September 10, 2014

TIME // IS // JUST // A // THING

I have lived here for a year now. University started this Monday and it is already messy, everything, really. The cat meows all the time, but when I put on "The Smiths" it sits calmly on that purple couch, eyes closed, listening, purring mildly. Summer is fading, it was a short one, so short that I almost didn't get to wear all my summer dresses at least once. I have learned new things, about myself and the world, gladly appreciated to discover a city I have never visited before, and managed to fall in love more deeply than ever. All in all, a summer worthwhile. So autumn can come, and I won't be longing no more for that roof terrace of yours. Autumn may come, and I won't miss how your eyes would grin against the sun, squinting on the very hot days in July. I especially enjoyed those days by the lake. Biking for a bit too long, we have found that secret path; on day two they cut down the reed by the shore and we had a clear view. You swam across a few times, while I was wondering about the future, filling out cross word puzzles or reading about the war, and planes approaching the nearby entry lane. I think of this summer as this intangible thing, because it was so short, it almost seems as if it never happened. Now that you are gone, I sometimes wonder if I made you up. How come you are at the other end of this world now, while I am still here? How come my memory is full with all this intangible beauty, whilst time is already counting down for our reunion? I will be here when you return. I sleep in your sweater sometimes. You left a bunch of those, that's good. Sweaters and shirts. Things that remind me of you are of abundance here: Vanilla scented candles, those sandalwood incense you hated, your blue toothbrush lying by the sink (it reminds me, I didn't make you up, you chewed quite a lot on it), the rose you gave me when we last met, it's dried out now, placed on the shelf you put up one night, next to the stove; there's still the smell of you everywhere I go, it's haunting me, perhaps. Biking by your house each day, sometimes passing that bar where I first saw you during a late November night; realising that the person who took over your room likes to keep the blinds shut, but the lantern in front of your window will always burn at night. And the crane by the corner, that building they were setting up, it's sky high now, blocking all the views; oh so glad we made of the roof terrace the best we could while you were still here. And the birds are gone now. They will return about the same time as you. I will be here.

May 04, 2014


   To share my life with the rest of the world has always been satisfying, almost a necessity, I would say. My memory is working in quite arbitrary ways, and what I end up remembering seldom turns out to be worthwhile. Writing helps, of course, and I would be lying if I say that my journals at home aren't part of my open bookshelf, at your disposal, if you feel like coming over. The last time I wrote about taking chances, and I took quite a few since then. I ended up in a new city and continued studying, met a hundred few new people and made a myriad of staggering friends, got an apartment and a black Spanish cat, an almost functioning bicycle, and on top of it all managed to find a shampoo that makes my hair more shiny. It's really not that bad.

   The Hague is an ambiguous place. You turn into a cobble stone road and see tiny brick houses with dark blue, crooked window frames, you look inside and want to take part in what seems to be sole contentment, transpiring behind the glass. People know how to live well in these parts of the world. The Plein and Grote Markt are filled with untroubled minds, and drinking in the early afternoon sun has become a less unorthodox phenomenon. You stroll around a corner and the cobble stones keep leading the way, more Ikea-colored drapes and unwilted flowers gracing serene window sills (I am thinking that I haven't seen anything blossoming inside my home ever since I moved in), and then you realize: everything that's missing in your life can be found behind that glass. You turn a corner and another one, and here you are, surrounded by government constructions and less entrancing livelihood. The big white town hall structures, the unforgiving reality of the Turfmarkt being everything but "turf", the city center that is desperately drowning in modernity. The Hague is an international city, it has the responsibility to be representative and to appease to the outside as this really competent place. In the meantime, I moved into a small one-bedroom apartment close to a gracht, and a 5 minute bike ride from campus. Pink walls, a necessity, flower patterns, candles, golden mirrors, long white curtains covering those bay windows, and, of course, cat toys scattered all over the living room floor. I've made it quite cozy, but I am missing a stable income and a book shelf. For now, things are working. Almost 10 months it has been, and I can hardly believe that the time has been running by so quickly. I wish there was a way to share all of what happened in those 10 months in one blog post. But it is impossible, and I can only pretend to try. Being creative when extremely happy is difficult for someone like me. So I have been too happy, perhaps. And it rains a lot in the Netherlands. A lot.

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