I enjoy the quiet plainness of my life. If I were rich and we were not in pandemic, I might travel a bit; but I can’t imagine that traveling would ever be my passion. I like staring out at the same street and waking up in my own bed to the scent of Trader Joe’s french roast coffee. I like getting take-out from the same three of four restaurants and eating while scrolling through the sports news. I like exercising early on a Saturday, showering and then cozying (cozying is not a word?!) up on my couch with a book or a comic by 12pm. But sometimes it all gets a bit lonely and the life I say I enjoy is the life I begin to dislike.
When I was an undergraduate at university I remember spending these long eight hour days on campus. I would use the time in-between classes to study at the library or dine alone at one of the campus eateries. The university had over 20,000 students and countless staff/faculty so it was easy to be invisible. I had one or two friends from high school that attended the same university but it was rare that I would run into one on a campus so large. Every once in a great while I would unexpectedly pass a professor or a classmate and they would greet me. When I tried to return their greeting my voice would often crack because I hadn’t spoken for….god….sometimes more than a day. I was so used to being quiet and alone in the crowd that I would literally lose my voice. It was quite a shock to the system to realize that I could be witnessed!
In some ways this is still my life. I go for so many days without seeing anyone that I lose my voice. I don’t know what to say or what to share. I feel more comfortable responding because I’ve spent so much time observing and watching and looking down from the balcony that I forget I’m a part of all of this. I forget that I’m in the world and not just watching it.
The thing is that I’m not complaining right now. I’m not feeling horribly about it. I’m just enjoying the process of describing it because for all the loneliness there is something quite lovely about it. I live a life that is not worth describing and yet that is what makes it enjoyable to describe. I can’t talk to anyone about the time I climbed Mount Everest or met the Dalai Lama. I don’t have stories about a time when I was so drunk that I woke up in the bus station of a different town. There is nothing that sexy about my life.
So what I have (in terms of lifestyle) is the ability to make do with very little. To lead a sensual life even when there is nobody to touch; to find beauty from an upstairs window. And this…I have this: a mostly unread blog. And yet…how perfect it is that even my blog is mostly invisible?! I would begin to worry if it were otherwise. Sort of reminds me of Mark E Smith (R.I.P.) of The Fall. I remember him saying after a few Fall songs charted in the 80’s that he “must be doing something wrong” if people were beginning to like his music. Ha! There I go, trying to romanticize my life by comparing it to that of an underground legend. Trying to make it sexy. For shame. For shame.