planning

I am quitting my life for something new

i am quitting my life for something new in europe.
the one-way ticket is to copenhagen, but i think i will not stay there.
the hope is to get work under the table if not over (visa?), and looking at the little mermaid statue does not present the kind of learning curve i seek in a professional undertaking.
also it’s starting to be baloney that i’m not proficient in a second language, and danish is probably not the one to invest in.
also i have been cold for fifteen years, more or less, since shortly after the arrival of that great letter from princeton, so probably i will make my way south to somewhere sweatier.
somewhere less prevailingly white.
somewhere that it’s okay for me to have a mustache.

How will this work?

She said,

How will this work?

I said,

I’m trying to spend no money

Iʼll email this guy from college who was Zooey’s roommate our first year in Boston and now lives in Amsterdam

My former coworker Aliscia’s father’s family is in some remote Sicilian village

I remembered last night that a woman I went to kindergarten with married a Spaniard and moved to Sevilla

I’m feeling pretty thoroughly bananas.

What is helping me stay sane and away from that mentality whereby things arenʼt okay unless Iʼve worked out everything for the entirety of my life is imagining that Iʼll spend a few weeks at a stretch in a given place and in each place forge relationships and make discoveries to plan the next place.

Like any version of living, I guess, but in more motion.

She said,

I literally thought you were just going to show up and figure it out.

I said,

Like sit at the arrivals gate at CPH and ask people where they’re going and whether I can come?

this wont take me anywhere

She said,

What are you doing

I said,

I am in the apartment eating carrots because thatʼs all I have so far

Although probably I will rectify that soon

I am going to put something familiar and safe on my computer and try to, I donʼt know what, send some messages in hopes of making things happen for myself

She said,

What are you wanting to happen?

I said,

My listening project

And

Iʼd like to start cementing plans for what will be after Berlin

I want to not feel afraid all the time, but that seems like something I need to go inside for, not outside

She said,

What are you most afraid of?

I said,

Of everything in the whole world?

Prolapse.

She said,

Of your current endeavor

I said,

That I will have to go back to New York and just pick up where I left off

That this wonʼt take me somewhere

She said,

Well it will definitely take you somewhere it just might not be where you thought

I said,

Also Iʼm afraid of getting fat

She said,

Impossible to get fat on carrots.

my voice is falling into disuse

She said, 

Are you seeing people? Organizing your room? Sitting in a cafe? Sending emails? Exploring? Eating vegan currywurst? 

I said, 

I just got back to the apartment after fucking around in constructive, aid-while-abroad-seeking ways on Facebook for most of the day over two cappuccini and a salad and a piece the vegan bananenbrod with some kind of peanut butter frosting which was EXCELLENT btw at the yes same one not-really-vegan cafe 

Trying to make plans for either tonight or tomorrow with the guy who works there, but he is I think Syrian under his German and so his English is pretty confusing 

Nursing some confusion about What I Should Be Doing Instead 

Feeling almost breathless with loneliness or some other kind of emotional vertigo  

In going through my Facebook friends to see whom else I should tag in my latest plea post, I discovered that this guy I had a mad crush on over my years in Boston with whom things never really got off the ground died in a bike accident four years ago 

When I think about it I get cold all over

I included him on my get out the vote for Clinton email in November 2016 

He’d already been dead for two years

I just redownloaded Tinder, although Iʼm not sure if thatʼs a bad idea or a self-forgiving one 

My voice is falling into disuse 

She said, 

What a swarm of things you must be feeling

I said, 

How can you tell?

A guy who was my immediate bestie on our freshman orientation backpacking trip sixteen years ago just wrote back being like Oh yeah I got sick of New York so a friend and I started an investment bank in Bucharest and for sure you can come stay on my pull-out for a couple of weeks let me look at the calendar 

And Pavel just messaged that he found me a place to stay on Île d’Oléron, which is evidently an island off the Atlantic coast of France, so now this is thoroughly a fairy tale I am unready for

This is very exciting if I can just figure out how to be scared only a non-crippling amount of the time 

I need to go to bed so I can get up and keep trying to move forward in some way even if itʼs not in the BEST way 

She said, 

Get up and do 10 push-ups first thing 

I said, 

Okay I will 

First I will put on a bra because how I look is the most important thing about me 

And then I will do ten pushups 

Eleven, even 

Itʼs weird how I waited for this for so long and then all of a sudden it happened

MARY WEʼRE ALIVE AND ITʼS SO TERRIBLE BUT THERE IS NO OTHER CHOICE 

missing manuel

My main friend here, Manuel—the German bass for hire with the baby face I befriended on the boat across the Baltic—dropped offline for the days remaining before he disappeared back into Denmark for the weekend, which was disappointing because I wanted to party with him and also because he’d left town with my sunglasses still on his coffee table, locked inside his apartment, seventeen stories above Kreuzberg. But also I am glad to have been forced by boredom-stronger-than-fear—after these days spent in the twee Prenzlauerberg cafés and apartment, writing and hustling for my next accommodations and clinging to the internet for comfort—to investigate the city alone.
Yesterday I made a friend I didn’t like as much as Manuel, a Syrian immigrant who worked in the vegan cafe where I had two lattes with mammal milk, and we made a plan for him to show me around today, but then he canceled. Instead I went to Tempelhofer Feld in search of a hike, and now I would like a word with whoever put that on a list of hikes, because it is more like a long walk on some bricks around some fields where there once was and may or may not still be ammunition. I did however sunbathe topless (!!! woo) in one of the fields. Also on the walk to the park from the U8 station I found a tomato, so now I have a tomato. Later I bought weed for twenty dollars American from a Nigerian guy on, I think, Hermanstraße, so now I have weed. Then I FINALLY went to an ATM—it had pizza smeared all over the screen, like someone thought that was a good thing to do with their time and pizza—and with my new euro got terrible Moroccan food at a place somewhere else in Neukölln where the proprietor addressed me in Spanish and I just rolled with it. Then I followed some signs for an English-language comedy show at the bar across the street and surprised myself by having a great time. Lots of jokes about the availability of drugs in Berlin (which is, evidently, ample), and some about the German sense of humor (which is, evidently, not good). I could tell that the last comedian was a good comedian, but I hated listening to him because he talked about dating in New York City and being Jewish on the USAmerican Atlantic coast, which is not what I came to Europe to think about. The bartenders were all Italian and didn’t like me as much as I liked them. I made another friend, an Anglo-Serbian voice actor, and I might like him as much as I like Manuel (unsure), except I think that what what I thought was a wedding ring might just be a ring, so now I have to play defense. He convinced me that Belgrade is where I want to be, except again for the cigarette smoke.
In his goodbye-until-Monday note, Manuel suggested I reach out if there was trouble so he could refer me to a friend.
I said, Like what? Again, all I can think of is nuclear winter, but I’m hoping that the only real trouble will be that I can’t wear my contact lenses because I only have my prescription sunglasses, which is when you think about it a pretty good life.
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