05 August 2006

the long road home.

like a ten minute dream in the passenger seat
while the world is flyiing by
i haven't been gone very long
but it feels like a lifetime

So here I am in Galway, Ireland at 2 AM, staying awake to catch a bus to the airport in two hours. Sitting at the Claddagh (riverside) in Galway, drinking cider in the mist tonight with Joey, Erin and I realized how absurd the past three weeks of our lives have been. We should have been sitting in the Tel Aviv airport waiting for a flight to Atlanta, and instead, we're a continent away in one of the most beautiful places I've ever seen after wandering across five countries. This summer has been life changing in so many ways, some of which I don't fully understand yet. Do I want to go to graduate school next fall? Is this really what I want to study? Is this who I want to be? I'm not sure I know anymore, but I think I like the uncertainty.

If this adventure has taught me anything, it's to plan less and live more. I've never had so much fun as when we walked off a plane or train into a random city, uncertain where we'd sleep that night or what country we'd be in the next day. Looking back on the things I wish I'd done in Haifa before we had to leave, I don't want that feeling ever again. I put things off believing in the certainty of tomorrow and next week, and I realize now more than ever how quickly things can change. While I'd rather have finished out my time in Israel and Palestine, I think I needed this time to decompress while wandering across Europe. So, I'd like to extend special thanks to everyone who made this trip the absurd adventure it turned out to be:

Conor Oberst for writing brilliantly introspective music that composed the soundtrack (and entry titles) for this trip. Hakan, Ersin, Murat, and nameless Greek chemistry student (and mother) for giving us places to sleep, breakfast, and showing us firsthand the generosity of strangers. David, Alli, and Joey for being amazing and studying/working across Europe, and for being willing to take in random refugees (and even give up their beds, unwilingly in some cases). And finally, thank you to those back in the states who supported me unconditionally through all of the chaos and are making the trip back the one I've looked forward to most in all of my travels. I've never really felt ties to a particular place, instead believing that "home is where you lay your hat," but you have made coming back to Gainesville feel like coming home.

i don't know where i am
i don't know where i've been
but i know where i want to go
and so i thought i'd let you know
yeah these things take forever
i especially am slow
but i realized that i need you
and i wondered if i could

(happy birthday to Caitlin, Matt, and Christine!)

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