritate them, and how commercialized the holiday has become, and how no good deed goes unpunished, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera. But I didn't. Because by the day after Christmas I realized I was under the weather -- for the third time since October -- and that my angst and dissatisfaction with the holiday was due to a 'bug' rather than actual events. However, as an adult, I do still believe Christmas is completely overrated. For the kids it's a wonderland, and a happy dream world, and fairy forests aglow with twinkling fairy dust lights, and that's the only reason for the way we celebrate it anymore at all. For the wee ones. (I realize I kind of did write a bit of a scathing post about the horrors of Christmas, but trust me, it's much more toned down than the one I was ready to post before.)

I sat on the couch the remainder of Christmas Day, and the day after, drinking as much water as my bladder could hold at one time, and downing armloads of Vitamin C (yes, those again). My daughter brought me a big bowl of udon noodle soup yesterday and that seemed to send me around the corner to wellness. I'm all better now -- kind of. Still a little woozy and tummy's not so good, but I'm at least 75% better than I was yesterday.

So now that the dust has settled, all the money's been spent, the sales are done (at least for me they are), and we're looking ahead with hope and faith in our hearts for a better year, I'm thinking of renting a studio space outside of the home. Not a retail shop or anything like that, but a small space, slightly larger than the narrow hallway I now call the studio, away from home so it feels more like going to work than moving from one room to the other, and try to get the dream of the thurifercorium back on track. There are several small studio spaces available down the street from where I live, however, they are all mainly retail with a smattering of art stores that are both studio and retail settings for the people who are renting them. There is one space in particular that I'm looking at and I'm wondering if contacting someone about it is the right thing to do at this time. If I were back in the Van Ness house in Fresno, this wouldn't even be an issue as I had a full basement into which I could store everything not in use in the upstairs studio, plus the house/apartment was zoned commercial, so I could have, and in retrospect, should have, hung up a shingle. But as you long-time readers are aware, I have a fabulous knack for letting opportunity slip through my fingers.

Many things are changing for me this coming year, both professionally and personally. I just hope I can weather the storm in the meantime and make it out the other side in a better place than where I am right now. That's all we can hope for, right? To one-up ourselves over and over again until we are better than we were the day before. Reading is once again on the agenda, and fortunately I have a book store friend who is willing to part with a few tomes for a friend. I feel empty now that the book is done, and I want to restore some of the knowledge I imparted with new knowledge. That sounds a bit whacky, but that's how it feels. I'm also feeling a bit guilty that the opus that I had promised didn't happen. I cut so much from the book that may have been useful to a learning natural perfumer -- but I decided in the long run that it was just too much. Next time, I will allow myself more time to pull it together, or better yet, use the time I have set aside for book writing to be filled with book writing and not with 'oh, I don't wanna do this today' and trip off to the ocean to watch the epic El Nino waves, or hike up a hill to watch the mist settle between the hilltops. Naw, I'll probably still do that -- ha! If you knew how much research material, how much research in general, goes into writing a book -- nearly any book -- you'd understand how topsy turvy the space in which you create becomes -- all that research material, the books, the reams of printed paper, the files and notebooks and whatnot associated with it, the pictures you draw, the quickly jotted notes to yourself written on the inside of an envelope box (because you couldn't find the sticky notes anywhere!),  you'd probably just chuck it all in the bin and walk away. For every book, especially a book like Working the Bench II, there is 20 times the volume in research compared to what actually gets set down in the book. Once I cleared away the books, and the files, and the notebooks, and the scattered notes of notes, the diagrams and drawings, I had a stack of 'research' almost up to my chin. This doesn't take into account all the raw perfumery materials used in experimentation, from putting together perfume formulations to cookery, and time spent evaluating. But all in all, it was fun and exhausting and challenging and I'd do it again a heartbeat.

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