Sunday, May 27, 2007

you might be spoiling me with too much love

Yesterday, we were passing the Museu Picasso, and for no discernible reason, a pair of very American dudes delivered an amazingly bluesy version of Don’t Think Twice, It’s Alright. I grinned from ear to ear, and couldn’t help but laugh a little, causing SP to look at me like the absinthe from the night before had finally gone to my head (but that’s a story for another time). It was just so perfect. Walking down this beautifully narrow street in Barcelona on the way to a saffron shop, the trip winding to a close, hearing a little echo of Dylan felt like a nudge back home. It’s time, after all. For should I stay here one more day, I am convinced I will never leave.

I’ve been living without clocks and watches, without time. The days are so long this time of year, each day here seems to stretch on forever, in the best possible way. Lunch is served between 1 and 4:30. We got into a bit of a rush last night, just to get to a few shops before they closed (everything closes on Sundays here), and I felt odd for several hours afterwards. It was the first time in a long time that I hadn’t shrugged and thought “there’s always tomorrow.”

The tomorrow’s are drawing to a close, and I guess that’s something to remember, but also to forget. The tomorrow’s are always drawing to an end. We’re constantly running out of them. And the answer seems neither to be to hold on too tight to the moment nor to treat them so loosely that they slip away without notice.

It took me so long to get here, and yet a part of me imagines I will be back. And I suppose you have to fool yourself with such thoughts, or everything becomes too laden with urgency, too heavy with the finality of it all. The truth, though, is that I might never return. If there is one thing that has become acutely certain in the past month, it is that so much will always remain uncertain. And thank everything for that.

It’s not just that fate is so fickle and meandering and unpredictable. It’s that I am too. I met W when I was 17. I met AL when I was 24. I met SP when I was 29. And to see them all and only them, good friends of mine, over the past month, I can see a reflection in their eyes. Even SP, who arguably should know me better having met me most recently, gets things woefully wrong. It’s not her fault; the past creates crevasses fine yet deep and you just don’t notice. And I can revert to being all of those people and none of them around these three friends. I can be the idealistic, moony-eyed girl with W, the easily irritable don’t-mess-with-me-b*tch pain in the neck with AL, and the even-keeled but rather staid wanderer with SP. But put me on the Metro to Lesseps, walking down Avenida d’Asturias to have one last look at Casa Vicens, and stuck inside my own head is someone entirely separate from all of that, or someone that is all of those things or much less than them.

I’m talking in circles, but I suppose I am just in wonder, surprised at the world, but more surprised with myself. By the time I started writing here in this space, I was already becoming this person, so it is hard to really capture who I was before. And I still, still can’t quite tease out how much of it was deciding to change, and how much of it was luck or circumstance. Maybe it doesn’t matter, this accounting of what I was responsible for and what I should be grateful for. Maybe what’s important is even noticing, or having the time to notice. It’s like pressing pause to take a moment to catch up mentally with what you’ve just seen or heard.

And now, it’s time to press play.

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