I realize that nothing has been written about my journey home from Africa, and nothing has been said about my two weeks here back in America. Truthfully, the whole past month has been of an emotional kind that has me mute.
On the taxi leaving Jenny's for the last time, I began telling Archie, the cab driver, how much Jenny meant to me over the semester. I had to stop talking after two minutes because I realized tears were sliding down my cheeks and my voice was breaking. On the plane home I closed my eyes and slept. That was at least a break from the turmoil in my heart and stomach.
Seeing my family waiting for me at the airport gave me a weird sense of relief, as if I was unsure of who I belonged to. On the way home I was caught between making jokes and referencing South Africa. I wondered if it would be like that for a while.
The first few days were a haze of strong emotions and jet-lag. By Thursday I was ready to see my best friend and on Frid I was ready to see two more friends. On Sunday I was excited to go back to my church, the place I'd missed the past five months. When I arrived I walked straight into hugs with the people I cared most about. After the service I stood around with a few other 20-somethings and realized that I will have to make friends here. I also realized that when anyone asked me how South Africa was, all I could really say was, "Amazing," because I had a story to tell but I hardly knew them and I knew all they were expecting was a one-word adjective. A girl I met at church this morning summed it up when she said, "It was amazing and so much more, wasn't it?"
On the second Monday after I got back I slid into a babysitting gig, which kept me busy mornings and afternoons. I applied at two different places and tried to think of more I wouldn't mind being employed by. I couldn't think of any. I determined to be picky for this month and next month to be more liberal in my job-search.
It's now Sunday night, the second Sunday after my arrival in America. It is around midnight in Cape Town, but only 6pm here. I sit at my desk, wishing I could have a few glasses of wine and some good books. I suppose I could indeed have both now, but it's raining and I lack the motivation to drive out in the bleary weather.
I am torn between talking and not talking, communing with people and keeping to myself. I have a feeling that I will not think of much this semester but my work, and truthfully that bothers me not at all. Last semester had me thinking in many different directions, all of which were far from beneficial to my "art," if one could call it that. I have new ideas and am aware of the things I need to work on both in art and in myself.
I am single, and think I will remain so for a good while...my heart is in no shape to be picked up by another guy. This will probably be the best thing that could happen to me right now. I have travels to save up for, friends to make, books to read and ideas to write, things to make and opinions to be formed. What does my American semester hold? Not change, really, but maybe growth instead.