I spent more days in hotel rooms this month than at home. I’ve yet to remember lugging around hair conditioner. I’ve gotten so good at being alone that I can lose myself in deep sleep wherever I am and enjoy the most vivid dreams yet shoot awake upon sensing the slightest movement. Turbulences do not bother me. The strangest feeling is falling asleep on an airplane even before it takes off and waking up to find that everybody else has, too – as if they can now afford to miss a final glimpse of cities they call home, as if to say, meh, I’ll be back anyway. I miss packing with me a similar certainty. The sum total of all my hours on the road, in the air or waiting for departure in terminals can be converted to a week, almost. I should really buy a pen because “I don’t have a pen” is not a legitimate excuse for not writing. Dumaguete has this fascination with shanghai. Cerveza Negra has become my drink of choice in places with no local breweries I can buy overpriced beer from. I suppose I can now identify as a highly-functioning alcoholic. I have to get that diploma so I can finally move to the Cordilleras. I was offered the option to keep this job for life yet I still harbor dreams of slaving away in the academe. My new favorite poem ends like this: embrace yourself. My salary for the last fifteen days was mainly spent on books, lipsticks and coffee. This is funny because I only bring with me a tube or two and then perhaps three titles per trip. In my room, the rest collect dust. I will never fall in love with the boy I am currently seeing yet he fascinates me like no one ever has, so I shouldn’t take it against him if he doesn’t fall in love with me. I wonder everyday how I’ll survive the humming zeroes in my savings account. Shafts of sunlight do a frantic dance upon touching the surface of Visayan seas, yet water here does not taste any different. I struggle with coherence. I tend to overstay my welcome in cafés. I do not miss you.
I recovered the manuscript I’ve been working on from my old laptop and reading it is like meeting myself again. There is this poem about eluding death, offering cheap alternatives, yet I can’t seem to remember what brought it to life. A poem about us would work better if I inserted a colon on the first line to call attention to something you once said, according to my date. I can now admit that the first love poem I ever performed and ever published was for someone I’m now ridiculously good friends with and it’s laughable how I look at him now and don’t feel like something is amiss.
Most days I believe that I am a genuinely good person despite my tendency to talk all tough and easily pass judgment on the most unsuspecting characters. The rest, I get teased about how easily I succumb to trusting strangers, usually upon their declaration that they, too, are damaged beyond repair.
I feel like a hypocrite for endorsing the human rights approach to the climate crisis yet feeling this huge sense of relief at the end of every workshop I facilitate, for obviously this would be the good time to hear people’s stories. A friend tells me I tend to talk too fast, like I just want to get the day over with. Usually, I do. I wonder if I can attribute the weariness to age. I remember how young I am and cringe at the impossibility.
I should really read more, write more, see more than the bare walls of old hotel rooms. Perhaps today.