New York City mind wandering. I lived in New York while in school and traveled between there and my hometown in Virginia. I consider New York my second home, so my mind tends to wander back a lot. Maybe it’s longing, maybe it’s a walk down memory lane, maybe my mind just wants to torture me so, but I always try to tell myself these little New York memories flying about my mind are kind reminders of kind moments.
I remember sitting in front of my school, most likely chain-smoking and sending mass emails on a BlackBerry. This was the year I tried to dye my whole head of hair green/blue (not a great success), got a piercing (septum) and embraced the fact that I could look however I wanted. All black and combat boots one day, a skirt and flats the next—oh, the possibilities! I was just learning to play around with style and wearing whatever I liked or found interesting.
That day I had on a black dress and boots, a mustard yellow cardigan, and stuck flower and skull brooches into my hair. An older man with his dog walked by.
That feeling of being watched out of your peripheral was not uncommon for me. Catching someone’s eye as they stare from my hair to my nose to my clothes, it never really bothered me. Hell, this little girl recently called me a mermaid. A mermaid! Who doesn’t love that?
I notice he had stopped, but I continued about sending messages on BBM or whatever random thing I was doing. I heard his footsteps getting louder and closer towards me as I looked up to see him: A little old man with long, flowing grey hair, small, purple circle sunglasses just barely reaching to the edge of his eyes, a cigarette held between his fingers that donned unique silver rings.
He took a drag, looked at me and said,
“I like how you decorate your soul container.”
It took me a second. He wasn’t asking for directions or saying something snarky about how I appeared, he came over to simply tell me something genuine, and unique at that. I thanked him and told him that I had never thought of it in that way before. My mind was kind of blown at the phrasing alone. Like some mysterious sage, he gave me a sort of confirming nod and told me to “stay unique.”
I already believed that your physical appearance/personal style was a representation of your personality, but I never thought about it in the sense of your physical form containing your soul, and you’re just decorating it for the world to see.
Sure, you could make assumptions about a person based off of the things they choose to wear or how to appear, but you’ll never really know. You can make small associations or connections, but just because I like to wear black does not mean I am not a bubbly person, or that I am “girly” because I wear dresses often. Black is an awesome color and I just hate pants. I think personality, mood, everything is depicted to a degree in what you wear or how you decorate your soul that day.
I thanked him again and smiled as he whistled for his dog and walked away. That phrase has stuck with me ever since.
At Luna Luna, we think it’s important to take care of your soul. Check out DJ Hopson’s post on living larger in your own life here.
Kim Bui is a freelance artist & designer from Norfolk, Va. She is a recent graduate of Pace University trying her hand at a little bit of everything; illustration, art direction & nail art. She has a passion for print design and finding the perfect pen. @Sincerelykimbui