Tag Archives: adventure

raspberries are red

It wasn’t a perfect day for weather — but it was a perfect day for Berlin.

 

Although, the rain did prove to threaten my plans for the day, you still wanted to meet.

 

I waited for you outside of our apartment building. Warschauer Strasse. One of the main hubs of Berlin, always bustling with busy bodies and enthusiastic drug induced tourists. The energy of the day was especially electric due to the kultural festival — an entire weekend filled with foods from all over the world and multiple music stages displaying local bands galore. I had been the previous night with friends, and ended up eating my life worth in Argentinian empanadas and pad thai.

 

My friends told me not to take you there, at least not to start off with. It was too loud for a first date — too chaotic. But I disagreed, I liked the noise, I liked the colors, the distractions from awkward conversation.

 

However, I took their advice. Instead, I suggested we started out with a photography exhibition from one of my favorite photographers, Mario Testino. I had already seen an installation of his in both Madrid and NYC.

 

So around 15:15 you finally met me outside. You were late, and I had counted on it. I was on time, and I’m never on time unless I’m nervous. But I needed the time to calm my nerves. Truthfully, I don’t know why I was wound up about it. I had spent time with you before, but in groups, and our flirtatious conversation and affectionate ambiguity had been taken lightly. I never let myself take romance too seriously. I don’t know if that’s because of my own insecurity or because I’m as laid back as I claim. Maybe, a mixture.

 

You looked nice though. You were in color — green and pink specifically. Mentally, I noted your favorite colors. I liked this about you, the vibrancy.

 

You smiled and we greeted, and then we were on our way.

 

The metro ride was particular. I couldn’t look at you, or else I would have just kept smiling like an idiot. So I never kept eye-contact with you for longer than normal. Plus, my uncomfortable habit of looking at someone in the eyes too long — I didn’t want to make things awkward within the first 10 minutes.

 

You noticed though, and playfully said, “Look at me, won’t you?”

 

So I obliged, it was the polite thing to do — but I wanted to, also.

 

“I never realized how auburn your eyes are in the light, I’ve never been able to look at you this long.”

 

I laughed, and redirected our conversation. I wasn’t ready to fall for this person yet.

It took us about 30 minutes to get to the other side of Berlin, to the museum that hosted the exhibition. Turns out, the museum had the wrong address on their website and the installation was actually in a sister building about another 20 minutes away. However, by the time we would have gotten there, we wouldn’t have had enough time to see it properly.

 

“We’re going to laugh about this later in the future,” I noted, a bit disappointed.

 

“Why later? It’s funny now,” you answered back, with your dimpled smile.

 

So instead, we decided on having a drink, at a Mexican restaurant called Que Pasa.

 

Was I tempted to have a real drink, and by real, I mean alcoholic? Yes, absolutely. Especially since it was already 5pm. But I didn’t.

 

My desire to want to spend time with you sober superseded it. The times we had hung out together with our group of classmates had always somehow involved ending up drunk, and us walking home together. We’d argue who would walk whom to each other’s door since we lived in the same building, and then we’d end up in our courtyard between the both of our buildings just talking and star-gazing. Well, what little star-gazing you can do in a city of clouds — undoubtedly drunk. You even invited me into your apartment once, but I didn’t make a move. I didn’t want to. I just wanted to enjoy whatever was happening without moving too fast.

 

So I chose a Sprite instead.

 

You drank a hot chocolate.

 

And we talked about family and aspirations and school for a few hours over a loaded plate of nachos.

 

You told me you were a vegetarian for a good 7-8 years of your life. So I found it ironic when you chose chicken to coat the chips. Well, we all have our guilty pleasures, I suppose.

 

Afterwards, I asked if you wanted to go to the festival and check it out. What I meant was — do you want to try all the food stalls with me and dance around and be fools together?

 

You aren’t originally from Berlin, but have lived here for a good four or so years, minus your year abroad in Korea. But you had never been to the festival. It’d be your first time too, and I was happy to experience this with you.

 

We walked around for an hour or so, before you decided on what you wanted to eat. A delicacy from Hungary — I can’t quite remember the name, but it’s their version of a pizza coated with garlic, a white yogurt sauce, and cheese — again, you also added meat: salami, this time. Said it reminded you of your father.

 

“You’re going to have to deal with me eating a lot of garlic… hope you don’t mind.”

 

I found the comment odd, but I didn’t mention it. Just said I wanted to try it how it’s meant to be eaten.

 

So we sat at the picnic tables put out beside the food stand, which was also placed right beside one of the many musical stages of the festival. It was a German group playing songs in many different languages. French, English, German.

 

We stayed watching them for 20 minutes or so, while you ate. We hardly spoke at all. But it wasn’t uncomfortable. In fact, it’s one of my favorite things to find in a person. when you can shut the fuck up with them and still have fun.

