Wednesday, July 28, 2010

What A Difference A Lay Makes

Kidding! I had that plenty here. Kidding again! Joking about sex is not really my bag so I don't know how to do it right. The joking part.

But it is nice to go somewhere else and be surrounded by European men who tell you that you are lovely and beautiful and lie to you that your American accent is charming and don't even wince when you trip or sneeze on their arm, they just keep nodding along to your stories about camp or that time your fish was stolen (yes, it was, I swear) and ordering you more jack and gingers and smiling and walking you home at the end of the night and asking to see you again.

Europe was fun. Of course it was! It was most fun to get away from my beautiful life, which I didn't know was beautiful, or meaningful, or worthwhile for a while. Big mistake. While I was away the resounding chorus, in London, in Bruges, in Amsterdam (cough) was, how lucky I was to live in New York! Lucky?, I repeated, balancing a coffee and a cigarette and my bag on top of a bike as I wove in and out of small cars with fierce drivers, mothers with no shame cursing, delivery men with razor sharp spokes, and dum dum pedestrians digging in their backpacks for God knows what.

Lucky, me? But I'm just a writer...who lives a small life that is honest but perhaps nothing more.

Oh, what a brat I've been.

Self, readers, world, will you forgive me? I'm too old to be acting so childish, but it's in my nature.

Running away is medicine, more than laughter, more than chocolate milk and summer Fridays and mixtapes and grass fields and thrusting your feet into a fountain on a hot afternoon. It is all of that, it is more than the sum. You are with people, you are alone, no one complains. You fear leaving will make you less than, you will miss something monumental at home.

And then you get home. And you know what? The only thing that's been missed is you. Everyone wants to see you, everyone wants to talk to you, everyone is smiling. Work is tough but you realized you're needed. Your apartment feels like a palace. Your shower is ecstasy. Your phone is a magic controller. Your morning commute is different again, your head is higher, your step is lighter, you feel like this morning, this moment, could be played out anywhere instead of being the usual drudgery that you had made it earlier.

But you appreciate it all now. The light. The noise. The still and the not so still.

You have been away, in cobblestones, in open-air concerts, rolling greenery of parks. You have sat, quiet and read. You read all there was to read, you listened to all there was to listen, you sang to yourself and you skipped on your rented bike, in the unfamiliar train, hooked arms with unfamiliar people, danced all night, walked all day, rested only by sitting on a bench and watching a new breed of people trot by.

It was good and it was all yours and there was no reason for it, you just wanted it. Sometimes, maybe all the time, you should have what you truly want. Because it's good for you, and good for the world.

I took a vacation alone. Shouldn't you?

(Yes, you should.)

Stories to come...


Anonymous said...

sounds wonderful!

chiara said...

Yes, everybody should. I remember during a very stressful time, taking all of a sudden 3 days off from work and driving to Toronto. Next thing I remember is me laying on the grass in High Park. That was what I needed. Being far (or not so far) brings everything in another prospective.