Ever feel like turning your back on the rest of the world?
You might have a hard day when you’re pushed to your limits and people come stomping (ungraceful as hell) into your path who make it so much harder than it should be but don’t forget all the people who need you. I need you. Just think of the pleasures awaiting you.
That someone who ruins your day can just as easily walk away, especially if you threaten their hate with kindness, love, and goodness. What would God do…They want your displeasure and when you don’t give it to them, they’ll go looking for it somewhere else. Sometimes they find it. Let them be and keep your head held high.
Someone unbelievable will walk into your life. That person is going to make you feel like your shoes are slicker than Cinderella’s, laugh like that first puff, even make you contemplate gravity because you are flying. Too much fairytale, not enough truth? Maybe that person was you all along.
Keep it pushing lovely. You’ve got too much goodness to answer for.
If you want something, go get it! Nothing in life is free!!! But you’ve heard all this mumbo jumbo before. Yet I repeat for the people who don’t realize how simple it is to invest in the path which you want your life to follow; The path which would bring you more happiness. Why depend on luck? That’s not even an option for me since I might be the most unlucky as hell person to roam the earth. There is chance, but even that doesn’t last forever. Go ask any high roller. Work for what you believe in and always believe in yourself. Head High, Soldier! Stop mopping around, unwrap your head from all that negativity and pessimism, and throw life into your future, one breath at a time. If you want more work, then you better be someone people want to work with. Not willing to change yourself? By God, I hope you have brilliance and brains… No matter, Head High, Soldier. Hit those notes, dash that work, reach the heights, live the life.
Sit on your arse, fine. But the fruits of your actions will cause your destiny to dry up like the remains of a cracked lake. You look into the vast bed of nothing, seeing the weeds and wonder how something so vast could all of a sudden shrivel up like the skin of an ancient being. No rain, love. No action. No change. Don’t even act surprised when you see your dreams walk away on shaky twig legs, barely able to make it out of the room before they snap into a cloud of ruins. You could try to run and salvage, but if you let them take those first few steps away from you, something tells me you’re already too far to catch up. The sloth on the sly holds you in its grip. Principles baby.
Isaac Newton’s laws of motion were first set down in his Principia Mathematica Philosophiae Naturalis in 1687. The first law states that an object will stay at rest or move with a constant velocity, unless it is acted upon by an external force.
The second law is the one that tells you how to calculate the value of a force. Force (measured in Newtons) is one of the fundamental physical properties of a system and comes in many forms. You might feel it as a push or pull (a mechanical force), while it is the value of your weight (the gravitational force of the Earth pulling on you) and can be seen in the repulsion or attraction of magnets or electric charges (electromagnetic force). A force might be the result of any number of fundamental physical interactions between bits of matter but Newton’s second law allows you to work out how a force, when it is present, will affect the motion of an object.
Where’s your force? Chaos and nothingness. If you want to create something already envisioned in your mind; the job that would make your life financially easier, making your significant other happier, taking that vacation to paradise (the list can go on and on), everything will take some effort on your behalf. EFFORT. It doesn’t take a brain scientist to figure that much out. But the hardest part for human beings (in my opinion) is how much do you really want it? Where’s your force soldier? That is the ultimate divider. Do you feel a pit in your stomach when you think of your dreams because you haven’t yet reached them? Do you break out in a cold sweat when you’re so close to touching them, palms clammy as hell? Does the image of your destiny stay within your vision day and night?
I do/it does. And it pains me. But it makes me stronger in the sense that I not only know what I want in life but I can feel it. I sleep so little and I’m fine with that because my soul won’t rest until I get the thing I want in life. If I fail? Fine. So be it! But I’ll be DAMNED if I fail because I half-assed this thing called life.
Head HIGH, Soldier!! You’ve got dreams to pursue. You’ve got your own wishes to grant. Feel like taking a nap? Okay pussycat, when you’re done don’t forget that the work you left behind, just like my boy Newton said, is either collecting a layer of dust or has converted to untameable chaos. Choose your weapon.
I choose fire.
So many times people have asked me why? Why do this? Why didn’t you do that? Why!? Why!? Why!? Most of the time I give them the It’s none of your damn business look. But there is one question that without fail hits me like a Deer in the illuminated tunnel of oncoming headlights.
Why did you start the Heiva San Diego?
