I’ve Got a Friend

You have friends and then you have The Friend. The friend who really isn’t a friend at all. More like your left lung or your right eye. You didn’t know a friend like her existed, because certainly you hadn’t seen anything or felt anything like it before. One day she just swept into your space and you inhaled her as if she were air. A different kind of air. Like the freshest, the one you find in the worlds most specific botanical garden. A thousand and two orchids, three birds of paradise, and one yellow Rose. The exhale even makes you wonder, what the hell was I breathing in before?

With The Friend you’ve conquered cities and countries. This type of friendship could never have boundaries. You’d break bones for her, you’d give her anything that she asked. Yet she would never have gone that far. Together you dance and the world blurs behind your laughing tears. You talk about stupid men, knowing without saying a word or giving a glance that you meant, stupid men who touched our hearts. She understood when to be silent just like you understood what her silent was saying.

The Friend came to you and offered her friendship and loyalty. She smiled and looked you straight in the eyes. Instead of looking away like the others she continued to stare until she saw what was behind those lashes and lines. She didn’t blink or get scared, instead she took your hand and a message in your consciousness appeared, Dont you worry, I wouldn’t dare.

Thank God, that I’ve got A friend.

Never Say Never… Unless

Never forget what others have done for you in the past. Even if you’ve moved on, or they’ve moved on from you, never forget their smile.

Never forget the sweetness in their voice when you saw them with their guards all the way down. Never forget that surprised look in their eyes when they realized something they said hurt you. Never forget that they had never meant to hurt you. Never forget they too are human and flawed and recklessly beautiful.

Never forget that somewhere along the line of your relationship they wanted you to rise, to succeed, to just be happy. Even if only for a moment, a moment can last an eternity. Never forget; if they could feel hate, surely they can feel love.

Never forget when they stood by your side. Whether it was a walk through the park, or a walk to visit you in prison. Never forget that their footsteps can echo just like yours.

Never forget that they were young, reckless, and inexperienced. Never forget that they aren’t getting any younger and one day they will return from where they came. Never forget the last sentiments you exchanged.

Never forget that no matter how much you think they despise you, the right words could make them admire you.

And while you’re at it… you should probably forget that idiotic word: Never.


Lindsay Reva

Art of a Life

Oh how much I love…
Walking down the street as if no one can see me,
Driving in my car, pretending
That nothing in the world matters
Looking out the window
Wondering when everything will be mine
But in the meantime, I sit back and enjoy the ride
Cause I love this life
Art of a Life
To some it’s all a joke, but I have felt too much pain
To let it go to waste
So I sit back and enjoy the ride
Work my hardest
Love till my heart bleeds
Open my arms until my back is cut and bruised from the bastards
But I’ll eventually relax and enjoy the ride
After the work is all done, after I’ve gone past the farthest yard
Try not to break
And in-between it all I will sit back and try to relax
Oh how much I love…
The days when I wake up feeling beautiful
When I go to sleep feeling peaceful
And in-between it all, try not to remember
Try not to trip and fall
One step at a time, one pair of lips
Plum bruised chapstick
God, how much I love
My life
Freedom, to be anywhere, everywhere, and nowhere
I wonder if they know…
How much I love them
I love them all
Every single one of you
But in the meantime, I’ll just sit back and enjoy the ride
One single heartbeat at a time
Oh if only you could feel how much I love.
Lindsay Reva

The Fairytales Were Real

That freckle right above your lip. The way you say, Unbelievable when I do something unbelievable. The smooth whiskey in your voice. The quickness of your mind. The silk in your skin. A kaleidoscope of gold when the light hits your eyes. Craze in your laughter. Your scent, like a fresh river. The pace of your walk; owning it, always. How I feel when you’re far. How I feel when you’re close. What happens when you touch me with your eyes. How you notice everything. How you think I notice nothing. The brilliance that swallows us. That first sight when we go long without seeing each other. Honey and milk got nothing on your words. The beauty of your angry. The illumination in your excited. The bliss radiating off you when you stand within my flawed arms.

Maybe you’re somewhere out there. Maybe not.

For all you hopeless romantics. Have a nice day.


Lindsay Reva

Why Did You Start The Heiva San Diego?

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.


Lindsay Reva

📸 : Ivan S Harris Photography

A Tourist In My Own Town


  1. A strong desire to travel.

Ever get the urge to pack up all your shit and head for the hills? Well, let me tell you for me it’s not an urge, it’s REAL. But giving in to all my urges was my past life. I’m trying out this new thing called Adult. Sort of… I mean does my obsession with sparkles and never being able to call my mommy, “Mom” make me a child forever? If so, I succumb to it. But this urge to suddenly flee sometimes hit me in full force and to get away without getting away I play the game of tourist for the day. Luckily I live in San Diego, Killer California where loveliness smiles back at you in every direction whether it’s the beach-babe infested coast, the sin city, the photo op obsessed deserts, or even the Burbs that are turning trendy as hellfire. I don’t know what I would do if I lived in a place like Arkansas or Idaho…Join a book club, get fancy for Denny’s night? No, lets not even go there. Instead, let’s go to Balboa Park where every crevasse holds a special kiss to our senses.


