Saturday, August 15, 2009
First thing--the site of ancient bikes crowding one another on railings always makes me feel a little dizzy with joy. Holland charms me everytime.
Second thing--there is no pandora in Europe. there are licensing problems or something.
Pleased to have pirated an internet connection in the apt in Budapest so that I might stream some music, it turns out I can't. I do have my iPod but putting in my ear buds seems like a extreme way to shut out the experience of being somewhere new. So for now it's the clacking on the keyboard echoing through the empty rooms, the faint conversations in hungarian at the cafe below my window, and someone's very loud phone with a shrill that pieces the silence of the dark courtyard. There is something, I don't know what yet, that is very eastern european, post-communist about it.
But its funny how comforting the internet connection itself is though. Zoe and Juniper aren't here yet and in a country where I have yet to learn hello, goodbye, please (and I just learned thank you. . ."kozonam"), once I was able to get online, I felt more at ease, like I had a bunch of friends around or within grasp.
I woke up at about 2pm today. I slept more than 12 hours after not sleeping at all for two days and barely sleeping in the last four days besides a 30 minute nap in vondel park in Amsterdam (ps there is a homeless population in tolerant/benevolent Amsterdam, we were all sleeping on the bank of the duck pond together) on my day layover there.
When I made it to Dam Square on my 4 hour meander through town, things started to get really strange in my head. I felt my grasp on reality slipping and started to think about how weird it is that everyone sleeps at night for certain number of prescribed hours and eats at certain intervals. Was it really necessary? What if we didn't need to? What if it was some sort of conspiracy to make us spend half of our precious lives with our eyes closed or distracted by gestation. I mean, here I was in Amsterdam, functioning properly, able to make my legs move one in front of the other and discern street signs and bad deals on shoes, and I was only a little bit off. I put my head in my hands for a few minutes, looked up blinking in disbelief at my surroundings and decided I should keep myself moving, trying to stay ahead of this train of thought.
At 2pm in Budapest the next day, my body finally accepted that it was in fact daytime and I should be up and about (thanks to the stumptown and french press I brought across the globe with me --I'm not ashamed to admit it!) I talked myself out of staying inside all day just because I was a silly american tourist that couldn't communicate with anyone and I wasn't sure if I knew exactly how to get in and out of the apartment building. I needed cream for the coffee, so I went out looking for a supermarket, which was literally about 20 steps from my front door, and ran into this (baroque?) theater.
And tomorrow. . . dancing at Trafo shall ensue.