Wanton Behavior

26 01 2013

I backpacked across Europe in my twenties. One of my 
adventures included my one and only experience with hitchhiking.

Heraklion, Crete’s largest town

Heraklion, Crete’s largest town

I was nearing the end of 
my travels. I had worked my way across the continent and made it to the Greek isles to laze on the beaches. The last stop before
 traveling back to the States was to Crete. My traveling buddy, 
Leslie and I heard it was beautiful, affordable; full of beaches to
 soak up the sun and it was famous for hiking with its mountains and 
gorges. After six months of travel, my bank account had dwindled;
 so free things like sunning and hiking sounded like a great way to 
end this adventure.

Greecefishing

Crete is a very large 
island, with few large towns. It is full of beautiful, wild scenery 
dotted with small villages. One fishing village was known among
 savvy travelers for its great beaches and being somewhat off the 
beaten track. Leslie and I stepped off the bus and walked to 
the closest tiny Inn with its attached open-air restaurant. It 
looked like a nice place to stay and over a meal we visited with
 the owner. She offered us a job on the spot. We just had to wait 
tables for lunch and dinner and could stay for free.

Still rural and traditional

Still rural and traditional

This was a traditional Greek 
fishing village that earned some money off the tourists. The
 European tourists were use to the topless beaches elsewhere and 
felt free to bare-all despite frowning from the local 
babushka-wearing women. No one seemed to mind the local men peering
 out from the bushes at the edge of the beach, except perhaps the
 local women. For the record, I was the only woman in a one-piece
 bathing suit—but that’s a story for another day.

We met a New
 Yorker one day at the beach. He was visiting his grandmother who
 had never left the island. We made plans to hike the Samaria Gorge the next day.

We stopped by to get him early the next morning and his grandmother
 chased us away with a broom. She wanted to keep those wild wanton
 American hussies away from her grandson. He escaped her watchful 
eye and the hike was spectacular. The only thing wild about the
 hike was the scenery.

Greecemount2

Over the days we
 were there, we settled into a comfortable routine. Sunning in the
 morning and afternoon, waiting tables at lunch and dinner, and
 sitting and visiting with the Innkeeper and family in the evenings.
 At some point we needed to go into town and went to wait for the
 bus. We waited and waited and waited. We saw the Innkeeper waving 
her thumb in the air. We got the message, we stuck our thumbs
 out and in a few moments a small Greek man in a tiny pick up truck 
pulled over to give us a ride.

He didn’t speak English and our 
Greek was pretty nonexistent. There was lots of smiling and nodding 
and he understood the name of the town we wanted to go to which was
 about 10 miles away. He drove very slowly. I sat next to the door
 and was just admiring the scenery. I noticed he pulled a notebook 
out from under his seat and was showing it to Leslie who was 
sitting snug up next to him and almost straddling the stick shift.
 I glance at it and thought he was showing her his English lessons.

Then I felt her body stiffen and sit up straight. She said in a
 loud hissing whisper, “did you look at this??!!!” So I took a 
closer look. It was indeed his language book. It had handwritten 
pages in French, in Italian, in Spanish and in English with the 
Greek translation beside it. On each page and in each language it 
said.

Hello. How are
 you?
You are very pretty.
Are you having a nice visit on 
Crete?
Would you like a cup 
of coffee?
Would you like to
 fuck?

Our reaction quickly told him that 
someone had misinformed him about those wanton American hussies. He 
stepped on the gas and we were in town in no time.

Greecechurch

As I think back I wonder 
if he ever got lucky. As we say in the South, “bless his heart.”

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The World Wide Web

20 01 2013

world-wide-web.jp

I heard Chelsea Clinton recently say—obviously amused by her Dad—“He still calls it the World Wide Web.” Remember when we all called it that, when it was new, amazing and somewhat mysterious. This was before laptops, ipads, smart phones…back when not everyone had a computer in their home. When…gasp…you might still get in your car and go to the library to find information.

This led to a conversation with a friend on how the Internet changed our lives and did I remember the first time I had my first exposure. Hers was on a 12” black and white monitor. The image was just copy, in that pale text. But it was a glimpse into an exciting “other” world.

I remembered my first exposure into that “other“ world.  I’m in advertising and my professional organization held a World Wide Web workshop. It was held in a computer lab at our local university. It was filled with mostly Internet virgins who were also my professional friends.

