Apparently It’s Next Time

I saw my brother yesterday in Gilbert AZ:

This marks the first time ever that I’ve seen all my immediate family where they live within the space of one week. Nate and I hung out last night and then went to breakfast this morning. The breakfast loving gene runs strong in our family and the Farmhouse Restaurant in Gilbert, AZ:

Offers a whole variety of egg scrambles – mine had potatoes, bacon and green onions – in a sweet little space with accomodating waitstaff. I’d recommend it in a minute.

We then parted ways. Nate drove to Globe and I drove to Tucson, staring at the horizon and taking really deep breaths the whole way.

I lived in Tucson for 10 years before going on tour with musical theatre shows. When I left, I packed up my stuff and put it in a storage shed, parked my truck in a different storage space, arranged for my friend Karen to forward my mail and took off.

Since I started touring, I’ve been back to Tucson every year and it goes like this:

1. A month before I arrive, I decide how long I’ll be there and figure out how many social engagements I can fit in. I send out a bunch of emails asking if my friends have time to hang out and then spend the next 2 weeks fielding return emails and scheduling lunches, dinners, drinks etc. and fitting everyone in. Sometimes this means a day where I have breakfast, lunch, happy hour, dinner and late night drinks all with separate people. On those days I have 5 opportunities in 24 hours to try not to talk nonstop about my crazy job. A blog has been a good solution to this problem. Now I can write about my life and my friends can read, which frees me up to listen to their stories over food and adult beverages and we don’t have to talk about me at all.  Note to all my friends who don’t read my blog, if you start reading we can talk more about you.

2. I pick up my truck and spend the first afternoon getting it through emissions, registering it and changing the oil. Every year it develops another tic or some kind of weird behavior that I chalk up to abandonment issues and power games. I’m pretty sure I’ve given it a complex by leaving it alone so much of the year. I fear it’s turned into one of those weird hermits with no gauge of normal truck behavior because it’s segregated from society and forced to recreate with the RVs stored around it.

3. I check on my storage shed, which is more and more of a mess every time I visit. I wade through dusty boxes filled with God knows what, knowing that there are things in there I’ve forgotten about and no longer want or need or would use or have any idea why I kept. I’m always searching for something and trying to remember where the 5-years-ago me might have stored it, usually with little success. I throw some stuff out, pack a lot more things away, rearrange a few things and hours later covered with dust I look at the giant mess, shake my head, roll down the door and drive away thinking “The next time I come into town I really need to figure out a different way to store everything.”

4. I collect my mail. Then I look at the giant pile and know that I’ll lose an hour of my life going through all the junk mail and cursing the credit card companies that won’t stop sending me card offers. Trees are dying, I don’t want another credit card, if I bake you cookies will you please for the LOVE OF GOD stop sending me mail??? Seriously, send me an address. I’m getting out the butter and sugar right now.

5. I spend every remaining waking moment seeing friends, running errands, complaining about the heat and saying “I will NEVER live here again” in very disdainful tones.

6. Right before I leave, I email the people I didn’t see and say “I’ll see you next time. How in the world do you live here? It’s hellish!!”

7. I jet out of town after too few days saying “Next Time” to everything I didn’t finish.

Now, for the first time in 5 years, I will be stretching the above madness over 6 weeks instead of 6 days. And while I have big renovation plans (STORAGE SHED) I also have a lot of writing work to do so I won’t be a whit surprised if I fly out of this city with even less done than I usually accomplish.

So, for the next few days I’ve got a truck whose ego needs stroking so it will run for the entire 6 weeks I’m here, a laptop that needs technical attention because it’s acting all feverish and virus stricken, apartment sublet keys and instructions to procure, a rental car to return, loose ends to wind up, a weekend in New Mexico and THEN finally, I move in to my own little place for 6 blessed weeks and stare at the wall in silence for the first 24 hours until my brain reboots.

Welcome to the official season known as “Next Time.”

8 thoughts on “Apparently It’s Next Time

  1. Welcome back Super Star. I had a great time last night – food, chatting, wine on the back porch. So excited about seeing you regularly over the next month. As far as the heat goes – I’ve got a client and she has this huge swimming pool . . .

  2. Deep breath, smile and enjoy. You’ll have just enough time to do everything you really want to do and you’ll be really glad to go. March on.

    Nate is looking more and more Smithish.

  3. oh grizzly barrett!

    and, i can’t wait to hear about the holidays that tucson celebrates, or something. i have good feelings about this time for you. :)

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