Tuesday, August 4, 2009


I attend college in a place where there is sometimes no cable, where shops are within walking distance, where I can cool down in the shade, where I learn from conversation and writing, where friends come over unannounced because they want to, where I live with people who must interact. When I come home I am reluctantly plugged into a stale opposite.

The temperature will not drop below 90 in the summer, making long bikerides (they are long because places are stretched so far apart) a last resort. Even in the shade, I am suffocated by hot air and sweat. I am convinced that even a small amount of this tepid heat would leave me dead on some neighborhood sidewalk, so I stay inside.

The house is two-story and air-conditioned. Four out of its six rooms are empty or used for storage. When one of the three people who live here come home from a day of work, the television is flipped on--usually to a news report, a trashy housewives reality show, or a cooking demonstration. After hours of shows, the voices on every channel seem the same. I know our television like I would know a relative--if I really knew one to begin with. Here, it is my stimulation--sad. It's strange how people can physically be brought together by such a device, yet pushed so far apart at the same time. I feel so distant from those around me.

I try to please myself with endless amounts of fresh strawberries, blueberries, nectarines, walnuts, ice cream--things I can't regularly buy on my school budget. I have new clothes and hair. I force myself to workout daily, I paint still lifes, I read books--activities which require only one person. I am alone.

When I am plugged into this life, I yearn for an emotional, intellectual, and spiritual connection somewhere else.


iBo said...

come back to me! Why did you leave!

Aly said...

I dont know! I'm coming as fast as I can!

Matthew R. Hall, Esq. said...

When I go home, I eat moderately well, enjoying have any fast food I want, and the pantry is always stocked with cookies or chips. The weather is always pleasant, and Mom sneaks me a few bucks here and there so I can take drives to enjoy it. I generally do yard work to pass the time and make some money, and I listen to audiobooks and NPR podcasts while I do to stimulate my mind.

But even with those pleasant things, going home is an exhausting experience, with only few exceptions. The weekend we drove to my house was fine, but every other trip home this year left me feeling like a burnt out motor. Maybe it's the lack of purpose or established social network.

In any case, I relate to this--the television and the fruit and the staleness.

Aly said...

Matt, its so nice to hear that someone else has similar feelings. Thank you for sharing this.

Kimaree said...

I love you Alyssa

Anonymous said...

:( I wish we had spent more time together while you were here.
Also... Story of my life. Kind of.