There are some people in this world who manipulate information and make you doubt yourself and your intentions when you seek to shed light on the numerous instances of hypocrisy. And then the chickens come home and karma teaches them that you were right.
Only give your energy to those who deserve it and reflect it back to you. Your life will be much richer and rewarding for it! Lesson learned the hard way :-)
On Tuesday, I was at a happy hour at a law firm in Barcelona, overlooking the city and Gaudi's magnificent architecture. Now, I am getting ready to go to work in cloudy Boston.
I've been really lucky that I've been able to realize my dreams: traveling, writing, lawyering. Sometimes, I wish that I spent more time developing my biggest passion which is to write. But in order to do that, I need to find some kind of gig that pays and gives me the stability that I now have.
The first time I left the country (the US) was in 2003. I left to study in Paris for six months. As an exchange student and part of the EU student program, I travelled to Germany, Italy, and Spain. I loved Europe and often felt like it was my second home because of the instant comfort and familiarity I felt whenever I returned. I now know and understand Parisian culture. I have a school that was mine and a place where I lived in Paris. I have routines that I practiced, like getting off at the same Metro stop, walking down the same street, and visiting friends. When I was studying in Paris, I took a weekend trip to Munich and then spent my spring break in the north of Spain visiting my cousin, and in Italy being a tourist and staying with a friend. C'était la vie.
I came back to the States and didn't return to Europe again until the fall of 2008. I worked in the Netherlands for three months. I lived in the Hague (Den Haag, as it's called in Dutch) with a roommate. Funny thing is, when I arrived, I was so jet-lagged, that my roommate woke me up on the first day of work, and I remember just standing there, staring at her blankly. And then she went, "Wake up Sabrina; you're in Europe!" Looking back on it now, I am utterly amused at how comical I must have looked, obviously showing no signs that I had a clue where I was, nor why I had come to her country. Hearing my roommate actually say that I was in Europe was the kicker I needed to remind myself to get ready to start my first day working for the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia. My time in Den Haag is actually a whole 'nother story 'cause I can literally spend pages writing about it from so many viewpoints. Let's just say that I learned how to balance working on cases of genocide (which was very draining, but about which I felt extremely passionate), and having a healthy social life of great and supportive friends. In Den Haag, happy hour was a very big deal on Tuesday nights - why Tuesday nights and not on Friday nights beats me. I was often the only, or one of the handful of, brown people in my groups, but I've been used to that since like forever. At least everyone spoke English, I rationalized to myself, so at least I was in the in-group somehow.
I left the Netherlands and didn't return to Europe again until three years later, when I visited my friend (let's call him) Nicola in his homeland of Sicily. I met Nicola when we were both in the Hague. Visiting him in Sicily was interesting because I definitely noticed the stares from people, which seemed to teeter between curiosity and hostility, either at again, seeing a brown face, or seeing a brown face in the company of a white face who was clearly getting along pretty well with him.
Tomorrow I go back to Europe for the first time in six years. That seems criminal, based on how frequently I used to find myself there (actually this year is the first time I've left the country in six years, so that's probably the real feeling that I find disturbing). I'll be visiting another friend who I met while we both studied in Paris. I'll be visiting Barcelona and Madrid. I am open to meeting the World and experiencing new things. I can't wait for this experience to begin and I know I'll be sad when it's over. Is there a way that we (I) can figure out how to just keep traveling on a continual basis? If you figure it out, please let me know!
Be gone you vile day
Don’t plague my mind with wet worries
You steal my joy from the sun
You hoarder, selfish hoax
You have overstayed your welcome
You were never welcome in my house
Travel across the continent
Or get lost in the ocean where you belong
I need fire to keep my energy ablaze
I better not find you when I come back
Cuz if you think of rearing your head here once again
You’ll find that you won’t have anyone to haunt anymore
With six months of March
Cuz I know where the sun survives
And that is where I’ll thrive
Sun 6/11 - Barcelona....Wed 6/14 Madrid
Why do my eyes feel so raw?
Red with no teardrops
I can’t make them stop
Wait until the tide comes home
He powdered his way through life
But always smiled
You’d never know there was something wrong with those dimples
Or the twinkle in his eyes
But those tears never lied
He swaggered his way through life
Dancing and leading and leaping
But always found it
Would never give it up
Even if it hurt him
He crazed his way through parties
Convinced himself that life was awesome
But those ghosts never died
So he went to go find them.