It’s weird how in times like this, like the pandemic we’re all in, as a planet, and going through it all without knowing what awaits us, that we realize we can’t ever know what awaits us. With or without any pandemic whatsoever. In the past, we used to plan. I mean, maybe you did. I haven’t really done much of and I don’t know whether it’s a good thing or a bad thing, but it got me to who I am today. I learned – a couple of times to remember big time – the hard way, however, that having a plan, a some sort of plan, gets you to live stuff on a bigger level. Sometimes. Just as sometimes, the greatest things happen without any planning whatsoever. And that is when my awe grows stronger and everything feels like a drive through Malibu’s highway on the coast on a morning – around ten, let’s say – and you’re wearing an off white soft cotton, a bit wrinkled – it’s the cotton the wrinkles look the best on – t-shirt just floating around your body, my favourite – wondering when I will ever find another pair just as favourite as this one and I know I will and I’m excited – blue jeans. These – we can’t ever really consider as being – thoughts ride just fractions of seconds through your mind as you are absorbing every bit of your ride on the coast. And I haven’t even, yet, been to Malibu. But then, life laughs just when you think you have got it and another season begins. It changes you, makes you who you are, but first it makes you go Maaan. And it’s tough, but you know what and who said: The truth will set you free, but first it will piss you off. Gloria Steinem. And then, one day, something happens, it always connects to everything you had been doing in the meantime, and you feel you are back on the highway in Malibu or in a completely different place. When you get to a completely different place, that’s when you know you are on a completely different journey, you fasten your seatbelt and set yourself to give your best. To live as much as you can while feeling the breeze every now and then.
When I bought two tickets to a U2 concert in Manchester two years ago for my brother and I – a bunch of twos here – as a surprise, I thought I got it all under control. Or, at least, this is what a friend would say when I would tell the story. But, yes, kind of metaphorically speaking, I thought I had it. But it was only naturally that I did. You can’t go to a U2 concert without planning, planning pretty much in advance, actually, and starting to adjust your life, a bit, around the freshly constructed situation. Especially when you don’t live in Manchester. UK, even. It is, however, one of the nicest things to have riding through your mind while yourself riding on the highway. For those previously mentioned fractions of seconds. So, you call it control, I call it plan. For now. But, then, everything that happened around that specific U2 concert – named eXPERIENCE + iNNOCENCE – was so completely out of any plan I couldn’t have even imagined, that it was only meant for it to end up as a story and stories is what our lives are made of. And then you get it. Are mesmerized by it. In awe. It feels like falling in love, although we know that nothing ever feels like falling in love does. I hope you know what I mean. Wait. I think it really feels like falling in love. Because it is with life that you, actually, fall in love with. And I don’t mean it only in the fairytale way, but in the hardcore, straight to the centre of you kind of way, the kind of love that changes you. The love that’s gotten you so deep into yourself that you had to change yourself. The other kind is just too dull and we only have one life. This is not a dress rehearsal, as Bill Murray would say.
When I said around the concert, I meant it. Because I’d expected for the concert to be everything that U2 is. It was more and we relished in it from the best seats on the Arena after having been lied to the whole time – a half a year – from when I had bought the – false – tickets to the actual day of the concert. Magically, we found available at the ticket office, within an hour prior to the concert, the best two seats on the Arena. The metaphors here would get us to a different chapter, but you can only imagine the thrill I’d been through. With my brother. It was a huge lesson on trust and I was blown away – again! – by just how far people would go on and on by lying. Whole organisations even. I can’t lie. I lied to myself a few times in life and it felt horrible when I realized I’d been lying to myself, so I would never choose to lie to anyone and I forget it is even possible. Yet, I can – acutely – sense a lie from a distance. It always comes out anyway, people, relax.
And when you capture this feeling and you do something about it, you get to a peaceful place. Now you know. Now you know better and can’t even be mad at it. Because it makes me feel lucky to be aware of all the magnificent things that I feel when I’m happy. From simple to grand. But what is simple and what is grand? When it’s that intense, it is intense. Full stop.
It’s the truth. It felt like we grabbed each other’s naked hearts with our bare hands in public, is a note I wrote somewhere and the picture of it has stood with me ever since.
When you are no longer in any sort of control. You don’t know the word. And the ocean is on my side. Or Tour Eiffel is. Or my mom and we have the most incredible talk. Or, you know, your eyes turn into cherries because you’re wearing a pink jacket you adore or into hearts because you’re eating watermelon. Chocolate.
And stories connect people. A cool lady just wrote to me the other day something. This is the original. Out of the blue.
My dear, I feel the need to write to you, although I have felt pretty embarrassed until now to do it. I, absolutely, wanted to tell you that you have super inspired me and made me try to change (for the better) things in my life, or better said, the way I see them. With some simple stories, that was it. Today was the first day I applied it and I feel great, thank you!
