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Teresa Hemingway

One Night Stand

Have you ever had a one night stand? Well, I’m proud to say that I have never done that. Why exactly Im proud of this, I don’t know, and I don’t know what that says about how prude I am (which I don’t think is the case) but anyway, I digress. No, I have never had a one night stand, but that wasn’t the case about 8 months ago.

I had just driven in from the desert to LA when my bff asked me to meet her for drinks with a new friend in town. First, I said, you can’t even imagine how hungover I am so I wont be drinking, but sure Ill stop by and say hello. I pulled straight up to the bar, hungover, no makeup, can’t remember if I had even showered that day, and met my bff, and her friend, aka my soon-to-be first one night stand.

It ALWAYS ends up being that the things you don’t plan, the things you don’t anticipate or build up to, end up being the most fun/wild/crazy. So needless to say, about seven drinks later (remember when I had said I was hungover and wasn’t going to drink?) the last thing I remember was standing on Main street in Santa Monica, outside of the third bar of the night. Next moment I’m coherent, I wake up in this guy’s hotel bed (he lived across the Atlantic), who I had just me about 14 hours before, and I start to panic. Flashbacks start replaying in my head, and its clear that this was a very mutual, fun, agreement. But my first one night stand?! How could I sleep with a guy with whom I wasn’t even Facebook friends with? To be fair, he was really nice and we had breakfast and walked around the pier for a bit, so it wasn’t a total awkward ‘k thanks goodbye’ kind of thing, like I had imagined from movies and T.V. shows. But for the rest of the day, and the next few days, I over thought it and wondered what my act said about my judgment and if I was spiraling down a path of self destruction . I know, so unnecessarily dramatic, and after a week I forgot about it and was only annoyed at having to add a name to my ‘list’.

Seven months later, I was sitting in a Michelin star restaurant in Rome, Italy, having an amazing dinner, an amazing bottle of wine, with a pretty fun date – my (former) one night stand. Now, would I ever in 1000 years have said, back on that confusing winter morning in Santa Monica, “I’ll see you in Rome in a few months”? And that’s not even mentioning that we had met in London about 2 months prior. So while we are in no way dating or have any sort of commitment, it’s a mutual understanding that we enjoy being around someone who is fun (and obviously there’s the sex but that’s implicit so why even go there), and probably the most appealing is the random, spontaneous, no expectations rendezvous, which if you really technically think about it, are like mini one night stands, except with more champagne and exotic backdrops.

But for this third Italian rendezvous, I had to really think about it. Well, I mean not really, because what girl would turn down a trip to one of the most romantic cities in the world? What was the problem? See, the London trip had been a no-brainer, I was already living in Paris, and I wanted to visit London anyway, and it would be fun to go with someone who actually lived there, and not to mention, I could erase the one night stand status - such beautiful logic. So I booked a train and pretty much had a crazy trip, where I tried cocaine for the first time and got a dose of the London members only life. But Rome…well that was, in all the wrong right words, too romantic. I had already achieved my objective: to clear my own conscious. Why take it a step further, if I wasn’t 100 percent sure I could not attach any emotion to it? Its one thing to party all night in London with a group of people, dancing and doing shots at the bar, but it’s a completely different atmosphere if it’s two people walking down the cobblestone streets of one of the most ancient cities in the world, having champagne in the rain and long dinners under the open air.

In fact, the dark truth is that I was beginning to fear that I lacked the capacity to be emotionally open with a guy. I hadn’t been in love in a long time. And this sort of behavior, with the no expectations, spur of the moment adventures only served to reinforce this fear that I could not emotionally connect. I mean didn’t I want to? But I already knew in my head that this sort of adventure didn’t mean anything more than it was, at that very moment, planned with no foresight whatsoever, no expectations, no anticipation. There was a beauty in that as well, because to be present in every single moment is to completely be yourself, having no time to think about what you should be or could be, and that leaves you, in a sense, vulnerable. But along those same lines, the point is to not get so caught up in your head and overthink things. I do that a lot, naturally as an introvert, which is why writing is good for me. 

