We're all talking about the weather, writing about it. I opened the door Tuesday morning and the air felt like waking up, felt exactly the way it did driving down the coast to Florida when I was fifteen or sixteen. When I thought about writing this, I knew those were the words I'd have to use--that the cool, the sudden, unexpected cool was like opening your eyes, being startled.
I want to feel that every day. I want to wake up and be startled by life, by the unexpectedness of it. By the way you can wake up every morning and make the same breakfast or walk the same few minutes to school, work, and even in the routine of what living seventy years might be, one morning it might be that the light was different, blue like hyacinths almost, glowing like the sky was back-lit, and you thought of T. S. Eliot. Or walking through people, people who don't touch one another anymore, who walk past and beside and around each other with invisible walls and separate lives and all these reasons to be near or close but not with--and then someone's hand touches your back or your shoulder, just squeezing past, but there your lives, drawn from two different worlds, crossed one another like lines and kept going, but that moment they touched and you can always trace back to it. Or maybe it was just that your coffee was hot and the morning was quiet and cold and you felt the heat of it go down as you drank and that moment. Just that moment.
I'm not sure where I'm going with this. Only that life is so surprising sometimes, even in all the everyday and I hope it's always like that. I hope that I don't ever settle in too much, forget to see things. I know that it's easy for me to hope for things I don't always expect, to not want too much consistency--here I'm thinking I should be thinking about things like people in villages who don't know when they might have to leave everything and run. What I am thinking about is stretching across an ocean and seeing light on the horizon hours after it would have gone down here, driving down a mountain road in a minibus and suddenly being tossed around inside of it, landing and my head feeling like it split open and hours later in a hospital, no one speaking my language, finally able to think and a million what ifs that wouldn't stop coming. Even in that.
I remember being fourteen or so and everything being so hard, life something I could never control and that always hurt too much, and I remember writing things about being numb but I don't think I ever was. None of it was right at all, but I felt it. Even now I can go back to those things I wrote, over-written and full of teen angst, but they pull me right back to where I was, feeling every bit of what I felt then. And that's the thing--I don't ever want to stop that. I want to always feel stuff. I don't mean living in melodrama or anything like that. I just mean those little things. Waking up and suddenly it's September, riding my bike to class and feeling cool air and wondering.