the wanderer

This post is just going to be random.  I actually stumbled upon this topic because I started rambling on Twitter, so I’m just going to go with the stream and see where it takes me.

I’m waiting on groceries to be delivered.  During the week, I normally rely on a local meal delivery service that I actually adore.  I’ve had many meal delivery services over the last couple of years, and it’s really hard to impress me.  They’re usually expensive, kind of repetitive, inconvenient, or just not that delicious.  I never realized how hard I am to please when it comes to food, but I absolutely am.  I don’t want to pay a lot for food.  But I want  high quality food made with care and ethics.  (I am willing to pay more for local, sustainable food–don’t get me wrong).  I don’t like being stuck in contracts for months at a time.  I don’t like eating sweet potatoes for EVERY meal.  And I like decent portions.   With choices.  I stumbled upon this fantastic service created by a chef trained in NYC.  It’s her and her husband with help from her friends and family.  10 meals are about $100.  That includes them coming to your door.  Portions are pretty huge.  The food is sustainable and ethical.  And it’s the kind of food I’d actually make.  (Not homemade looking food–food that looks like someone knows what they’re doing).  Plus it’s usually really healthy and veggie-heavy.  And it gets me out of my comfort zone.  I’ve learned to like eggplant and squash.  Every week, there’s a new menu of about five meals.  You order as much as you like–with a minimum of two servings of the thing you want.   On Friday, they tell you when they’ll be there on Sunday.  They even send you tracking info when they leave.  And sometimes, you get to say hi to the chef and her baby.  In short, I pretty much LOVE them.

They went on a break for Thanksgiving, so I ended up buying extra food.  My plan didn’t exactly pan out since I have a pretty set routine in place that works great for me.  I get enough, but not too much to get bored.  Usually ten meals a week, so I have a couple days where I can order out.  I usually eat all of it and am a happy camper.  But this week, I had way more Thanksgiving leftovers than I anticipated…and turkey day made me REALLY SICK of comfort food.  Heavy food was just not appealing.  (I still don’t feel like it’s winter yet, and it’s hard for me to eat heavy when it isn’t winter yet).  So, I ended up freezing the food and eating out more than I wanted.  I was just going to eat the meals this week–and skip ordering more–but I’m still in that space of not really wanting this kind of comfort food.  I’m craving lighter Italian dishes and Mexican food.  Not mac and cheese and meatloaf.  Plus, everything is frozen and it can be difficult to plan that out.  I’m not exactly good at that.

So, I’m just going to keep things on ice  for a few more days and have decided to cook myself this week.   Which is difficult when your kitchen is mid-boxing.  The crock pot is my friend.  I’m going to attempt to make pasta in that sucker today, so we’ll see how that goes.  I’m also making a go-to favorite mushroom salad that’s super perfect for how I’m feeling these days, and some yummy bratwurst with some  broccoli soup.  (Not together).  And I’m going to make black bean burgers (yes–actually MAKING THEM) with a salad of some kind.  Kale with avocado.  I really tried to keep it simple.  Because I’m really lazy right now and haven’t cooked like this in a few months.  Plus being tired and sick and having mucho to do every weekend means life is not helping.  I’m looking forward to it.  Thanksgiving reminded me I really do love cooking.  I’m hoping I don’t overwhelm myself.

It’s good training, though.  I’m finally going to have a decent kitchen when I move to San Jose!  And even if I wanted to be lazy, I’m told the delivery services out there are not exactly good options (supply and demand kind of ruined that, apparently) and I’ve yet to find a meal service I even want to try.  So, I’ll likely be cooking a lot out there.  I’ve missed cooking and feel some amount of guilt about not cooking a lot for a little while.  It used to be a huge part of my life, and ordering out was a rare treat.  A lot of that changed when my health took a nosedive–and when other people entered my life–who also struggled with finding time/motivation to cook.  Things I’d done my entire life–that were healthy habits–suddenly disappeared.  The result was not pretty either and probably helped those health issues get worse.

