I had been feeling a little depressed recently. Nothing but your standard “away from home” and work related stress stuff (today was killer. I messed up while trying to mail something to London and got ripped a new one for it. I guess I deserved it. But dude, this job is supposed to be easy! I am a freakin tour guide! Well, not anymore. With greater power comes greater responsibility… and the greater possibility of failure! I thought about if accepting this promotion was a good idea, but after reflection, I think it was. With any job, the lowest rung of the ladder is generally the easiest. So why would I want to remain stagnant? Advance! Succeed! Onward! And the worst that could happen is that I discover I am not cut out for management, in which case I become a tour guide again. No tears shalt be spilt.)
Anyway, it gave me a chance to reflect upon an unforeseen consequence of living alone in a foreign country. Though I have many friends here and I meet new interesting people every day, for the most part it is just me walking the streets with only my thoughts. The voice in my head is really the only thing I can listen to because I can’t understand anybody around me because they are not speaking English! It’s an odd thing. It’s as if my thoughts are in solitary confinement. The only real outlet for them is this blog! I guess everybody could feel this way, but I feel that it is more pronounced when a language barrier exists as the ability to listen and comprehend what others around you are saying is a distraction. Eavesdropping is natural and a way to occupy your brain without really thinking. You can commiserate, compare, contrast, and consider. Unfortunately I cannot do this. I might as well be surrounded by a horde of drunken Mongolian folk poets. Nothing is coming through the static. Hence, it’s just me and my thoughts keeping each other company (and I maintain that the two are completely separate entities. Dude, I can think of some pretty sick shit. I won’t get into it, but I certainly don’t have complete control over the things that I think about).
I feel like I can now understand how a person put in solitary confinement in prison could go insane. Thankfully I see the sunlight and I have friends to spend time with. If I lacked those simple things… I would lose it. Guaranteed.
That gets me to thinking: (Why) does our brain have a mental self-destruct? Left completely alone, will a thinking mind consume itself and lapse into dementia? Huh. Does it need stimuli in order to function properly, and if those stimuli don’t exist, will the solitary mind cease to function? I think so. I am sure there has been a study on this.
I am on the train right now from Munich to Paris. Luckily I am alone in my compartment. Hahaha, I say that after writing the following paragraphs… but heck, I’d rather be alone that with some crazy random person. There was a woman here before but I don’t think she had a ticket (the conductor and her had a prolonged conversation) so she was kicked off. I was thankful, as when I entered into the compartment I intruded on her fingernail painting session. Are you kidding me? If I lit a match when I walked inside you would be reading about me in the paper. The fumes were unbearable. Well she’s gone now, thankfully. Now it’s just me, my laptop, and the smooth tunes of Hall & Oates on my headphones. No joke, these guys are geniuses. Luckily I was blessed with the opportunity to see these modern Michelangelos in concert with Dan and some friends. After getting appropriately plastered in the Jones Beach parking lot, we proceeded inside, only to remember that Todd Rundgren was opening for them. Nobody knew who the hell he was… except me. I shouted at the top of my lungs “IT WOULDN’T HAVE MADE ANY DIFFERENCE!!” and “HELLO IT’S ME!” He played both. Awesome. Then the Dynamic Duo came out. They were awesome. For an encore, our group of polite gents requested that they play “FUCKING RICH GIRL!” They did. I cried with delight.
My battery is running out. Paris in 7 hours. Here I come.