...and miles to go before I sleep...

For more than 90% of the year, I am a homebody.

I have a routine that I love, plenty of time for my little family, fabulous neighbors and friends to spend time with. Also? I have a serious yen to get OUT. To go out, to travel, to try something different.

But November? In November I get to squish all of that wanderlust into a focused, full-of-travel month. And it's awesome! We cram auditions and meetings and operas and reunions into what soon becomes a fairly masochistic schedule. I get to see folks, make my own brand of awkward conversation, take in new art, and resurrect/nourish relationships that are important but that languish under a heavy layer of neglect. Rough math, I've seen 4 operas, heard well over a thousand arias, flown on five planes, read 7 magazines (Thanksgiving editions! And cue the cravings for turkey and stuffing!) and one book (Bukowski. My first foray...I will dip my toes back into that pool.) I flew from the east coast to the west coast on the day that daylight savings time ended, and my body clock is STILL all ausgefuched.

Cramming all of that in takes a toll. I am tired. Tired of 20 year old sopranos offering nothing but 7+ minute arias without offering cuts. Tired of lugging my things around like I'm a turtle. Tired of singers having no idea of the text of their aria, let alone subtext. Tired of trying to find time to exercise. Tired of the caricatures. Selfishly tired of trying to be a good colleague to my workmates back at the office, and so very irritated at myself for falling pitifully short. Sadly, quite tired of Stephano and Siebel. (Cherubino? Despina? I miss you guys...) Tired of my right shoulder living a full 2 inches above my left.

Bitch, bitch, bitch. I know. And really, this has been a nice, easy tour...beautiful rooms, smooth travel (knocking on wood, as we're not done yet!), good singing and lovely warm reunions. I have found that 16 month old babies are perfect lunch companions (they eat enough of your fries and ice cream to reduce the guilt level to nil! And they give random kisses...the best kind.), that singing pop songs at the top of one's lungs is an easy way to clear the aria jukebox, that 5 minutes of focused, in-person conversation is better than hours of chat. That having separate travel days makes life totally bearable. That my travel companion and I travel well and easily together, and that's a real blessing. (And also that we have some hours away from each other...we need some new stories for the next flight!)

Next stop? Chicago...that toddlin' town. But before that? A quick stop to repack. To reconnect with my little family.

To get a massage. Because the hunchback I'm sporting is even more striking than the fabulous shoes.

My five?
  1. Sleep. Too much is never enough.
  2. Context. The doorman at the hotel in Houston asked us to wait inside for the cab, because it was too cold outside. It was GLORIOUS outside. :)
  3. Cinnamon spice candles.
  4. Restaurant meals.
  5. Fasting and exercising.

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