Friday, February 18, 2005

four days in the mountains, part one

as some cold dark bleak weeknight crawled its way into day, i sat watching my laundry spin dry in the 24 hour laundromat up the street from my apartment. bad south american soap operas droned on and on all around me, in stereo. the place was bustling with activity, of course. everyone was thinking the same thing -- it'll be empty when i get there! -- and everyone was genuinely suprised that it wasn't. i know i was. i had been looking forward to the solace and quiet of humming machines, and getting lost in a good book. as i waited listlessly to use a dryer, i realized how much i enjoyed my time alone. i had an epiphany: i needed a vacation. not just any vacation. i wanted to get away, as far away as my no money situation would allow, from people. people were starting to work my nerves a little harder than usual. not because they were especially rude or in my way or whatever, but because they were there.

most of the time, this middle-of-the-night scenario reinvigorated me in some wierd way. when that "i'm revived!" sensation didn't come as easily to me as it usually did, i knew that i was in trouble.

i couldn't make my own vacation and stay home. my roommate was usually there in spite of his graduate school/day job responsibilities, giggling with his new girlfriend who happened to live across the street. besides, there were always things that pulled me out of my apartment when i least expected it: things to pick up, to drop off, to go look for and whatnot. there was always something that had me getting out of bed and running all the way downtown like my butt was on fire. there was no escape.

when i could pull it off, staying in bed all day was dreamy, thanks to my negrovision and my baby taylor. there were moments that were highly creative. ideas and songs and lovely visuals would come at me like shrapnel. but i couldn't hide in bed any longer. i had to go power up some place else.

i hadn't had a vacation in years. i suppose i could call visiting my family a vacation, but it's not. i don't know of anyone that visits their family for an extended period of time and comes back to their life in the city without feeling drained.

the only option was to go somewhere upstate and konk out. i had a few options, none of which i'd ever explored. my need to get away was greater than any fear of the unknown i may have harbored. president's day weekend was upon me. i could either stay in the city, watch movies all weekend and catch a white sale ( because frankly, i could use another set of sheets) or i could jump on a train and disappear.

i chose the latter.

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