Monday, 17 September 2012

A Not-Summer Post

Oh my holy goblin, it's been so long since I wrote a 'personal' blog post I've kinda forgotten how to do it O_O.

I did have another version of this all typed up and ready to go, but it felt a little too personal, plus it was long  and largely incoherent (I'm just as shocked as you), so it's been absorbed into my diary instead. It was my first day back at uni today, and I was in for a total of forty minutes, which was sufficient enough time to completely freak out, Lose All Faith in Self, and feel defeated before I'd even begun. I suppose it didn't help that I'd had very little sleep, no breakfast, it was raining, I was cold, a guy in a lilac hoody practically walked through me, and etc. A couple of days ago, on the other side of summer, I had this kind of affected superstition that if I didn't do a 'My Summer' post then summer wouldn't officially end and everything in it would kind of bleed into the next chapter, like this:

But like I said, the intended post was too personal, maybe because I was panicking and when I panic I tend to spill my guts a little too messily all over the keyboard (ew), and I was super tired and just really not in the mood to do anything except watch The Horse Whisperer and go to bed early. And you know what? On the other side of summer, it is so obvious that bookending that period of time doesn't change things one iota. A few days ago my friend and I were browsing through some old photographs and we kept noticing how the seasons were very well established. The summers were hot and sunny, the autumns were rich and gold, and the winters were icy blue and mystical. Of course, retrospect is a deceptive thing, and probably those pictures were taken on days when the weather was particularly paradigmatic, but still. The weather has definitely changed over the past couple of years; the seasons kind of blend and smudge together. And I guess that's the way life is too. No matter how many little traditions or exorcisms I perform, like chopping off my hair at the start of term, or setting goals by the expiration dates of bus passes, I cannot compartmentalise the things that happen and how I feel about them. As much as I am resistant to the let things flow/come what may philosophy, it is probably healthier and more natural than to stanch and divide and suppress. I think. I can't force myself to jumpstart the getting over it process if I'm not quite there yet; that would be deleterious in the long-run. The restless part of me is impatient and eager for it to begin, but for the wrong reasons. Since I seem to express myself better in images, I suppose what I have to do right now is wade out into the water, and let my heels sink into the sand, and let the waves flow over and around me, and keep standing up. I'm not sure why these images are always to do with the ocean. I'm also not sure why in my head it is night time and I'm near an old harbour and I'm wearing torn raggedy scraps for clothes. Must be the Victorian Lit course seeping into my brain already. But yeah, I guess not actually being ready to move is why I've been having these conflicting thoughts of "I want to move on because I don't want to still be here when I'm 21" (prescriptive) and "but I also don't want to move on, because that means it's really over and I can't...hope about it anymore, and I'm not quite ready to let go of that yet" (descriptive). I guess I'll be ready when I'm ready and the impatient part of me is just going to have to deal with that, because better this than dragging all that crap around and dumping it on someone else's lap. Or something. I think I'm still in the shell-shocked stage, but I've grown accustomed to being shell-shocked...does that make sense? 

And now I'm going to devolve into bullet points recounting life over the past few months cause I'm a waster:
·         The summer was begun by returning to North Berwick, this time with Meejin's little sister who I kind of want to adopt because we both love movies, she makes organised dance cool, and has the common sense that neither me nor Meejin possess. Which is an asset when you're going to stay in a demonically possessed house for five days. Except she was leaving after three. When we arrived at said house, the attic was lying open with the pulley stairs kind of hanging down into the hall. On the last night Meejin and I discovered that not only can we run for twenty minutes straight along a beach, we can also do it again five minutes later when we think we are being stalked. Seriously, that town is just Wickerman creepy at night. And here's a tip from me to you: 'zinc', when placed appropriately, is a v. good word in Scrabble. Thank me later ;).
·         I went to the cinema six times to see five different films; I spied Kevin Bridges in an ice cream parlour; Limmy came into my work and I bought his copy of Se7en; I took many driving lessons and clipped off one hubcap; I went on four ostensible not-dates; and read exactly eight books. I also did so little that I had time to enumerate what little I did do. Neat, huh?
·         Meejin spontaneously appeared at my door one evening and we ended up gutting my room until two thirty in the morning. It is frightening how much crap I had unknowingly accumulated. I can now see my desk once more, and my floor is no longer the site of the Two Towers (of DVDs).
·         I am embroiled, or partaking, or something, in A Situation. It is an indication of my lack of self-esteem that it took me most of the summer to recognise this fact, and from the outside I could justifiably be accused of being a bitch for appearing to allow it to go as far as it has. But I had to really know it before I knew, you know? Anyways, I never would have thought I'd be involved in something like this and while I'm surprised at myself, I feel intrigue rather than guilt. I'm not quite sure what that says about me but if I scrutinize anymore I will be struck permamently cross-eyed. If nothing else, it is interesting research for a book that I never could have gotten second-hand. Which got me to thinking, how far are writers willing to go in the name of research?
·         Speaking of writing, I done practically none, and I think I might expand on this later because I rarely talk about it to anyone, in reality or virtuality (is it bad that I totally smiled at that word?). To cut a long story short, I reckon this dearth of creativity was due in large part to...
· experiencing something of an identity crisis. In fact, crisis is the wrong word because it implies immediacy, and this is a sprawling languorous thing which is still going on. (This would be one of the things I was attempting to contain in summer.) The only way I can explain it is that I really really wanted to write, and I knew what I wanted to write because I'd planned it all out, but when it came to actually writing I just couldn't. There were other niggling little things like setting, format, the overwhelming choice of words in the English language, but the centrifugal problem seems to be that I have forgotten how to write like me. And I'm not quite sure how to fix that.
·         The Eglish teacher I had for four years in high school moved to Thailand with his family in August, and I'm feeling increasingly...not sad, just kind of oh about it. I kind of can't begin to describe the nebulous significance of his presence in my life, and how he always believed in and supported me even after I'd left school and I was no longer his responsibility. In a selfish way, because so many aspects of this summer have felt unfamiliar, and I'm embarking on something now even more unfamiliar, it kind of feels like I've lost an ally or a pillar of support. But mostly I'm just happy he's getting this amazing opportunity, and I hope his new students appreciate him as much as we all did.
·         And then this is the really frilly bit of news at the end of the bulletin: I'm taking on a couple of students to tutor them in English for Reasons which are mostly but not all to do with money. Also: there are some weird fuckers on Gumtree.

And here are some pictures to commemorate:

(This is what a not-date looks like.)

And this signifies making time for friends around busy schedules, 
not the fact that we are Total Losers.
I may have had a total slo-mo writing summer, but I was the co-creator of this.

Also, this is the sound of life right now:

Thanks for reading :) x