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.