arts and crafts and chocolate cakes (gf)

I realized recently that I am often compartmentalizing. Friend groups; appropriate topics of conversation therein; the year by season; music by playlist; and, most recently, books by Kindle folder.

(Aside: 800-odd books later, I’ve finally invested in a Kindle. The future is now.)

It’s one of those things that reminds me of the extent of my neurosis. Having a mental grid where things must belong, a metaphoric handbag with thousands of pockets designated for particular things. A cross-section of my brain would probably look like a filing cabinet. Which is a mental image that makes me want to die, a little bit. (So much neurosis.)

Shockingly, I was not always like this. I was quite a carefree child, in fact. Artistic; always sketching in the margins of notebook papers; experimenting with watercolors and charcoals on canvas and sketchpads; molding clay or carving foam; and, eventually, graduating to digital painting with graphic tablets to accompany my shoddy web-designing (I still remember vividly how my 13-year-old face lit up like a Christmas tree when dad gifted me an absolutely gorgeous Wacom tablet). I don’t know when it died down, my love of art. College, I expect. Other obligations got in the way, as they always do.

(The tragedy of growing up.)

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beginnings, endings, and mugs of butterbeer

Another old post, borrowed from the old blog. After returning from Valencia last summer, I spent the remaining 6 weeks before classes living on my own at the apartment, alternating between part-time work on grounds and interning with a Spanish professor during the week. It was fitting, after all, since my part-time job consists of me working with words on pages. Sometimes poetry, sometimes manuscripts of fiction novels, sometimes letters to old friends.

And working for upwards of 6 hours a day in almost total silence, save for an iPod plugged into my ears and a new set of texts by my side, I had ample time to muse about anything and everything. After a visit to Orlando that winter, though, and a looming final film on the horizon, my thoughts turned, unsurprisingly, to a childhood full of magic wands, flying broomsticks, and a boy with a scar on his forehead.

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♫ merry christmas, ring the hogwarts bell

During December of 2010, I visited Orlando with two of my cousins and my sister, Yusra. Orlando, to be sure, was a lovely city to be in during the winter; the weather was perfect, strolling downtown in the relative quit was beyond peaceful, and the greenery still lining the trees was a welcome contrast to the skeletal branches of Virginia.

But the real gem, and purpose, of our visit was the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

I’m quite certain I may have actually teared up when  I first caught a glimpse of the castle. I man, it was more or less my entire childhood bursting to life before my eyes.

Between the quaint replica of Hogsmeade to the castle interior, every detail was accounted for and nothing went unnoticed by my keen, knowing eye. I entered the park expecting to spend the weekend scrutinizing this and that – Ollivander’s isn’t nearly cluttered enough, the Three Broomsticks looks nothing like it did in the films, they’re certainly going to leave some of the candy out of Honeydukes – but was pleasantly surprised to find absolutely nothing to criticize.

Well, I suppose, aside from the fact that the park isn’t within walking distance of my apartment, but I’ll give them a pass on that one.

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