Friday, July 15, 2011

Spilling Anxiety

When did I become so fearful and judgmental? Sometimes, I feel there is nothing worthwhile in my thoughts- there's nothing of substance. I can't remember how to get to know someone. I have an excruciating fake laugh and even a fake voice, depending on who I'm with. What use are my thoughts if they're undirected and with nothing to show or speak of them?

Despite these anxious feelings, today was wonderful. I "tutored" Jackie. Walked barefoot in the Grist Mill. Finished The Fountainhead. Took a nap in the hammock. Watched Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Pt. 1) with Melissa, Matt, and Krissy.

What kind of a treadmill do I need to feel satisfied? I don't have anything to show for the past year that I'm proud of, but I was wholesomely content with the routine. If it weren't for stories, I don't know where I'd be.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


The Megabus was long and quiet, letting me catch a little sleep despite the freezing temperature. I arrived in DC a little after one AM and walked to the corner to see the Capitol. It was impressive, lit up against the night, but my leaning on the corner's lamppost elicited a holla from two young guys in a car, so I walked back to the bus station. Nicki picked me up promptly afterward, and I met her boo, Marvin. We got decent pizza together, then parted ways and hit the hay. The following morning, we took the AU bus to the metro. The Metro. The marvel of architecture and transportation as envisioned by Big Brother. I couldn't wrap my head around the workings of the metro card- swipe in for free, it tracks your exit, and charges you by the distance traveled. There's no personal information encoded on them (though it's an option to do so), but I'm dubious about whether or not the metro is the only technology capable of tracking the cards. In voicing this, Nicki exclaimed, "It's the capitol. It's a little more expected." That sounds like what they want you to think.... :P It was a short walk to the zoo, free, like every other cultural institution I'm so jealous of. Our first route had very few animals in it. No sloth bear. No panda bear. No fisher cat. There was a clouded leopard, which was one of my favorite big cats as a child, and I was pretty into the big cats. Unsurprisingly, my favorite exhibit wound up being the dual tiger/lion enclosures. The solitary tiger paced along the concrete barrier of the water and seemed to follow us. The lions of the National Zoo had cubs in May, and the adolescents were more lively than any other big cats I'd seen. In watching them, the impending rain unleashed. We took shelter under a bamboo alcove, as there was nothing solid in view. The lions ignored it. Ignoring the rain wasn't hard for us, but ignoring the ensuing humidity was more difficult. It was a new experience for rain to only worsen the condition of the heat. Another interesting stop was the bird house. In one open air room, there was a blue bird, about the size of a squat crow, whacking something against a rock. It was a mouse, thoroughly dead. Leaving, we walked to Adams-Morgan, a neighborhood solely dedicated to "food and drink." A sign warned caution to vehicles, as the main drag becomes an informal pedestrian zone after a certain hour. I got a crepe, and we bunkered down at Nicki's falafel place to wait out the returning rain. It lasted through the meal and into leaving, so we took a cab back to the university. Nap time. Some hours later, we were ready to hit the streets. Marvin knew people at a few clubs, but we wound up sitting at DuPont circle and enjoying the early morning. It was lovely and had me thinking of petty romance. Nicki dropped me off at the bus stop early the next day, so I read The Fountainhead. This continued on the bus, ending only when I took the luxury to cry for a few silent moments.

Lancaster-York-Red Lion

Wednesday morning, I found myself on a train for something under two hours. Although my book was too engrossing to acknowledge the 'Hook to Philly ride, the passing landscape held my attention out in farm country. The rural graffiti interspersed with clothes lines and silos brought more of an appreciation for modern Americana, and the Lancaster station was beautifully in that line of thought. Its vaulted ceiling was lit by a dirty skylight and the paint was peeling from every surface. Matt was already outside when I arrived. We drove the forty minutes to Red Lion, Matt explaining all of the little towns and counties on our way. It was fun. We hung out all day with another Matt, checking out various locales. We went to "the Top of the World" and hot-tubbed with more friends and a view unlike any I've seen from a suburban hot-tub. Bedtime rolled around 4 am, and I fell dead asleep. In the morning, we had breakfast then went out to Tom's Music Trade Store. It was impressive. Boxes. and Boxes. and Boxes. and Boxes and boxes and boxes. I spent thirty dollars on records. We got pizza at Central Pizza, and that was our day. I missed my first train back to Philly, but it was either wait in Lancaster or wait in the city. In waiting, I finished reading The Great Train Robbery and moved on to The Fountainhead. Luckily, there were no lights available for reading in the Megabus to DC, so I put it away and thought.