All this, at the very least, has been immensely helpful in learning about myself. I can’t just have sex to have sex, just not in me, however fun and exciting it is in that moment. At the same time, I don’t want my relationship with my future husband to be boring, I want it to be exciting and thrilling, spontaneous and adventurous, all the things that I experienced here, but with a lot more passion and emotional connection. Holding out for that complete package…

Tis a luxury to be an artiste, at once perpetually poor but yet so rich in the joys that others consider small luxuries: music, art, books. For the artist, it is scary to look yourself in the eye and realize it is not possible to have both worlds, because only through struggle is true art born

I love everything classic about my new baes. Pure sex.

" Love is or it ain’t. Thin love ain’t love at all "

-

Toni Morrison

Ain’t it the truth. Be all in or all out.

(Source: viciouslycyd)

" I read somewhere that sunflowers follow the light. They turn to face the sun, and follow it faithfully, as it travels across the sky. For many, these flowers are a constant, true, and unwavering trust in something bigger and brighter than themselves. "

-

A Walking Cliché: My First Week in Paris.

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Being a Hermit until the sun comes out 

 

Dear Diary:

Tuesday May 20th, 2014

I need to stop being a hermit. HELLO, Jacqueline, you are in Paris. I know this is the hardest part, because I am naturally shy and would rather stay home and read than go out on my own and talk to strangers. Ok, I know that. That is one of the reasons I am doing this, so I can force myself to be more social. But I’ll be damned, the anxiety gets to me. So I had one day inside, that’s not a crime right? It was gloomy today anyway.  I did laundry. I had two work calls. I got shit done so no big deal. You can’t beat yourself up over one day, plus I had shitty sleep last night.

(later that evening):

“It was a dark and stormy night,” As Snoopy said. It is currently pouring rain in Paris. Rain is my nemesis. It makes me sad and moody, like a flower that is beaten profusely by every drop. I blossom and open up in the sun, with its warmth and color. But rain? Rain is for the emos, and god knows that I am much too emotional already to enjoy it and bask in it. What is it about being an introvert? About being ok with being home, reading a book. About being drained by the energies of others? I’m trying to get into the reasons why I have this internal part of me. Unless I drink too much, I’m almost too mellow. I prefer to listen than to be in the spotlight (most times). Maybe its what makes me a better writer, to always be in my head….

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My new neighborhood, Montmartre 

- I am a walking cliché. At least, that’s what many of my fellow Americans thought of me when I said I was moving to Paris to write.

“Oh let me guess, you want to follow in Hemingway’s footsteps. You want to sit in a café and get inspired by the afternoon bouts of rain spilling softly on the cobblestone streets.”

Yes, and so what, hater?

I of course had friends and family who were very supportive, but I did have quite a few skeptics who obviously forgot what they learned in kindergarten, that if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t open your trap. Why put negative energy into the universe, I say. So off I journeyed, feeling very blasé about the whole thing, and I sort of settled in my new neighborhood, Montmartre, fairly quickly. It was nice having an old friend around during the first few days (hi Jess!) , which eased the transition of being a total stranger in a new land. And, finding the absolute best coffee shop that reminds me of Zinque back on AK: KB Café, in the 9th, with its awesome music and a good blend of expats and locals. As soon as I started to meet local Parisians, I started feeling better about my move. Being a writer, or any form of artist, is highly respected here. As I timidly declared I had moved here to write, I was prepared for a lofty scoff (the French can be very haughty), but was always met with a welcome praise. I don’t know if I would consider myself an artist, but if I ever wanted to explore that option, France is the perfect place. Artists are embraced, encouraged, and supported. The café culture is real, sitting at a café for hours writing is actually a thing. You meet people, you talk, you share, you learn. And for me, all this in hopes of creating.

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working from my new cafe with with a view  

See, I have two competing needs in me, the need to be free and the need to be rooted. To keep my head in the clouds and my feet on the ground. Basically, I want to have my cake and eat it too. I want it all.

