On 26

Commentary

Dear 26-year-old self,

To be clear, this is a letter of goodbye. You and I are being held together by nothing more than a cobweb string of a hours that separate us from the new and cool 27. You see, it’s still OK to look forward to the next self, there are no drops of perspiration as I extend my hand to meet my new older persona. We need to part, and I’m ready for it.

I’m sure going to miss you though, fool. Remember that time you decided to get a new piercing on the wrong side of your face? You kept walking around trying to convince yourself that it looked like the kind of thing you would do — the kind of thing you had expected even! Until your sister pointed out that there’s too much metal on the left side of you face, so you took the earring out just like that.

You were always a restless one though. You considered staying too long in one place the way to rot your brain and curiosity. It’s no wonder that you moved locations 3 times without blinking about it. And you loved the packing, the unpacking — the excitement of possibility. You moved fluidly between borders, you travelled mentally and literally and there was never a dull minute with you holding my hand. Remember Paris? Remember Berlin? I would have never gone ahead if it weren’t for your impulsiveness, your endless drilling. Let’s face it – you would never stop until you got your way. It worked to my advantage. Most times.

It’s normal, I guess, to have ups and downs, but your ups and downs were intense roller coaster rides. You went from deliriously happy to grimly morose in the flash of a second. I had to choose my words carefully when I talked about life, about love, about what it means to be free. This issue really kept you sleepless. You wanted to choose wisely, surely, independently. You wanted to be free but would talk endlessly about your fear that love cripples your freedom. And it pained you to place these two ideals as polar opposites, to force yourself to choose between such lofty ideals. You let love win every time, and I’ve come to the conclusion that it was a defeat you secretly welcomed gladly. You were a true contradiction, as such.

And then my dear old 26-year-old self, you had a bright idea. You needed some direction, even though you didn’t even know it then. You were a little lost but you had convinced yourself you were right on track, as always. It came in the form of a small box with an air balloon on it. Inside there was a bag of beads, and you were confused. Until you started to toy with the idea of using them. And overnight, awoke a new streak of creativity that lay dormant just below your fingertips. And then, you gave the act of creating, a name, and attached a blog to it. For that I thank you old self. Because of you I am here now and I am writing to tell the rest of the world what happens next.

I will miss you,

plain bananas x

Into the moment

Musings

During the entire week, I’ve been telling myself than I need to wake up earlier that 10ish (and 11ish even), but have hardly made a conscious effort to meet that 9 o’clock wake up call. When I say hardly, I mean I haven’t even set any alarms, because I falsely convince myself it will happen naturally (of course the other reason is that my Thai-bought cell phone, only has annoying ringtones that are pretty much the equivalent of waking up to the racket of pots and pans, but with an Asian twist). Today, lo and behold, I woke up at 8.30 a.m. and in my disbelieving excitement that my biological clock had finally set itself right, I tried to transmit this excitement to my sleeping boyfriend, who could hardly understand what I was on about through his sleep-heavy eyelids. Enthusiasm diminished, I turned the other way and went back to sleep.

When we woke up at our regular 11ish time, we surprisingly managed to do everything we have always been saying we’d do on Saturdays but have never done until today.┬áSaturdays are usually unrealistically inflated with all this hope and ambition of things we want to achieve, but secretly know we won’t. Today we were just more determined than usual and as a result I experienced the chaos and disorder of your average Greek farmer’s market for the first time, bought freshly-baked bread from the best bakery in town, got a new piercing and shopped at our local (evil) conglomerate for convenience’s sake. All this, while we trudged through what seemed to be the whole distance of Crete.

I have a thing with piercings, but I ┬áthink this will be my last one. Of course that’s what I said about my other “last one” two years ago, and look at me now. It’s hard pretending I mean such absolute statements, when I know the impulsive bug in me just won’t stay put. I like to kid myself like that.

I have been making some more jewelry with the new beads I got in the mail last week, but have yet to take some good photos of them. When I sit down to bead I actually get so into it that time sort of freezes and so does my brain actually, because I completely forget what it is I was doing before I picked up the pliers, the beads and whatever else. I call it Beading Alzheimer’s, and the only cure I know of is more beads, please.