I’m tempted to start this post like most of my handwritten letters start — It’s been awhile. I should have written sooner, but there was x and y that got in the way. Really, though, there’s no excuse. If you want to do something badly enough, it will happen, despite the obvious timesucks that are packing and cleaning and saying goodbye and going places (which is really what I have been doing! I swear). The days in which I can still pretend to be European are winding down. In 5 days my countdown will be in he single digits. Gulp. On my last night in Evreux I sat in a bar with a bunch of my friends and ordered a girafe. I was talking with one of my friends and explaining how I have to squeeze so much traveling now that school is over because I’m in a new place. At home — chez moi, I said — I venture less, feel less of that urgent need to see, to chronicle, to buy postcards. “Ici, c’est un peu chez toi maintenant, quand-même.”
Here, it’s a little bit your home, too. I can feel it. When I left Montpellier, I wasn’t sure if I could ever live abroad again, let alone when I’d be back to France. But last week, pulling into Saint-Lazare from Evreux felt exactly the same way as when the LIRR finally gets into Manhattan. It’s not an issue of getting back, of visiting some incomprehensible place…It’s a matter of time between homes, between selves. I’m not so worried anymore about when I’ll see everything again, only because I see it as inevitable.
I’m sitting in a hotel lobby because the wi-fi is free here. I like watching the staff work, seeing people come in and out and ask questions. Also I realized that I’ve been wearing my sunglasses on my head and my actual glasses on my face, so I probably look ridiculous. Also also I’ve been Google-researching keywords like “potty training” and “fitted diapers” for my freelance job so anyone sneaking a passing glance at my laptop probably thinks this is weird. This is weird, you know. But it works.