I’ve long straddled southern BC like a 4runner driving colossus. One foot in Ymir, one in Victoria/Vancouver, my heart torn in two, mind split asunder. Wanting the best of both worlds, unwilling to compromise because I could never find my way to one. I honestly didn’t know how it was going to go. I decided last spring I would do my best to live moderately well in both since I wanted to give up neither the mountains or the sea. I had an amazing summer of transitory festival work, less time spent in the east than the west as my world was revolving to an extent around hoping that my mom’s house would sell, which it did. And now I’ve moved on, into the okanagan to another house that I hope sells soon. I’m only here until the spring but I find myself, funnily enough approximately 5 hours away from both Vancouver and Ymir. Exactly in the middle.
The idea of spending new years in quiet contemplation is not an idea that comes easily to me. My brain has this notion of what it is to be new years, how it should look, how it should sound. How it should feel. The old year chased away with music and noise and screaming and drink. The new year welcomed with music and noise and screaming and drunk kisses. And so torn once more was I between two places I love, filled with people I delight in, people I admire, people who make me smile with joy that they are a part of my life, however long it is between visits.
I am exactly far enough from both places that I could easily have made it to either place in good time for celebration.
I woke up this morning to sunshine pouring in the window. I had expected the weather to be way more gnarly than it was, feeling as though my decision would be made for me. But no, surprisingly (total sarcasm) the universe wasn’t going to make it easy to opt out, if indeed that was what I decided to do.
Because that’s the reality, not the notion of opting out, but that there is always a third option. I remember a boyfriend saying to me, when I expressed a dissatisfaction with how my life was progressing, “either have a baby or go back to school. I’ve seen this before with women your age, it seems to be the thing you all do. Baby or school.” I was 25 or 26. But I didn’t want either of those things. I wanted a third option. Consequently we broke up and that was when I went to live in the kootenays for the first time, beginning this 12 year cycle of kootenays/coast, never spending any longer than 4 years with an address in either. Happy but eventually dissatisfied. Not because of any lack of the places or the people! Because of something lacking in me. That dissatisfaction is still there. But rather than drinking in the face of it, screaming into it, kissing my way through it, dancing and whirling and forgetting for a time that it exists only to be faced with it again next year. Which is in about 8 minutes. But my strategy so far has always been one of externalizing. It’s been fun, but I think it’s time to try a new approach.
So I decided to stay in this middle place tonight. Quiet, contemplative, a glass of scotch and a marx brothers movie marathon. It seemed like a reasonable third option.
I’m going to attach this video by Sleeping At Last because I just learned to play it on the piano today and it feels appropriate. And it’s just really pretty.
I miss dancing with you, I miss laughing and playing with you, I miss kissing you. You are a delight to have in my life and I’ll see you next year. Bisous, mes cheries.