My Story, Yours Too.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Woman on the Verge of Paradise: Slurpage

Thanks for joining me on the verge of Paradise, as a new chapter of my life unfolds. This series can be found in the Paradise button to the left. While I alter some details as I see fit, I do my best to remain true to place and time. Mojo really is my housemate's cat. How could I change that name?  Enjoy.

Its sweetness lingers on my tongue with tingling peacefulness. I lean back on the black metal framed patio chair, the sun’s rays generously warming my face.  Slowly sipping a chocolate chai frost freeze at Chico’s T. Fusion CafĂ©, I’m in paradise. I’ve come home.

Wait, something’s wrong, terribly tragically undeniably wrong. I stare at the bottom of my cup. It’s all gone. How did that happen? Focused on the wide green straw, I slurp with all my might. Then I slurp again. Fellow customers snap their heads to glare at me, clearly offended by my explosive slurpage. I don’t care and keep at it, determined to elicit just one more molecule of flavor. I come up short. Damnit. Life is no longer sweet.

Alas, the dichotomy of Paradise vexes my soul.

Graced by majestic trees, exotic flowers, and glistening bodies of water, it’s an attractive place. People smile with sincerity around here. While jogging yesterday, a car pulled up alongside me. The driver rolled down her window, shouting “Hi Robyn!”  She’s a neighbor three doors down. Strangers offer smiles at Safeway. Home provides a peaceful sanctuary, except when Mojo pummels through my locked bedroom door at 3am, which occurs at least once weekly. It’s unusual to have such attention in the middle of the night, so I don’t mind. I’m appreciating a refreshing novelty of life in a tension-free house. Steven’s friendly and easy-going. Work is good too, despite the need to unexpectedly readjust my course shortly after I moved. I bounced back and like my job. Moreover, I no longer experience an intense frenzy due to traffic, crowds or life in general.

Beneath the surface, though, Paradise isn’t my home. With a population nearing 27,000 it is home to 54 registered sex offenders. Social ills run rampant, hitting extreme levels of poverty, homelessness, substance abuse and crimes of all sorts. Chico’s stats aren’t as alarming, but gang violence has plagued the campus community for be continued


  1. There just isn't any real paradise... there aren't enough bullets to go around for these people...

  2. Steven??? Whoa... I missed something, somewhere!

  3. how come places with lots of sex offenders always have the best names? they are never called Pervtown, for example

  4. To some people 27,000 people is small. To me, that's a big town.
    I think you could divide that number by 10 and still be bigger than the town I live just outside of.
    There is no perfect place to live.
    I realize that every time I want to move and do the cost of living comparison. Gain some things,give others away.

  5. Some might say that your slurping of that chocolate drink was a form of substance abuse, but I wouldn't agree with them.

  6. Some places grow on u some never do...27000 would seem like hardly anyone for some one like safe and enjoy slurping...its fun to raise a few shackles sometimes. :)

  7. And isn't that often the way of the world? Paradise as an illusion...

  8. I don't blame you on the slurping. I would have done the same thing! Can't wait to hear more.

  9. Love the imagery here: "explosive slurpage" "pummels thru my locked bedroom door."
    Awesome-sauce. :)

  10. Just when I was trying to find something similar to the chocolate chai frost freeze, you took me out of my happy place. I hope you haven't met any of these sex offenders, but I will stay tuned...

  11. The chocolate is all you need to make the Paradise. :)

  12. Pat, so true. Thanks.

    MsA, he's the homeowner and my roommate..very nice, easy going guy. He's a techie and has helped with some computer probs.

    David, good point. I like that. They should be more transparent and change the name to Pervtown.

    Ruth, wow, you really are a small town girl. Chico, at 87,000 people, must sound ginormous to you.

    GB, I am addicted. Chocolate/sugar may destroy me someday but it will have been worth it.

    Rek, thank you. Having grown up in LA, I know what it's like to live in a highly populate area. I much prefer fewer people.

    Terra, good. =) Thanks.

    Beth, yeah, that's kind of what I'm grappling with.

    Darlene, thank you. I tend to start off slowly and savor the flavor, then speed up and gulp the last drop.

    Dawn, I really appreciate it. Thank you.

    Julie, oh no, go find something similar. You have my blessings!


  13. I spoke with Mrs. Penwasser. She says a chocolate chai freeze IS better than sex.
    Wow. Guess I should work out.

  14. as long as there is chocolate everything will be okay.

  15. You find a real paradise, please let us know.

  16. Wow...I can't wait to read part two.

    You have a way of reeling us in!

  17. Robyn, sounds like Paradise is a pretty typical BIG small town at 27,000; and that you have much to enjoy there, even though there are a few worms in the otherwise big juicy apple... It's all, really, about your friendships and the job and your writing, beauties of the place and of your heart. Be safe and take good care, dear Robyn, and be happy.

  18. Al, I like that Mrs. Penwasser. Send her over. We'll go for orgasmic drinks.

    PTM and Laila, excellent point.

    Alex, will do.

    Marlene, thank you.

    Margaret, how sweet you are. It's much appreciated.

    Damon, thank you.


  19. You're better than I. I would have bought another and continued to enjoy and slurp. I always tell myself that home is where the heart is. But sometimes my heart isn't where I live. It's hard.

  20. I LOVE Slurpage!!!! That first paragraph was....well--never mind...

    Sex offenders are rampant and living everywhere EXCEPT where they are supposed to be!!

    Love ya Robyn!!!