1.2 – Katrina Caliente

To every one and no one in particular,
Sorry, it has been a while since I have last written. I had every intention of keeping up with the journal, but things have just been so busy. I am madly scrambling trying to rustle up as much cash as I can, because I really need better shelter than just a tent. I can’t wait till I have walls, a roof, electricity and plumbing. So far I have managed to make a little, but It is slow going. I am getting frustrated. I am thinking of taking on a career. I don’t know what will happen to my very large garden in the beginning before I can afford to have a gardener take care of things while I am gone (as a side note, you should see my garden! It has already started producing, and soon I will be able to sell my first batch of garden vegetables!). Fishing has also taken up quite a bit of my time. I have discovered that I enjoy fishing, and enjoy the money I have made from it.

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Today I went to to the library as I wanted to use a computer.The Library is a beautiful building next to the gym in downtown Willow Creek.

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Unlike most libraries, this one was not a quiet place to be. The culprit of all the noise was a red haired women beside a bookshelf in the back of the library, seemingly talking to herself. Loudly. Curiosity getting the better of me, I remained a few paces away and listened to her:

“I can’t believe him! Nobody dumps me! NOBODY! *I* do the dumping! The nerve of him! And then he brings his new little strumpet and parades around town with her, introducing her as his new girlfriend! Oh, how I would love to fight her. Nobody messes with my life!
He’s not exactly innocent either. I’d like to push him off a cliff! He deserves it!”

After this tirade, she stopped for a minute, and I decided to approach her and see if I could calm her down. Her back was turned on me, and as I got closer she whirled on me and just glared at me. If looks could kill I would be dead.

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“Um, hello,” I said.

She raised an eyebrow questioningly at me.

“What do you want?”

“I am Erika Nielsen, and I can’t help but notice you seem to be in some distress.”

“You think?” said the redhead.

I was a little uncomfortable at this point, but being concerned and a sucker for someone in emotional turmoil I offered to lend an ear.

“Do…do you want to talk about it? From what I overheard you are having guy problems, and I have had my share of guy problems. More than my share.” I said.

“Well, I suppose it wouldn’t hurt to talk to you. I hear its best not to bottle things up,” she said, visibly calming down.

“Let’s start with a name. I need something to call you.”

“Oh, my name is Katrina Caliente.”

“Ok, Katrina, whats going on?”

“My lousy boyfriend dumped me for another woman. We were engaged even. I just came home this morning to the house we shared and all my stuff was on the lawn. He wasn’t home so I went looking for him and eventually I found him at the park with another woman kissing her. When I confronted him all he said was sorry, as if that was adequate apology. Do you know how long I was with him? five years. Five years of what I thought was bliss. We never fought or argued and I thought we really loved each other. I had no idea he had someone else. We shared everything, and he took it all when he got rid of me. Now all I have are a few possessions.”

Katrina began to sob uncontrollably, so much different than  her earlier, potent anger.

“I don’t know what I am going to do or where I am going to go now,” she cried.

I stared at her and felt a tear slip down my own cheek. Her situation, while not the same, was still so similar to mine that it tugged at my heartstrings. I felt so bad for her.

“Katrina, I don’t have much in fact I am just living in a tent on a plot of land, but you are welcome to stay with me if you don’t mind the conditions.”

Caught by surprise, her sobs immediately stopped.

“What? You don’t even know me. How do you know I am not like…a serial killer or worse?”

Sighing, I said “I don’t. I just know what it feels like to have no place to go and to be going through extreme heartache. I know it’s dangerous to trust a stranger, but I want to help you, and the truth is, I am lonely too. So how about it? Wanna come live with me?

Nodding her head Katrina smiled saying “Yes”.

“Well, Katrina, it was nice meeting you and I hope we will be good roommates, but I gotta ask, why on earth did you choose the library  to shout and be upset in? It’s a a bit..odd,” I said stifling a giggle.

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Blushing Katrina looked away and said “The library is my happy place. I thought coming here would help calm me down, but I was so upset that it didn’t do much good. I am kind of embarrassed. Willow Creek is a relatively small town and news of my disruption of the peace of the library is sure to travel around town.”

A few hours and new purchases later, I walked back to my little plot of land. I got started on setting up Katrina’s tent, right next to mine. As I was finishing, who else but Katrina approached my land. Beaming, I motioned her over to me with an enthusiastic “Hello!”.

“So this is it huh?”

“Yes, this is home sweet home. It’s not much but its all I got and the weather hasn’t been too bad so the shelter has been adequate.”

Blinking back tears and taking a deep breath, Katrina said “It’s nice, really. I can’t imagine living this way, but I suppose some people must live like this. So which tent is mine? I have to get my stuff put away,” she said, motioning to two large suitcases and a large backpack.

“Oh, yours is on the left. When you’re done putting your stuff away, I have a few house rules, even though I don’t have a house, that I want to go over with you. Also I have a surprise for you that might cheer you up.”

“Ok” she said.

While Katrina was unpacking her stuff, I got out the gourmet hot dogs and stuff for s’mores I splurged on and set them aside after lighting a campfire. I waited patiently for Katrina. After about twenty minutes, my patience payed off and Katrina came and sat down by the fire.

“Oh, you got stuff for hotdogs and s’mores?!” she exclaimed.

“Yes, and you’re more than welcome to any of it.”

“Thank you, I am extremely hungry right now,” she said, skewering a Hot-dog and holding it over the fire. “So, there are rules you say? Let’s hear them.”

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“Well, you got straight to the point quickly,” I said.

