Odd, isn’t it? What we get used to. The smell of the air after rain – petrichor. The heat of a lover sleeping beside you. The aching of bones as you drag yourself out of bed of an early morning to a job you’re of two minds about. We each have those little addictions, those little rituals that we have to keep up for various reasons. Be it the brushing of the teeth to keep them from falling out – a job I can see not having its desired effects in my case; be it the warming of water for coffee or tea or that first morning cigarette. I remember the feeling well. That weird light-headed feeling and that odd lethargy that sets in just for a moment and it all worth it.
All these things, highlighting our inability or perhaps just incapacity to ever be very good at “suddenly”. It’s all we can do to keep our shit together and ride out the storm sometimes. And when we’ve got our little patterns and our little rituals, it feels all the more tolerable.
For me, a few things have become commonplace without any deliberate or conscious effort. The first, that when I wake up in the morning I stand on the landing in a zombie-like half asleep, crusted-eye stupor and stare out of the window. With eyes only half adjusted to the already bright and growing morning light, I see houses and houses for miles. Humans. That’s what we do, after all.
Standing there, I’m faced with the heat of the morning sun bleeding through the landing window onto my face – warming me where the A/C (which relentlessly switches itself on and brings the house to far too cold – need to change that) had cooled me. Something about the scene reminds me of home.
I don’t think whether it’s the silence of the home as Rosa continues to sleep. I don’t know whether it’s waking up early. I don’t know whether it’s the temperature or the sunlight (probably not the sunlight), but something brings me to this feeling of nostalgia. A feeling which, without any deliberate invocation has found itself a regular slot in my days.
It’s not a sad feeling though, not at all. Far from it. It’s a warm, warm feeling – a lovely reminder that I love my home country and my family.
Living a life like mine, with an internal world that is so drastically changeable from one day to the next – clear-headed, task-oriented and high-achieving some day and then tired, resentful and somewhat melancholy on others – you get used to swinging pendulum of emotion. There’s this inescapable sense that whatever you’re feeling won’t last and that whatever it is should be savoured/scorned (delete as appropriate) for this moment – at least if only for a second – because pretty soon things will change and the whole world will seem to change with it. A feeling not uncommon to many, probably. Not something entirely unique to me.
Today is a quiet day. A reflective day. At least for the moment. I like that. It’s peaceful and calm. And as I stand looking out of our landing window, remembering my loved ones back home, the feelings come and go yet those houses – stretching on for miles and miles – remain.
Live, love and play