July 16, 2004

week end

I talk Dan through signposts on the way down the 405. Long Beach, Huntington Beach, John Wayne Airport, Irvine. Take the exit, yes, turn left, yes, turn right, yes, into the parking lot, yes, Ill run downstairs, yes.

I check my hair in the mirror, feels almost like a first date. I skip through the hotel lobby into the warm night air. I see them. Looking around, searching for the hotel door. So strange to see them in this antiseptic, lonely place. Mommy, I want to see if you have more than one room! And so yes, up the elevator to my hotel room, after showing off my son to the front desk clerk Ive gotten to know. Then on to dinner in a place with more tables for six and eight than Ive ever seen in a restaurant this place is designed for business meetings hell, this city is designed for business meetings and then its time to pack while my guys watch crazy sports stunts on TV in the other room.

This week outside of time, this unexpected and so-intensive job, my first in years, this exile from normalcy is over. I get to go home. Im relieved, exhausted, and oddly, unexpectedly, a little bit sad. Because it felt good, being a working woman again, this time with the dignity that comes with the mantle of a freelance professional brought in from outside. Nobody my boss, just my client.

Ive been Mommy for so long, Mommy and not a whole lot else. Sure, I write. Sure, that work matters to me. A lot. But its been a slow, subterranean evolution. Im ready now to sell some of my writing, almost ready to market more. The roots are strong underground now. But still no flower, no colorful resume-building, brag-worthy fruition, not yet. And so this photo gig, this insanely intensive shoot (the shot number of my very last image? Number one thousand one hundred eleven), this job that takes me out of the flow of my underwater life-giving real work its been important emotionally. Crucial, maybe. Because its shown me I remember how to do this. How to be in the workaday world. How to comport myself, how to organize my workload, how to be on top of my game when it matters in that particular way that it does on a paying job.

I fell back into it as if Id never left. No, as if Id left, joined a boxing gym, been battered and bruised and developed muscles where none had existed, where Id trained for a fucking marathon of emotional strength where Id done all that and then come back into the arena.

Both guys I worked with the industrial client and the production guy who hired me said they want to work with me again. I think I might like that too. Irvine or no Irvine.

Posted by Tamar at July 16, 2004 10:26 PM