Wednesday, June 24, 2009

where in the world is sarawr the dinosaur?

Well. I don't even know where to begin with this. I've been writing blogs in my head for the last three weeks and now that I sit down to actually do it, this is all I've got: well. You see, it was like this. That kind of thing.

This summer has been perfect. Mostly I just want to write about that. About the people I've been spending this perfect summer with, all the crazy things that have happened, the books, the shenanigans, the bike riding I've been doing, and mostly the way God's been growing me like a weed here in this heat. That's what all these blogs I've been writing in my head have been about, only I never got around to writing them. Sometimes--you know, I don't know. It's like I don't know how to write it.

Last summer (has it really been that long?) in Colombia I really didn't write much. I have a notebook I probably wrote in three or four times while I was there. I'd gone planning to write every day, to write everything down, but then I got there and it was so much at once, it was so wonderful. I remember telling Yamil that I wasn't taking many pictures because I wanted to remember seeing it, feeling it as it was, not remember what the pictures look like.

With writing, that line has always been really split for me. There are some things I would never have remembered if I hadn't written them down, particularly the feelings that accompanied everything. But then once I write something out, I remember it that way. I wrote a story once about when my brother and I had a gun pulled out on us (not exactly, but for the sake of brevity ask if you want the long version), and now I remember what happened as I wrote it. I remember it through the lines that I wrote, how I pictured it as I described it. If I made any mistakes bringing it from memory to the page, then I've managed to change how I remember. I'm fairly confident that I did remember it as it happened--the best that can be done, anyhow--but some things, at the risk of forgetting them, I'd like to remember as memories, instead of stories.

I'm not sure how much sense that makes, and in any case part of me does wish I'd written much more while I was in Colombia, and I know that there will be parts of this summer, the detail-y, nuance-y kinds, lost to me forever because I've picked the other way of remembering, the non-writing one. The funny thing about it is that writing is indeed cathartic for me, just like they say, but with some experiences (this is more applicable when I write about something that happened a long time ago as opposed to doing it while it's in process, but then there just went my whole justification. Well there you go.) it goes further--Dave Eggers was right. Something like shedding skin.

But now that I've accidently outed the other part of my reasoning, we'll just say it. Laziness and avoidance. Be real, right? So:

Dear Blog,

I've thought about you every day we've been apart. I've wanted to come back to you, but it's just so complicated. This time we'll make it work, we will.



I really want to end it here. I'd feel brilliant. I'm not very funny, I think--I've got no sense of timing and my wit is better served when I can sit and brew over it, which sort of defeats the purpose. You're yelling end it! end it! end it! I'm yelling, but you have to know that was a joke! I'm making fun of my own sappiness and endless sentimentality! Speaking of jokes, the title. Get it? Haha. Because in a few weeks I'll be in Romania (three, to be exact). And I want to go to all those places in the world? I almost was in Colombia most of the time I've been gone from here? That's true, but more on that later. Explaining the joke that I think is hilarious--that I'm shaking and crying from laughing over often while no one else is--is my favorite part of the joke. The big exaggerated wink after the pun. Oh yeah.

All right, transitioning here. (That one was a nod to how constantly self-conscious I am and how I act in social situations and to using awkwardness to the advantage. If you use it, it's good! Pointing out the transition is totally unnecessary but usually I haven't got one or it doesn't work so well so I'm like, hey! Transitioning! I can't stop it but at least I know I'm doing it which has been working so far.)

I want to say more about this summer. About how I've spent the last six weeks spending time with a group of people who've been calling me to something huge in God. It's been incredible. All this talk about not writing, and this is what I really want to write about. But how? I've been sitting here for twenty minutes now typing and backspacing. I don't know how to put it. I wrote: I'll tell you this. And then I didn't know how to tell you besides saying how God is good, man is he good. But it's more even than that. I started to talk about how it's been nothing but blessings, but that doesn't exactly get at it either. Ultimately, I suppose, that's true, the way things come around to being blessings anyway. But I don't want to boil it down, either, simplify it too much, because there's so much more to it than that.

So I'll end with this:

The dart game + the pushup/mine game + all the silliness you can imagine + old friends + new friends + God times about a million + heat getting everywhere + more than fifty miles on my new bike in a week + spanish spanish spanish + those conversations where people surprise you, when you see there's a depth to them you wouldn't have realized, when you see that as fully a God thing + seeing little parts of the places people keep below the surface, the parts they're reluctant to show + hope for someone you know is going to become a Christian and they probably don't know yet and how exciting that is + all the things I wish I could fit in here = a summer something like perfect.

And now I have to go because my coworker says I'm rambling, that I always do. And it's true. She says to say: peace out.


  1. I know exactly how you feel about Colombia. When I went to Germany I planned to write every single day exactly what happened. Well, that happened for the first few days then kind of stopped. I don't exactly know where the journals are (the ones I wrote by hand. I did do a blog online as more of a im alive thing).

    I do remember some of those feelings though...vividly. Being absolutely petrified wehn I first steped of the plane and realized I was in a foreign country....ALONE! Then making my way to the subway thinking "How the hell am I gonna get to Ulm?" I had absolutely no idea how to work those machines. Then running into a nice stranger who, believe it or not, spoke enough english to get me on the right train. Then, being in the train and realizing its actually 5 am and my body is exhausted.

    Those first few days were actaully the only days in my life I have ever felt so much emotion.

    Read my blog

  2. Also I am INSANELY jealous you're going to Romania. You'll be great, don't get attacked by some strange animal, keep a copy of your passport with you at all times, don't carry too much cash, and think of me as you're doing all these amazing things!

  3. you should find those journals if you can, those things are like gold. and haha, as far as getting attacked by strange animals, apparently romania has the highest percentage of wolves in europe. and i'll be hiking in the mountains with the wolves. aaaand going to read your blog now.