What a difference fifteen years makes.
There’s nothing quite like awesome hand-me-downs!
Despite being virtually bed-ridden since I got back from Shanghai (all I’ve done is stay in bed, stay online, upload pictures, watch soccer, eat, sleep…), tonight I decided to do something productive before I wasted the rest of my holidays being sick. So I finally decided to clean my room up (somewhat).
Most people start in the day, when they have all those hours in front of them. For someone as lazy as I am, the only time I am motivated to do anything is when the weather is cool and the air is quiet, i.e. 3am in the morning. I finally unpacked all of my luggage, organised some parts of my table (still a mess). I threw away virtually four years of university printouts. And then I turned my attention to the files that had been sitting on my shelf for years. I opened one of them, and started sneezing due to all the dust. The file was bright yellow, still had my school badge on it (remember those?) and still proudly bore my 15-year old handwriting. I re-discovered how much of a sentimental nut I could be, when I realised it was all A Maths stuff. Then I saw my JC notes, all the photocopied lit essays from my classmates, a Pinter essay where Mr P said, “Obviously very intelligent, but also greatly indebted to the Ronald Knowles article — actually, ‘indebted’ is a kind word” to which day I am still ashamed of (but what the hell), random articles on revisionist history. I took all of that out, and now all of it is going to the bin. I feel a vague sense of loss.
Am I the only one who keeps things that long? I still have Christmas cards from primary school. And a huge-ass 16-postcard-long birthday greeting for my 16th birthday from my best friend when we were in secondary school. These days few people send me things, so there is less to store away. But still. All of it reminds me of a life I used to have, and I say that without any negative connotations.
Over the years I’ve kept feeling like I’m standing on the brink of things, where life brims with limitless potential. There must be an age where life stops feeling like that; where the potential seems to stop. Yet, it’s not here yet, so well, what the hell.
(Sorry about the constant layout changes. Still trying to find a theme that doesn’t mess up my photos… not happening yet.)
I could say a thousand things about Japan, but nothing quite beats the visuals, and the way the city lights dance in your eyes. Mishaps, stress, mangled Japanese, almost-missed trains aside, there was loads of fun, laughter, alcohol, and a shit load of things to see. Every time is different. Every time you go back, you always get to know a country better.
I feel a strange homesickness, even though I am back home. It seems trite. But I think of orange hats and flags, beer cans strewn across the grass, music thumping in my veins on a great big green field. I think of bicycles and drizzly days, punctured tyres and scarves. Sunny days spent at a square eating ice-cream. I think about heaters and living in the kitchen, and no food on Sundays. I think about heartbreak and half-closed curtains, walls plastered with pictures. I see churches, gloves, cold weather.
If only it weren’t so hot, I think to myself, I might be more content to stay here.