Can I call you Liz? Can I just call you?

May 17th

Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert is one of those books that I’ll always carry around in my heart. I’ll share it with others and I will read it again. I’ve dog-eared countless pages where I felt like Liz — my new best friend forever author — is speaking directly to me, as though we are sitting in some cafe sipping tea and dishing over lost loves, great food and our spiritual journeys.

“Traveling is the great true love of my life. I have always felt, ever since I was 16 years old and first went to Russia with my saved-up babysitting money, that to travel is worth any cost or sacrifice. I am loyal and constant in my love for travel, as I have not always been loyal and constant in my other loves. I feel about travel the way a happy new mother feels about her impossible, colicky, restless newborn baby — I just don’t care what it puts me through. Because I adore it. Because it’s mine…
I have my own set of survival techniques. I am patient. I know how to pack light. I’m a fearless eater. But my one mighty travel talent is that I can make friends with anybody.”

I wish she was in my life. I wish I could have dinner with her and quiz how exactly she climbed in my brain and made me feel better — about everything. I once described an ex-boyfriend as a drug I simply couldn’t get away from. I knew he was bad for my soul, but I was hooked. Guess I’m not the only one.

“Addiction is the hallmark of every infatuation-based love story. It all begins when the object of your adoration bestows upon you a heady, hallucinogenic dose of something you never even dared to admit that you wanted — an emotional speedball, perhaps of thunderous love and roiling excitement. Soon you start craving that intense attention, with the hungry obsession of any junkie. When the drug is withheld, you promplty turn sick, crazy and depleted (not to mention resentful of the dealer who encouraged this addiction in the first place but who know refuses to pony up the good stuff anymore — despite the fact that you know he has it hidden somewhere, goddamn it because he used to give it to you for free. The next stage finds you skinny and shaking in a corner, certain only that you would sell your soul or rob your neighbors just to have that thing even one more time. Meanwhile, the object of your adoration has now become repulsed by you.”

Scary how true to form I followed that little recipe for disaster. Thankfully, I survived. This 300+ page book reminded me how nice it feels to be happy and to not be the freak waiting for her crap boyfriend to return (although the skinniness was nice while it lasted.) Finny sent this literary therapy as a gift (or perhaps on loan. Regardless, I owe her a new copy) and I inhaled the story. I couldn’t put it down. But then, too quickly, it was all over and I was taking each of the last 20 pages one letter a time hoping desperately that there would be more by the time I’d finished.
Liz, if you are reading, thank you. Within your book of travel and adventure, you reminded me of who I am and what I love. I too love to travel. I love to eat great food. I’ve got a great friendship with my faith. And I love who I am. Your story of rediscovering the beauty of you reminded me that life is to be cherished — not paced by relationships. I finished this book on my recent trip to San Francisco. With the novel in mind, here are a few glimpses from my travels:


pretty pissed to be on ice
Produce for sale, China Town


St. Francis of Assisi church
Mosser flower
Garden Ganesh


A perfect afternoon

Miss Finny in her garden. One of my favorite people in one of her favorite places. The wine was nice too!


Some of the best public transportation in the world. How can you not love BART?

beautiful pink rose
next time take me along!
so much fun for 5 dollars
Welcome to China Town
Mother's Day in China Town

A mother and daughter in China Town on Mother’s Day. This made me ache for my own mama.

Eat Pray Love — five out of five bananas, absoloodle.


*More San Francisco photos here.*

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Journal, Travel
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7 Responses

  1. Aside from the horror of seeing my giant white thighs splashed across your blog, I love this post and am so glad that you liked Eat, Pray, Love as much as I hoped you would. It’s yours. I’ve already absorbed it into my soul.

  2. wasn’t that an awesome book? i loved it, too. i felt like she was writing it all to me. that’s so rare when a writer does that.

  3. One of my good friends has been on my case to get this book for some time now. I really want to read it. Too bad I have 3 books I’m currently reading & can’t seem to finish! But it’s definitely on my list of “must read.” And can I just say I love the term “absoloodle.” I’ve got to incorporate that into my vernacular!

  4. I have wanted to read that book, and after this post I know that I must read it. 🙂

    Oh I adore that crab shaped bread. That has got to be the niftiest thing I have seen in a long time.

  5. Always a pleasure to hear about what you are reading.
    I’m so glad that you enjoy reading as a favorite pasttime. It can take you places like none other.
    Your trip sounds like you had a wonderful time, the pictures are breathtaking. Finny is quite the hostess, did you visit her favorite yarn barn?

  6. brittny May 17, 2006

    I feel so behind on all you’ve been up to! For some reason I can’t get your blog up at work, so I got on at home today and have caught up on all your adventures. Sudan!? you will totally have to keep us posted on that one. I know your huge heart would bless so many people down there, but I can fully see the concerns of those around you- including myself! I am so glad I sat down and took some time to catch up with you today. I love the pictures you’ve been taking. They remind me of things back home.
    I will be sure to check back more often from home. I would hate to read a post from Sudan and not know what the heck is going on and what I missed! 🙂

  7. Hi kelli, thanks for getting back to me. You know when someone leaves a comment, if you click on there name it shows you their blog name. However it doesn’t with yours, it say’s you don’t have a profile. You’ll have to set one up so people can track back to you when you leave comments. Love your blog!