l i l e p h y t e

January 23th, 15:11 | Feeling gypsy again

My head's feeling kind of grey and misty, the way I always imagine the sea looks in the winter. I think half of me is still out on the Beaches, wind-whipped and a little cold, but still refusing to come home.

It's a hard emotion to explain to someone who doesn't know me. Yes, there is the aspect that I want to see everything in the whole world. That's not really what's driving me though -- no one's more comfy curled up in an oversized hoodie and trying to catalogue her mountain of books than me. (More on that later; it's a project I started last night.)

It's not that I'm tired of my city. I'm continually amazed by what I don't know about this place. Every time I think I want to move, or that I could do without something here, I find a new draw, a new street, a new bookstore, and discover again why I haven't fallen in love with another city yet, even though I've lusted after a few on my travels. No, this has nothing to do with geography. This has to do with environment.

I am a social creature. So in all the most important ways, my environment is defined pretty much entirely by the people around me. I'm not saying I'm bored of the people I know; I'm not, I love them lots and am glad to get to see them, usually not often enough. But lately, I just feel... misty and grey, and a little cold. I feel like nothing's changing, except to drift slowly away, and it's stifling me. What I really want right now is to feel something new, something I haven't felt before, and I've always felt that to do that, I need a new environment. So, new people.

My brother PongBear once commented that he thought it was so strange that sometimes it was way easier for him to confide in strangers than in his own friends about some things. I don't think that's strange at all; I do it all the time.

Any time I feel trapped, or frustrated, any time I can't find the right words, my first instinct, especially in the winter, is always to get outside, get in the cold, and run. Just run. This has been a lot harder since moving back from Kingston, where there was always a welcoming lakefront to run along, but I've done it a couple times.

If that's not a possibility, though, my next move is invariably to call someone I barely know, or go find someone new and talk to them. It doesn't matter what about, it doesn't have to be related to whatever I'm upset about. I just want to hear someone else's story, I want to know that there's someone's life I don't know anything about. I want to forge a new connection between myself and the world. I don't really understand it.

Needless to say, this has gotten me into trouble. Apparently no one believes that near-strangers will be attentive and want to hear all about whatever it is you feel like sharing, without having ulterior motives of the intimate persuasion. I maintain that if all it takes to mislead someone is to be a good listener, I have nothing to apologize for. But then, maybe this is more of the rules I never learned in highschool manifesting themselves.

In any case, that's about where I am now. It happens every couple months or so. I don't feel lost, but I don't like where I am. All I really want is to just take off, disappear into the New with an acquaintance, or no one at all, and come back, eventually, having found something new, something that quenches... whatever it is that makes me feel this way.

If any of you have seen Chocolat (mediocre chick-flick, but totally worth watching for the scenes where they work with the chocolate), it's a little like Julie Binoche's character. I can't control it, or explain it, and even though I know it's preventing a lot of things in my life, it's just there. Definitely part of who I am.

On the bright side, all the imposed stay-at-home-time that goes with me trying to tether myself and not-run has meant spending more time with my parents. I've actually succeeded in having a couple of Real Conversations with my mom over the past week, which was a nice change, and last night, I totally stole my dad's database for book-tracking (seriously, he's got like 800 books, at least) and decided to implement a copy for my own heap of texts.

Why, you might ask, would I bother with such a thing? After the October book splurge and subsequent shelf re-org, I was sifting through trying to find a book when I came across some of the ones I'd shelved from the booksale and realized I'd completely forgotten I had them. That was about a month ago. Yesterday, trying to think of a couple books that might be of interest to someone else, I realized that I no longer have any idea of what I own. It's a little ridiculous. Clearly senility + used-book-buying-habit = disaster. So that's why we're going with the tracking, okay?

Having established that though, let me tell you something -- populating a database with information about all the books you own? Is way more time-consuming than you think it will be, even if you're fast, and efficient, and stole all your dad's author and publisher information. (Because, let's face it, your dad might have Tolkien and Asimov in his collection, but he likely doesn't have L.M.Montgomery or Beatrix Potter.) If I consider how much I've got done in such a short time, I'm actually doing really well. I'm about 65% done, and most of the remaining books are non-fiction (either reference, essays or religious texts) or "misc" (comic books, joke books, etc). I've no idea how to classify those, and am seriously considering leaving them out of the list. I mean, who's going to borrow that stuff anyway, right? (Answer: coworkers. When I worked in the government healthcare branch, one of my coworkers borrowed The Satanic Bible, and only partly because he didn't believe me that it existed/I owned it.)

Anyway, so yeah. That's what's keeping me busy (other than laundry, housework and voting) today.

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