Saturday, March 25, 2006

The Anticipation is a Bitch…

So here I am entering my last month here in Russia, and really the anticipation is just as bad as it was the month before I left home. This is probably for thousands of reasons, but the most pressing one is that everyone here and at home keeps talking to me about it. Everyone wants to know what my plans are for when I return, which is a really confusing subject for me to discuss. I have no solid plans and the world is open to me right now, but honestly I don’t see any clear direction. My whole life has been lived with having plan after plan lined up: first after high school, I had college to attend; then after college, I was leaving to Russia; but now after Russia, I have no fucking clue as to what I’m doing next. Of course, there are a million different things I could do and want to do, but life has no direct road for me to travel right now. This is so scary, and I’m not sure how to handle it. However, one thing I’ve learned from my time here is that I can handle almost everything, and this is such an exciting knowledge that I look forward to the uncertain future.

Even though I am looking forward to my return, for the obvious reasons (family, friends, and most importantly Taco Bell and Starbucks ;)), I am so afraid about leaving Russia. This country will always be dear to my heart, no matter what type of relations our country has with it, because it has aided in my maturing and becoming a little more the person I want to be. I believe, well I know, that it is going to be very hard saying goodbye to the country and the beautiful, caring people I have met here. It will be so odd waking up and not having plans with Lucy or hanging out with Alina, Olya, and Sasha. Plus, I have a routine here which will be hard to say ‘so long’ to. Not waking up every morning and eating breakfast in my room, getting dressed for the appropriate weather, and not making the short walk and long climb up stairs to the department will be very odd to me. It’s as if I’ve been living in a six month dream and that soon I’ll be waking myself up. I’m not sure if I’m getting this across to you all very well, because it’s such a hard thing for me to truly comprehend myself.

Honestly, there are many things I wish I had done differently with my time here. Mostly I wish I had been open more to meeting and becoming friends with people. Yes, I have friends here that I’ll never forget, but because I’m stupid I ran a lot of people off just so as not to have to deal with the pain of having to say goodbye. This is a very stupid thing, but I’m just happy I learned early enough to save some relationships that I almost lost. Everyone I’ve met here and those I’ve spent a lot of time with mean the world to me –almost just as much as my family and friends back home do. Yet, still, I wish I had just been more open to experiencing all aspects of Russian life, except the sauna because that just scares me, but luckily I still have a month to try and experience as much as I can. Thus it is my resolution to enjoy my last month as much as humanely possible and leave here knowing that I did what I could to enjoy myself. Of course, I’ll return to Russia someday, as I have not seen St. Petersburg or Siberia both of which I’d love to see, but that experience will be nothing like the one I’ve been living through.

Life is such an odd event that each living being goes through. I received an e-mail today from a great friend at home who is extremely excited about making her first trip outside the country, and her excitement made me remember my own. It seems so strange that only two years ago, I was getting ready for my trip to England. I was beyond excited about that trip as I thought it would be my only chance to see what life was like outside the States. Yet here I sit in my room in Russia and I still cannot believe that this life is mine. I keep anticipating waking up in my bed at home and being disappointed that this was just a dream –but it is not a dream, it is my life and I couldn’t be happier. Going from a boy who dreamt so much of living a life that was not his own, which to be truthful I still do a lot of dreaming like that, to living a life that I never even considered is such a fucking great feeling. I feel that I’m truly alive, which is a feeling that no drug could ever reproduce. So I guess what I’m trying to say is that dreams do come true. They might not be the exact dream, but a version of it and maybe even better then the original one. Every time I am walking the streets of Rostov, being surrounded by hundreds of Russians, seeing sights that nothing in the States can compare to, I just feel –alive. No other word would be better able to describe it then that one –ALIVE.


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