Love Birds: a short flight of fancy

He glimpsed her through the flocks, and had to admit, her eyes really glowed against all of that green. It was obvious she was from a similar breed. The way she moved, so free from inhibitions and the fact she was as happy alone as when she was surrounded by others. Plucking up some inebriated courage, he flew over to her and introduced himself. Her eyelashes fluttered and the rest, well, the rest was history.

She took him back to her cosy little nest, which she had built all by herself on the southern tip of the city. She liked to be close to the ocean, her secret getaway when the city took its toll, and of course her gate way to other lands, other skies. He lived more to the east, higher up in height and higher up the ladder. He cruised with a different type altogether, and yet it is more than likely that they would have passed each other at some point or other, if not today, then upon some other eve.

There was an immediate understanding, perhaps owing to their breed. A mischievous look from her was all it took to ruffle his feathers and after that first encounter she found herself flapping all over the place. Her heart was in her stomach and she felt as if she’d just flown around the world and back. She couldn’t wait to see him again. Sending out a message of flirtation, she waited for a reply. It came, after some time. Maybe it had been held up by the storm or lost in the wind, she told herself calmly. Except she didn’t feel calm. She was anxious and already planning the nest they would build together one day. She tried to slow down but it was so easy to get caught up in the whirlwind of it all. Her heart began to soar too high, too fast. Knowing that she might get knocked down at some point, she retreated a little.

And every time she did so, he would pop up and carry her along on his dangerous flight of love, or was it lust? She began to feel addicted to the adrenaline of it all. The way he would pick and choose their route, the things they would see and do, and then after a tumultuous ride of highs and lows, he’d dangle her over the edge and she really could snap at any moment, falling back down to earth with a broken heart, a broken wing or two. She knew it was risky but she had been flying solo so long and this adventure was new and exciting and who knew what would happen next? Maybe he would finally make it official and tell all his friends. She didn’t know how much longer she could handle being referred to as his ‘bird’. She didn’t want to be anyone’s ‘bird’. So, she decided to wait it out.

They glided through the seasons, both departing frequently and flying off in different directions. The summer passed in a haze of humidity and absence. With the arrival of autumn though, they became a little closer. It started to get cold out there and it’s always nicer to seek warmth from another. She had grown used to his delay in communication and started to accept it as normal, even though others were whistling all around her, reaching out to her with their wide, open arms. She darted off every time one of them approached. She wanted him, only him, in all his mysterious glory. And sometimes she really did have him. They would be hovering on the edge of something solid, something real, and as she glanced at him with those big, watery eyes, he would take off.

Back to her nest she would go, where she would overthink every single thing she had said, every move she had made. It was obvious they were not on the same path. She stuck around regardless, daring herself to get hurt. And on moonlit evenings she would look out and wonder what he was up to? Was he building their nest? Or was he flitting around, creating his own world? They were circumnavigating, it was clear. Maybe her inner compass had broken? Was it possible for her to have lost herself this much?

Having reached her limit, she asked him outright: “Will you ever be ready to build a nest together?” He didn’t respond. He stayed very still, but something inside him had flown off. The next day, he really flew, leaving her to pick up all the stray feathers, the aftermath. She needed to clear her head with sea breeze and she knew just the place for this.

As she flew home amongst the stars, the mountains jutting out below, she could feel the past year falling away. It wasn’t going to be an easy journey. There were so many places they had graced together, but she flew solo once upon a time and she sure as hell would do it again. She thought back to the night they had met. She had no idea it was on the horizon. And yet, if you asked her now, she would tell you she would do it again. Over and over again. Those adrenaline-fueled flights of fancy aren’t every day occurrences. They are pretty special. And anyway, it’s not that difficult to heal a broken wing, a broken heart. Especially when there’s a whole world out there to explore. Lucky for her, her wanderlusting wings heal pretty quickly.

Where to next? She wondered.

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 Image sourced from here.

Two Thousand and Thirteen, farewell.

Dear Two Thousand and Thirteen,

I wish I could say you were a walk in the park that was sprinkled with sweet-smelling blossoms, sunlight peeking through the branches and warming up my freckled skin, or a tall, dark and handsome lover that seduced me under the stars with a picnic of delight, but Two Thousand and Thirteen you were more of a hike in the snow with a sharp wind that tested my balance every time I reached your peaks, dotted with an unstoppable rain without the quirky kisses. You were ready to throw me off course at any given chance, and you did- over and over again.

I’m not defeated that easily though.

I decided to give you one last chance on your last day before Two Thousand and Fourteen came and took over. I climbed one last peak, known to the masses as Ellie Mountain. As I got higher and higher, your sunshine got brighter and brighter and I realised how far I’d come (literally speaking, that was a lot of stairs, and of course, without trying to be clichéd, I have most definitely grown and matured over the past 12 months). I packed my suitcase far too many times this year, said numerous goodbyes- only to return a few months later, got my heart a little broken, repaired said broken heart, spent what seems like the entire year trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up, all the while growing more and more positive throughout all of the confusion and haze that seemed to attach itself to me continually.

