slowly surely + xyz : a journey of (re)discovery

I AM. Saint

By InspiredJourney


He took note of everything. He felt compelled to utter nearly every thought inspired by appearance.

He commenting on the sparkle beaming from my watch and glittered nails.

He commented on my shoes (Vibrams).

He silently noted other things.

And finally he issued his claim that I needed to come to get next to him.

LORD. The seniors, they can be hilarious.

Even at my insistence that “No, I didn’t need to come to Atlanta to be next to you.”, he didn’t let it rest. So much so that it was mildly irritating initially. The greater was his need for validation in a way I’d never experienced with him. And given my propensity, I was not amused by this need that all the attention be on him.

Sadly, and too my chagrin, this instance was NOT a momentary need. But more, a common thread that’d show itself through the days passed and to come.

Le Sigh.

Enter stage left: The Girls (Robbie & Angelica) and their Mom (Carmen).

During some intermittent and hearty (I can’t help it) laughter, Carmen performs her daily ritual of dropping The Girls off after school. She pops her head in to see where all the noise is coming from. Her face shows a look of being perplexed, for more reasons than the one of ‘Who is this?’.

It’is I, the Saint of Perpetual Journey.

Don’t study me. One moment I’m here, the next, I’m gone.

Carmen dashes off and back to her 9 to 5.

I am formally introduced to The Girls. Beauties. Naturally. Two young ladies I’m pleased to say are beautifully articulate and aware.

As the day carried into the early evening, Carmen reemerged. She’s back to do what they normally do when I’m not around, and collect the girls. I notice she kept a bit of a distance until she was finally introduced to the woman on a perpetual journey: Me.

[While making the connection between the words of introduction she leans in with an exuberant hug while exclaiming in her slightly muted Caribbean accent: “Wah!, I didn’t know that was you. Nice to finally meet you.”

You see, Baba has connection to a number of adults who have become part of a larger ‘family’. In the 20 plus years I’ve known their nucleus family (having met connected through their first child in common, Tchad), a number of the ‘extended children’ have never met in person. We’ve been introduced when randomly crossing paths with one another on a call to the shop.

So, yeah, she greets and hugs, closing the circle that had been open.

There were only a few minutes to expire before Baba strolls into his usual activity complimenting. This is usually accompanied by what I refer to as him exaggerating inflating things a bit; a LOT for my personal taste. Granted I’m quite private and never care to play up my affairs, accomplishments or failures. Generally, and contrary to this blog, you won’t really find me broadcasting much. Actually this blog is my ‘work in progress’ attempt at being very public.


Carmen compliments my hair and nails, while simultaneously asking if I could do the girls’ hair.


During another moment of Baba ‘complimenting’, he mentions my ‘accomplishments’ in San Francisco: “Graduated cum laudi; she’s like you are with the girls with parenting…Grem is nice. He’s been to Africa and e’thing, etc.”

Me: Stahp it.

Carmen: Really? He’s been to Africa? Where was he?

Me: Senegal.

Carmen: Let me see a picture of your sahn.

As she has a look, she compliments how handsome he is.

Me: Thanks.

Carmen: So how’s San Francisco?

Me: It’s okay.

Baba throws some red meat money line into the mix. It had the overtones that I have a nice cache. That had Carmen inquiring more.

Not needing any attention, I wail “Baba stop.”

Carmen caught in the middle of the round Robin between me and Baba: No I want to know things. I have family out there. They’ve been trying to get me to move there for years. But I’m not sure if I’ll go.

Baba utters more, and I, nearly screaming as I retort: “Don’t listen and trust what he’s saying. He’ll have you thinking ten different ways about something that is really nothing.

I despised being put on what feels like a false pedestal.

By this time she’s exhausted by the dizzy nature of our volleying convo and goes on to declare her unwavering trust in his word. I leave the convo at that.

Antics complete. The hour to close the shop arrives and the troupe makes its way to its resting place.

Knowing my different way of engaging with the world, I felt inclined to make the announcement regarding the impression I was sure to make during my time there.

As a result of my minimalist mindset and intention, my mgear has a dedicated uniform that I wear daily. At the moment, it primarily consists of black stretch tanks, leggings, socks, even black panties, two black dresses, one short sleeve top, a denim jacket and one sarong. And though I had previously only traveled with my Vibrams, I took two pair of brand new sandals I hadn’t worn in a year on this trip. I knew it’d been hot in Atlanta, so I want to be prepared.

To anyone, and at a glance, it may appear I’m wearing the same clothing day after day. And because I know people, this prompted me to make an announcement.

I entered the great room of the house, exhibiting multiples in hand, I attempted to make it clear that I wouldn’t be walking around with the exact same pair of leggings every day of the week.

Difference and deviating from people’s idea of ‘normal’, has a way of eliciting and array of visceral responses that ultimately affect the ‘offender’ negatively. Yes, you’re living your life as you wish, but it strongly bothers others, and they let you know in ways that range from unintentionally mean to deeply hurtful.

Baba and Kenya both shrugged while stating something akin to ‘no worries’.

Ohkay. We shall see.

I retreat to the guest bedroom to prepare for my first night, since my last trip, in Atlanta.

Day 2.

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