The workshop leader was a charismatic guy, but at some point the words he was saying explaining it all became a wah, wah, wah droning on and on. I was ready, like a kid ready to cut their birthday cake. My friend sitting next to me pointed to a headline on the screen (I didn’t know the word link back then) that said “Hunks Online”. I hovered the arrow over this and clicked the mouse.

Suddenly a HUGE PENIS filled the screen. I didn’t know what to do and I didn’t know how to get it off the screen. This led to laughing like when you’re in church and are uselessly trying not to call attention to yourself. But we were loud. I may have even fallen out of my chair. I know tears of laugher were falling down my face. Someone behind me yelled, “Connie, bookmark that page for me!” I didn’t know what that even meant (though I got the concept).

This was my first exposure to the World Wide Web.

I’d love to know your story about the world wide web!

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The Places I’ll Go

12 01 2013

dr-seuss

It’s time to turn a new page. That’s my thought as I write the last page of my journal.  I get a little reflective as I end something and start something new. Next week I’m facilitating my first group through the Art’s Council on The Artist Way at Work, based on a book that has been important to my journey. While reflecting on the past and the present, I look forward to where this journey is taking me.

My Creative Journey

Five years ago my then new boss told me I wouldn’t make another round of budget cuts and I should consider a job in sales. She saw me as a dinosaur. I was criticized for being a bad proofer. I’m a graphic designer, didn’t she know designers just look at words, we don’t read them?!

This led me to say YES to being on the Board of my professional club, the American Advertising Federation-Baton Rouge (AAF-BR).

I read the Artist’s Way for a second time.

This made me realize that while I still love design, when I started it wasn’t so solitary. I could now go all day sitting in front of a computer with no human interaction. I hate this. I’m an extrovert. I must talk to people in order to know what I’m thinking.

I make a decision to get over my fear of public speaking. I put myself in positions of HAVING to talk in front of people.

youer than you

That new boss quits and moves away. I become President of AAF-BR. Every email I send out as president has a typo in it and I still win District President of the Year.

I start giving workshops on Creativity and Innovation outside of my day job.

I started a side business, Greenview Designs. I designed my own logo and business card. I gave myself the title Creativity Coach.

Be who you say

I started this blog, My Creative Journey, so my creative  voice can be heard.

In the middle of the night, I stumble upon a bloghop by this group of midlife women bloggers called GenFab (Generation Fabulous).

weirdness

I become part of the FABULOUS GenFab blogger/writer tribe—a group of supportive, creative women who are changing how the world looks at midlife. (They don’t kick me out because of my typos.)

My blog makes it into a GenFab bloghop and I’m in Huffington freakin’ Post.

I make plans to attend BlogHer this summer in Chicago.

This week, I will lead a group based on the book The Artist’s Way at Work. It’s how to nurture the creative spirit within you.

today is your day

The thing about journeys is that they take you to unexpected places. I’ll keep telling you about my unexpected twists, turns and falls. Feel free to let me know yours. Oh, the places we’ll go!

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Timeless Tips from a Fashionista

6 01 2013

mcleodturban

Morning
I am a fashionista from the moment I step out of the shower when I don the classic, timeless turban. I particularly like the animal print. It goes with another classic, the fire-engine-red robe. It is belted at the waist to give the illusion of an hourglass silhouette. This look never goes out of style.

mcleod nightgown

Noon
While baking at home, I find it most practical and fashion forward to stay in my nightgown. This attire is multipurpose and can also be used to clean your hands while cooking. The must-have red fuzzy socks go with most anything in your closet and is a staple in any wardrobe.

mcleodyardwork

Evening
This is perhaps my sexiest look. The oversized retro tie-dye t-shirt also hide those holiday pounds. Tie it together with the exercise capris and you’ve got a look that will take you from daytime cleaning to that late afternoon yard work. Finish off this look with the red Crocs; another must for any fashionista (yes, I love to have a splash of red in my fashion palette)! Add a visor from a favorite bar and you will have the neighbors thinking the grass is indeed greener at your house. My sweetie says I never look sexier than when I’m doing yard work. I tell him the same thing whenever he has a vacuum cleaner in his hands. This attire is also good for painting, I find the paint splatters add that little devil-may-care attention to this look. Good for all seasons.

You just have to click the follow button to read about my continuing adventures on “My Creative Journey”. I made the Huffington Post with this. I’m #16!