Tiny Man, Big Spatula
Jonah here - as I write this blog I am sitting at a table with a very wise trans 19-year-old who I've met, and feeling very inspired and humbled by their openness to me.
This morning after not getting much rest the day before we woke up together in a quaintly strange bachelor pad Airbnb in the heart of Miami. In our weeks of planning before the trip we discussed integrating meditation into our routine and today was our first day of practice. We set our personal and group intentions, which ranged from bodily safety to expanding our ability to connect with people along the road, and sat with them together. After this and a good night’s sleep, I know that I feel like I’ve gotten my footing in the trip.
The day started off a bit rough - Basil got news that his dog got in a fight and was being taken to the vet for stitches! Luckily, it looks like Yep Dog (an indispensable member or the Transilient team) is going to be alright!
Secondly, our interview in Miami got called into work and could not meet with us - but this gave us some more time to do more of the planning and networking that is involved in this voyage. We made our way from Miami to Ft. Lauderdale in the early afternoon. Basil drove and honed into the power of Rihanna’s “Only Girl in the World” to ignore how crazy traffic is down here. We all road together with little idea of what was in store for us in Ft. Lauderdale.
When we arrived we were greeted cautiously at the door of an immense house by Leland, the founder of New Beginnings - our shelter for the next three nights. New Beginnings, also known as the "trans mansion" amongst Transilient, is a surgery recovery center for trans people. Its founder is a fierce trans entrepreneur with a surgical background who seems very protective of his flock of post-surgery babies. All food here is included in the stay, and we definitely freaked out about the multiple freezers full of cake and muffins. Additionally, there's a massage chair here and it's already changed my life.
Leland gave us a tour of his incredible facility and then sat with us for a heart-opening conversation where we eventually decided to collaborate with him on some really exciting future projects - stay tuned for more info on this!
Today has been restful and amazing. We swam in the pool and I took some sexy photos of Basil in a sailor's cap. SahLeem and I had a heart to heart about our family history - as we will be staying with both of our grandmothers on this journey!
Finally, we did some work and cooked a yummy dinner. Basil, with a ginormous spatula that was not intended for sautéing broccoli, and me, with average sized kitchen utensils. There is currently a lemon cake defrosting next to my bed, because Leland shares his love of food with all who enter his home.
As I told you before, I am sitting with Elliot - an intern here at New Beginnings. His dream is to be a world-famous artist, and he is drawing a portrait of me so that we can trade our art with each other. I couldn't be happier.
It's been a great day. Thanks for following our travels y'all.
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