Sometimes I think I must be crazy to be so content without any kind of master plan, without the stability that we all so badly seem to crave, and yet the minute we do have it we’re ready to throw it all away for some spontaneous adventure. Actually, even if I did seem to fall into a never-ending maze of uncertainty in 2013, I had a darn good time trying to find my way. I wasn’t looking for the exit or entrance or whatever you want to call it; I was just meandering through the twists and turns of everyday life. I let those curve-balls fly smack bang into my little life and then I threw them right back where they came from. I embraced the unknown and I cried a lot, but mostly I laughed and admitted, that, yes, this year I have absolutely NO idea what I’m doing, but it’ll figure itself out, it always does. And it did. And now I can look back on what was, yet again, another fantastically, fateful year full of extreme emotions, ridiculously fun adventures, challenges that pushed me to the max and memories spent with friends and family that I will cherish forever.

Life is a pretty funny journey, but I wouldn’t change mine for the world.

Two Thousand and Thirteen, let’s not forget the time we…

*Brought in the new year and ended the old year on the same street in our beloved Taipei with some of the bestest friends from our sweet days spent in Taiwan, whilst watching fireworks in a whole array of colours come flying out of the majestic 101 to shower luck on us for the coming year.

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*Cycled around a bend in South Africa to come face to face with six elegant giraffes.

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*Plucked up the courage to approach Lomography Taiwan about a possible internship all in Chinese!

*Started to dream in Chinese and forgot how to speak English properly…

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*Took an overnight train to Green Island and fell asleep on a harbour wall, awakening to sunrise on our faces.

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*Partied so hard with amazing friends the police had to come and tell us to be quiet…in Taiwan.

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*Dressed up as Minnie Mouse and danced through the streets of Edinburgh.

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*Celebrated my birthday ceilidh-dancing with the most special friends from far-away lands.

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*Spent a day searching for Nessie and faeries with a friend from days gone by.

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*Played Bridesmaid to my best friend and laughed, cried and smiled all day from happiness.

*Frolicked around London town and attended my first, magical bilingual wedding.

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*Road-tripped around Portugal, getting lost in the tiniest, cutest villages with my beautiful, hilarious family.

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*Landed back in Taiwan in the rain and spent a wonderful, strange month job-searching, cycling around mysterious alleyways, and eating some of the most delicious food you could dream of.

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*Put on my brave face and flew to Hong Kong to start an internship with Lomography Asia.

*Hiked, camped and laughed until I ached.

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*Started my Luna’s Letters project. (Stories to follow…).

*Took a little trip down the memory lane of China, and loved it!

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*Manoeuvred the city like a boss, embracing the glittering skyscrapers, the cows on the rolling hills by the sparkling ocean and the new Cantonese tongue.

*Learned a bit more about what I want from life, and what I don’t want. (I’m a simple creature really.)

*Flew back to the beloved Taiwan to spend another Christmas and New Year with some of my favourite people in one of my most favourite places on the planet. (Blog post to follow).

*Realised how cyclical my life is. I even wrote my 2012 round-up post on the exact same day last year…take a peek.

That pretty much sums up this delightful life; the world’s a’turning and so are we, around and around and around. And you know what? I like it like that!

Love,

Luna

Equator of Love

This is a short piece I wrote about four years ago. I was going through old files on my computer and I thought I would share this one…

Equator of Love

As softly as a feather skims the window of an old seaside cottage, they fell in love. People say it was destined from the moment she touched the orange earth. Others believe they would have found one another sooner or later, whether down some broken path or in some moonlit estuary. It is thus strange that, that is precisely where the first meeting began.

An escapade into the jazzier side of life, filled with rainbow flags and parading eccentricities, that is where it started. A hint of flirtation, followed by an unanswered intention, but then the adventure unveiled itself. It happened so naturally, almost as though they were both eagerly expecting it. Intimate moments happened earlier than could have been anticipated. Blue tights and musical sing-songs. Their afternoons were filled with the soft beats of a drum and a bass, and frequented trips to a lazy mountainside passed the time, hydrated with calm. It was a gentle, yet desperately sensual journey that was only just beginning.

The girl from the northern, icy-cold, but green pastures never knew such peace. She embarked on a homecoming and yet the feeling of home seemed to live further south, where the boy had always lived. The boy from the south continued with his daily tasks, and yet there was a lighter step that carried him to and fro. It appeared that the entwining of these two had immersed within them.

