Catpaws Cafe

Random musings from my virtual fountain pen

Archive for the tag “spiritual expat”

The unexpected melancholy of others

Summer is at it’s end. I feel the sadness and melancholy of others, in other places. I feel it and it’s not even mine – and yet it is me – in earlier years.
The children have gone back to school
autumn is drawing close in the northern hemisphere
the end of august,
still a few warm, sunny days to be enjoyed
but the days are getting shorter again, the evenings darker.
Soon the trees will break into the finale and launch natures own fireworks
the announcement that summer is indeed over for this year.

I feel it, even tho where I live it’s perpetual summer according to some.
It isn’t; but the seasons aren’t as pronounced this close to the equator.  Peculiarly enough
it is the winter I treasure the most here, even tho the vibrancy of autumn is still my favorite.

On my inner screen, years and geographical distances is no obstacle;
one aspect of me is driving down a lane in France in an old split screen Citroen
the weather blustery and the road covered in fallen leaves turning brown.
And I want to be there in body too
feel the crispness in the air and the light rain on my face
as I get out of the car and pull my jacket tighter, hands in pockets
delighting in the bursts of colour of my new scarf.

Or in the garden where my parents once lived.
I am walking around in this no-time land like a ghost
the sound of the silos drying the harvest in the far distance ever present this time of year.
The bright red garden furniture my mother restored all those years ago
the droning of the drowsy bumblebees, enjoying the last of the Nasturtium.
A younger version of me, new notepad on her lap, pen poised
waiting for inspiration that won’t come
before giving up and reading someone else’s prose instead.
Transported instantly to another place and time
where something worth writing about actually happens.
She dreams about cities where there is music to be heard and others like her to make friends with;
who reads books, likes art, go to the theater and to see a live ballet,
far from immature teens with their cigarettes and beer-cans, smelly locker-rooms and spots.
Where the people with dreams and aspirations live…
For a minute I too want to red wooden garden furniture
in a fruitless attempt to somehow connect with mother in a way we, me and I, never could.

Picture blurs, and clears once more
New school, new books, new jeans
the promise of new, hope of new friends
maybe even a fanciable boy…
Sitting at a desk
when I’d rather enjoy the last days of summer, cycling to the lake and going for one last swim.

The brochures of evening and hobby classes drops through the letterbox
see what tempting things we have on offer this autumn!
All in the name of trying new things and exciting adventures and the hope of meeting kindred souls.
Special offer Sunday lunch with friends after a brazing walk, lazy late afternoon drinking tea or wine.

It is the quiet exuberance time of the year
the enrich the soil of my mind – nourish my spirit time of year.
Not the loud jump up and down and dance of spring and summer.
It’s the tgi the weekend of my school-years
not to go out or partying
but to be allowed to spend time as I choose, with whom I want, well – to a degree…
A break away from the noisy crowds of competing children,
school corridors, playgrounds and gym-class.

All while the cats snooze in the midday heat
a gentle breeze keeping the mosquitoes at bay
just dregs left of my coffee.
The far side neighbor is on his lunch-break; Mexican popular music is pounding for all to hear.
I briefly wish our trusty bike would miraculously transform into a truck
where everything was ready and packed including the cats
and we could just jump in and take off onto our next adventure…
It’s time to go inside.

Pic from the web, I can't quite make out what the watermark says.  If this is your property and you want me to remove it please drop me a line.

Nasturtiums.  Pic from the web, I can’t quite make out what the watermark says. If this is your property and you want me to remove it please drop me a line.

 

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The dusk and dawn

 

The dusk and dawn

 

When the worlds overlap so slightly

is when the pain of separation

is at it’s most intense.

I never looked at it that way

I only knew it hurt

but I couldn’t work out why

I’d been just fine five minutes before

just like for me in 3d

I often don’t realize how much I miss something

until reminded

by having it once more

a blessing in itself, in disguise

So at dusk the pain of separation from

my soul family is so palpable

because of those on the other side

are cloaked but near.

It hurts so bad I never made the connection

I never thought that’s what it was

tho now,

when I compare the two

missing someone who has passed over

or longing for someone who is away

I can see they are one and the same for me.

