Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Azores Day 16: Military Lady Time

Well Blog, I'm drunk. Yep. I'm drunk and happy and nostalgic and excited and sad and thankful. The drunk brings out the emotions, doesn't it? I just feel so lucky, you know? Who would have thunk that ten years ago I would be forming friendships strong enough to carry me across the ocean to where I could have a terrific ladies night with wine and chats about how we all met our significant others?

By we, I mean they. I don't have a significant other. The married ones say they like to live vicariously through me. But I like to live vicariously through them. What's more romantic than wanting to be with someone to the point where you'd move a remote Azorian island to be with them? I don't know. Romance isn't something I'm too familiar with these days. It's ok Blog. I still have you right?

I don't talk about it too much here because I don't want to come off as a crazy single almost-thirty woman, but I am a single almost-thirty woman. Am I crazy? I'd like to think not, but society would probably dictate otherwise because I'm single and almost thirty. Isn't that the way? It's kind of tragic when you think about it.

Today I was walking to the store when I passed by what I like to call a man-bar. This is a bar that has an understood rule of only being for men. Think townie bar, then think Portuguese, then think men only. What you get is a bunch of dudes smoking and drinking in something that looks like a box made out of plywood because they have to protect themselves from the bull fights that happen from time to time in the street.

See, the bull will get angry and ram shit with its horns. The Portuguese respond with cheers and a feeling of superiority.
Anyway, I passed by this so-called man bar, and the men said stuff to me. I don't know what they said because I don't speak Portuguese. I don't know if what they said was pleasant or rude, so I did the only thing my single American lady self knows how to do and I hesitantly smiled at them. I figured this covers all my bases. If they were being pleasant, I was acknowledging their presence. If they were being rude, I was giving them a limited amount of attention.

Fuck it. I don't know how to be a woman in this country. I don't know how to be a woman anywhere.

I really don't want to sound like I'm on a feminist soap box here, but it's true about the objectification thing. It's what we ladies tend to be perceived as on so many levels and it does get annoying after awhile. Those man-bar dudes could have been saying "hello, nice day we have today" for all I know, but because of all the catcalling I get back home that I do understand, I default to assuming they are saying something about my physical appearance and how I can improve it for their enjoyment. (i.e. "why don't you give me a pretty smile?")

Whoa, Blog. I just got a little political. That doesn't happen often. All I opened with was the lovely evening of drinking I had with the Air Force ladies. But maybe that's it. There's an element of passion and romance to the whole marrying a guy in the military thing, but there's also a huge sacrifice on their part. I have to remember that in order to put myself in their position, I first have to find a guy I care enough about to where I would give up everything I've worked for in Minneapolis. I can't imagine that, Blog. And for some reason society tends to place a "oh you poor, single thing" on my single status as a nearly-thirty something woman because I haven't gone to those ends. Huh.

I'm not discounting the ladies I hung out with tonight as women who gave up everything and are only defined by the men they are married to. They are amazing women who know themselves better than I probably ever will. They are the ones who define their households and they have not lost sight on what they want and are getting out of this life. I am just in a completely different position relationship-wise than they are. And basically I can only surmise that on some level we all want what the other has.

Ok. I'm stepping down. I don't write in you to voice my political and societal rants. But I'm not going to quell them when they come up, Blog. Don't worry. I know you understand. With that, I'm letting the wine I consumed tonight close this entry and put me to bed.

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