When those words leave their lips, memories pour into my brain as if it were yesterday that I stepped barefoot onto the To’ata stage, feet raw from dancing for weeks on concrete, my stomach screaming from nerves, and a thousand electric currents pulsing throughout my hearts’ core. Oh yes, that is a question that makes me not only remember, but makes me feel.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with the Heiva San Diego, it’s a Tahitian Cultural festival and Dance Competition that takes place every year in August located in Sunny San Diego. This year the dates are August 11 & 12 and it’ll be the 8th year that my family and friends have put together this gathering and event. Every year I hope to bring Tahiti to San Diego. I fail in some aspects, in others I succeed. No matter the outcome, I keep trying.
So why Lindsay? Why did you start the Heiva San Diego?
As a child, I grew up around my mother, aunties, and grandma talking about the Heiva I Tahiti (Check it out!). It was something to gossip about on a tiny island where everyone knew everyone. Almost every single woman in my family had danced in the Heiva. I could imagine them as young women full of life up on stage. Then there was my older cousin Vairani. She was the most beautiful person I had ever seen and when she performed on stage with her hair long and crimped hair, makeup and red lips, she was transformed further into something untouchable to my young awkward self. Her skin turned to gold. Her hair was spun silk. And even that stank attitude she always gave me because I was her little cousin dissipated. She was no longer the prettiest one in our family to my mind, she elevated into Vairani, Island Goddess. OMGAWWWDDD I was such a twerp! You better believe that after I saw her up on that stage I would have done anything for her (This probably made her despise me even more!) I followed her around like a pesky mosquito while she tried to smack me out of the way (and she was real smooth not to do it in front of the adults!). But I didn’t care. She was Goddess. Goddess’ can do whatever the hell they want! That was when I was a young chump. Eventually, I grew up to be an older chump.
As I matured my memories of my cousin never faded. I remembered the way she smiled on stage and how infectious her joy was as she swayed and moved in ways I couldn’t. I would never forget how beautiful she was. There’s just no way in hell I could erase the impression of the costumes, colors, and sounds as the drum echoed across the courtyard into the waters that made the island a paradise to most and a prison to others. Every time I saw bright red lips, my inner bitch would shake her head and comment. Sure can’t rock it like Vairani. No one can rock it like my cousin did when I was young, impressionable, and wanted to be just like her older cousin with the perfect everything…Nobody!!!
Then I hit rock bottom. Not really rock bottom…Let me restate that; Teenage Rockbottom. It involved teenage heartbreak to a guy who I was better off without. I stopped eating and I didn’t want to see anyone. 20 lbs lighter and disappeared from my usual group of friends, my soul searched for something else to cling onto and somehow I stumbled upon Healii’s Polynesian Revue (HPR ). They were doing a performance in a parking lot. BAM! Just like a magical abracadabra, my lost teenage soul who felt soooooooo damn ugly after being dumped by her good for nothing boyfriend, saw the red lips, the bright costumes, and heard the drum beats that made her blood hot as if she were standing in the middle of a summer storm. I went through highschool uncommitted to everything and anything(except douchebag boys) but at that moment I tugged on my father’s sleeve and looked him in the eyes with an expression that meant Business. “I am going to dance with them.” He probably liked the ways my eyes lit up with fire..but he might have hated that he was going to pay for my dance lessons. Thanks, daddy! So I dance, and the more I dance, the more I fell out of love with scum bags, and back into love with myself. I felt beautiful on stage. The dances made me part of something that I had never experienced before. I learned about other islands as well as my own and more importantly, I formed bonds with others that made me stronger. My hula sisters.
Slowly and surely I wanted more. MORE! MORE! MORE! More dance…. but especially more of Tahiti. Healii’s was mostly Hawaii. They were wonderful, but my soul searched for something that my younger self had seen; Ori Tahiti. When I turned 18 I found an opportunity impossible for me to pass up; Competing in the Heiva I Tahiti. The competitions of all competitions, which my mother had even participated in when she was my age. I WAS ALL IN, BABY!
