Anxiety. Calm. Panic. Tired. I can’t remember the point anymore. So many arguments and bad memories but in that moment that is not what I think about anymore. All I can feel is the heat in my ears, the lump in my throat and a confusing mixture of sadness and hopelessness and letting go. My hands are trembling and my stomach is jumping. I am caught between holding on and letting go. I’m resisting what I have known was the inevitable. Clinging and grabbing at thin air. Air made thinner and thinner by the lack of feelings between us. Where there was once a swampy thick heady mixture of lust and feeling and emotion, now there is just this. Just you and me and a phone connection. It is human nature to connect and hold on. We hold onto dreams when we know they aren’t realistic, we hold onto hope when its presence crushes us, we hold onto people when we should just show them the door. I was never good at letting go. I still have scraps of paper from my childhood. I put sentiment in every action. I imbue objects with meaning long after they lose their function and familiarity. Relics of a life yet lived. So sitting there, gasping for breath and clinging to the memory of hope, I fool myself again. I do what I know I do so well and I lie to myself. I cannot lie to anyone. It’s written on my face, all blushing and darting eyes, screaming “this isn’t true, I’m sorry” but I am an expert at lying to myself. I can’t act but I’m an actress in my own life. I tell myself whatever it takes to stop change. To prevent the crash. To unexploded my life. But one of the mysteries of life is that even with our maniacal need to have hope and dreams, when the dust settles and you take that first true deep breath for yourself, there is a deep relief in beginning again. Real adventure in the remaking of yourself.
The light had been fading fast and she yawned hard fighting sleep. She felt her jaw muscles stretch and burn and her eyes so heavy they could just close in an instant. Her hands were limp on the steering wheel and her gaze was easy on the horizon. The sun had set long ago and the blue in the sky was now murky and cold. Stars on the dark horizon showed the open road. An open road was either freedom or a struggle, she hadn’t decided. She shook herself to jolt the heavy sleep from her mind. Turning the radio up loader she held a cigarette between her fingers and felt on the seat beside her for the lighter. Joni Mitchell lulled and wooed her from the speakers and the lit cigarette glowed warm and bright. She had left so quickly, random clothes stuffed into an old bag and some money from the dresser drawer. The backseat debris was all she had now in the world. She pushed this thought to the back of her mind, it wouldn’t do to be sad now. She had made her stand and she needed to follow this road until it came out at another end. If she went back there would be no future and they both knew it. She had said it first and now they needed to feel it to believe it. They had met years ago, so many years , when they were just children. They were all they had ever known and if she stayed he would be all she ever knew. It wasn’t enough anymore. A dead end job, the bar on weekends and the hot sticky sleepless summers. It hadn’t happened all at once. It was like a little itch. A little niggle that had started a year ago for what seemed like no reason at all. As the days and weeks wore on that itch had turned to a rash that had her full attention. It permeated every situation and even if it was invisible to everyone else, it was all she could see. It was like poison in her blood and she was seeking a treatment. She had wanted to tell him, to explain but it was useless. It couldn’t be explained. It had to be felt and it would not be ignored. She didn’t wait around to see his face. She could imagine the sorrow and hurt changing into that flash of anger. Leaving the house her heart had been jumping out of her throat and her ears rang with the terror of the unknown but once she was on the open, unending road a stillness had descended. Nothing was clearer but everything was possible and it would be ok.
The news and media were all panic stricken this week with the news that snow storm Juno would be hitting the east coast with record winds and more snow dumped that anything seen in recent history. WE planned for a day off work (not for me sadly :)), trains and buses prepared to stop and the queues at Fairways were around the block. While standing in the hour long queue for my bag of oranges and milk it never crossed my mind people were preparing for snowmaggedon!
Needless to say it looked bad from the 14th floor of the lab, all of downtown disappeared in a white-out and people scrambled for home. Friends advised me to stock up on water and batteries. God I love the iPhone torch app. I appeased my mother by buying matches for my one lowly candle and then I crawled under my blanket and watched a netflix marathon.
Needless to say the next day as I prepared for my first ever blizzard conditions I was not shocked. Don’t get me wrong, calling Ireland home means anything more than 1cm of snow is intense. I had to switch my torn vans for actual shoes and had to leap some snow drifts. On my way to work (in an empty building) I took some snaps in central park. The little dogs shivering in their booties and checkered gilets were the highlight for me (and the people skiing to work through the park). The resilience and ingenuity of new yorkers is not surpassed by many. Now roll on summer and the absence of hat hair!
Photos courtesy of my new Olympus Pen E-PL7 – still getting the hang of it all but such a nifty little camera with easy handling and a great look.