 

So here I am subconsciously thinking I’m travelling and

moving the world over

in search of my souls cherished companions

where I need first to explore

and know intimately

the Pain of Separation.

And I know how to be a stranger

just as I know how to pack up and move.

Years of temping taught me how to pick up and fit in

without ever being noticed.

To the next place, and the next…

Many times I wanted to stay

mostly for the camaraderie I witnessed

but it was not to be

and anyway, I was always too soul restless for that.

I’d spend a year with the same group and

the itchy feet would start

Like watching from the sidelines

the echoes of voices

the same lines

over

and over

and over…

When I got a close fit

they’d disappear out of my life

often without a trace

no explanation, no closure

and the confusion and question-marks would hurt so much

sometimes instant,

other times time would trickle away

and they’d be irrevocably gone.

Too late to grieve like for a lover lost

but I guess I grieved on the inside instead

the tears I never shed

the dull pain never identified as such

the missing unvalidated.

Never enough to hold me in one place

when I needed to move on

in search of

and exploring it’s counterpart

when it starts to get comfortable

like ants all over

unbearable

I’m subconsciously urged to move on

by boredom at work

of fear of stagnation.

To stay in a stale job one needs very special colleagues

or a fulfilling life outside of work.

A fulfilling job can equally accommodate

an empty personal life.

Mine was rich on the inside

whilst empty on the outside…

I wanted the inspiring career from day one

to make up for the empty feeling inside and

later to cover up for my lack of success in attracting all I thought I ought to have

I don’t know if it would have made me happy or not

since I never got the experience.

 

Then I came here

I reckoned I’d moved for every other reason bar love

so I thought why not try that.

Actually, that was an afterthought

It wasn’t so much of a choice

as it was a a road with no turnoffs…

No matter how much it pained me to leave

my friends, the job I loved, the car of my dreams

I knew with every fiber of my being

I was doing the right thing.

And so the next phase of my life began.

For a while all the bits of my crazy life made perfect sense.

 

It certainly stepped up the feelings of alienation in a way I had not foreseen. I had expected because I was on the right track at last to quickly make new friends. It didn’t happen that way. Spanish turned out to be just as impossible to get the hang of as it was at college, and I found myself surrounded by women of all ages with babies on the brain and not much else; tourists in search of sun and an escape from their everyday life, problems and worries; and men fuelled largely by beer and tacos.

As the friends I had made left one by one and work dried up, the layers of the onion deepened.

 

My friend Jacquie once said when I was new to Park Gate and feeling low about it, that it takes about a year to make real friends in a new place, and I’ve found that to be my truth too. It’s been almost six years now and here I am, mainly alone, acquaintances aside.

Every other year I encounter someone I feel is close friend material for sure

only to never hear from them again.

 

I don’t know how much deeper into this onion I have to go

or what I’m supposed to do.

What I know is I’m not aligned with much on this island anymore.

I’m not interested in drinking, smoking, bullshitting and bar-hopping. I’ll never have any interest in babies, kids or the soaps on tv.

The sand and the palmtrees on the beaches does not make up for the absence of other things nature wise. I need personal space and will never be comfortable living the way many Mexicans do, on top of eachother and in and out of eachothers pockets and space all the time. 14000 residents plus tourists on 3 square miles of buildable land is too densely populated for me, with more people arriving every week, and soon every foot of land will be covered by concrete in one form or another. I’d like to live somewhere where alcohol is not the main fuel of the economy.

But I only have to look at my husband of almost 5 years now to know I got the man right!  I wouldn’t change him for the world.

 

So now I know

what that dusk and dawn feeling I’ve always dreaded is.

I feel at peace and easeful, for a little while.

I give the kitties a good brushing because they love it and

passers by smile at me and I find myself smiling back,

right here, right now.

 

So where do I take it from here

or where does this take me more like?

I don’t know.

 

Do I care? In the now, no.

If I let myself go to the future, yes definitely.

How much should we allow ourselves to dwell on the future?

I don’t have an answer for that right now.

I don’t want to go there.

Because I am here

and I like to stay in the moment for now.

 

 

10 April 2013

(c) Catpaws Cafe, Liz Rosales.

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