“Honestly I am just tired, hungry and emotionally worn out. I just want to go to sleep and start the next day fresh.”

“I can understand that. Ok, so the first thing I want to talk about is jobs. I intend to build a house here, a house in which I can spend the rest of my life in, and my future children and grandchildren can. In order to do this, obviously I am going to need money. alot. of. money. Right now I have started off small, selling fish at the market, selling rare stones I find, and selling produce. Now that you’re here I want thinking of starting a career. I was thinking you could stay home and bring in extra money with the garden, fishing and selling stones. What do you think? And why are you grinning like that? What’s so funny?”

Taking a big bite of her hot dog, she spoke with her mouth full of food which was disgusting: “It’s funny because I have never done a  day of gardening let a lone fishing in my life. I am not that type of girl. I don’t know how you expect me to accomplish this.
I mean, I’ll do my best but I don’t know how good at it I’ll be.”

Nodding my head I replied: “Don’t worry about it – I will show you how. It’s all very simple. You’ll be an expert gardener/fisher in no time at all. Now, I have a few more rules, but don’t worry they aren’t that bad. Rule number one: do your dishes after you cook, and
throw away all garbage immediately. Rule number two relates to rule number one: clean up after yourself. Rule number three: you can have friends over, but I ask that if you have a special someone over and you want to do special things together, please make sure I am not home when it happens, at least until the house is built and you have your own room. And that is it for my rules. I am sure I will think of more the longer you live here but that is all i ask for now.”

Shrugging, Katrina replied “That’s fine, that all sounds doable to me.”

Tired myself I stayed up long enough for Katrina to finish her hot dog, cook and eat a s’more, and put the fire out. I gave Katrina a hug and then retired to my tent to get some much needed rest.

 

1.1 The first day

To every one and no one in particular,
Today is the first day I am truly alone, and the first day my journey of healing and re-self discovery begins. I have next to nothing after selling most of my possessions to be able to afford the plot of land in Willow Creek I purchased to live on. It is in fact just a plot of land, nothing is built on it (yet). For now living will be a camping adventure. I don’t mind, as I have always wanted to go camping but have never had the chance to go. It is not much but it is my own and in my world, where sometimes it feels like nothing is certain and life is spinning out of control, it feels good to have something concrete and stable.

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The neighborhood my plot of land is in is beautiful, the creek after which the town is named even runs through my backyard.

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One of the things I will be doing until I am more secure and have a little more cash in my pocket is living off the land. I will be planting a garden today. I will grow carrots, spinach, tomatoes, grapes, mushrooms, potatoes, onions and apples. It will be a lot of work, and I plan on making the garden a large one. Eventually it will be profitable, because I will sell what I have grown.

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Later in the day:

I have finished planting my garden, and watering the plants. It was a lot of work, and I am soaked in sweat and I am grimy. I am proud that I did it all myself though. And I have Grandmother Aster to thank for my knowledge of plants and how to plant them. Grandma has always had a green thumb and has always loved to plant. At one point in my life I lived with her for a while and picked up a few things.Thanks Grandma!

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Since I still have some daylight I am going to explore the neighborhood and surrounding areas. I grew up in the neighboring town of Oasis springs in the desert, so I am very new to Willow Creek. I must admit, I like the greenery over the endless varying shades of brown and tan of the land.

Dusk:

Well, I am home now and thoroughly exhausted after all the work and exercise. Here is a photo I took while I was out:

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That’s all for now. I am going to grab some supper and go to bed. Goodnight.

 

 

1.0 – A fresh start

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To every one and no one in particular,
my name is Erika Nielsen, and this is my journal. I want to keep this journal so my children and grandchildren will have something to remember me by when I am gone. At the time of this writing I am 28 years of age. I feel like my first entry into this crisp, new journal should include a little about my past so not only will I be remembered for generations, but also so that people might know me a little better.

I was born to my mother, Iris Nielsen, and my father, Arthur Nielsen one day in October. I have two sisters, Genna Nielsen and Lynette Nielsen. Both are younger than me. Life, until I was almost 10 was like a dream, perfect almost. I had friends, and my family was a
loving one. I didn’t want for anything. Then, tragedy struck. My father passed on due to illness. Several months later my grandfather Corbin followed. My grandmother Aster and mother were both filled with grief. Afterwards I became a very unhappy child. I didnt get a long with Genna and Lynette and eventually moved in with my grandmother.

Life was ok when I was at home, but when I went to school things were horrible. I had no friends, It seemed like I was nearly invisible to everyone around me, it seemed like nobody cared about me, and when someone did pay attention to me it was to point a finger and laugh at me.

When I got a little older, I got my first computer and discovered the world of online gaming. I met many unique and wonderful people on the simnet and spent hours and hours chatting and playing. It was my safe haven, and when I came home from school the first thing I would do would be to go to my computer.

The depression got worse as I aged though, and eventually I dropped out of High School. After that I was stuck in limbo. My life was on hold.Then, I met a man online, Shayne O’Connor. I ended up marrying Shayne. It was the worst decision I have ever made. I thought I was in loving relationship with a wonderful man, and for a while my life was bliss. But things got ugly between us. He started abusing me, and I felt worthless, ugly, and stupid. We began to fight a lot, and eventually he decided to leave me. He took
everything from me, and I felt hollow and empty inside. It also came out that he was in love with his best friend. That hurt more than anything.

It has been several months since he has left, and slowly but surely I am healing. Things have not been easy, but I have hope that they will get easier.

Well, that is it for my first entry. Hopefully those who read this journal will gain a better understanding of me from future entries.