Since that whole almost dying thing a couple years ago, I’ve been on a real health journey.  Part of the reason I started doing the meal service stuff was because I was relying on takeout services to feed me on the regular–which was expensive and super unhealthy.  After I got sick, I couldn’t eat like I used to without getting pretty sick–so I had to find healthy options.  And oh, I found them…but they often were disappointing or super expensive.  I got bored of them really fast.

I’m excited to be in Cali with all the fresh produce and farmer’s markets.  It’s such a foodie area.  Our apartment is maybe a block or two from a great Asian market.  I’m looking forward to exploring and challenging myself.  I finally, usually, have a decent amount of energy and a job that actually supports my life (when I’m not abusing myself).  It was important to me to find a place with a great kitchen–to encourage me to use it–and I’ll be setting some good boundaries with roommates to make sure things are encouraging in that aspect as well.


Recently, I was reading about a couple who used AirBnB to decide which NYC neighborhood worked for them.  They basically moved to a new neighborhood every month for a year and then decided.  This idea intrigued me quite a bit.   In the 70s, my dad wandered from place to place, worked for two weeks, got his check, and then moved on.   He met my mother during that process and they did this together for a while before I was born.  My mother had great stories and, while it was definitely not in her comfort zone, I think it expanded her worldview a lot.  Eventually, my dad saw that my mom wanted to settle down, so he asked her which place she liked best.  She chose Denver, and the rest is history.  I’ve always loved that my parents met that way.  I’m definitely my Daddy’s daughter.

I’ve had lots of thoughts about wandering myself, and I’ve kind of thought of ways I could embrace these thoughts.  Namely, when I’m going for my PhD, I think I might tackle a big project which would involve me traveling from place to place–working on my studies.  I don’t feel like I travel enough, and I want to do everything, so it would be a great way to kind of take on some of those dreams while making it practical.  Of course, I’d have to figure out logistics and how to pay for it.  It’s hard to travel when you have three cats you adore, but I could make it work.

One of the big obstacles, of course, is that I want to have a family.  I’m not getting any younger, so I’d either have to do this while my kids were young or do it when they were a bit older.  Which would have all kinds of complications.  Namely, um, finding a husband that wouldn’t object to such a thing and could join me on the journey…or would tolerate me being gone for a year or two.  I’ve worked hard to make my life location-independent.  I’m not tied to any one place or specific thing right now.  It’s the one fantastic thing about being an orphan.

Life has made me more dependent on others in recent years, and it’s a really uncomfortable place for me to be in.  This year has really been healing in that way because I’m feeling more like me.  So, the idea of such an adventure is truly thrilling to me, as I am a fiercely independent person.  As much as I love my roommate and am looking forward to us living in Cali together, I also can’t wait to leave Cali and see where life will take me.  I know it’s not a long-term situation, and it’s one I’m excited to see play out.  There’s a dynamic to my personality where I can really take or leave people. That sounds worse than it is–trust me.  I mean that I just don’t often feel very connected to people, and friendships have not been easy things for me.  I’m used to being by myself a lot.  I grew up as an only child, so I’m pretty okay with  this aspect of me.

But part of me wonders if I’m just meant to be alone.  I mean–I’ve decided, partner or not, to have a child someday in the not-so-distant future.  I know I could do it alone if I had to, but I’d prefer not to.  I’d prefer to have love in my life, and I’d prefer to have a kid raised by two parents.

It’s not so much that I fear being unlovable like in the past.  I know I deserve love and that someone is out there who would think I’m just fantastic.  It’s happened before.  It could happen again.  Though, for how long?  Who knows?

This thought came up for me this morning.  A while back, I decided to fire up the old OKStupid account and see what horror I might encounter–hoping maybe–I’d at least bump into someone who might be worth dinner.  This is terrible–but, as a 37 year old woman, I don’t feel like I have the luxury of just waiting for Mr. Wonderful to show up.  He hasn’t so far.  Granted–I have never put much effort into love…in terms of finding people.  I’ve put a lot of effort into me–into being the best person I could be.  But I am not a cougar.  Ha.  I have zero interest chasing a man.  Been there, done that, wouldn’t do it ever again.  I went through a phase of really not giving a crap about guys.  I didn’t even care about sex.  I don’t need a man, at all, and that became abundantly clear during that time.  But I like being in relationships.  I like me in relationships that are working and healthy.  And romance would be nice sometimes.

