Domingo 18th – First time speaking to Spanish strangers in a while. Lost with a dead phone. Ask or explore. Asking was the easier option. Feeling this regression of wanting to go into myself. Not wanting to be seen or noticed. Just ghosting by the world, plugging in when I want to. That isn’t possible though. You don’t get to pick and choose your waking moments. It’s akin to robbery to even try it. You’ve got all this joy to share, so share it. You’re not a wounded animal. You’re a lion. Stand up tall and roar like one.
Lunes 19th – “Hombre! Hombre! Tu paragua!” I shouted after the elderly gentleman as he ventured off with his head in his receipt. Not a day to be without an umbrella. A day for the ducks. “Muchas gracias.” He responded. I threw in “De nada.” Feeling confident in my Spanish today and returned to pack my already racing groceries as he quipped “Thank you! Thank you!” Feeling confident in his English.
Martes 20th – The game all square at one – one Raquel suggested an idea. “OK if I lose I’ll get a tattoo but if you lose you have to get your nipples pierced.”
“OK. Just one.”
All on the line as she dealt out the shithead hands. Over quicker than you can say clap your hands say yeah and Raquels tattoo fate was sealed.
Miercoles 21st – Read a poem today that said selfless people are often the ones that think they are selfish. Hard to argue. Have critically called some decisions and choices over the last few weeks selfish and all that did was prevent me from doing good. Selflessness starts with yourself.
Jueves 22nd – Bounced out of school in wonderful form today. Everyone I made eye contact with got a smile, a see you tomorrow and/or a high five. It continued onto the bus where I listened intently to teenagers discussing their woes and joys in a language I barely understand. The sun is shining and my mind is as clear as the blue sky. Contentment reigns supreme once more.
Viernes 23rd – “Talk to me Ineko. How are you? I’m doing great, thanks for asking. Any plans for Easter? Are you playing football tomorrow? What position do you play? Have you scored many goals this season? Don’t forget to breathe. You’re doing brilliantly. It’s all you now.” I had a question or an encouraging word for each milkcrate he climbed. Higher and higher. Close to the roof. As he arrived at the top I encouraged him to stand up and reach even higher. He did. To rapturous applause. I wonder that moment feel as significant for Ineko as it does for me?
Sabado 24th – Is there a word for digital-physical serendipity? That convergence of the real and unreal gets blurrier and blurrier over time. Becomes easier to grow into a dream like state. Serendigitious.
Domingo 25th – Ares caught me off guard today. “You can ask for help you know, Adam?” I had dropped my water and set my umbrella down as she spoke her kindness. You can ask for help. I’m not sure who to ask and I’m not sure what I’m asking.
Lunes 26th – Always a little anxious serving food for the first time. I set down four bowls in front of my quests and distracted myself in my own meal. “Really good ehhh Adam!” Lea encouraged. “If Lea likes it, it means it’s amazing because she hates all vegetables.” Ares added, putting me at ease. “Es brutal!” Mark belted out his criticism so joyously in confused me. “In English, brutal means terrible. Very bad.” No! No! In Spanish the opposite”
Martes 27th – I got my wish for solitude as Olli did not appear at the train station. Fell asleep at the back of the bus though and missed my intended stop. Or else I got on the wrong bus in the first place. Getting off at a random stop, I ventured off with no intention of exertion. Finding myself a fallen tree I took a seat and rested there until the clouds parted and the sun was shining on my smiling face.
Miercoles 28th – Met a guy called Nolan in Quartier tonight. “Adam Smith, wealth of nations, Adam biblical.” He said more for himself than me after we introduced ourselves. A nice memory tool. Speaking about entrepreneurship and how it can be used to get ideas out there for feedback, acceptance, critique and renewal. This last week I’ve stopped doing that. Begin again, dear friend.
Jueves 29th – Didn’t even go outside today. Didn’t step outside the refuge of my house. Part of me is convicting myself for such behaviour and I’m making sure acceptance and forgiveness wins.
Viernes 30th – First time playing football with the erasmus group today. Lining up against a Spanish bunch. Thirty seconds in I play a pass that gets converted to put us one nil up. Scuff a left foot swinger that gets deflected in. Then channeling my best Jackie Chan Chris I feint two dummies round the last defender and keeper before retiring to my own goal, contend with the impact.
Sabado 31st – Over at Jose’s for dinner tonight. Vegan paella from the self confessed meataholic. Nice to be brought together over great food. Sharing our thoughts on the lost boys that are prevalent in our society before lightening the mood with shityerpants stories. Conversation so honest it feels like therapy.