Monday, April 05, 2010

Self-Centred Introspection

A few years ago, someone in New York gave me a black Moleskine notebook, and told me that I should use it to write down my thoughts when I'm feeling pensive. I took the book, and then forgot about it for a couple of years. Last year though, while packing for my six months of travels, I found that notebook in my desk drawer and decided to take it on a whim with me.

Funnily enough, I started writing in it only about half-way through my travels, when I felt that I had accumulated so much to say and write that I had to put it down before I forgot. So I finally started the first entry one afternoon in Angkor Wat, after spending several hours contemplating the incredibly humid, worn-down beauty of the temples there. Since that happy time, I've begun carrying it around even though I'm no longer travelling and will often scribble a few sentences in it. Usually this happens when I'm on the tube in London, since public transport allows you to observe so many different people anonymously, while letting you stay secluded in your own little world.

So from today, I'm going to start (selectively) putting up some of the excerpts that I've written down. I'm going to tag these posts "Self-Centred Introspection" since that's exactly what they are - my thoughts about me and my life, with no real purpose, meaning or intent.

So here it is - the first one.

Today I’m at peace. Things are calmer, my thinking is clearer. I understand what it is that I need to keep me happy.

That doesn’t mean that I am automatically happier. But that I know – intellectually, rationally, calmly – what it is that I need to do to be so.

Tourists wearing A&F in the District Line. My eyes shut, I see flashes of your naked chest as I rest my head on it. The sexy, acrid smell of your armpits, the hair brown & curling; I can hear your sighs as I recall our lovemaking.

The air in this train is cold, crisp, damp. Spanish filters through the soft strains of the music on my iPod. I rejoice in the minute details. The ruff of my jacket against my neck, unshaven, scented, stubbly. The taste of that last beer lingers in my mouth. The cold of the glass partition seeping into my shoulder as I lean against it.

I am told that memories are made of this.