Who doesn’t love compliments? Only this isn’t a compliment. This is her telling me, without even her realizing, her story. I was so happy because I felt her courage to tell herself, first, the story. Her story. Through a message to me. And we are more of strangers to each other than acquaintances and this is where I feel, for a brief moment, that my heart skips a bit. For someone else falling in love. With themselves first. It’s called acceptance, evolution. It’s a choice, really. Through a story you had the courage to tell.
The things we’re experiencing right now might be related to the times we’re living. As a grand thing. They, obviously, do, but! This is also a time when things start to surface the shallow. If you let them. Choose to. There’s a kind of a story, intimacy, we could have day by day with the people we interact with and here comes the part that holds all of the stories all the time in one place. Yourself. You get to be intimate with yourself first. You can’t have the grand thing without the simple thing first. Yourself.
It very much depends, of course, on what grand is to you, but you only know this – this, too – when you get to that place. Yourself. Myself. Ourselves.
The presence of actually living every second is what I have been committing myself to maybe even more since the planet stopped for a whole year (almost) and it started without anyone actually planning for it (life). Or, at least, now I am more aware of it. In the past, I just did it and it felt good. I didn’t even think about it putting into words. I believed this is what everyone was doing. Enjoying every aspect of it (life). The year 2020 brought the word – presence – in caps, in front of us all. Or didn’t it? I am assuming, again, that it did. I hope so. Diving into something completely is what makes me feel alive, but it even more, makes me connect to who I am sharing, afterwards, the dive with. It would be wonderful for it to happen with every person that I’m meeting (imagine!), but I learned, the hard way, that it doesn’t. It made me sad too many times, so I’m pretty much editing life as we speak. I now, fearlessly, shut the door to something that is not me anymore just as much as I open myself up to let’s see. Because you can’t let anyone steal moments away from you, not even the voices in your head. I’d almost said you can’t let real people or even the voices in your head, but real people would never want to steal anything from you. Especially moments in the present. And then self-preservation comes in and I wish I didn’t have any reason to use it, but then it feels fantastic when I don’t and I ride, through Malibu, for more than fractions of seconds. Days. Months. Years. I can almost smell the air of the ocean.
This period was the longest I have been through to have so many sleepless nights or nights when I slept, but didn’t feel at all like sleeping, yet tried to find the power, every morning, to not give it too much thought or feel tired, but rather feel everything that I’d been feeling during the hours I just couldn’t sleep and thrive on it. A small gather together with friends, at home, until five in the morning, sometimes helps. To not sleep. But not be able to fall asleep even then, at five in the morning? The picture above was taken after one of these sleepless nights – zero sleep – at a friend’s wedding. It was a different kind of ride. Still a ride. And it is sometimes on this kind of ride that I thrive. It rhymed way too nice with ride to not use, one more time, thrive. It is the times when I write a lot in my head, on the ceiling. Not daydreaming, but thinking about the truth and what could be done in the hours when we are all awake, to make this world a better place.
Or love, you know. Also known as life.
I even befriended two ladies doing surveys over the phone, that is how involved I feel I have even more become.
My brother used to get a lot in trouble as a teenager, I was always there, younger than him, to witness it all, cover it up most of the times, so I must have made a decision to not want to cause trouble. Somehow, yet, miraculously, I ended up, while growing up, partying harder than my brother had done and just as miraculously he ended up being one of the best surgeons I have ever heard of. And I don’t know if miraculously, or surprisingly, but anyway, extremely luckily, I am here and I salute you. I love the feeling of not being able to hide something I love making. I don’t really have breaks, maybe that’s why. I’m a tight hugger. When I’m into something or the time spent with someone or, rarely but surely, when I’m into someone, and always in a friendship, I just don’t stop (until you show one aspect of ugly personality and it’s over for you somewhere deep in my heart I kept on saying to myself until I finally got it). Loyalty is like that.
Where is this going? I don’t know, but a lot of the people I’ve been talking to don’t know what they’re doing for New Year’s Eve, either, and it marks the end of the year 2020. I believe this pandemic is only the beginning. Things were bound to happen as things just got more and more. And out of control. Some things, apparently, should be kept under control. Our planet seemed to have needed to self-preserve from us all a bit, don’t you think? Following rules that inspire respect, gratitude and love is definitely just as fabulous as breaking the rule of never wearing pink and orange together. And red. And sequins.
Is Let it be a synonym for Let go? Beatles, music and this is how I got to a very fun friend of mine who sent me this
and I completely absorbed it. We used to make each other mix CDs – for sex, lol, but it’s true – and giggle from behind of our computers at the tv music station we used to work at thirteen years ago. She is… she, I am… me. As opposed to lawyer and storyteller. The below song (and video!) was the highest entry in our tops and it still makes us heartedly laugh every time we mention it, it made us call each other “pie” and now it’s here.