While I absolutely abhor the term “biological clock” I can’t help but feel that my biological clock is ticking. I’m not getting any younger, and I know I want children and a family. I want to teach my kids all that I’ve learned in the world, I want to raise them to be even more open than I was. I’m having strong maternal instincts, and yet, I packed up and moved to the other side of the world. I don’t understand myself sometimes (most times) and I don’t think I ever will. I wish someone did, and sometimes I wish life had some sort of guide or reference. See, I have this thing with anxiety. If I watch a movie, I will google it before I see it because I have to know who dies, who gets hurt, who falls in love etc, before it happens, and before I invest myself completely in the characters and storyline. I guess you can say it comes down to a fear of being hurt. That is my biggest flaw. I have the word courage tattooed on my body but I don’t really practice it. Sure, I have courage in that I am not afraid to move to a new country, with the money in my pocket, a laptop, and a dream. Yeah that all sounds so boho and romantic, but that’s nothing. What’s scary to me is opening up to people and being one of the most beautiful things one can be: vulnerable. To be vulnerable is to stand naked in the middle of times square: fucking scary.

For now I guess I’m just living a dream. I can’t say the dream because I think I’ve been lucky to do a lot of cool shit. And I don’t even really chalk it up to luck, I attribute it to hard work. Working 14 hour days is no joke. I swallowed my pride and disregarded all the creds I built up in this world, of graduating from a top school, of starting my own company, of being published in the number one blog in the world, and made drinks and waited on people at a restaurant, just so I can move here and take a stab at opening up and writing. This is me being vulnerable. This is how I am getting naked in the world. I arrived in Paris, where no one knows who I am, and playing on the charm of my terrible French accent (the French love it if you at least try to speak their language) and my decent looks (I was once told I was a 9, and I believe it) I hope to really rid myself of this stubborn, closed off heart. Be less in my head and more in my body. Less in clouds, more on the ground, and writing all about the come down. 

imageAt a gallery in the Marais: 

Doorknob: “Sorry, you’re much to big. Simply impassable.” 

Alice: “you mean impossible.”

Doorknob: “no, impassable. Nothing’s impossible”

-Lewis Carroll 

Don’t you think that it’s boring how people talk?

I love my neighborhood

Feelings, Part Deux

Its funny how life sometimes doesn’t work the way you’d like, but you have to be totally prepared for that. I definitely thought I was. I was about to put my heart out on the line until I heard the words “I’ve been dating someone”. craaaaaack. That was a little bit of my heart, my ego, and my illusions of love kind of cracking at the moment. I wasn’t like in love with this guy or anything, but I really, really liked being around him, talking to him, and I thought we had pretty amazing chemistry. Nothing was ever forced between us, except for today when I had to force myself to keep my mouth shut. I never do that. I always say whats on my mind, but when you like someone enough that you get nervous around them, thats got to mean something. 

Plus, I’m moving to Paris for fucking crying out loud! I already have dates set up for me while I’m out there, thats the beauty of being a single, awesome, hott girl, everyone wants to set you up with everyone and I know I won’t have a problem in that regard. But I’ve been SO SO good. I haven’t been with anyone in like 4 months which is cool, whatever.  Ive turned down quite a few guys, including the guy i like (or now that I think about it, he most likely turned me down because he likes someone else) whatever, I’ve been an angel. Maybe I’m growing up, maybe I’m realizing the worthless value of cheap sex, and realizing how its fucking 10X better with someone that you really care about. It really is. Its like comparing a 10 second sparkler to a full blown firework finale with accompanying Christmas music. Thats how awesome it is to get it on with someone you like. 

But you know, I can hardly remember what that is like, since the last time that happened for me was a couple years ago. And back to Paris, shouldn’t I be going with an open mind anyway? yes, i should. But I can’t deny what i feel right now. And not only that, I want to fully embrace it and feel it and take deep breaths in it because its so rare. Its a beautiful feeling and although it seems as of now that nothing will ever come of it, at least i know that in this moment, I feel vulnerable, I feel fire, and no matter how rejected or butt hurt I am, I feel alive.