Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Louder, Louder, And We'll Run For Our Lives...

'What's the deal? Suddenly you get home and can't write? It's like you just don't want to. I mean you have a lot of great thoughts, and you keep saying "I need to write that down", but you just don't. What is it? Laziness?
That's what it is...


That's how I've been talking to myself recently. I've had all sorts of inspiration, all sorts of things to write down. I just haven't been actually doing it. Hopefully that starts to change a bit...

Here's one of my recent ponderings:

We're never alone.
We don't know how to be alone. If we find ourselves with no-one around we fill the void with white earphones, LED glow, and the tick-tap of keys clacking. We refuse to be alone. We try every single thing we can to avoid sitting in our own thoughts. We try to overpower that still, small voice with loud beats and rhythms.
We're scared of being alone with ourselves.
We're terrified of listening to our own heads. We hear a lot of other outside things. But we're petrified of slowing down and miring ourselves in... ourselves.
Clearly, I need to be alone more.

It finally happened. The day after Christmas. After showing off the photos for one more time.
I missed it.
I didn't really know what I was going to miss. The last night I asked myself what I would long for, and nothing came to mind.
Then, a few days ago, I pictured myself on the streets of London, a crisp, cool air around and the dim, warm neon glowing in the distance.
I missed Europe.
I want to speak in French for a few days. I want to drink German coffee. I want to climb Turkish walls. Basically, my instincts are going crazy. My being is just calling out. It's saying MOVE! Get out of Dodge; abandon ship; flee for your life; "what do you do when a pistol-toting Nazi is walking towards you".


Thursday, December 17, 2009

Have Myself A Home Life...

The Irish say: You Never Can Quite Go Home Again...

I guess they're right... Kinda.

I mean, home still feels the same. It still feels as warm, comfortable, and kelly green (it's not actually green, but that's the color I associate with Home) as ever. But there's definitely something different.

Oh wait. I figured out what's different. Huh.

I was asked a couple times over the weekend while I was in Santa Barbara
"So, how have you changed?"
Talk about a loaded question. I kind of feel like that's a question I can't answer. It seems like the people who weren't with me on the trip, but are around me now should be the ones who should answer it. I mean, they're the ones who see the change. It's always striking how much people change when you don't see them for extended amounts of time. It's harder to see the difference when you grow with them, you know? Now, nothing against the people who ask that question. I love you for asking it, cause I need to figure out an answer...

I mean, I know that I've changed. I'm just still wrestling with the how part of the question. I definitely can't fully answer that now. And it'll be a while before I can. But, I do definitely know that I'm not going back. I mean, can you ever really go back? The Irish don't seem to think so.

Regardless of this moping/pondering, Home has been excellent. I feel so relaxed, so comfortable. So spread out. Europe has a certain feeling of crampedness... Us Americans are big, and we like our spaces to match. Colorado is crisp and bright. It's been cold, which has been amazing. Snow. Oh glorious snow. Finally.

I spent the weekend (give-or-take a few days) on the Coast. And it was like I was never gone. That's how you know true friends. You can ditch them for months, and then step right back into their lives and they'll pick things up from the last Save point. The weekend was filled with dancing, lights, neon, coffee, conversations,
(You don't really know how much you miss a person until you see them again. Heartache from missing a person is one thing, but it pales in comparison to the heart-overflow that comes when you meet that person face-to-face again and then sit for hours talking without boundaries with nothing but a table in between you)
pillowtalk, video games, laughter (such joyful laughter. Talk about the giggles), smoothies, California roads, food, handshakes, hugs, rain, smoke, boardgames, being surprised, not-being-surprised. I actually loved every minute of it.

I flew home and landed in snowy Denver at 6:00 sharp. My dad and I then sped the Colorado highway to the Pepsi Center for a 7:30 puck drop. At that point, all was right in the world.

It is so good to be home.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Some Turkish Delight...

Istanbul. What a… strange… city. It is gorgeous. It is a lot of fun. It has some wonderful places to explore and offers great treasures. But it is still rather bizarre. The thing about Istanbul is that there is just no other place like it in the entire world. It really, truly feels like the meeting point between east and west. As our time in the city wore down, it seemed to accelerate. The last few days absolutely flew by. However, they left their memory mark. I don’t think I have ever seen a sunset like the one I saw from the roof of our hotel.  It was kind of eerie to be at the same level as the calling balconies on the minarets. It does give a stunning view, though. As we left the city for the inner country, two of our professors and their daughters left us to go home early. Their third daughter has been battling a case in the U.S. immigration court, and they had to come back to settle the ordeal once and for all. The night before they left, I bought them all (the three professors and Kristin) a round of drinks. We ended up sitting and talking for about an hour. Naturally, we talked about parts of the trip, and people on the trip. It’s too much fun to get a professor’s opinion of students, let alone the opinion of professors who have been living with their students for three months. That interaction made me miss last year a bit. The whole RA position lets you in on so many different people’s views on the situation, and there’s something unique about an authority figure’s opinion. You just gotta love that.
Anyway, we left the city for the country. Landed in Cappadocia. Apparently, it’s pronounced cap-ah-doe-key-ah, we’ve been saying it wrong this whole time, and no one told us. It’s basically the Turkish version of Utah. Obviously, this entails some very cool things. Like churches built into the sides of mountains. Think Petra, but on a caveman scale. They also have things called “underground” cities. It’s a huge underground network of caves and tunnels. They were built by early Christians escaping persecution. We explored one of these cities for probably an hour. I was like a little kid. I was jumping off the trial, into random corners and unlit caves. At one point I had my head dangling out of a hole scaring people coming through a tunnel, at another I was talking through a small hole to a girl as the voice of God.
Basically, I had a real good time in Cappadocia.
We took off after two days in the desert and headed for the beach. We literally ended our semester with a vacation. We were beachside in a five-star resort on the Aegean coast. The town is called Kusadasi, and it’s Turkey’s Cancun.
We were there off-season, which is a real good thing. You could just feel how the streets would flood with drunken university students during high time. The only bad part of being there in the late fall was a closed hot tub. Course, the sauna, spa, and Turkish Bath made up for that ;) Like I said, it was a vacation. We spent four days poolside, spa side, and threw in just a hint of touring. I mean, seeing Ephesus was no big deal right? Sheesh… It’s going to be strange to read about these places in textbooks, and, well, the Bible, now. I mean, we stood on Mars Hill where Paul spoke to the Gentiles, and we sat in the Ephesian theater where he addressed the city.
That’ll bring the Bible to life, eh?
So, that was Turkey. One of my favorite stops on the trip. And once Turkey was over, we headed to…

We headed home. Or rather, I headed home.

It’s over.