69. I didn’t feel completely nerved out of my mind while talking to adults of high standing. Actually, I was enjoying myself a bit. Though I still catch myself being hyper aware of how I’m presenting myself (do I sound like a pompous asshole? do I sound like a brown noser? Dear god did I just interrupt you?), my responses arise more naturally and aren’t taken over completely by my paranoid thoughts. Confidence building gold star. Also, the most amazing Indian food for dinner! After two weeks of pretty tame French spices, it was a party in my mouth.
68. Sleeping early after a very, VERY long day. So much traveling and being in motion this week, it’s heaven to lie perfectly still in a bed that isn’t on a train or a bus or a plane or a rocky cab. Also, free book from HarperCollins. Free stuff.
67. Painting en plein air – beginners edition. I do not enjoy being in direct sunlight, so I compromised by being in this totally rustic shed with open windows and barn doors. Still go attacked by mosquitoes though. Eating fresh figs off the tree right next door made up for it.
66. I have 24 mosquito bites on my body right now. I have never been so happy for the invention of antihistamines and calamine lotion.
65. Every painting is a journey. I start off, almost always, with a fear that it’ll turn into a horrible mess. In the middle, I’ll encounter a period during which the painting actually is a mess – colors bleed together, proportions are slightly off, my palette is turning steadily brown. But eventually, the painting will work itself out and I find myself, for a moment, on auto pilot as the painting tells my brush where to place some strokes and which colors to use. The middle part is never enjoyable and always is frustrating. But the breakthrough at the end is nonexistent without it. I had a breakthrough today.
64. The long stretches of time that fill up Sunday mornings and afternoons. The sun streams in and it is quiet. There is no one in the house. I’m reading and writing my homework but there is no stress, just the slow, leisurely pace of learning. And my chicory coffee.