4 months, 17 countries, 28 cities, 16 museums, 5 trails, 40 brands of chocolate, 10 books, 10 pieces of art, a few movies, 1 song, 12 flavors of soukos and 2 NASA astronauts later…
The pleasant vibration under my feet. The boat is sailing by the glittering windows of the city – that same one, from all the movies and songs; New York, New York. This really is a boat and not a ship, a Staten Island-bound ferry; but I close my eyes and pretend I’m still home in 3058, aboard the MV Explorer, and the journey has just begun. I know it’s not true, but there’ll be time to think about it later. Now I’m just enjoying the ride.
It’s been two days since we disembarked. I’m so calm on the outside that it even scares me; the volcano inside me is sealed and wrapped in Christmas gift paper and put away on a faraway shelf of my mind. Far far away. It’s a time bomb; let it tick. I’m distracting myself all the time – I’m quite easy to distract. I bought a beautiful solid wood ukulele, a soprano, but with a concert neck, and I’m badly in love with it. My stepdad made me a gift of a new iPad in exchange for my old one. I got some delicious ginger tea and pies and wursts at the Christmas market by Columbus Circle; a batch of blueberries and some organic chocolate at WholeFoods. I met family and dear dear friends. Distractions, distractions, distractions. Do not think. Just keep doing something.
I didn’t even cry that much. First for a little while when still on the ship that morning, saying goodbyes. Then aboard a plane; all 2,5 freaking hours. I guess I’ve never cried for so long in my entire life. I was crying, and I was genuinely curious how many tears could a human being have. Well, I must tell you, helluva lot. Went to the restroom, looked at myself in the mirror, and commanded the organism to calm the hell down. I was afraid my relatives would think I kept drinking all voyage, and that would’ve been such a fail (and such a lie)!
And I didn’t even cry because it was over; no, I had my own reasons. The sadness of leaving the ship just added up to the whole emotional flood.
In any case, for the past few days I was quite a miserable human being – on the inside; I couldn’t sleep at all and I didn’t normally eat until yesterday afternoon, that is in what – four days? The headache became a part of my body, so I don’t even pay attention to it. It’ll eventually pass, as soon as I get some sleep; but now there’s no ship to rock me to sleep.
I guess that’s how I’ll get back to Moscow – numb and senseless, frozen – self-frozen that is, and I will come home and go to sleep for the winter. I wish I could just sleep through the damned winter like bears do. Human lives are a torture sometimes.
I want to swim; I need to swim. It would’ve made me sleep and took the tension away. But I’ve sold my pool contract back home, and I’m not sure I’ll get a new one.
It’s been a rocky roller-coaster indeed, from super highs to super lows, from hope to desperation, from excitement to fear. It was challenging, even exhausting emotionally, physically and mentally; I made it through. I achieved my goals – it’s even funny how the saddest and most unfortunate events brought me closer to becoming stronger, more self-confident, patient and courageous. Although they still probably wouldn’t accept me to Gryffindor. Although it’s up to the hat to judge.
I met so many outstanding, talented, inspiring people on this trip. I bathed in their warmness, support and appreciation like I never had before. My fear is only to lose contact with them. These people are now the part of me, some more than the others, but all of them form me as a mosaic. Most of all I am scared that the mosaic would peel off with time; but now it’s bright and shining.
As for now, I’ll go back and I’ll go to sleep (or I won’t); and wake me up, when it’s all over.
I’m down to hit the road anytime.