i thought when i started school again that i would be presented with all manner of hilarious anecdotes about “the youth” and how far removed from their experiences i have become in the years since i was last there.
apparently that’s not going to happen.
in fact, this time around my experience is very similar to what it once was: i go to class, i participate, i occasionally say a couple words to some classmates afterward, and then i go about my day. i was never really a part of undergraduate life in the past. i don’t have any friends from college to speak of (save one, though that was a coincidence later on), and i guess i don’t see myself making any this time around, either. which is fine, really.
i’ve had a couple quizzes, one of which was a pop quiz on which i possibly got 2/3 points. the other one, i think i may have answered the question correctly. i’ve had a paper that i have zero confidence in, though i suppose it will turn out ok. as a few of my friends have said, my work is being compared to people who make christmas trees out of keystone light cans and do massive bong rips in their free time, so i have that going for me.
i don’t know if anybody is keeping track, but i may very well be busier than i have ever been. it’s not helping.
the loudest sound ever heard on earth occurred in 1883 – i can’t possibly comprehend what that must have been like, but i can certainly empathize with the idea of an explosion reverberating for days. the sound of something letting go with terrific force, and then aftershocks rolling past every few hours for a while.
once it’s gone, there is beauty to be found returning to the earth – i have always been fascinated by the way in which nature takes back its own space, drawing everything into itself.
there’s a truth in time, in growth, in decay. in massive explosions and the destruction of islands. in lost love and in longing.
i’ve never seen anything like this.
it keeps happening.
i’ll be walking to or from class, and memories just wash over me. it seems a lot like wandering around, invisible, in the midst of the past. passing a corner and remembering one time i rode my bike past that corner and saw an old acquaintance from high school, shouting a thing we always shouted at each other, and then rolling by.
parking on Cramer again, as i do every wednesday, looking at a house i’ve only been in a couple times, remembering every time i stared at that house 15 years ago.
i wonder if this is what dementia feels like. just awash in memories, indistinguishable from the physical world.