Another thousand miles north and I arrive at the place that used to be my home. There’s something sacred about stepping back inside the house that I grew up in. Yet the first thing I do upon arriving is immediately begin to miss the Miami that I just left behind. Why is the grass always greener? Way too often I fantasize about being somewhere other than where I am. Even when I am perfectly happy in a moment, I can still feel a deep, constant nagging that there’s something else I should be doing. This inability to be satisfied anywhere is starting to unnerve me.
One thing I do appreciate about being here is that now I have somewhere to return to, a space I can call my own. This I am grateful for, but now a sudden and intense loneliness has set in. Throughout this past month and a half in Miami, I’ve been constantly surrounded by people. Even when I took my alone time in cafes, I knew I’d be with people in the evenings in order to have places to sleep, kitchens to cook in, couches to relax on. Now it’s just me, and it’s lonely. How can I will myself to focus on the things I had wanted to do with this me-time instead of spending the time missing everyone?
Driving back from my coffee shop, late afternoon sunlight filters through the bare branches. I am surrounded by springtime cherry blossoms just beginning to peek out. One year ago I was in Miami, so I missed them all; two years ago I watched the pink blurring through the windows of a bullet train in Japan.
In the morning, I awake to gray. Fuchsia flowers drip with rain, and the bare branches scratch the clouds. I drink coffee from a glass mug, play my guitar for a few minutes, and sit down to write. At first I feel antsy. How should I use this time? When am I going to leave? What should I be working on right now? How many hits am I getting on my blog? What music should I listen to? How can I best use this rainy day energy? Where am I going? What am I doing? Then suddenly, something clicks into place, and I breathe. I drop my pen and surrender. I have nothing to “figure out.” Today will be my day to focus on the small things. I watch the rain for a while, listening to Sigur Ros now, letting the melodies pour over me and watching puddles form and raindrop ripples quiver. Then I decide to brew another cup of coffee. I cannot guess where I will be in one month, what I will be doing, but right now I fully devote myself to filling the pot with water. In this moment, scooping the coffee grounds into a fresh filter has become an art form, and I perform this ritual as gracefully as I can. While the coffee is brewing, I wash the glass mug. When the coffee is finished brewing, I swirl in the hazelnut cream.