I'm not one to fondly remember my past and talk about it in length. It's not that I don't like my past, it's that once things are over - I tend not to really think about them much unless it comes up in conversation or someone reminds me (such as my Bill Bryson Down Under and my Racehorse Billionaire posts were both because someone reminded me).
So I was a bit surprised last night when I found myself looking through old photos of myself. I notice the distinct lack of any photos Pre-Australia, but hey, Australia's been a fun place. I never really took full advantage of America while I lived there. I saw a lot of it - the entire West Coast, the entire highway down the Mississippi (which hits like, New Orleans, Detroit, Little Rock, Chicago and a whole slew of other landmarks I can barely remember at the moment, and definitely not in that order).
According to my mother, I saw a lot of the middle too, but I don't recall a moment of it. Nor do I have photos of my numerous trips to Mexico, Canada, or the Redwood forests. A pity, really. I simply did not appreciate what I had enough to feel photos were necessary. Now, I'm almost an obsessive photo taker. Who cares, though? I have a million wonderful funny things I probably would barely remember had I not taken photos, gone through them and smiled at the memory. So my camera might annoy some people - it's been worth it.
So - I leave my photographic memories to those of Australia, simply because that's when I started taking photos of things. I would like to share some with you. A little piece of my past, to greater understand the person who does all the things she does - or just to mock the silly lifestyle I have had. Either one.
This photo is the first photo I ever got with my new motorbike. I remember my 22nd birthday was fast approaching and I was really upset that between the ages of 21-22, I had done nothing to improve my life. So I decided to get a motorbike licence. As you do. I decided on Kiki, the beautiful 1989 Honda CBR250R. She's my girl. She's a bit small for me now, but she's going to be with me forever. Someday soon I plan on teaching learners how to ride on her.
This photo is from the time I married myself. What? Yes, you heard me right. After a particularly nasty break-up (those who know me will remember the time I was BILLED for my relationship) I decided I wanted to marry myself! What better use for that dusty dress I had planned on marrying someone else in? This photo was taken by the amazing Greg Morgan, a rather colourful-looking but down to earth fellow who just likes to smile and have fun. You always know he's around because he jingles from his multiple piercings. Anyway, I really had this shoot to sell the dress - but figured while I was in mourning over a relationship AND on Facebook, I'd make a fake me and marry myself. I posted this and some others as proof I married myself. The dress is still for sale. Damn resale value.
For a few months, an ex-pro motorbike racer took me under his wings and taught me how to ride. He worked with me on simulators (this photo) and on my own personal bike. He taught me how the pros do it, but from a newbie viewpoint. He taught me all about camber of the road, how to read a road and how to properly lean in the corners. I will forever be grateful to him for doing this for me. I still, to this day, ride in a very much racer-position (I even get mocked for it by other riders! "What do you think you're doing? racing?!") thanks to the positioning he taught me. Without him, I would be an exceptionally poor rider. He literally saved my life on the roads. Thank you, Redroo!
This is from when I decided to convert to Judaism. This is the shul that yes or nos you in Melbourne. This time I was no'd. Repeatedly. Seven times, actually. (That three thing? yeah, turns out, it's a MINIMUM, not a guarantee) I was really happy to have come all this way to see this beautiful shul, so I took a photo in front of it. I spent much time on this trip studying Judaism so I could convert. It was a major turning point in my belief in Gd, my diet, my lifestyle and my faith. I am so proud of myself for undertaking this experience and connecting myself to a higher power - even if it's not for everyone, it really did help straighten me out a bit.
This is the day Glynn proposed. This is my first photo ever where I'm wearing my new ring. I like this photo because it shows the love we have for each other in something a little crude like a public kiss. I remember when I picked out my ring, the silly male was given it by the clerks to give to me and he turns to me, holding the ring in the palm of his hand and says, "Here ya go!" and hands it to me! So romantic! I also remember running back and forth along the Queen Street Mall in 5" heels so I could transfer money over to the credit card so we could buy the ring (no I didn't buy it myself, my fiance had his money in my account after selling his house - trust, man) and the shop was closing. They opened JUST so I could have my ring. It was a terrible idea, as I spent the entire drive home in peak hour traffic staring at my hand instead of the road.
This is from when my girlfriend and I were Indy girls, about 4 years back. We found, of all things, celery in the bathroom of our hotel. So we thought we'd be silly. This isn't a huge memory, but it's a fun one. I recall a lot about Indy and generally getting my teenager wild-on a few years too late. I didn't do drugs or anything, but I had a good time. With celery in my ear, apparently.
This is just from the time I mud-wrestled the dog and won. WHAT? It's a good memory. I won, didn't I?!
I remember when my girlfriend (not the one shown above) and I decided to take up belly dancing. We decided to try to find one in my area before the city but were a bit, um, disappointed. Some moves were so basic, we already knew them and at one point, the lady was counting beat and said, "1...2... what was the next number? Geeze it's okay if I lose count at 8, but at 2?!" Ha. It was quite adorable, really, but not for us. So we learned via Ambyr in the city instead and last year did a show for my partner's birthday where we bellydanced for him and took him to dinner. You never saw a man so happy - two bellydancers on his arms at dinner. He looked like he won the jackpot.
And finally, from the time my fiance and I went on a 3 day getaway to the mountains. This is honestly one of my best memories. I was really woo'd on this trip by my wonderful partner. We went to the markets and got gourmet foods and soaps. We fell in love all over again, really. It was just after we got engaged. An engagement-party if you will, just us. This is the Escarpment Resort on Mount Tamborine. We went on picnics and watched the sun set over the countryside from the top of the mountain.
It's the little things in life I remember most fondly. Kindness, love, passion, learning - all those things are what really made my life these last few years truly special. I will treasure these times as long as I live.