It’s 9:00pm. I’m on the floor of a powerless empty room, feeling empty in more ways than one. I moved 3,000 miles just in time to fly back to a place I can’t even claim as home anymore. Now it’s just another piece of trivia to the endless stream of new acquaintances, none of whom really give a shit past asking “What’s New York like?”. To which I politely attempt to explain the difference between the city and the part of the state I actually identify with, as the other person invariably loses their interest in the conversation. Maybe, though, that’s a shortcoming on my part. Or maybe it’s along the same lines as how talk of Seattle and Portland seem to dominate all other parts of the Northwest.
I went from school to work to school, repeat this process for years on end and that’s what college looked like. But now the biggest difference is how there is no going back in the fall. The usual rhythm of the year and of seeing friends for the first time after a summer mostly apart has been completely dismantled. This is now your life and nobody really cares what happens from here on out. Nobody takes the time to explain how one day you can be a student, and the next you’re part of the congestion on I-5, churning, plodding, and certainly not getting anywhere in a peaceful manner. Work is fine and all, getting paid is great, but the air feels different.
There’s always some resistance to change, the internal thought which says “Maybe if I turn around and go to bed this will all clear up”, knowing full well that the only thing that will happen is the waste of some time off. Everything feels the same but everyone looks and talks at (and sometimes they’ll even talk to you) different It’s easy to want to go back, even when you know the things you miss aren’t there for you to reclaim. The businesses, the streets, they’re all there, but the people and the atmosphere you want to go back to don’t exist anymore. Not in the way you remember.
Featured in Basement Babes, Issue 15