I was driving this morning and a James song came on my mix CD and I was thrown back to 1998, living in London on a study abroad program. I was in college, so, as was often the case throughout my twenties, I was sober, hanging around a lot of people getting very intoxicated on a fairly regular basis. I feel like going overseas made me expand in mind and soul and take me into the journey that I'm on today. So when I'm thrown into that memory of my time in London, it all feels very magical and good and happy...as do many of my memories from my twenties.
But a lot of times when I reminisce about those days with others, they only can shake their heads over how much they drank and how they don't even want to think about that time of their life. It makes me feel a little lonely when that happens--that a memory that's lovely and light for me is one someone else would rather not have. I guess it's the same kind of lonely I felt back then, once it began to turn yellow out (as my dad always says) and people were drunk beyond their real selves, too far away for me to laugh with, connect with, or reach.
I was in a dance club once during that time--The Borderline--oh it was the best dance club ever, all British pop and cute bartenders. I was kissing some boy I met who was drunk (of course) and assumed I was too. When he took me to the bar to order us drinks and I asked for a Coke, he was shocked.
"You're not drinking?" He said, aghast.
I shook my head, smiling.
"You're not drunk?"
"Well...I never kissed a sober girl before."
I remember feeling a little sad at that statement, but glad I could be someone who might stand out in his hazy memory of drunken make outs.
"It's funny snogging a girl when you're drunk and she's sober" He said later.
I doubt he could have picked me out in a line-up three hours later.
But that was part of my twenties. Being sober in a sea of drunkenness. I loved telling my friends stories about what they did last night, over coffee the next morning.
Listening to James today and remembering that time was fun, and a little moving. I wonder what the other people who were in that program with me remember, if it feels like a good place to return in their minds, or something best forgotten.
|Me (second from the right) in London, 1998|
I know it's been awhile since I've blogged. I've just been traveling again and thinking and having summer. But as the weather gets autumnish and the leaves start falling, I usually want to write. Thanks for sticking around.