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Another day in California Comments Off on Another day in California

Posted on March 29, 2004 by Marna

Today was a spontaneous day that evolved into a California cliché. That’s OK because I’ll do anything once as long as it doesn’t hurt small children/animals or involve Wolf Blitzer.

Vivian called early in the morning and suggested we hit the Brentwood farmers market. Brentwood is an upscale neighborhood with $1M+ homes and famous folk (Nicole Simpson being a famous dead neighbor). This is not your normal farmers market. In addition to purchasing roses, or artichokes, you can pick up $100 beaded bracelets, or adopt purebred Dalmatians.

While doing the vendor stroll, I stopped in my tracks. The hotdog and sausage grill guy had bratwurst. I was elated. I stepped up to order and heard something I’d never heard before.

“Would you like jalapeno peppers on that?” my apron-wearing sausage vendor asked.

In my mind, I could hear my Fatherland ancestors cleaning and loading their guns at such sacrilege. Where’s the kraut or even the dark mustard? Jalapeno peppers? What the fuck? Oh yeah, I live in California. I decided to roll with the punches and try it. You know, when in Rome…and at least they didn’t offer avocados or sprouts on my brat.

We took our food to go and drove over to Palisades Park on Ocean Avenue and sat on beach chairs under the palms trees. The waves were nice and everyone was out enjoying the great weather. Once I got settled, I unwrapped my brat. The crunchiness of the jalapenos provided a nice balance to my German soul food. Overall, not too bad.

After a brief shopping stint, Vivian asked if I’d be interested in attending a holistic hoolahoop workshop later in the afternoon. I needed a work out and it sounded fun, so I went home, put my hair up in pigtails (it has been 30 years since I’ve ‘hooped), and we headed over to Echo Park for our hoolahoop adventure.

This quite possibly has been the crunchiest moment I’ve had since my CA arrival. This was Burning Man meets The Grateful Dead meets recess. Four of us sat cross legged on batik-printed fabric that formed a circle in the middle of a field with two foot grass. We were the north, south, east, and west points (yes, I was east).

In the middle of the prayer to the fourth Chakra, my left leg feel asleep. I bit the inside of my cheek to keep from giggling and thought, “I’m having a Blog moment. Focus so you can remember the details to write about later.”

We rose and went to our entrance table/alter and wrote one positive manifestation (something we want to come into our life) on a piece of paper and one negative manifestation. We lit the negative piece of paper on fire then sage smugged ourselves using Indian-blessed feathers attached to deer antlers. Our positive manifestation was taped to our hoolahoop. We then selected an essential oil, dabbed it on our foreheads and on our hoolahoop. The energy we created from ‘hooping would heat the hoop and remind us of our positive manifestation through aromatherapy.

Enough ceremony. I was ready to get my hoop on. Our leader taught us tricks with 42”+ diameter hoops. After an hour, my hips had created more positive energy than a stripper on a pole. I longingly looked at the leader’s gaunt, rockstar boyfriend who sat on the side of the field drinking a Newcastle Brown. I wanted be there. Screw the hoop, give me the beer. The sunset and the white noise of cars speeding on Route 2 made me sleepy. I was ready to go home. We concluded with some four points sisterhood and positive reaffirmation.

Vivian and I were exhausted walking down the hill to the car. “Thanks for hanging in there. I know this was more crunch than you are used to. I imaged you thinking ‘oh those Californians’ when we said our Chakra prayers,” Vivian said.

“Oh yeah, but I had fun,” I said laughing.

“You are going to Blog this, aren’t you?” she asked.

Today I got to experience another perfect day that began with a bratwurst and ended with sore hips and answered prayers. Only in California.

  • About Marna

    Marna’s writing career started as a Pentagon intern. Early exposure to $500 toilet seat press releases made her appreciate creative nonfiction. Now she has more than 25 years of senior-level marketing and communications success working with Fortune 100 companies, government, nonprofits, small businesses, startups, and agencies.

    Stats: 377 Posts, 132 Comments

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