The first moment they shared such intimate words was soon. After a frantic landing on a grassy mosaic, fuelled by sweet juices, they chased each other back to his residence and it happened. He said it first. She had been wanting to say it from the moment she landed south and became bombarded by his world. The right moment never came…until that winter evening. He said it first. She hid her face in his shoulder and her heart became light. The lightness continued to spread through her and the next day she radiated.

It was happening and no one could stop it or step in their way. Their intimacies filled rooms with passion and a fire that could not be put out, no matter how much water entered. It seemed that nothing could prevent their happiness, even cut lips from broken flowerpots. She wore blue tights again. She lit up the room like a lightning bolt, and he dazzled the spectators with his gold. A sun and a moon, a girl from the north and a boy from the south, fire and water, silver and gold, sugar and salt. Literally separated by an equator, but never far from each other.

As with life, following paths can lead to unusual circumstances; circumstances that can ruin and destroy, or simultaneously create an ever tightening bond. They experienced both at exactly the same time. A series of passionately induced outbursts, followed by the storm, and then the calm, and then once again a storm of never-ending poverty.  They were lucky to have each other. They both knew it, and the storm is a cherished, yet ever so slightly angered memoir.  He said it, and she will say it again- If we didn’t have the storm moments, we wouldn’t have the calm moments. He is right. She knows that he is right.

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a Belle and her Beau

Last week I wrote about my best friend marrying the love of her life here and some of the hen party antics.

It’s suffice to say that it was one of thee most magical weddings I have ever been to! It was beautiful and full of amazing, fun surprises! When we woke up and saw the sun peeking through the gap in the curtains and then pulled them back and saw the bluest sky with not a cloud, we were ecstatic. Especially seeing as we’d had a full week of non-stop rain. The wedding birds were out in full song and the champagne was flowing.

It was so fun to watch the Belle transform into the stunning bride, and when she put her dress on and glided out to the garden for some photos against the green, it was a moment to remember.

The wedding ceremony was so beautiful too, and had a few laughs thrown in for good measure, such as when the groom picked up the wrong ring and when we all realised we were singing ‘hosanna’ which brought back hilarious memories of school church trips. Then there was the Star Wars theme tune played by the string quartet as we all exited the church. Classic. And we wouldn’t expect anything less from a die-hard Star Wars fan- that’d be the groom, not our bride’s choice, right Rachael?!

One of the readings in the church had me on the verge of tears as it was just so real and rang true-

The Way of Love- Corinthians 13:4-8

13 If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3 If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.4 Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant 5 or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; 6 it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.7 Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.8 Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away. 11 When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways.12 For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.13 So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.

Oh, love.

After the ceremony, the bridal party got driven in awesome cars to the cathedral for some professional photos. Some of them involved pretend tug-of-wars and I can’t wait to see the finished products. Afterwards, the newlyweds went to the West Sands beach to frolic, while the rest of us drank champers at The Golf Hotel, where the evening reception was held.

The speeches, the food, the dancing, the band, all of it was so much fun! A Scottish wedding wouldn’t be complete without a few ceilidh dances, and there was definitely some of that going on.

One of the highlights of the day was when we were all nibbling on our main course and one of the waitresses took to a microphone to randomly announce that this was her last shift at the hotel and that the head waiter had bet her she wouldn’t get up and sing in front of all these random people. So, she decided to prove him wrong. And, sing she did! She had the most amazing voice and sang a famous opera number that not only blew us all away, but also left us feeling extremely confused as to why this had happened. The groom looked completely bewildered, and after a lot of ‘what on earth is going on?’, we proceeded to finish our meal, but before the last bites could be taken- the ‘head chef’ popped out from the kitchen to sing a little number. A rather famous number in this part of the world- The Proclaimers- 500 miles. That was when we all realised something was definitely going on. The bride had the biggest grin and it dawned on us that she must have planned this! Sneaky!

Well, they kept on singing, and they did the most amazing duets, such as ‘That’s amore’ and Frank Sinatra’s ‘I love you baby’. It turns out they are from S.O.S- Secret Operatics Society, which you can read more about here. It was the coolest surprise ever!! Personally, I think every waiter should be a secret performer. There isn’t much more fun than being served dessert by someone singing ‘That’s amore’. Yes please. And well done bride!!

Some of the personal touches that I really liked were the table decorations and the favours. Each table had an old wedding photo on it that represented a year and marriage from the bride or groom’s families. The favours were amazing! They had m&ms with their FACES on them. A teeny, tiny picture of the couple on each m&m and the date of the wedding. How cool is that!! You can find out more about this unique idea here.

It truly was the most fantastic day, and I’m pretty sure it was the best day of their lives. To the newlyweds, thank you again for letting me play such a big part in your day, and I hope you lovebirds are honeymooning to your heart’s delight!

I said I’d share lots of photos this week, and I will share a few, but unfortunately I didn’t actually take very many. I was so busy enjoying every little moment that the thought of pulling out my camera didn’t even dawn on me.

