Underthecurrent


One month later
November 30, 2017, 12:21 am
Filed under: nomadisms, unrelated thoughts

This winter has been nothing but hard rain alternating with biting cold, the darkness seems to come earlier, the carbohydrates more seductive.  Nothing gets done, each day blends a bit into the next.  Work has slowed down a lot, which is fine given that early commutes in the pouring rain would not necessarily be ideal.

Planning a trip to LA.  Travel in cities is always more technical, there’s more to see (and miss) and it’s easy to accidentally spend a lot of money on pointless things like logistics and average food.  I had always written the city off a bit, it was booked in part because airfare was so ridiculously cheap and it is likely to be just a little warmer and less rainy.

We’ve been entertaining ourselves, in the meanwhile, with random evenings out of the house.  Shutting down multiple bars on Sunday nights.  A birthday that ended with a shot with a favorite dive bar owner.  Pancakes and other welcome diversions.

Everyone keeps asking about plans.  Where do you plan to be?  What are you planning to do?  There was a point where it became clear that the answers were designed more to appease than out of any sense of reality.  The point of this is to stop having so many plans, in lives that have been full of them, for awhile.

Advertisements


Great Expectations
November 17, 2017, 1:35 am
Filed under: runaway, when I grow up

In such a strange head space right now.

Work yesterday was fun – the food, the people, just enough action to keep things busy. Some funny stories. Worth leaving the house at 6:30 am and getting back around 10:00 pm.  So much of the job has to remain concealed.  Non-disclosure agreements, social media policies.

I walked in to get dressed, she said “We’re going to have to ugly you up!”

Today was just rain and darkness.  Back to the question of what to do in this city.  Killing time and ending up doing nothing at all.  Sitting in this vantage point, looking back over these years.  Feeling feelings continues, for better or worse.

It’s not hard to find the right words to make those years productive, almost compelling.  Helping people; genuinely there are a handful whose lives were very impacted by the work.  Making money, decent money.  Professional achievements.  Spending more time with family.  Maybe in time any of these will come to mean more, to feel like more than items accomplished on someone’s to-do list.

It’s also not hard to look and see that most people were doing the same.  Social media feeds shifted from imperative information to “at least it’s funny” to obscenely dull.  If it’s not shots of deeply mundane life events, it’s commentary on television programs or grating politics.

Maybe the abyss began to stare back.

All stacked up, it’s impossible not to want more.  To feel envy for the sprinkling of people who seemed to pursue more instead of sedating and just waiting for life to get on with it.

The most striking aspect of the last few years is a strange kind of loneliness.  In part, this is probably a consequence of not being really seen.  Pretending to be something, to fit into something, has that danger.  It gets harder to take the mask off at all.  It has also been a consequence of changing behaviors to fit assumed expectations – socially not being too loud, too funny, too forward.  Whose expectations becomes the question; there are several answers, some of them uncomfortable.

Coming out from these walls: like coming out of a bomb shelter after a long time away.

*

The call is coming from the ocean.  Ten years ago, a perfect morning.  Everything still but the water.  A feeling of peace, completeness, for the first time ever.  Letting go.

*

All of the big life questions seem to be looming at once.  Where will you live? What will you do? Who will you be surrounded by?  Everything is so wide open.  It feels almost wrong, things aren’t supposed to be like this at this age.  Don’t you have something together?

I’ve been resisting writing.  Because it feels like the truth will continue to come out and perhaps there are downsides to this.  Exploration can lead to discomfort.



home and away
November 8, 2017, 7:22 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

“You looked happy when you got off the plane,” he said, “you didn’t look happy to see me.”

“I was happy to see you.”

A month plus away woke everything up.  That dormant energy that felt like it would be gone forever crackled again.  The strangest part was starting to feel feelings again, good and bad.  Even the bad ones feel good compared to an absence, alive.

In the first two weeks, at a party.  A man came over and grabbed my hands, moving them, dancing for me.  “Now you’re having fun,” he smiled and wandered away.

The last big night out things were completely different.  Everything came easy again.

Midway through, a shift.  There was a conversation and then separate ways, a connection that suddenly ended, on a dark street well past the middle of the night.  It was as though the taps of the last few years turned on with this last little push, this insignificant thing.  I laid down in the dark and the sense of loss was physical and hot, choking the warm morning air.

The last day, a complicated bus to a beach, half conversations in Spanish at the terminal.  Talking to strangers through the day, conversations as easy as the slow tides, I order a bowl of sangria at an expensive beach bar and as he brings it the waiter tells me it has been paid for by someone a few tables away.  Plans to take a boat ride fall through, back to the bus stop.  On the return trip, listening to a soundtrack added to and played on repeat, everything starts to wash over.  This whole year coming clean against a sunset in a strange land.