At least as long as I do



Last week I moved, again. I packed up 40 kilograms of possessions, divided them in two piles: Those needed for backpacking in Spain, those I’d take with me to my next fixed address in Amsterdam.

I was clearing up scraps of paper, train tickets and other bits of rubbish I always attach excessive sentimentality to. In place of people that can’t be brought along. I put on Cold Chisel because I needed a rock that afternoon. Soundtrack to a teenagehood driving on open roads for hours, where you never really moved from the one place. My Australian childhood. Working out exactly what that is requires comparative study.

Hej Hej Denmark. Hola Spain: go easy on me. Only credibility I’ve got is a pure bloodline and a surname as common as pan (that´s bread in the language I am far more comfortable with). Wondering if Spain will be one of my anchor points, or if this is just a pilgrimage of obligation. Often try to work out which countries will make the cut in the long run, which ones will just blur in nostalgic appreciation for the travel calling. Yesterday I changed direction walking and tracked a man in the street for a few minutes because he was speaking Indonesian on his mobile.

It’s New Years but I’m not making any new resolutions. Are you finally getting old when the anniversaries roll around, and you realize that to get things done, you’re just going to have to work at it everyday? Some mornings I forget that, others I get myself back on track. When I was little I didn’t even know you had to make that kind of an effort once you’d grown up.


5 Responses to “At least as long as I do”

  1. lovelli Says:

    He was speaking Indonesian on his mobile? What a distraction. I could only imagine how that made you feel, really. Scary vowels and hard boiling consonants stressed unevenly. Pure torture.

  2. bellesbits Says:

    are you serious? It is one of my favourite things to hear! It is beautiful!

    • Lovelli Says:

      Oh, I’ve gone past the oh-how-exotic romantic phase with the language. And I’m pretty sure that the next couple of weeks would see to that I get over feeling mentally bruised each time a person speaks to me in a “proclamation Indonesian” manner. It almost sounds like yodels.

  3. Laurene Says:

    I am going to listen to a dangdut song right now. I miss hearing and speaking bahasa.

  4. penamalam Says:

    neither did I. Life does creep up on you.

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