Here’s a few though, and one or two from various friends (hope you don’t mind me sharing)-

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The bride would have killed me if I whipped out my signature ‘peace’ sign in any of the professional photos, but I couldn’t resist one or two later on in the night…

I can’t wait to develop my lomo photos and see the professional ones too!

a wedding belle

I remember I was sitting with my friends in South Africa back in 2007 when I got the message; it was from my best friend to tell me that she had a boyfriend and how happy she was.

Five years later I was on a train when I got the message to announce their engagement, where he proposed by sunset, on a beach in California.

And it was a couple of months after that message that I had a Skype date- Taiwan to Scotland- with her, when she asked me to be her bridesmaid!

Now, it’s one day until their wedding and I am so excited for them.

This is my very first time to be a bridesmaid! I feel so honoured to play a part in her big day, and although I spent 10 months of her engagement on the other side of the world, I still made it back especially for her ‘Minnie Mouse’ hen party and for the run-up to Saturday.

Tomorrow we will begin the day with french manicures and champagne, I can’t wait! I cannot even begin to imagine the excitement and butterflies that must be floating in her tummy right now. I just know it’s going to be the most magical day ever!

I’ll be sharing lots of photos next week, some lomo ones too, yay! In the meantime, here are a few from her epic hen party in Edinburgh…

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Yup. There was a Butler in the Buff. There were Minnie Mouse ears. There was a Piñata filled with mini bottles of vodka. There was ALOT of drinking. There was drinking in a fire engine while singing karaoke and dancing on the way to the ladies race day (horse racing, and yup I won some money, yay!)- we are classy like that.

And now for the big wedding where we get to wear beautiful dresses and get our hair and nails done all fancy. I like being a girl!

The adorable Emma Magenta

Any book that begins with this line- “She became a cartographer of the heart”  with regards to hope and love, has me hooked. Emma Magenta is an Australian writer, illustrator, artist, lovely person, oozing creativity. My friend gave me a copy of her adult picture book- ‘a gorgeous sense of hope’ a couple of years ago at a time when I could definitely have used a little pick-me-up in the love department, and it quickly became one of my favourite little reads. It’s a love fable and it’s adorable…

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I just ordered one of her other books- ‘the peril of magnificent love’ which I’m really excited to read.

I think her drawings and quotes are really cute and can be uplifting, or just extremely hilarious. They are simple and yet, so evocative.

Here a few of my favourites from her Facebook fan page which you should join immediately here and also buy her books on amazon too…

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I’m sorry but aren’t these just amazing?! All of these photos were found on Emma’s Facebook fan page here…join it!

Before Midnight

Circa high school, when the days of sunlight seemed endless and love was fresh and untainted, I would bask in the words bouncing so naturally, between Jesse and Celine. Before Sunrise and Before Sunset are two films that have some of the most beautifully crafted dialogue to ever enter our cinematic worlds. And now the third movie in the series- Before Midnight is out and I can’t wait to see it! I’ve heard great things so I’m sure it won’t disappoint an enthusiastically, hopeless romantic such as myself. On the off chance you haven’t had the pleasure of watching the first two films, I highly suggest you get on that before skipping to the cinema for the new one.

If you’ve already seen Before Midnight please let me know what you thought. Is it as wonderful as the first two?

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a flirt with fate.

i ran home from Red Room last week filled with inspiration. i had high hopes that i could throw together a piece for the following week’s spoken word session. i scribbled a few random words, and tried to create a rhythm. i felt like i was writing a rap, and it was quite clearly my first time. but anyway, here’s a peek at the beginning…

‘and as the wheels turned and the smoke churned, you sat and feasted on a plate of merriment. old beaten boxes, suitcases filled with parts of broken hearts from months before, consumed my mind and forced memories to bind, our date was put on wait.

the day of the lunar eclipse, i took away the ellipsis, of a life yet to be spun. and so it was that you graced me with your face of spontaneity. elements shifted, time stopped and then was lifted, to a life far from recollections and old rusted nostalgia. and on that word the ink began to fizzle and dwindle and i knew the time had come to change the pen and the men, of this world.

so boldly and in a flash, i saw our path, moustaches and green lashes on a moor by a lake. it’s a date, he said, and they danced to the sand, no light from this land could illuminate them like the moon, but she was on a day off, so they took to the loft, to a day gone by, a lingering alluring daze of haze and mist from their first date, a flirt with fate.’

love,

Luna Finula

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Paperman- a flight of love

Paperman is the new black and white animated short from Walt Disney Animation Studios. It’s lovely! Please take 6 minutes out of your day to watch this cute little film. Boys, prepare your best paper aeroplanes because Valentines is just around the corner. Why not write a little love letter, rock your best origami, and send a flight of love flying her way?