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It was a hot Thursday evening. The night, to myself…I was not packed, had no plans, I may just use this long weekend to recharge the batteries. Take time to escape from myself, within myself. Granted, 2011 has been an abnormal year to just take a look at those things that will readjust the man I thought I was. At one moment, it was seeing YOUr eyes, another your laugh. Then again, it was hearing your voice in person, and not through the phone. It was seeing the amount of life that has filled this few short years, especially in comparison to the time we spend here on this planet.

Adjusting to things that you plan to do, I want to do this, this, and this…and allow for them to be put off for another year. So I looked at being in Boston, my trips to California, and in one night, unpacked, unplanned, skated away to New York. Unfettered, unrestrained, real experiences. And also, real reflection. I was able to think of the box I’m supposedly pegged in, Hispanic, Black, worker, writer…so as I packed my bags hours before heading to the office, what I didn’t pack:

And experienced LIFE,

I ran away from me to New York.

Was it planned…nope.

But then again, I got to return to some of the essence of what I’m doing and Blue Lines. Is Blue Lines based in New York, or the northeast…no. But many of the campus college experiences stemmed from being in Bridgeport, Connecticut. Did I meet Keypsiia’s template there…no, but those coy moments, those wants and needs were similar. The parties we threw, were there. The clothes I wore, I got there. Plus my best friend, whom I based Keypsiia’s best friend, Azul, was from there. Brooklyn!!! Not to get sidetracked, but a lot of the Blue Lines experience actually occurred in Atlanta, and was recreated on the campus of the University of Carolina at Chapel Hill.

However, with all that said, the trip wasn’t about that…I doubt the book was mentioned, but it was about the freedom we don’t take the chance on. It was about the troops I sat by on the plane rides up and back. Seeing my aunt. Seeing friends, I may have spoken to, but had not seen since the mid 90’s. it was about late nights that ran into early mornings of conversations, and walking aimlessly through the Lower East Side, and Tribeca. It was about going back to my missing New York roots, and finally escaping Georgia to feel at home there.

In many ways, it allows my to understand my connection with someone as similar to me, and free as me…in different ways, to be able to experience ME. Although, not about this either, I want to be able to leave my mark, rather than sit back and exist for these few years I’m given.
So, as we slept in my hotel bed, like college kids…trooped the next morning (I was getting all my hours in) to The Smith, walked the Highline, ran into Irv Gotti, surveyed the Meat Packing district, I cabbed back, hit the boat with my other bestie, saw a great friend, and former work study co-worker, then we all met up for karaoke, worked my iPhone to death…there is nothing like life.

There is no feeling like living…the good, and the bad. That’s why like I love Blue Lines, I loved being back out in California and the chances I took.

BUT, being back “home,” as you can attest JJP, this is the first time that it was just, real. Grown children putting together moments that will last in out memories forever…or all your damn photo’s…lol. And being with people who show me love, at times I don’t feel I fully reciprocate…and YES, I am an asshole…you guys have to love that part of me to, because it did come out, but when I left that night (morning) who was I with??? You guys…karaoking, and dancing in LaGuardia’s parking lot, before returning to the “A,” on a 6am flight.

How can I say this? Very bad things have happened this year, some things are still tenuous, but I really LOVE this year, thus far in my life. Granted, I don’t have MY daughter, let alone my first child, YOU…well…and that’s it, has bad happened, or have I just had experiences…I may not get what I wanted, then again I may…but I’ve jumped out the plane without a parachute so many times this year, you can’t not love that.
I’ve cried,
I’ve loved,
I’ve experienced,
I’ve thought about you,
I’ve met you, you, and you,
The concerts I’ve seen,
The shows I’ve gone to,
The love I’ve felt,
The pain I’ve felt,
The wins I’ve had,
The good,
The bad,
My cousin,
My niece,
My broken heart,

It would be so easy to sit back and not experience anything, but also easier not to grab yourself by the bootstraps and take off. Dive, jump, run…

The manuscript Blue Lines is the fictional coming of age narrative of a young California woman Key Yemaya Walker, and her 2 year growing journey through school, love, and life period piece, written by Kenneth Suffern, Jr., taking place at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill between the years of 1997 – 1998. Loosely based on true events, and experiences during that time, told through the eyes and voice of the main female protagonist, a freshman first attending the school.