17 October 2007

I have not had this much silence in quite a while. It has been a loud seven years.

I remember convincing myself that I had the stamina to walk to the Alps from the city square. It was the first time I had ever really seen mountains like that. In which direction would I travel? I figured it did not really matter. The city was surrounded my mountains.

After six hours of walking, I was in the (dirty, rural) French slums, with nothing but a blister to show for myself. Except the decisive conclusion that it was time to drop out of music school forever. You see, this was, as they sometimes say, my year of discovery. And of the things I discovered, it was this that mattered most.

The only other discoveries worth mentioning were that Europe itself was boring, not so different from North America, except with more littering, more overt racism and more antiquarian preservationists that I could tolerate. Only in Morocco and Barcelona did I genuinely enjoy the traveling itself -- and for quite separate reasons in both cases. The silence was what really kept me there -- not the sights -- not the culture -- not the hostels.

And so here I sit. Type. Read. Alone in this massive apartment. Thank goodness I have control of the volume on my headphones, or else this would be a long journey to the foot of that mountain.