On Being Gypsie
On being … how arrogantly philosophical of me. I also considered The Doctrine of a Nomad, but found that to have a level of pretentiousness that far exceeded necessity.
Back in my day we had to write stories in a ringed binder of paper, called a notebook, with pencils, colored optional if pictures included. The magic lay in that notebook paper could instantly become loose-leaf paper at the tear of a sheet. It could also become a basketball, or projectile of choice should the target be a younger sibling rather than a trash can.
I was raised by straight-laced people. The straightest of the laced, and by god if they didn’t want something more for their children. So we travelled. We saw the world, or at least the corner of it called The United States.
I had a record by eighteen months. Simple assault on Flamingos. But it was in San Francisco and we weren’t from San Francisco.
Summer vacation. It was as routine as spelling tests.
I have no idea about the world except the world I’ve explored. I’ve given it a good go, though only as far as England and Germany. Not as good as some. Better than others. I grew up travelling. I moved out travelling. I have stories. Some are good, some are bad, some are naughty, and others will make you wish you were a better person.
I once lived in an apartment that was once a house. It was in a historic neighborhood, down the street from a private high school. This place. Best. Place. Ever. I negotiated a low rent with the landlord, who also happened to be my boss and signer of paycheck, and agreed to do things I never had any intention of doing. It has stories. The kind that make you wish you were there and glad you weren’t all at the same time.
Have you heard of the Corn Palace? It’s living art. I bartended topless once, sort of. I rode a mule down the Grand Canyon and hiked the swamps of the Natchez Trace. I’ve walked the wall of York too. I was pissed off that day. I needed the fresh air.
I still have the banana flavored condom I got at a night club in Germany in 1994. I still don’t need the picture to remember walking across the crosswalk on Abby Road in 2004. I can still taste the brie, basil, and tomato sandwich I ate on Virginia Woolf’s front steps and the bitter from being teased for my white socks at Canterbury Cathedral.
All that travel, plus the non-travel: the apartment on Concordia, the apartment on Timberlake, the townhouse on Lemay, the cottage on 13th, the house on Waits, and the two apartment on Churches…not to mention the place I moved out of while a friend guarded by bedroom door with a sawed-off shogun so I wouldn’t get beat up. I had broken a guy’s nose the night before. It was better to be over-protected.
So I am neither arrogant, philosophical, pretentious, or even necessary.
I am Gypsie.
Please don’t call me that.