This past Saturday, Jonathon brought me along to a friend's family farm for an annual weekend party that...well...

Okay.  Jonathon came back from this party last year and told me how he spent his weekend.  "Lies.  All lies," I insisted.  And when we arrived this year, I was so pissed that he was right (and he kept laughing at me in my incredulous wrongness).  Look, I can try to describe it, but it will save us all a lot of time if you just trust that 99% of what you see in this music video actually transpired in real life (somebody else said it was like living in a CW show).  

Oh, but with more fireworks, both purposeful and accidental.

Around one AM, with the ridiculously large bonfire finally losing its novelty and with no tent to our name, Jonathon and I retired to the finished loft above a garage, where several people had already sprawled out on air mattresses and sleeping bags.  At 6:15, I woke up to abundant sunshine and chirping birds.  I thought about grabbing a change of clothes and heading out for a solitary stroll, but more people had settled in around us after we'd dozed off, and I was effectively marooned on our sleeping bag.  My phone still had most of its charge, and I briefly checked email and the news.  I wasn't really feeling it, but neither did I feel like I could go back to bed.  Then I realized I could reach my book* without noisily disturbing the sleeping crowd, so that's what I did.

Sometimes my mind would wander from reading, and I'd stare out into space.  But the hissing of ripstop polyester tossing and turning often crescendoed over the ambient sounds of a rustic morning, reminding me that I ran the risk of creeping people out by being wide awake without any task.  So I'd bring my awareness back to the book in my left hand and the hi-liter in my right.  And every once in a while, another person did wake up.  They'd tiptoe through the maze of flannel-clad humans, go downstairs to use the bathroom, then return to their bedding for more shut-eye.  Eventually I felt my own eyelids becoming heavier.  Because it seemed a shame to stop only ten pages from a new chapter, I willed myself to finish the one I had started.  And once I was done, I conked out 'til midday.

There's a lesson here for times I find myself lacking motivation: read like I'm surrounded by casual acquaintances who could wake up at any moment.

I'm still a little miffed about the implausible perfection of these outdoors.

I'm still a little miffed about the implausible perfection of these outdoors.



*Someone asked me later in the day what I had been reading.  It took my a good ten seconds to come up with Marvin Carlson's The Haunted Stage: The Theatre as Memory Machine (an excellent book I've long been meaning to read more of, and not simply because it was written by one of my professors).  Reading may have been the best use of my time in this particular situation, but I don't think I'm at my most efficient at six o'clock in the morning.

AuthorMaria Cristina Garcia