Much as I would want to pack an overnight bag and leave for the beach/a perfectly indifferent mountain/anywhere, really, I am more or less stuck in this city, well done at thirty-two degrees. Free sauna for all, at all hours, whether you like it or not.
But I am an optimist, always have, always will.
And so, we make the most out of our own prisons. I’m all shackled up because I am broke and I have the decency to refrain from asking mother for a couple of hundreds over the last few days because summer registration’s in two weeks and we’re looking at two months of learning a new language and quadratic equations to ensure I haul my butt out of college in a year and a half from now. Not that I mind so much either — home is where the wifi is, after all, and I’d almost always rather be in daddy’s old, ratty t-shirts reading in bed all day than clamoring outside to still look human despite the humidity and my hyperactive sweat glands.
Besides, reading, while not exactly a remedy, is still somewhat of a calming balm to rid myself — at least temporarily — of my wanderlust, of fernweh. And it is awfully, awfully distracting. As of this writing, I consider myself cured of some virus I managed to contract about eleven months ago, or maybe even longer. Zizek has a book called Plague of Fantasies, meanwhile I have been plagued by them for the better part of the past year. Good riddance, then. Equilibrium’s rightfully restored. Hopefully no one sashays in where I’ll have no choice but to look up and take notice soon. I’ve had enough of these things for my age, anyway.
My age! Oh god forbid, I am turning nineteen next month and that makes me cringe. Being eighteen is amazing — you get to call yourself an adult, because well, you are under the eyes of the law, but you feel as young as you’ll ever be, the world yours for the taking. The naiveté here is forgivable, but even if you’re one of the good ones and you do exceed expectations a few times, people give credit where it is due. My mother, for example, had me when she was eighteen, kept her grades up, had my brother when she was nineteen, and still managed to finish college on time.
Being nineteen and achieving things — say, graduation, or a job, or a relationship that does not leave you with a hankering to call your therapist every two days — is normal. Fall short, fail to do so, and you’re branded as immature until you hit twenty-five and finally settle down a boring, monotonous life all for a bloody paycheck.
I, on the other hand, with all the delusional, spirited ways of a soon-to-be-nineteen-year-old, would rather risk my young adulthood, whatever that means, for something I love but will pretty much make the next few years the toughest I’ll ever have, financially and else. From then on forward, I have good reason to belive it’s a downward slope, and Schopenhauer wrote that we pick up speed once we’re over the hill.
I’ve given up on pretty much everything, but all in all I still think doing all it takes to be and to remain a decent, level-headed human being requires I put myself and my whims first. Travel. Grad school. Travel while in grad school. Write while in grad school. Write about travelling while in grad school. Have this MS degree under my name. Teach. Try not to screw up (so much). Travel. Repeat ad infinitum.
And yet, and yet — it’s four in the afternoon and the most I’ve done today is brave the heat wave and buy ice cream at the neighborhood Ministop. I haven’t gone out since Tuesday and had to shield my eyes from the piercing sun rays. Damn, I thought people doing that were being hyperbolic and melodramatic.
In my defense, mind you, I was supposed to be Antipolo today with one of my bestfriends from high school for three days with her Tito’s house and clubhouse pool all to us, but something came up and she cancelled. So last night I planned on going to Marikina to jam with my friends from an art group but that got cancelled too. Universe, what the hell are you up to? Is my transformation to a recluse complete now, huh?
Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s–
Who knows, I might find myself this time tomorrow a changed, accomplished woman (hah). Maybe I should start working on that portfolio I’m submitting for a writing gig, or start reading Russell like I promised myself, or watch the lecture videos I have to peruse in order to survive this Stanford physics class I signed up for online.
The fact that I still have these options, that I have this insatiability, that I am one to just take off and go into the unknown just because the moment calls for it, that’s what’s keeping me sane. Bored, but sane. Which is sometimes already a lot to be thankful for.