Thursday, October 31, 2013

I'm Back! How One Inspiring Weekend Made a Blogger Out of Me. . .

I'd like to start off this post by announcing (to the two or three people who follow me), that (drum roll here), "I. . .AM. . .BACK!".

(Pause for thunderous applause)

What exactly does "BACK" mean, you may inquire? Well, the short answer is that I've actually cracked the laptop open, logged into this account and started to write a blog post. The long-term vision, the fantasy, the best case scenario, is that I've decided to become a real blogger! Now given the fact that I'm not quite sure what that entails, I have high hopes for myself! Please don't hold against me the fact that I've only written three or four times in the last (cough) year or so.  It's been a rough year and, hey, the exploits of the last twelve to fifteen months may just find their way into this puppy-I mean, I need material to write about, don't I?

Anyway, back to my self-professed 'blogger status'.  I've read other blogs, I've done (minor) research and I think that to be a blogger, the criteria includes the basics: tools-like a laptop, to write with (check), internet service (check), a place to post on (check), material to write about (to be determined) and followers to read your posts (pending).  Throw in consistency (meaning more then one post every six months) and voila, a blogger is born!?!?

Here's the part where I humbly accept advice from real bloggers regarding what this process is really like (please feel free to comment, inbox, email, tweet, FB or send message via carrier pigeon).

The more important question, however, that must be posed here is, "WHY". "Why?" "Why?!?", you may ask? As well you should! Let me pause to collect myself here. . .deep breath. . .inhale. . .and out. Ok, cause guess what I did this weekend????

I met Lani Wendt Young! Did you hear what I said? Shall I repeat myself? Not necessary? Fine.

I met Lani Wendt Young! (too bad, you needed to hear it again)

Never did I imagine that I'd meet the Pasifika warrior woman author whose books I've been reading for the last two years and whose blogs I've followed, as well. Not only meet, but interview, attend a group dinner and partake in a musical church event with. . .seriously? I feel extremely blessed and grateful to the dynamic group of fierce island women who made this all possible for the readers, fans and newly converted to #teamlani in Hawaii. To be included in any of the events of this past weekend was truly an honor.

I have to admit that I felt so intimidated beforehand, not only by the fact that I'd be meeting the creator of the Telesa Series but hobnobbing with a group of accomplished, talented, intelligent women from the Pacific Rim.  The night before I was to meet Lani at the interview site, I sought advice from my dear friend in Japan via Skype. After all, she introduced me to the world of Telesa and was a fabulous, glamorous, Samoan woman herself.

(Me): "Sis, what should I ask her?" (We discuss a number of potential questions.)
(Me): "At the very least, I want to thank her for Daniel Tahi."
(Roni): "Of course!" (Followed by lengthy discussion about the hot men in Lani's books, as well as hot men in general and hot men we'd like created for additional books. This is followed by Roni's husband interrupting our meaningful discussion with, "hello, do you know I'm in the room?". Men, gee).
(Me): "Sis, I've been invited to a dinner and I have nothing to wear. I don't go out and have no eye for fashion." (Roni proceeds to give me fashion advice.)
(Me): "I can't do it, there will be young, hip, worldly and I'm convinced fashion-oriented people there, I just know it! I'm staying home with Snoop and a pint of gelato, I don't have to get dressed up for them."
(Roni): "No! You ARE going, sis!" (Resignation, trepidation, determination ensues. . .)

Next Day: I start off the morning by warming up my flat iron. I don't know how to use it. I press clumps of hair between the heated metal bars, hoping that somehow it will tame the mane. I decide to throw it in a hairband (yes, the kind that little girls wear to elementary school).  I apply foundation, something I wear two to three times a year. Every piece of make-up I own fits into one small make-up bag. I'm screwed. I'm certain that Lani hangs with people who have whole make-up cases and maybe even people who do her hair, like a Simone.

I meet Lani and she's taller than I expected, statuesque would be a better description. Beautiful and much too young looking to be the mother of the Fab 5.  She is gracious and witty, articulate and smart-just what I expected! (I try not to appear star-struck but am convinced that I rambled). After the interview, I tell my husband that I MUST go to Manuheali'i (famous Hawaiian designer) to buy something for that evening's dinner. An hour later, I leave the store dejected, with nothing over a size Medium that I liked. So much for Polynesian-sized fashion. Great. So I speed off to the one place I know won't let me down-Ross. And, yes please (!), an $11 plus-sized garment awaits me! (Lord, please don't let anyone else in the restaurant be wearing the same thing tonight. . .).

Several hours later, my make-up and hair has survived, my belly is full of Cuban delights, my mind runs over the fascinating conversation that took place and the even more fascinating and fantabulous (my own word) people that I've met. Writers, artists, professors, business owners, mothers, wives, survivors, world changers-Pasifika women (and a couple of great men)! I feel blessed, I feel inspired, I feel grateful. . .and I feel pretty ghetto asking two women that I've just met for a ride home (thank you Tina and Sina!). I vow then and there that I will get off my lazy butt and write again, about anything, everything, something, nothing. Just write.

Thank you, amazing women who I had the privilege of associating with this past weekend. And thank you to the one who brought together this powerhouse circle of ladies-Lani! I look forward to the journey ahead, the ones to write about and the ones to enjoy living! (And in my fantasy world, that journey includes hanging out with Lani again!)

. . .Yup, I'm BACK!   

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