I still don’t have much energy or motivation to put myself out there, but I do realize that I need to be open–findable–for a guy to actually meet me.  I’m not going to meet anyone sitting in my PJs day in and day out.  So, Hell, why not just keep a profile up?  When bored, peruse it.  If someone messages who seems nice, say hi back.  Okay.  I can do that.  It’s not really something I’m counting on.  But it’s something to stay open.  I have a feeling my plan to just live my life and be more active, in general, when I’m in Cali will help with the meeting people thing.  I actually miss being social and can be quite the social being when I want to be.  And if I’m having fun, it doesn’t drain me.  So, I’ll have fun.  And not do things that are draining.

So, I’ve had this profile up for a few weeks.  Gotten many messages…and just didn’t like any of them.  I  may be awful, but I don’t respond just to be polite anymore.  It’s gotten me in trouble, and no one needs that weird ass drama.  I only respond if I think this person could be my friend–at least.  I never promise anything either.  I’ve never really been successful with online dating.  I came close once, but that was a shitshow of massive proportions…his and my fault.  We were both shitshows at the time, and honestly, we had a really good chance of working.  I actually still care about him. and he is probably the only ex I would revisit.  But things didn’t end well, at ALL.  I get it.  Completely.   There was another one who I really liked–but I think I scared him a bit.  I’m intense, and he was gun-shy after a bad relationship.   Ultimately, it wasn’t a fit.  No harm, no foul.

A couple days ago, I got a message from this guy who has a complicated situation happening.  It’s not something I would ever really pursue because of said situation.  He also has two kids and doesn’t want more.  At this point in my life, I’m open to guys with kids–though I’m not sure how it’d work.  I like kids.  Kids like me.   But I don’t really want to pursue people who aren’t on the same wavelength when it comes to marriage and children.  Been there, done that.  The thing is–at 37–most guys my age either have  been married and divorced and have kids already or they’re permabachelors with no interest in kids.  It’s crazy how much indicating I want a child will limit who even sees me.   There really aren’t many guys out there who are single without kids who want them.  And the problem with guys who have kids already is that they usually aren’t free to do whatever.

This is a  huge problem for me.  I don’t have family ties that keep me stuck in any place.  The biggest responsibility I have is my cats and my job.  My job goes anywhere and supports what I want out of my life.  My cats are challenging, but I make it work.  I would never ask a guy to move every three years and be far away from their kid.  So–doing all the things I want to do (that are totally feasible as single Alma) becomes big nopes if I marry a guy with a kid.  So, I don’t even want to really go there…though I did  respond because he’s decently good looking and seems interesting.  I hate having this thought process at all because it’s so practical and not romantic and too soon.  I mean–it’s just a date, right?  But I don’t want to waste time or fall for someone who isn’t right for me.

But then I wonder if ANY guy would be able to fit into my life.  I mean–even if they’re childless and perfect–they probably don’t have as much freedom as I do.  They probably couldn’t be my sidekick on the million and one adventures I have planned.  I don’t know how to solve that little problem.  And I don’t really want to compromise on living a great life.  SO, maybe, I’m meant to be alone.  I can be a mom alone.  I don’t have to get married.  And I’m feeling more and more pessimistic about finding a guy who really loves me and is good for me anyway.   I mean–I know–statistically there has to be someone.  I mean even Sarah Palin has love.  But it never seems to stick for me, and the benefits are never quite worth the costs.  I know that sounds so awful, but maybe I am a little over the whole love thing.  Maybe I really just don’t even care about it anymore.  I’d rather just live the amazing life I can choose than hope for the best and rely on someone else to keep showing up.

I’m starving.  Think I’ll go make lunch.  Happy weekend, all.


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