Something remarkably strange came over me during my preparations to leave for Turkey. I traded my black coat for an emerald-colored one, cut off my hair into a shoulder-skimming, Cate Blanchett-in-Charlotte Gray-style, and bought red lipstick. Red. I have very fair skin, green eyes and dark hair, so the red lips are shocking to me and on me. Quite a change from my usual decades-old standby of pink lip gloss.
I told myself that before I left the grand old USA I could spend $25 on frivolous thing(s) to haul along on the trip. No fuss, no frills were going into my suitcase... just jeans and things that could get dusty, my camera, a drawing pad, and a book. (And some other things. I'll tell you when I arrive home safely.) When I was a reporter, we were trained to pack everything into a carry-on. I still have a hard time filling an entire suitcase, which makes me a rare breed of woman, I know.
Anyway, I went to the store with $20. (I decided, as soon as the $25 budget was set, that I'd buy a yard of Japanese fabric to make handmade hankies. I'll show you later. Promise. They're adorable and I'll keep them always.) So I showed up with a crisp twenty and after circling the store for over an hour with only a tube of Vintage Wine lipstick in my hand, I settled on buying fake eyelashes.
Here I am - nearly 29 years old. A little lost... a little wounded... and definitely in that in-between place. But I'm also determined. And hopeful. And have a faith that won't be shaken.
She wore eyelashes to Istanbul. Let that be my first, heart-freeing story.