I want to start this blog off by saying that I'm not in the job of defaming people, their images, nor their projects. What I have promised to myself, and my readers, is that I will be honest with my point of view, in life, and particularly while on this journey. With that, let's set the scene.
Dinner table. Rainy night. Entire Cast. Two field producers. Two cameras running.
The inevitable takes place...
There is a certain cast mate whom I have had a personality conflict with since Day 1. The energy he gives off is one that I have not been able to vibe with and if we were under any other circumstances, we'd probably not be in each other’s lives at all. Period. We simply do not mesh. It's been underlying for months now. Within the last few days approaching the trip, we got into a phone conversation in which both sides of our story were presented. In many ways we felt the exact same way about each other. I felt it best to really dig into it before landing in Thailand.
For me, it's a situation where you get along great with everyone in a room, but one person can come in and suck the life out of you like a vampire. It's where one person sets off all your alarms, involuntarily throws up all your boundaries, and you don't know why. It's merely the energy/vibe they emit. No one wants to be in a situation like that, let alone living and traveling with this person for three months. Something has got to give.
The phone conversation followed a talk with the Universe. I said "I want to let this negative energy towards him go. I truly do. How can I do this?" He called seconds later and I felt the need to take advantage of the opportunity.
From his side, I felt it was a pseudo psycho-analysis of "I feel you're ungrateful." "I don't feel you are excited enough about the trip." "You are stressing so much about finances." "Why are you going right after the death of a close friend?" Among other things...
From my side it was "I feel like, from jump, you've been overly controlling with planning the trip and not truly acknowledging everyone's contributions." "I am going because, why wouldn't I? Rudi would want me to."
I have found myself, in a number of situations, feeling like I need to defend who I am and how I operate for his satisfaction. That ended tonight.
The energy that, I believe, we both felt was released after that initial phone conversation surfaced (for me) immediately upon arrival. Again, it's an energy thing.
It's been like this, again, from day one. I have spoken to a number of people about it, for perspective (family, friends, others in our situation) and even tried meditation practices. Dude got me meditating.
So, tonight, at this table, we ate and spoke. He started it off:
"Again, I don't see you being happy about this trip."
"Do you think you're present?"
"The entire time, you've talked about your issues with finances more than anyone else. It's bringing me back to a time when I had nothing. I am out of that place in my life right now when I was struggling to live, and I don't want to pick up on your energy. It doesn’t seem like you want help." (abridged, but you get the jist)
Another honorary comment shared at the table (not by the same individual) was "It feels like you're here trying to add to your resume."
My reactions varied, but included:
"I am very much happy, and myself, just not around you. Something about your energy makes me shut down and throw a barrier up. "
I also addressed the fact, again, that I am dealing with losing one of my best friends less than three months ago. Something, that I feel, in itself would warrant some people to lay off and allow space and time.
"Yes, I'm present, and I am soaking Thailand in my own way."
"My financial stress on this trip is mine, of course I'm not going to you with it. I am getting help, just from home."
"I am a business owner. Where I go, my business does as well and that is what it is. For me, it is about personal growth as much as making connections professionally."
I'll be honest, I'm proud I didn't flip my lid. I handled it like the only lady on this trip. It was honest, at times pointed, but truthful and shed more light on the magnitude of this situation for what it was. It was definitely Evita, and as long as I can say that, my conscious is in tact at the end of the day, for me. As long as I can look in the mirror at the end of the day knowing I said what I felt and meant it, I will not beat myself up about this.
Tonight, compromises had to be made. Apartment, personalities, time frames in Bangkok, etc... I think what may be forgotten a bit tonight is that we are all different people, from different backgrounds, who operate differently. No one is more right than the other.
A New York artist who has built a career, and following, off of a true 'New York' style work ethic (a.k.a. international networker/hustler) does not even think at the same speed of most normal human beings.
Someone from Los Angeles is not going to understand certain things someone from Atlanta, who has also experienced New York make feel.
Us big city folk, may not be able to always relate to the psychology of a small-towner, from Louisiana.
That's the point. We are all different and should be revered for being such. We are all beautiful and great in our own talents and gifts. I believe people should allow that to be and let the genuine emotions come on their own.
Look, as I said earlier tonight, we all have weaknesses and strengths. Real talk, that is probably the hardest part of doing a reality series like this. You are fucking open for the world to critique, including those you live with. It is Day 2 and I'm not sure if everyone came with the assumption we'd all be friends off the bat, but where I am in my life, people have to earn that title.
As I've repeated to my closest friends, as I get older, my circle of friends shrinks while my network of associates multiplies daily. It is what it is.
With that, I will work on being more open, even to him, because I will not live like this for 90 days.
I got to a point where I looked him in the eye and said, “What are we going to have to do in order to get along for this 90 days? How can we put this in a place where we are both comfortable with it?”
Post rants, it was decided that maybe he and I needed to spend more time together to get to know one another. I had immediate reluctance. IMMEDIATE. But then I stopped myself, and for the good of the group I agreed. On Sunday, we will be taking a day trip alone.
I feel as though we are either going to come stronger or simply agree to disagree and find a way to get through the next 3 months…
To be continued…
I like to end on a positive, as my mother says. After dinner, I met up with a new Bangkok (female) friend, who runs a bit of a talent agency here and ran through the gamut of films shooting in the area. She also told me the freelance market here is prevalent. That definitely eased my mind.
We attended an art opening at her sister’s art gallery, Attic Gallery, off Sukumvit 31. It was amazing to be in a room of creative, diverse artists and something I’d been missing since arriving in Bangkok. I am at my best when I create.
She was handed physical samples of my work, and it seemed as though the 5 Points photos caught her attention immediately. I truly (TRULY) hope to see my work on her gallery’s walls before our time in Thailand is over.
Yes, I’ve been hustling. Yes, I’ve been networking, and yes it is already beginning to pay off.
10,000 hours to genius. Shout out to all my Outliers. Spin In Peace Rudi