i've noticed that because the uk is inhabited by those highly prim and proper brits, that everything in this place has a prettier name than it's american counterpart. though, there are things they say that just sound so much worse than we yanks say.
i won't get into the nitty gritty of what prompted this observation. suffice it to say, that some female problems just sound more acceptable over here in the uk.
i haven't lost myself in a while. i haven't awoken from a dream to find that my toes have wiggled into the warm earth and become root-bound by the concrete world i inhabit.
i haven't wondered where the hours have gone. haven't noticed that the sun has set and risen while i remain pondering why the wind feels sweeter when you're in love. i haven't wandered into the depths of sorrow. haven't hung my head in anguish. haven't had a day go by where i didn't know who i was.
i haven't lost myself in ages. haven't had a moment of non existence.
today is the day i was meant to be born. the doctors predicted today as the delivery day. little did they know that at that moment and for the rest of my life. i was hitting the snooze button.
today is also not just the day i was meant to be born. but it is also the day i was meant to be a birthday present. a present for someone who was also born on this day. my grandfather. george.
today is my grampa george's birthday.
it would have been.
grampa died half my lifetime ago.
his body ravaged by cancer. there are photos of his last "good" days. he is smiling. he has his favorite chocolate bar next to him. he has his boys next to him. i believe he also had his dentures... next to him.
he was a character. his personality was divided between his children. and his children's children. and i have no doubt, his hardheadedness will be passed on for many more generations.
so today i am going to celebrate his and my birthday. it's a milestone one for me. i'll be sure to blow out a candle for him. and to order something extra chocolately in his honor.
wandering back from the temp job. i had a feeling of "hey... i know where i am... i think..." and proceeded to walk into the cold night. my fuzzy blue earmuffs dulled the honking horns and cursing of the massholes on the evening commute. my sparkling pink scarf whipped in the exhaust as the blurred faces peered back through salt frosted glass.
walking along the charles. boston just a stonesthrow away. well... perhaps not my stonesthrow. the glistening lights bouncing off the frozen shell of the river. hundreds of heartbeats. thousands of sighs. all running for the exits home.
and here i am. meandering in the chill. feeling my life crystalize in the air. a million whispers scatter and float upwards. joining the clouds and stars.
i turn several corners and come upon a place i knew. a place i know. a bus stop that we used to take. from one place to another. to wander through the kiosks. to fill up on warm cinamon and sugar. to empty our wallets. to trade paper for denim and lace.
i take the free shuttle. the driver is the same as 3 years ago. i recognize him instantly. i wonder if he recognizes me. doubtful. i'm sure he sees a lifetime of faces. i'm sure he's blind to mine.
exiting onto the street i smile. i remember a small asian woman. i gave her a tissue. she was on her way to shop alone. i wanted to gather her into my arms and take her shopping. i cried on the bus. her smile and eyes were both happy and sad. i wondered where her son was. surely he should be taking her shopping. my mother was far away. and so i cried into my loves chest. my unexpected emotion shocking us both into laughter.
gathering my memories i enter the underground. burying myself with the machines and discarded newspapers. wedging myself into a corner by the door. ignoring the inquisitive smiles from young men who can not see my ring. disguised as it is by my blue knit gloves.
on the street again. lost for a second. backtracking. most places are the same. the pub. that other pub. coffee shop. conglomerate coffee shop. another pub. the gap is gone. i thought you'd be sad. it's where you got much of your american wardrobe from. so you'd only have to bring a toothbrush when you visited... much to the raised eyebrows of passport control i'm sure.
the hippy store is still there. the front is new. a fancy cafe. no longer the bohemian rambshackle that i loved. a snazzy new name. glass and wood. shiny and safe. clean and clinical. people are plugged into the wall. plugged into their ipods. their iphones. does anyone talk anymore? face to face? and not via a computor screen?
i waltz the aisles. touching the produce. gazing at the things i can't afford yet. only the basics. apples. carrots. onions. tea. eggs. and peas. the bulk aisle is calling me. the beauty of lentils and legumes is a siren song. i only manage to escape. i pay and leave by the side door. this is still the same.
the door empties onto a parking lot. the gym is across the way. this side street is quiet. i pause.
enjoying this moment.
this sweet moment of peace. watching the world rush by. no more than a few feet away. and here i am. in a bubble of time and space.