Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Where am I?

Where am I ... is a question I could ask myself. I mean, I know I'm here, in Santa Barbara, but it's not where I expected to be. I thought, by this stage of the game, I'd be someplace else: up north, living in a cabin near Mt. Shasta and writing my memoirs. I thought I'd be hiking in the rustic canyons of Sisque County and taking regular trips to Ashland Oregon and Medford, for stimulation and to replenish my supplies.

Santa Barbara was not a place I planned to stay. I thought it would be a step, a rest point, the kind of place you stay for awhile, and then, look back at and remember. When I first arrived, 30 years ago, I took photographs, copious photographs, and I imagined that I would look at them in those days after I had moved on. I pictured myself sitting in an attic bedroom on a large, overstuffed chair, perusing photos of this city: the coral skies behind the harbor; the zig-zag peaks of the Santa Ynez Mountains and the lofty palms at Chase Palm Park; and as I did, I would settle so deeply into my skin that my memories would become palpable, and I would say to myself, "Aneet, you did it -- you lived there. Thank you for that gift."


  1. Hi Anitra-

    Well I was thinking something similar the other day. This past Sunday was my birthday, my 30th to be exact, and I know I'm not where I thought I would be at this stage in my life. In February I lost my job of over 6 years and I'm having a great deal of difficulty trying to get back on my feet. I'm so frustrated that I'm seriously considering moving to another part of California to look for more opportunities.

    It's hard to comprehend why some things happen the way they do. I had figured that by this stage in my life I would have done a great deal of traveling, and maybe be married and have a home. Well life had other plans for me. I guess we just have to work with the cards we're dealt.



  2. Beautifully said, Anitra. I can certainly identify with your words. Goodness knows that my life has not taken me on the path that I expected it would. never know what's to come and, whatever that may be, I hope that it continues to make you happy and that you always look back and smile.


  3. Hi Joseph,

    Your story is poignant. Thank you so much for sharing it. It's an odd an unpredicatable time in the world. You have such a creative and sharp mind. It will be interesting to know where life takes you and what opportunities you find. I surely hope you get to do more travelling as it means so much to you.

    Sending you my warm regards, Joseph, ~ Aneet

  4. Mark, hello, hello,

    Ah, you have given us some very wise words. We don't know what's around the corner, and I love what you said about always looking back and smiling. Thank you for your kind and thoughtful comments.

    Lovely to hear from you Mark, ~ Aneet

  5. And oh, This blog insists on posting all comments, including mine, chronologically in order of the date and time they are received.

  6. I truly believe that we are where we are meant to be at any given time in our lives, even though it may not be where we thought we would be.

    I can certainly understand Joseph's frustration. I was laid off 3 years ago, and it's been tough for sure. Hang in there because eventually it will get better. I keep telling myself that anyway...

    I can not say that there is really anything in my life that I regret, but were I given the opportunity to do over, I think I probably would do a few things differently.

    Then again, when I think about this, had things not happened as they did, there are events that would probably never have happened, and people that have become a part of my life that would not have otherwise.

  7. Mark,

    I agree with what you say. This is a universal subject. I think it's healing and even energizing to find the value in our lives.

    And yes, Joseph, we're in your corner.

    Thank you so much for your wise and heartfelt words.

    My Warm Regards, ~ Aneet

  8. Aneet,

    "Where Am I "is a title that I believe carries over to every person's life. As I'm sure everyone has experienced life as a roller coaster, with its "ups and downs". Think about it,how many times have you basked in the sunshine of success and accomplishment, and would have thought the day before: "it would be incredible for something like this to happen!"

    The late John Lennon said it best: "Life is something that happens to you when you're busy making other plans" (right about now I predict you're smiling :) How about "People make plans and G-D laughs" Whoa! Two heavyweight statements! But they're true.

    This is something I think about as well. If being on this earth for half a century has taught me anything,it's that sometimes you just don't know what tomorrow brings. But you do have the power to change. From the "Wizard of Oz", all Dorothy had to do was click her heels 3 times and she would be back in Kansas. She had the power all along but didn't know it. Same applies to us.

    Aneet,I am totally confident that you will turn "Where Am I" into "Where I Am" in short order.
    You're the best.....Jonathan

  9. Hi Jonathan,

    Your words carry so much wisdom. You are an anthology of sage quotes. I do believe that you could write a self-help book.