For months I trained with a small group of girls in America and it went a little something like this: Watch video’s of a Tahitian dancer and memorize the dances. That sounds so easy. NOT! I lost about 15lbs in the first couple of months. We trained every day like dogs doing moves that normal human beings just don’t do. During training..our hips could NOT lie. Instead, they SANG TRUTH, louder and louder as the days passed.. well you get the point. When it was time to finally go to Tahiti and meet the group that we were joining things only got harder. Dance, dance, and more dance..Oh and BTW when your finished dancing, you better dance in your sleep (which is exactly what my dreams made me do!) It was so damn HARD, but every single second was pure BLISS. Even the blisters on my soles felt worthy. Finally, I had found something in life that I was willing to work hard at. Yet, when it was time to actually perform the dances, I would have never expected what happened…
My hair was amazingly big and puffy. My lips were fire-truck red. The costume I wore fit perfectly. I was ready. We were ready. Vairani, you better watch your back..I’m bringing it! And together the beats took their toll and we stepped on stage as one. At that moment I could feel the heartbeats of everyone standing beside me. Their breathes were rhythically aligned with mine. The crowd looked at us and I did not shrink back. Together we were brilliant with our flaws and all.
That night we didn’t win first place. I can’t even remember if we got second or third.. but that wasn’t the point. There were over 100 dancers who had learned the same routines as me and I could feel every single one of them besides me that night. We were one and the same MANA. Their power was mine, and mine was theirs. Happiness swept through my soul like a dove through the blue sky and I knew that after this night never again would I be the same. I had danced as my mother had danced. I had become what Vairani had once been. I had reached something that seemed untouchable. I competed in Heiva I Tahiti.
So Lindsay, why did you do it? Who do you think you are bringing the Heiva to San Diego?
I created the Heiva San Diego for one reason. That feeling that swept through my body as I stepped on stage with my new brothers and sisters. I wanted to share that feeling of camaraderie, passion, dedication, and mana with the world. Not everyone can go to Tahiti. Some people don’t even know the difference between Tahiti and Haiti!!! But if I can bring part of Tahiti to America, maybe I can show them my hearts addictions. And if it’s only one person who can believe in what I believe, it’ll still be worth it. Tahiti will always be worth it.
In the beginning, only my mother believed that it was possible. Nowadays, there are some people who talk behind our back and shake their heads. I care not! One day soon, San Diego will see why Tahiti and the islands are utopias, paradise, Eden, and better than Sweden.
Why did you start the Heiva San Diego?
Because this is what I was born to do.
📸 : Ivan S Harris Photography
Despite her hate for him and everything he had done (she could still feel the shards of glass swimming in her soul) when they came face-to-face in the parking lot of a gas station their first reaction was to smile at each other just like old friends, or old lovers.
He looked her up and down as he use to do. Measuring her worth as if he knew he had her. While she on the other hand was able to control her traitorous smile into a flat straight line never taking her eyes off of his pale white face and gruff beard that had almost made him look like a stranger if it hadn’t been for the lie of kind eyes.
He had lost weight and his clothes hung on him with a face paler than she had ever seen complimenting his decay by bags underneath his once bright almond colored eyes darkened like soft plum bruises. Her first thought was that he was sick, maybe a lost battle of cancer or maybe he was on drugs. But his teeth told her otherwise; Straight, white, and clean. They didn’t pretend to not see each other nor did they cause a scene in the street. He walked up to her and she stood in place with her feet firm to the ground, arms comfortable at her sides.
Leon. She said his name softly, and no one around would have been able to tell that she wanted to scream the name until the two syllables reached the skies.
Rose. Poison on white roses whispered in the wind, just like he had always said her name.
She looked into his eyes and remembered. How a gentle touch of his finger to her cheek could feel like the earth had disappeared and they were no longer humans but their own species on a planet far, far away. How giving he had been..Of course that was before she had paid for all the happiness with an equivalent if not more amount of pain. She wondered if it meant she was weak. It would have been easy to pull up all the misery he had ever caused yet her mind made the effort to bring back their bliss and faded magic buried under layers of dust and heaviness of hurt.
No. I am not weak.
Leon. This time she said his name just the way he liked it.
“Leon, what’s wrong?” Finally he looked away and his facade chipped away showing an animal aware of it’s fate when it’s placed at the very center of the wolves table.
“Beautiful.” He use to call her that as if it was her name. And she did look beautiful, especially standing next to him, no longer in suit and tie which he had been accustomed to but wearing soiled pants and a white shirt that bleach could never bring back. He looked at his feet as if he could read her thoughts and looked back into her eyes making her remember once again. Almost but not quite an apology he said, ” I lost…Everything. The house, the money, my wife- she wouldn’t show him what that word did to her- They even killed my dog.”
