The Urban Ashram

I have started calling my new home “The Urban Ashram” because it is pretty much empty and only has the bare-bones necessities. I suppose it makes sense. Sleeping on a yoga mat made me bust into a bunch of asanas before folding up the blankets neatly and heading to the bathroom to brush my teeth. I like waking up like this. Will I stop once the organic futon from Vermont arrives?

I am thinking about what Ethan Hawke says in “Before Sunset:” “I’m always looking for the next thing. There is always something to desire.”

For me right now it’s furniture. How lame. I want to make an example of anti-consumerism. Do I need a bed to put the mattress on top of? Is there a practical reason for this? Or is it only because it’s just what people do? Why can’t the mattress be on the floor? Because then I look poor? Is this what this story is about? Sheesh, it’s taking much longer to figure out what this story is about. Sure, it’s about homemaking, but the context is 21st century, from the female gaze, in the era of climate change in the very heart of the Capitol of Power where the slogan is “Be the Change.”

Last month, I had decided I wanted a mid-century modern style chair to sit at my desk. But now, as I write this standing in Mountain Pose, I am wondering if I should forgo the chair. I am aware of my feet rooting into the ground. I am consciously tucking my pelvis under, lifting up my thighs and sucking in my belly as I am working. Perhaps this is healthier than just slumping over in a chair? Why do we have to sit while we work at a computer?

I work so much I have very little time to just sit in my new apartment and just be. The bed arrived yesterday. Timing was perfect. I moved the air mattress directly in front of the window. It invites me to run and land on it. Eventually I will find a piece of furniture, not filled with air, to put there. No rush. At least I have a place for my guests later this month.

If I had enough money to live in Miami, would I? No. Not full-time. I don’t know if I want to be anywhere in the world full-time at this point in my life. I am a traveler. Movement is an essential algorithm to my survival. In the Capitol of Power there are so many others like me…we are all here to meet each other and bring back the power to our homelands. I love Planet MyAmi but…it’s like the way my parents feel about Puerto Rico. They love to visit but they don’t want to live there. They became accustomed to Americana.

I am at this realization after spending the day with my amazing parents. They picked me up from the airport and we drove down to Miami together as a family to scrub the condo and hopefully rent it out to a student. It’s epic, this particular reality check. I am not thinking of boys not texting me and furniture I don’t have. I am full. These people know my heart and they love me. I can relax. I don’t have to be on guard. I don’t have to push myself to be the best yogi on the planet. I am so emotionally tied to this condo it’s crazy. I love coming here. The simplicity of it is special again now that I am immersed in 21st century technology.

My dad says the condo isn’t really a good investment. But he doesn’t see it the way I do. I see the whole neighborhood. It’s changing rapidly. A new, huge LA Fitness just opened around the corner.

My parents are totally hooking me up. Mom got me sheets and blankets for my new bed. A backpack for me to carry my laptop. My dad is going to ship my touchscreen computer to me.

My brother hooked me up as well. For my birthday he sent me a catalog of all kinds of stuff I could order for my new H-O-M-E. I have decided on an electric wine bottle opener. It fits well in my modern environment.

I am so blessed, God. I forget sometimes to be grateful for what I have because I am so busy trying to get something else.

I woke up this morning thinking, “What makes home…H-O-M-E?” I suppose this question has always been somewhere lodged inside my M-I-N-D. But now that I have this empty space, I am wondering what are the elements that fill it up? Is it really furniture? No. I got furniture instantly in my first home in Miami, and yet, it didn’t feel like home until I started writing in it regularly…and that took a few years.

I don’t have a few years to make this new space a home. So far, I have filled it with:

  • Photographs of my family
  • An organic futon
  • Music
  • People

I have invited three friends to visit me here: The High Priestess, Cherry Blossom and the Planetary Citizen. The High Priestess brought me wine glasses. Cherry Blossom brought me ideas. The Planetary Citizen brought me food and love.