    And you were right, I did smile :)

    I'm really touched, and very often, by the kindness and depth shown by the readers of this blog. I take what you say to heart, and it is meaningful.

    Whatever we do and wherever we live, as you say, Jonathan, there are always ups and downs. For me, the key is in finding the value in what I have and in being kind to myself. The fact is, years ago, I thought I would have to move on from SB, that it was too good and too challenging to stay here. I didn't say that in my post, but hoped it would be perceived. And so the twist (and hopfully the giggle) is: I'm still here, in this lovely place, almost in spite of myself.

    I loved what you said about basking in success when the day before, it would have seemed incredible. This is so true. Amazing opportunities arrive every day, whatever your age or situation; and they manifest if we but rise to greet them.

    Those big, splashing successes are exciting, but I find some of the smaller and more subltle moments in life to be every bit as enriching, and sometimes even moreso.

    Ah, this appears to be an endless subject. I so enjoyed your charming, well written and valuable words. Once again Jonathan, thank you. ~ Aneet

  10. Anitra,just curious,is that you in the photo?

  11. Yes, walking a friend's dog on the Ventura Warf in 1982.

  12. Hi Aneet! Your video tribute is posted on You Tube. The tribute was created by GSNSmashFan3.

    Enjoy the weekend. Love the blog.


  13. Hi Bitsey,

    Great to hear from you! Glad you like the blog. Thanks so much for the info on the YouTube video. I saw it and it was fun. Wild to see all those clips set to that fabulous music. Loved the effect. And as they say, it was a real 'blast from the past.' And, oh, one last thing. It referred to that bogus MySpace site at the end (my only complaint.)

    Thanks so much for sharing it with us. Sending you my fond regards, ~ Aneet

  14. Hi Anitra-

    Thank you to both you and Mark for your kind words of support the other day. I will remind myself of those words when some days are tougher than others. By the way, in that picture from 1982, I can tell you're still showing off that radiance that I'm sure TPIR director Marc Breslow just loved. No wonder he did so many closeups. =)



  15. Ah, Joseph,

    Lovely to hear from you. Thanks, ~ Aneet

  16. HI Anitra
    there are so many wonderful people that read your Blog! I just want to say that,when one door closes another one opens.being on this earth for 49 years now,I too have had my share of ups,and downs,I guess this is life for all of us in this ever changing I believe that the Universe is always teaching us a 17 year old son(the baby)thinks he know it all.he has life all figured out.I just want him to be 17,it goes so fast ahhhh.
    now i want to move back to the USA,but to a mountain,colorado maybe,who knows what tommorow will bring! Anitra all I know right now is that im 49 ,and I'm HERE

  17. Roger,

    Great to hear from you. And yes, it's true, wonderful people do read this blog :)

    I too have gained value from looking at difficult issues as lessons. It's a very helpful context, and healing. I so enjoy reading your insights and reflections.

    And so, now, the mountains are calling you.... I love that great, big capital HERE!

    Sending my warm regards, ~ Aneet

  18. Hi Anitra. That's a great photo-and befitting of this blogpost-you are looking back to the future and leaving posterity simultaneously.
    I have two follow-up questions-did you ever consider leaving Santa Barbara for an exotic destination-by exotic, I mean New York or New Orleans?
    If I may ask, whatever brought you to Santa Barbara in the first place?

  19. Hello Joe,

    I appreciate hearing your perceptions of this photo. I too had a similar feeling when I cropped it and posted it. Working with photographs can be surprising. Sometimes they deliver even more than you had hoped for.

    As for your questions about other places, yes, I often have thought of leaving SB, but have never found the perfect place. I came here because it reminded me of where I was raised in Manattan Beach, about 100 miles south of here.

    Sending good wishes your way, ~ Aneet

  20. Always liked her having first seen her on The Price Is Right. Hot. Always enjoyed seeing her on different TV shows and a few movies. Hot. Yes there is definitely a physical attraction towards her but in a nice way. I hope she attains all her goals and dreams.

    1. Hi Anonymous,

      Your comment is like a poem. Thanks for sharing your impression.

      My good wishes, ~ Anitra