Roaming around this 1,200-acre urban cultural park I can get lost for hours. It’s madness how many randomly placed benches there are. Whose job was it to find homes for these rump sanctuaries? And did they know that people like me would go there to forget the world? Some are hidden and some are out in the open. You can tell a lot about a person by which bench they choose. Mine always overlooks the wilderness trench with deeply rooted trees that make me contemplate my own roots and how far my branches will reach. Why is it that when I feel dark my bench always seems completely shaded and obscured but when I’m as light as air the sunlight swallows me whole? It knows…

The museums are a little too much for me. When I look at art I look for meaning and in that contemplation, my own blue print comes into view which gets in the way of why I went to Balboa in the first place; to get away. So, I keep it pushing past the Museum of Man, past MOPA, and past the statues that look half monster/ half beautiful being. I wander to the fountains and make my way over the bridge taking my time between the rose gardens. Have you ever seen a rose so beautiful that you want to pluck a petal off and taste it? Don’t. Nothing ever tastes as good as it looks (and I might know from experience that it taste rather bitter). That’s beyond the point.

It was bliss to wonder in the kingdom of roses with the sun warming me from the outside where my sunlight inside did no good. In my Steve Madden bag, my phone was ringing. Text message. Facebook alert. Instagram notification. Email. Email. Email. At that moment the only person I would have answered was God, and I highly doubt he would have sent me a Snap. I sat on the grass that overlooked green canyons and warm valleys blocking out everything that had been pulling on my attention for the past week. I inhaled a deep breath that smelt like earth, nature before man. Suddenly something hit me like lightning striking on a clear blue day and in my surprise, I let go. Sitting there held down by gravity and the heavy chains of my responsibilities I could feel my other self’s wings expand as I  flew above the rose bushes, above the tourist taking pictures, FREE FREE FREE. Life was good when you remembered it. Life was even better when you could forget about it. Free at last. 

Slowly I rose brushing the blades of grass off my dark faded jeans and made my way back over the bridge where I had come. I walked past the other tourist who looked fascinated and lost at the same time. What did my face look like? Maybe they could see the secrets that shone in my eyes… Or maybe I just looked like another tourist.

I was searching for something I had lost… But what are you suppose to do when you have no idea what it is you lost? Or if you know what you lost, but it was never really yours in the first place…

Keep moving forward.

So on I stumbled, walking past the pond and looking at the red, white, and brilliantly spotted orange fishes that cost a fortune. Koi meant Love and Eternity in Japanese. I wondered if the Koi fish could feel as much love as human beings did in their imprisoned waters. What about the pains? Suddenly I felt sorry for the Koi’s who swam in and out of my reflection. On and on and on, I only traveled forward.

Past the Old Globe and under arches and Palm trees, past the Japanese Friendship garden whose Cherry Blossoms one day will bloom like cotton candy, stopping briefly before the magnificent Organ Pavillion constructed by the Famous Architect Harrison Albright which first opened on December 31, 1914. Whenever I look at this monument I think of the time that I saw it lit up at night and a public concert was underway. The Organs rang to the masses and I stared at the lights illuminating the faces of so many strangers who had all been brought together because of the efforts of one small human being sitting at the center of the Pavillion playing notes on a bench that her soul knew better than anyone; The Organist at the seat of her instrument.

But I quickly blinked away the memories before I remembered too much and walked to a path which might have been the darkest part of the park just because of all the trees that swayed overhead. The bridge that led me to my salvation was old and wooden just the way it should have been. I was too tired for shiny newness. I didn’t follow the path down the stairs where a couple was having a violent makeout session. Instead I made a spilt for a dirt path that was less used and deeper into the cliff side. No one was there. On my bench… They wouldn’t dare. I sat down and the muck of life fell off me like a dirty and overused cloak. I took my Micheal Kors black patent pumps off and sat Indian style. The Concrete below me was cold and the wind had picked up making my hair brush back and forth from my neck to my cheek. People below me snapped away for pictures that would flood their social media accounts and in their excitement, they were oblivious to me. I closed my eyes and listened to the wind, smiling that no one could see me and yet everyone could look as I sat in my solitude.

As the minutes passed and the lovers took their last pictures I swallowed one last glimpse of everything surrounding me. I was seeing a mess of a jungle in the middle of stunning San Diego and it could have been the very replica of my heart. But that’s okay… I had gotten away and to run away from your troubles is fine, just don’t ignore that urge to take one last glimpse back as you walk away forever. Today I played the part of tourist in my own city, my sanctuary. Nothing calms me more than silence. Nothing can make me feel better than the wind carressing me. Nothing can make me feel more at home than when I’ve been gone. I put my pumps back on and neatly brushed back the hairs that had come loose.

I traced a tiny heart on my bench with my manicured finger as if it was a sealed promise that I would be back. In the meantime, let’s hope my place remains cool. The heat of my life is going to need it. When that day comes, maybe I’ll wear a fedora to blend in better with the tourist. Did I find answers? No. Did I find strength? I never lost it I just simply needed to get away.



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