Small Adventures

 

OUT WITH THE NORMAL, IN WITH THE WEIRD

Ah, spring. March came in like a lamb, and out like a tornado full of screaming lambs. I’m all about this weather, it has me making snap decisions and having spontaneous fun. How could anyone stick to their routine when they see a gigantic rainbow blazing across the sky like a unicorn with explosive diarrhea?

There’s just something about rarity that makes ten minutes of sunshine an impetus to run outside and revel in the beauty of it all, when three weeks ago the endless stretch of gorgeous days were eye-rollingly boring. The threat of the warmth and light having an expiration date makes me want to live the moment like it’s my last. I guess it’s like how vampires don’t appreciate immortality (according to numerous documentaries I’ve seen, not personal experience as a fang-banger).

And then there’s the storms! The torrential rain and hail, downspouts overflowing like geysers, and people running around giggling like little kids trying to stay dry. I was having dinner at Thai Basil a few days ago when the sky opened up, and everyone in the restaurant suddenly turned to the window and started gasping and chatting with each other about how we all left our umbrellas in the car, and how funny the poor suckers outside were, running with their shirts over their heads. Just like that, all the odd little social boundaries dissolved.

Those moments make me all giddy; I like it when the rules change and strangers start acting as like friends. It’s like in a musical when everyone suddenly busts into choreography, except it’s just a group of diners making fun of some poor schlub getting pelted by hail.

Anyway, I’m in high spirits. Dain and I went for a nice little jaunt up to Table Mountain to check out the flowers and have a snack-picnic. We gambled and won with some bargain-bin deviled eggs, which is always a good feeling, and got a lot of pictures of rocks. We also drove down some random backroads on the outskirts of Oroville, where we saw two goats, a dilapidated mini-windmill, and a lot of No Trespassing signs.

Continuing the streak of small adventures, we started taking a ballroom dance class through CARD. Nothing says breaking routine like entering a new environment to learn something totally alien, feeling super nervous and out of place, and then discovering you’re harboring hidden talents. I’m not saying we’re Astaire and Rogers or anything, but we definitely don’t suck as bad as some of the other couples (in your face, other couples!).

Plus, it turned out to be super fun and oddly thought provoking. The basic deal is that the man leads and the woman follows; you just shut off your brain and go where the man moves you. On the one hand I recognize this gender dominance thing as a relic of old-time sexism, but when it comes to dancing anything that isn’t choreographed, someone has to lead, and it was surprisingly thrilling for me to let go of all control and let him take charge. Dain’s not a bossy guy—which is one of the things I really like about him—but I found it incredibly hot, and I found that incredibly weird.

Speaking of segues, did you notice our new column? Well, it’s called “Exotic Adventures in Smalltown, USA,” and it’s by our brand-new columnist Emiliano Garcia-Sarnoff. He and it are both awesome.

Managing Editor for Synthesis Weekly. Amy likes to make clothes, plant flowers, and chase butterflies.