It’s good to be home.
By the end of my journey, I started longing for the comfort of my house and slippers, as I imagined being splayed out on the couch, watching a movie with a bowl of ice cream in my hands. It’s been more than a week since I’ve been back, and I’ve yet to do this. It’s hard to pull myself out of the old habit of being productive. Sometimes I need to be waiting at a terminal in New York with a three-hour layover to be able to sit down and enjoy a film.1
At the same time, I’ve never been more indulgent, my latest vice being those bags of York Peppermint Patties. I figured out that life is too short and I should be enjoying myself when I was sipping café allongé on a patio with Karin on a beautiful Paris day, and I could finally appreciate this fact when talking to Dennis over our lager on an Edinburgh afternoon.
This is probably why I don’t feel overstimulated, even though I’ve been going full-tilt for the last two months. Darren came over as part of his sabbatical, and we did the things I rarely find an excuse to do myself, like going shoe shopping or ordering sushi. Last week I staked him $20 and watched him win $600 when he hit his number at the roulette table, five minutes after we stepped in the casino. He gave me back a percentage of my winnings, and he spent the night playing blackjack while I bet on the electronic horses. We didn’t end up winning much after that, but we both left up.
Lisa even took us dancing2, where I learned that the entire appeal of strobe lights is their ability to make everything look like a Michael Bay movie filmed in 24p. It turns out this is also a great way to do some people-watching, although you start to get depressed when you see a pair of kids from their respective groups picking a fight with each other cause they’re drunk, then making up and playing grab-ass on the dance floor. Ironically, I ended up being the one sober enough to drive home.
Last time I checked, there were over 5000 unread items in my feed reader, and tweets from over a week ago in my Twitter timeline. It’s strange to be so disconnected from life as I knew it. I haven’t written anything in as long either, which is a very long time for me. I considered deleting this blog, then taking a month off instead, then decided I’d write when I felt like it. The thing is, I always feel like writing, but lately this urge has given way to being productive in other ways or having fun. It’s like I’m finally on the Taoist path, discovering that my trip has changed me more than I first thought.
- I ended up watching seven on my travels, which is probably more than all of last year):
- Sunshine — good as long as you can get over one really big, really stupid plot element. Which I couldn’t, so on the whole this movie sucked, even though it had some of the best directing I’ve ever seen in my life.
- Network — Unbelievably ahead of it’s time in terms of media commentary
- The Last Picture Show — a great coming-of-age movie directed by that guy who played Dr. Melfi’s psychiatrist on the Sopranos, and Cybill Shepherd in her debut role
- Ladder 49 — I don’t trust Pat’s taste in movies anymore
- Kung Fu Panda — they were pretty good at the Chinese details
- Scott Pilgrim vs. the World — a fun movie overall, the best part being that it’s set in Toronto. Also, very disappointed at how much of a sellout Bryan Lee O’Malley is for changing the ending based on audience reactions at test screenings
- To Kill a Mockingbird — I wanted to be a lawyer after seeing this
- Which for me is pretty much just swaying back and forth while being mesmerized by the guitar players. [↩]