Sarah Grant

Musings on Poker and Other Stuff

10 Values I Hold Highest

December 20, 2012

Tags: Sarah grant, Heath herring, EPT, Prague, Top 10, Values.

If it really is the end of the world tomorrow, I'm probably going to regret wasting the last two days running errands, going to the grocery store and deep cleaning my apartment. This is some sort of cathartic return from travel that I ALWAYS do. When I get home...pretty much no matter what time...I always start my laundry and unpack my bag. It is kind of sick. I recognize that.
The following day after hopefully sleeping as many hours as possible, I can't seem to return to normal life until I've cleaned the apartment thoroughly. I have the distinct feeling that until the dust is shed from the shelves I haven't fully returned home. And probably more out of necessity I must grocery shop. It is a sort of ritual. Part of my coming and going.
It got me thinking about all the things in our lives that become rituals. Some of them good, and some of them bad. Heath mentioned to me the other day that I usually do my phone calls when making dinner. I hadn't really thought about it. But, he is right. I can barely chew gum and walk. So, trying to have a conversation that is meaningful and doing anything that isn't 2nd nature is impossible for me. Honestly I can't even grocery shop and talk on the phone because I always forget things and, simultaneously I am not totally present in the conversation. I guess, without my realizing it has become a sort of ritual for me.
I remember when I first was trying to quit smoking, it was impossible for me to get into my car without wanting a cigarette. Now, I would never consider it. But I had developed some kind of synapse fire which went immediately from car to cigarette. How many of these do I still have unknowingly in my life? How many times do I let my little mini-traditions dictate my moment to moment reality?
I guess just living is an act in both being awake at times and sometimes being in a semi-sleeping state. Although being ever-present is the goal of course, it is a very arduous and trying task. WIth a season ripe with tradition right here and also the season of setting goals and making changes I was to stake claim to my goal. I want to actively chose each moment and not let my habits or rituals dictate my life.
I want to be mindful of the things I value most in this life. Top Ten off the Top of My Head
Loyalty
Honesty
Liberty
Joy
Balance
Compassion
Integrity
Justice
Gratitude
Faith

Here's a pic a fellow journalist sent from EPT Prague. And Happy Holidays!! I leave this blog with gratitude and Love!

Prague

December 11, 2012

Tags: Sarah grant, Heath herring, Kristy arnett, Adam brown, Mantvydas plynius, Prague, Ept.

I went to school in Prague for a semester during my time at NYU. I enjoyed myself. But, honestly, it wasn't my first choice. I wanted to live in London. I was into punk rock. I was into movies. My guts told me to go to London. I let a lot of people convince Prague was like London but way cheaper. Prague is nothing like London. It is cheaper. It's not cheap. And it is not London.
When I came before, I was alone. I had been traveling alone for months in Europe before I found myself in a dorm in one of Prague's lesser known districts. Although I didn't particularly enjoy traveling alone, I preferred it to what I considered the mental midgets that were my peers. I was so condescending to my fellow students since I perceived them as being typical co-ed types that only "act" like they want a cultural experience...meanwhile they throw fake keggers in foreign dorms and make out with each other.
I found the locals in Prague to be just as aloof to me as I was to the other kids. I wasn't very interested in architecture. I've never liked beer. And the Czech language was impossible for me. Needless to say, even though I had a good time, Prague was never my favorite travel destination.
I guess it goes without saying I didn't care one way or the other about coming to this EPT. If I've realized anything though, it isn't about where you go as much as it is about who you go with. Wandering the city with our tight knit little video crew and my new fiance was a blast. We were freezing by the end, but laughing and enjoying the journey. Instead of looking at how this place could enrich me, I found myself seeing how we enrich each other. Maybe my time here before was colored less by the place itself and more by my attitude. Maybe in some karmic way it wasn't a paradise for me because I didn't deserve a paradise.

Somehow I think as you get older everything is prettier. I think as you age you look more inward to shape experiences instead of letting the outside shape you. We even got stuck in a snowstorm and spent 12 hours in Amsterdam Airport trying to figure out what was going on. Even that felt completely comfy and even a little fun.

I had never been here during the holiday season and I have to say I think that is the perfect time to come. I welcomed the snow! We never get it in Vegas and it just feels more like Christmas when it is cold and snowy. It makes the eventual move from the sights of the city and into a warm & kitchy restaurant all that much more precious. When I think about next year I know I will be excited to go...because it doesn't matter where we go...as long as we are all going together!

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