“I could live like anybody else in one place. I could be happy and fulfilled, in one place…”
-- One Place, Everything But The Girl from the Worldwide album
I love Everything But The Girl and this particular song always puts me in a reflective mood. Oh wait… I’m always in a reflective mood. Hehe.
Heard this song one weekend afternoon as C and I were on our way home from a squid balls, kikiam and gulaman samalamig spree at UP. It was one of those moments I want to bottle up so I could go back to it again another day, to savor it once more. I felt happy to be going home. I felt happy with the settled life I have.
It was not this way a few years ago. Maybe five or six years ago, I wrote an essay for a creative writing class and these were my first paragraphs:
On a bus from Dumaguete in Negros Oriental to Kabankalan in Negros Occidental. The bus is pulling out of Dumaguete and I am looking at backyards and the city life I had grown familiar with in the three days I had spent there for work. I am surprised at the tears that start to fall. I am feeling heartbroken. Why am I crying? I am wishing the boy beside me will not notice my tears.
After a while I realize that I am scared. Scared to go home to Manila. And that bus ride was the first step I was taking in going home. Home, where my happy life was waiting to be resumed.
I pour out all of my grief in that long bus ride. And I savor all the sights, sounds and scents. Children playing in their backyards. The sweet smell of earth freshly harvested of sugarcane. The dull bass of the bus sound system blasting Bread songs.
I remember that time in my life a bit vaguely now. I was so restless and I felt I had not done all that I could do and I was married and scared of the looming possibility of getting even more tied down by children. I remember incessantly asking C to allow me to get a job in a cruise ship so I could cure my wanderlust. Hahaha! How crazy is that, right?
Instead of doing crazy things, I quit my job and put up Silly. A truly Silly thing to do, leaving a decent pay and awesome medical benefits. But taking that plunge surely cured my wanderlust and gave me a better sense of who I am and what I want in life. I am deeply grateful that I had the balls (and the patience of an oft silly husband) to make such a huge change in my life.
And five or so years after, I read that essay with much sympathy for that scared-out-of her-wits girl, trying to figure out her life. I don’t have everything figured out just yet. I doubt if I ever will. But I surely know I’ve got one heckuva good thing going here (and a great friend to experience it all with) and no cruise ship is going to be as exciting this. Eeeks… drama.