Los blue jeans

The days have been beautiful here, sunny, almost windless and warm enough to go outside with just a sweater. Because of this I’ve been walking around a lot instead of taking the colectivo type taxis, which pick up various people and drop them off in the center or wherever the passengers want along the colectivo route, for only .60 cents! On election day, which was Sunday, the town was eerily quiet. The only cars around were those of carabineros. Two police officers parked alongside a long grassy walk nudged at a drunk (passed out in a fetal position near an unbroken swingset) with their feet similar to how one might pet a mangy dog or test to see it's still alive. I guess this is a pretty typical sight. Though today--with the blue skies and emptiness, and the fact that nobody can buy liquor on election day until the last vote is cast--it felt somehow more poignant and ironic.

It was one of those days. Feeling simultaneously far away from home and at home. Flashes of home swoop in on me often. When I look and I am surrounded by sky, whose multi-layered cloud texture has the most character of anywhere I've ever been. The mountains, yet snowcapped, jag into it, jutting up straight from the sea. On a clear day on the right hill, you can see all of this. And I think, wow, I live here. Cool. But the distance is wrought with ambivalences. Sometimes I can describe them perfectly, to myself at least. Other times, like right now, I can’t even imagine my way back inside of them. Liquid flighty moments. Drippy and on air at the same time.

Maybe the other side of the flux is a pull to usefulness, which has something to do with how at home I feel. I'm a bit of a vagrant. This is a vagrant land. People come and go (including us), so developing close friendships proves rather difficult. Finding my niche of purpose would raise my comfort. Of course, right now I'm in between jobs. Relieved to have ended one and not sure which basket to put my eggs in for the next one. It's a tentative space. For the most part Americans feel defined by their jobs. I mostly refused to let this happen to me in the States (especially in my early years of employment as a administrative assistant or glorified secretary). What made this refusal easiest though was that I was always working to pay for school. In that way I still identified myself with some role: that of a student. Each part of living, a means to an end. Just living and being--outside of roles--well... it's still a struggle.

In the mornings I try to write my way back into an old niche. It's like putting on an old pair of jeans. They still fit and sometimes they are surprisingly comfortable. Other times, they're too big and I need a belt or they are recently laundered and I can hardly button them up. It's impossible to tell how they look.

1 comment:

tim said...

Ha! Los blue jeans. That band rocked.


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