Funny and Interesting Airport Stories That Strangers Share : Human tapestry

Madrid January 21st- A small dose of jet lag

Time and place… it seems at times to escape me. i am here in body but I still am adjusting to the time zone. Have all the parts I left behind caught up with me?
I take things day by day. I am always amazed at the strangers I meet along the way of my journeys. There was the humble man who was on the plane with me to Texas who wanted to talk incessantly when I wished to sleep. tThere was the two women travelling from Costa Rica. The Bolivian temptress who sat with me on the train station speaking of her boyfriend , her cousin’s slutty ways and her adventures in Malaga. In certain conditions, humans tell me their stories and they open up like rivers. Sure, sometimes we exchange numbers but I doubt if I will ever see them again. But yet, in that small dose of intimacy two souls connect… I wonder if the next world I will recognize them.
There is the girl who I met on the station in Madrid, who told me she had no money and her mother had died and she had been forced to send her daughter back home… who spoke in scared hushed tones , tiny and young and frail. There is the punk boy on the bus ride in Amherst on my way back to university who took out a knife and told me he was running from the cops and then proceeded to smoke pot in the bus bathroom. There is the woman who did not know how to write when I was 14 and asked me to write her immigration form on the way to the UNited States for the first time. The two women from Argentina, fresh off the financial collapse in 2001 who had taken out all their money in time to go on a vacation to Cuba. The salvadorean loud texan who rambled on about the government. The Ukranian mime who lived in London who was stuck with me in the airport in Milan… The 70 year old man who sat with me on the trip home in Texas this month who sadly spoke of his widowed wife and his trips to Spain so many years ago… Or the Texan couple in the hotel in December who told me that with her first husband she was a hot red headed who would get pinched in the buttocks when she went to London… the mothers in the coffee shop in Chertsey whose husband is a gaffe for famous television films. And yet, after our conversations, we say ” Have a nice trip, nice speaking to you” And there they are gone from my life, disappearing into the cosmos of a time where I do not know them… to a life I cannot cross.
And I want to be in their kitchens, I want to see their stories. I want to know why the girl with the wilted flowers and the broken pantyhose is crying… I sit in the subways and see the couples…some intimate, some just starting out, some old and familiar, others with babies on their laps…
I love their stories, their humanity…the ability to speak forth like deep embracing oceans, small drops of spectacular freedom.
And yes, it might mean I sometimes do not live my life. My writer’s mind is always in other thoughts. But I would never ever change this.
Ocean Tenerife

Advertisements

Suitcases Filled With Holes

My point is, everything, afterawhile will get old. Life is just not exciting all the time. You will feel lonely, unhappy , sad in any situation. The best thing is to make the most of what you have and live intensely. If you are moving to somewhere else the worst thing you can do is compare. The place you are living will never ever live up to that comparison. As time passes, you begin to think of your homeland in rose tinted , puffy lalala contexts. You think it can do no wrong. I have seen many a person get out of the plane to El Salvador, their hearts raised with hope just to realize that their house isn’t as big as they remembered, people who used to be their friends don’t have time or remember them and it is far hotter and harder to live there than they thought.

The problem with moving is you are always somewhere else. You always have one foot where you are and another in mid air ready to move forward. You can pretty much think of home as a bunch of selected places.

But for the first time in my life, I lack an anchor. When my mother rented out the house in El Salvador, I was left feeling like my navigational SAT Nav went a bit wonky. I always knew I could go home, no matter if I was in an indigenous Radio in Ecuador, studying in below freezing temperatures in Ecuador or whatever else was happening. There was always home to go back to. But now, I don’t have that anymore.

Trying to get my bearings has been a long and painful process. It’s odd going through all the seasons of the year without knowing I would go back to the tropical sun. The problem is, being in between, sometimes you are never satisfied with anything. People back home tell me, it must be amazing to live in Europe.

But what people don’t realize is that you can get used to anything. After the novelty wears off, you are still the same person and sometimes you deal with the same tests. Here are a couple great things about living in Europe :

Getting on a train and not worrying about getting mugged
Walking at night and not worrying about getting mugged
Unlimited amount of books that are available
Parks and lakes
Cheap flight tickets
Cheap hotels
The ability to meet people , all the time
All kinds of bottles!
Warm hot bubble baths!
Pampered cats and dogs!
No stomache problems !
The cute British accent
The wonderful architecture
No one ever bothers you or is in your life

Here are some things that go old after awhile :
The trains and underground- incredibly slow ( and expensive)
The cold – it just doesn’t stop
People fussing over dogs
The cold – and I am not talking about the weather
Formality and bureacracy

Here are some things I miss about Latin America :
Knowing people forever and knowing that you can call them and they know how to comfort you
The predictability of things
The warmth of people
The sun basking on my face
The hard and tumultous rain which always gives way to the smell of wet earth

However there are things that drive me up the wall :
The fact that everyone is in your life, all the time and forever. Amen. ( Case in point : Your news will always be known even before you get to announce it yourself. I found out my friend had a baby the minute she had it and it was through her cousin’s mother’s sister’s friend).
The warmth of the climate
The predictability
The mugging and the violence!
The bugs!

My point is, everything, afterawhile will get old. Life is just not exciting all the time. You will feel lonely, unhappy , sad in any situation. The best thing is to make the most of what you have and live intensely. If you are moving to somewhere else the worst thing you can do is compare. The place you are living will never ever live up to that comparison. As time passes, you begin to think of your homeland in rose tinted , puffy lalala contexts. You think it can do no wrong. I have seen many a person get out of the plane to El Salvador, their hearts raised with hope just to realize that their house isn’t as big as they remembered, people who used to be their friends don’t have time or remember them and it is far hotter and harder to live there than they thought.

No place is magical. What we have to see is ” How much of the bad can I deal with”…because to be honest, that was one of the main reasons for going to all those conferences was to see a place where I can truly say ” Hey I can stay for a long period of time”…. To Be Continued…