Welcome to my blog..


"We struggle with dream figures and our blows fall on living faces." Maurice Merleau-Ponty

When I started this blog in 2011, I was in a time of transition in my life between many identities - that of Artistic Director of a company (Apocryphal Theatre) to independent writer/director/artist/teacher and also between family identity, as I discover a new family that my grandfather's name change at the request of his boss in WWII hid from view - a huge Hungarian-Slovak contingent I met in 2011. Please note in light of this the irony of the name of my recently-disbanded theatre company. This particular transition probably began in the one month period (Dec. 9, 2009-Jan. 7, 2010) in which I received a PhD, my 20 year old cat died on my father's birthday and then my father, who I barely knew, died too. I was with him when he died and nothing has been the same since. This blog is tracing the more conscious elements of this journey and attempt to fill in the blanks. I'm also writing a book about my grandmothers that features too. I'd be delighted if you joined me. (Please note if you are joining mid-route, that I assume knowledge of earlier posts in later posts, so it may be better to start at the beginning for the all singing, all dancing fun-fair ride.) In October 2011, I moved back NYC after living in London for 8 years and separated from my now ex-husband, which means unless you want your life upended entirely don't start a blog called Somewhere in Transition. In November 2011, I adopted a rescue cat named Ugo. He is lovely. As of January 2012, I began teaching an acting class at Hunter College, which is where one of my grandmothers received a scholarship to study acting, but her parents would not let her go. All things come round…I began to think it may be time to stop thinking of my life in transition when in June 2012 my stepfather Tom suddenly died. Now back in the U.S. for a bit, I notice, too, my writing is more overtly political, no longer concerned about being an expat opining about a country not my own. I moved to my own apartment in August 2012 and am a very happy resident of Inwood on the top tip of Manhattan where the skunks and the egrets roam in the last old growth forest on the island.

I am now transitioning into being married again with a new surname (Barclay-Morton). John is transitioning from Canada to NYC and as of June 2014 has a green card. So transition continues, but now from sad to happy, from loss to love...from a sense of alienation to a sense of being at home in the world.

As of September 2013 I started teaching writing (composition and rhetoric) as an adjunct professor at Fordham University, which I have discovered I love with an almost irrational passion. So blessed for the opportunity and hope to find a more permanent job doing same.

I worked full time on the book thanks to a successful crowd-funding campaign in May 2014 and completed it at two residencies at Vermont Studio Center and Wisdom House in summer 2015. I have done some revisions and am shopping it around to agents and publishers now, along with having written a rough draft of a new book and some other projects.

Not sure when transition ends, if it ever does. As the saying goes, the only difference between a sad ending and a happy ending is where you stop rolling the film.

For professional information, publications, etc., go to my linked in profile and website for Barclay Morton Editorial & Design. My Twitter account is @wilhelminapitfa. You can find me on Facebook under my full name Julia Lee Barclay-Morton. More about my grandmothers' book: The Amazing True Imaginary Autobiography of Dick & Jani

Recently, I started a website Our Grandmothers, Our Selves, which has stories about many people's grandmothers. Please check it out. I will be blogging there, too, now.


Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Last box unpacked!


TADA!!!

These are shelves I put up myself  & Freecycle rocking chair!
Spent many hours last night and today unpacking the last box, which has all the photos, documents and writing from my grandmothers.  I bought a drawer unit just for that so needed to put some thought into how to arrange it.  (That unit is on other side of study.  Above are book/journal shelves)  It is now semi-organized.  Things in right drawers but internal organizing needs to happen.  However, going through all the stuff makes me nauseous so it's hard to be super precise when I'm basically trying not to hurl or succumb to dizzy spells.

I just finished doing some writing tonight as well, so I am either heroic or stupid or masochistic.  Or some combination platter of the aforementioned. You decide.

I still have some pictures to hang, small table/shelves etc to sort out, and yet another godforsaken Ikea shelf to purchase...damn them and their cheap and yet somewhat attractive shelving options, damn them to Hell!  So, thinking to change things up, will check out the Brooklyn Ikea and take the water taxi, so I can see the now-swanky Red Hook...and like, when did that happen?

Which reminds me that it's taken me about a year (at the end of this month I will have been back in NYC a full year) to begin to truly appreciate how much has fucking changed since I left in 2003.  I mean I knew stuff was different but I didn't really know how different.  In many ways it's a completely different city.  And yet it's still NYC...which is the genius and weirdness of this place.  It changes, morphs, r/evolves, is in a constant state of becoming-something-else but yet never does.  But does.  The great NYC paradox.

Speaking of which it's just weird to see more skyscrapers going up downtown.  One of which has the horrendous name of the Freedom Tower.  I am sorry everyone in the rest of the world reading this.  I just am sorry.  We are truly moronic and hyperbolic here.  That's all there is to it.  But you knew that already...

However, when I have to suffer through politicians from Both parties at their conventions saying, because they think they have to say: "The United States of America - the Greatest Country in the World" - well, I just die (of embarrassment) a little.  What other country would do this?  I mean aside from probably, say, North Korea or some other 3rd rate dictatorship somewhere without good internet access.  I mean really?  Really??

So, I am having to suffer my decision to stay here.  I did not apply to about three jobs in the UK that I probably should have applied for because I know - all practical evidence to the contrary (like say, oh, health insurance, a real job prospect, etc...) I am supposed to be here where my heart resides whether I fucking like it or not.

I gotta say that in the whole 8 years I lived in London, I never once spontaneously thought (as I do at least once most days in NYC), damn I really love this place.  I abjectly love New York.  Weirdly, madly, deeply.  I have probably said this many times in this blog but it strikes me as odd, especially when I cringe to be American most of the time, that I love this place so so so so much.  New York City that is. Let me be clear.

Add to that my new apartment that I am beginning to love, too, beyond all reason - though it is a kick-ass place.  I feel it growing on my like the continual smell of Dominican food (which is a good thing, because there is an almost constant smell of Dominican food).

Last night I finally used one of my fancy pans to make a stir fry.  I'm typing this post on my amazing desk from Housing Works sitting on my ergonomically correct chair, etc., etc.  Though the lighting situation is still a work in progress....

But there is Space and Light and All my Books and Journals in One Place on One Wall...amazing.

So I'm here for a while.  God/dess knows for how long.  But I dearly hope to finish a draft of the book here.  I am not saying "I will" because every time I say that, something comes along to change that plan, so not tempting fate anymore on that one.

Oh, and I almost forgot, weirdly enough, one year to the day that I saw the Mystery Rabbit in my back garden in London, I saw a rabbit in Inwood Park when walking with my friend Dave...What does it mean???

Here's a picture:


Rabbit is in center of photo - Very well camouflaged but there!


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