tonight is my last night in florida. my vacation has nearly reached its end. i have done what i set out to do: i have written. i have written a lot. i have written candidly. and i have written unrestrained. tomorrow, while plane-hopping back to my dear albany, i hope to reread what i have wrote, and reflect on all that i have thought about, dwelled upon, and expunged from the mental queue in my brain. inevitably, i will make minor edits along the way—but i want this project to be as raw as possible, though i know i will never be content with first drafts. and i don’t think i ever will be: there is nothing that i have ever done that i was pleased with the first time around. i suppose that stems from me either being a perfectionist, or just being plain lousy at everything i do. any semblance of success in my life—i suppose—will be the judge of that.
i look out my window on the 15th and topmost floor of the aquanique condominium. though i gaze upon the evening lights of fort pierce from my altitudinous throne, i feel like such a small part of a large world that i am curiously feeling myself wanting to be a part of. this notion has persistently—in one way or another—been nagging at me for the past year or so. i have been saying over and over again that ‘it is time to do something about it’. last summer, i took a small step. now, i think its time to do something more. inexorably, i will—it’s all just a matter of cutting the bullshit and making the time. read on.
i described several things the other evening that i had been meaning to do, that i wanted to do. one was to make plans to actively seek out the remnants of the relatively minor relationships i have, scattered about the city. and so i have. my entire week is booked. this is uncharacteristic of me as of late, and it is a change that is beyond welcome, and is well overdue. i hope that this reemerging social side of me finds it well to stick around awhile. i am so much more fun that way.
the other was to place a phone call to my dear friend k. and so on tuesday night, i did. she was unavailable as she was climbing an ice mountain of death with my friend and fellow summer intern, who i will call d. he—unlike myself—was able to make it to her hometown this winter. i plan to make that trip later this year. i hope that i can.
coincidentally, they placed a phone call to me as i was writing this very document. we all talked for a while and it was nice: d and i about cell phones and books—k and i about life, as always. and it was nice. for a half hour, a part of my brain, un-stimulated since their departure, became active again, and a rusted tongue was put to use. i cannot help but feel like my inadequacy with verbal communication subsequent to five consecutive months of perpetual solitude is blatantly obvious in conversation—it is to me—but it was still nice talking with friends that i had made and shared experiences with during a time in my life that was immeasurably better—though not lacking its own unique peculiarities. i will never tell.
at this moment, as the smell of what glade calls ‘french vanilla’ air freshener permeates my nasal passage and excites my olfactory nerves, which—hardwired into my limbic system—pass along electric messages that cause my brain to question yet again, “where am i?” i have finally become at least somewhat lost for words. let me think.
today, for the first time in what must be months, i was thinking of my future, and not of my past—not recreating the environs of the past. i was entertaining a fantasy i used to have wherein i progress successfully through graduate school, and am on the precipice of the next stage of my life.
inevitably, i will make it to california, specifically, orange county. i am a child destined for the sun and sea.
and so, in my fantasy, i am a postdoc at the university of california, irvine, working in the laboratory of dr. suzanne sandmeyer, ph.d., and living in a beachfront apartment in laguna beach; a laser blue mini cooper s convertible is in my designated garage space. this is not entirely unrealistic; it is—in fact—highly probable.
someday i must leave my beloved albany—i have come to terms with this. the oc is far different from albany, and it makes me feel far different than i do in albany. in albany—especially in the summertime—i am overcome by a persistent feeling that i will never be able to describe fully. i cannot help but feel like a creature that a manifestation of albany—organic, and sentient—could discern from the rest of its residents, and have a unique respect and appreciation for. i feel at one with the city, as though it were my mother, and i were its child; the rest of its inhabitants, merely coincidental. during my brief stays in california, i feel entirely different, but i am comfortable with this feeling.
it is important to me to feel at one with my natural surroundings—nature and ecological aesthetics are important to my mental health and general wellbeing (bare with me). i was exposed to albany during the summer of 2008. my life changed there. i became inexplicably drawn there—it became my home. i would be unable to move anywhere else in this country—or this solar system, for that matter—where i did not feel at home, and did not feel like a child of the ground upon which i walked—the air which i breathed. this may seem intuitive to some people, but it is paramount to me. california—though i have only spent a total of 23 days there—feels like home. and i feel like i could very easily develop a similar relationship with orange county as i have with the city of albany.
time will tell.
until then, i will try to focus on my present—and make the most of it—so as to build toward this potential future. nothing ever works out the way one has planned, but for the past three years, on a global scale, it certainly seems to have. i can only hope i can make the most of the opportunities that greet me in the next three years, and end up in a place where i am happy.
i think that this is what i have learned, this week. there is much to be done, so that i can get where i am going. and along the way, i must make the most of every situation that i find myself in—good, bad, or indifferent. this is not news to me—it is probably a deep-held philosophy of mine. but in the midst of the maladies to which—in my weakened state—i could not help but succumb to this fall, i lost sight of all of that. it would seem—and it is not surprising, and is somewhat humorous—that i had to come all the way to the beaches of fort pierce, florida, to find it again.
i guess you never know what you will find buried in the sand.