She didn’t know who he was talking about but she wasn’t that surprise when he said the word killed like it was a word commonly tossed around in the streets among old acquaintances who meet in parking lots. Especially after what he had done to her. She did know one thing. Before he even said a word of his problems and jadedness which she knew nothing about, a plan formed in her mind like seismic land shift which when split, shook, and pulsed created a brief destruction and in turn formed a new beginning.
He was cut off by her question. “Where are you going?” For a walk. “Where?!” a little bit of the urgency she felt inside started to spill out and she knew that she would never regret what she was about to do. He looked to the east and pointed to a bridge with an overpass. “Home sweet home.” She had an urge to call him a bum, kick him in the shin, throw him to the ground and jab his back with her black widowed Louboutins. You took everything I ever had, and you even let someone else take it from you. She was unsure of what part about that she hated the most. Calmly her hand extended as if it was the most natural movement that she had ever known gently grabbing his his pinky finger. He was led to her white Lexus IS250 which was as polished and clean as her manicured hands. She didn’t think about the dirt that he would rub against her leathered seats, or the smell that comes from not taking a shower in over two weeks. Instead she opened his door and told him to get in. He obeyed with a smile that might have made her feel disgusting if she hadn’t already been engulfed by flames of pity.
The perfect cinnamon lacquered nails pressed the start switch bringing life to the engine and Stromae’s “Formidable” came like a crushed lullaby through the speakers. He brought his dirt stained finger to the volume and Stromae made his exit leaving them with silence that could be felt like an electric shock in the closeness in her car. Of course he was the first one to break it. “So where are you dragging me off to? I might have to charge you by the minute you know…” She blinked at his words that might have made her laugh when she had half the experience and two fold the ignorance. Do I really want to take him there? Yes.
” Were going to paradise.”
He looked at the road remembering how he had studied her and calculated his every move to get her to crumble. She looked ahead at the road forgetting the destruction and started to plot the new beginning.
When you’re sick with a cold and can barely speak the last thing you want to do is be in a room with people who are searching every corner for a good time, but that’s exactly what happened.
Surprise Farewell for Brenda Pacis who stepped down from her position on Heiva San Diego Board. GAWWDDDD am I going to miss this lovely lady at our board meetings. But that’s irrelevant compared to her happiness. Wherever she goes, whatever she decides to do I know that she will always be a part of my family. That’s the beautiful thing about community projects, clubs, or organizations. Friendships begin and some never end. Auntie Brenda is beautiful inside and out and her stepping down from the board doesn’t mean I’m disappointed nor does it mean she has stepped into enemy territory. On the contrary, I am happy that she won’t have to deal with the STRESS that will strike like lighting when August hits. And where will our friendship go next? We are planning a trip to Tahiti. YAAASSSSS!
Teachers conference for French Bilingual Teaching Techniques at Alliance Francaise San Diego partnered with the French Embassy in Los Angeles. French teachers are so damn cool. Uriel, Monique, Martine… Even their names roll off my tongue with a little dash of amour. I adore them all, especially when the men wear cute little scarves when it’s 80 degrees outside. And of course I can’t forget what a fantastic job my girls did making sure everything ran like clockwork. They work so hard for what they believe in. I should have recorded how they teamed up on me to buy them chocolate cake. Those pleading eyes, those pouty lips!! I just had to say oui oui et OUI. J’adore!!!!
Tahitian Punch Tasting. This was my baby and a family affair. The Tahitian punch was made by the most beautiful mother in the world; MAEVA. The poor guest… Punch so sweet they didn’t even know what hit them but thats exactly how you know the punch is good and strongly laced with rum. At one moment I walked into the room and someone who doesn’t usually dance was sweating from head-to-toe because they were twerking so hard. People even started taking shirts off! The food was AMAZING. Poisson Cru, Pineapple Chicken, vegetarian lasagna, jasmine rice, raspberry creme brûlée, Banana Poe. The night kicked off in paradise with some beautiful Tahitian songs and dance and ended in heat with a Fire Knife Dancer that warmed my heart despite the nighttime cold.
Party Party Party Sick Sick Sick. Everyone told me I should rest more.
But you know what? I wouldn’t change a single thing about it. Seeing so many people laugh, smile, my LOVED ones brought Together, new faces… These particles of life are worthy of all fatigue and bodily discomfort.
When the night was finished and I lay down with my feet sore from dancing, my throat gone from talking, and my mind dull from too much thinking, someone crept into my bed and held me tighter than I had ever remembered; his name was Happiness and my sickness started to leave me.