I prefer things to spring naturally, found where they are needed, which usually means there's an element of surprise. Initial incongruency. Though if I were to be completely honest, this makes me shades of uncomfortable. I spent the day aimless. Wandering. Scheduled and then needed no longer. The vague plan of my life dissolved, I had my hand unoccupied. I did not decide. Found near a museum, I decided and entered. Of all the things, this was unexpected. But a perfectly natural recourse for my seeking some sort of refuge. The Hilton housed a yoga conference. Boatloads of women in corporate culture yoga wear. Frustrating. Sterile. Yet a sense of familiarity in friendships I found again. Brief. A kindness in those others, those, shall we say, compliant consumers.
I exchanged it for the mausoleum where artists who've
ascended can house their lonely parades as finished works, deaf
artifacts to live on, ingested by crowds of anonymous faces. I honed in
on their possible back stories. I recognized the girl with a deformed
head and face from my earlier failed attempt to work at a cafe (one with
no electrical outlets or WiFi), she reappeared in the halls of the
museum. Her grey-haired escort pushing her along in a wheelchair. What
are the chances, running into them again? I had thought to myself after seeing her for the first time there in the cafe that I'd like
to tell her she's beautiful. Not to be cruel, because it's painfully
obvious that she's anything but, but to give her those words that she's
maybe never heard. And to say it earnestly. Because I believe there must
be some kind of beauty. Even in the most heinously disfigured of
The expo was nothing but a quick interlude. The chance to kill
time among people momentarily sure of what they're looking for (a
cultural experience of sorts) in a life grossly devoid of certainty. And
it was free. Security pushed us out of the galleries back into the
The allure of traveling can be found in its sharp honesty. You're
confronted with yourself, un-moored, having to admit you don't know where
you are, or quite what you're doing. Trading your sense of self as
referenced within a culture, for your person as simply a figure in
space, ready to find fulfillment as the boundaries dissolve around you.
Forcibly, freeingly naive; dependent on a force beyond this carefully-constructed sense of self which, among the unfamiliar, no
longer has the currency which once sold you out in exchange for
recognition that you are indeed important.
On my way back I decided to
let the stories go.
The drum beat found me as I found the rhythm. In an
instant all that could be contained was the purity of eyes closed and
seeing, shifting hips, pumping chest, sure feet, synchronicity. The
sound, a sensation, a sort of indelible truth, a container which poured
me out into the primal. My tribe, our energy; my imagination replaced the
synthetic carpeting with dirt, earth. And free of substance, of
self-importance, we got down, we got high as hell.