 

Once you finished, we got up to leave. I walked ahead of you into the crowd, while the band continued overhead playing a song. I didn’t understand the lyrics, but I figured it must be German since I couldn’t catch any French.

 

Then I felt your hand on my shoulder and I turned around to look at you.

 

“Kiss me now, and I will be in paradise in Heaven.”

 

I am sure the look on my face betrayed me. I’m not that great of a liar. So after a few seconds of looking into each other’s eyes, I blurted out, “What?”

 

“It’s the lyric they just sang,” you said, as you smiled casually and then led me out of the crowd.

 

I closed my eyes and followed you, wondering if that was what the song had really said — wondering if I had missed my chance.

 

But let’s be real. I didn’t know if were on a date or not, honestly.

 

A few days earlier, we had gone on a picnic with my group of friends. I had invited you, and you accepted. There was lots of food and lots of alcohol — two of my favorite things. So naturally, we got very inebriated.

 

Afterwards, we walked from the park to my friend’s house to continue our day of fun. While we strolled to theirs, you and I somehow ended up side by side. I can’t quite recall what got us onto the topic but we had both mentioned how we wanted to hangout, but not get super drunk. Since the past few times had all ended very drunk, but that’s what happens in large groups of socialization.

 

“We should make a date out of it.”

I was pretty intoxicated at this moment already, but I remember it. The “date” word. It took me by surprise.

 

“Yeah, okay, we should.” Then I asked when and we were trying to figure it out, but got interrupted by our friends and their intruding conversations.

 

So when we finally decided to meet up, just us two, it was never explicitly stated if this was our date or not. I wasn’t even sure you remembered what you said, or if it was just drunken words, so I didn’t bring it up. I just thought I’d go out with you and figure it out during.

 

That was a dumb idea — but also very brilliant because it took the pressure off of a label.

 

After eating, we decided to check out the parade. So we followed the crowd into the fray. You put your arm on my shoulder to keep hold of me. I was too nervous to grab your hand. I had told you previously in a different hang out how intimate holding hands was to me, possibly more important than kissing.

 

So I didn’t want to make you uncomfortable — even though we had already held hands in the club, but that was different. I was drunk and friendly then.

 

Now, I was sober and interested — and that’s a deadly combination, for me. Once we got to the street the parade was on, the crowd tightened. So we crossed the street to the other side to be on the less busy part, or so we thought. Once there, we realized how packed it was, too. I let you stand in front to see, and I stood behind you.

 

One of the first floats we saw represented Ghana. The truck had a DJ and many dancers in the back. And there was a massive following of Ghanaians dancing around the truck to afro-beats and their own mix of reggae. This excited the energy in the crowd. People were chanting in solidarity and enjoyment, and dancing around with bottles in hand. You turned to look at me, with the biggest smile.

 

“This is awesome, look at all the colors and dress they’re wearing!”

 

I grinned back at you in response, and for the life of me, I cannot remember how it happened. I know for sure I didn’t exclusively go for your hand.

 

But I know it wasn’t just you either.

 

It just happened.

 

And there we were, in the middle of a huge raging crowd, looking at each other, our fingers intertwined.

 

You turned back around, and I expected you to let go. But you didn’t. Instead you gave my hand a small squeeze, and we stayed that way for a long while, watching the rest of the parade. I couldn’t concentrate much anymore though.

 

All I could feel was the heat between our skin, and how nice it was to hold your hand — but also how confusing.

 

We decided to cross and go back to the festival grounds to get more food — as I hadn’t eaten yet and was getting hungry.

 

There was a knot in my stomach, but it wasn’t from hunger. I realized in this beautiful moment that it was the first time I have ever held hands with another girl openly. Without shame, without secrets, without guilt.

 

I’m 25 and before that Sunday, I had never held hands with another girl so freely. Not with my fling I had before I moved to Spain, and not with my almost 4 year relationship. Not with any of the girls I “dated” in between, either. I hadn’t felt comfortable enough with myself yet.

 

And here I was, holding hands with a beautiful girl. A girl who didn’t make me feel like I needed to hide what I felt.

 

And you know, her and I can turn out to be nothing. We could stop talking today and never speak again — and I will always remember this moment, and how she was and always will be part of a very important experience for me.

 

Maybe this is why holding hands is so intimate for me. Because I’ve never done it before with someone and it felt so… normal.

 

No one gave us weird looks, or ridiculed us, or said anything out of the ordinary.

 

But it was you, too. You didn’t pull back, or make it feel awkward. Just comfortable.

 

I can’t describe it properly, how it made me feel. Just that it felt so normal. It’s the first time in my life, I’ve felt like a girl who likes another girl and that’s normal.

 

I’m sure at the end of the night, I could have kissed you.

 

I didn’t want to though. It was enough for me, to have your hand in mine.

 

A little after midnight, we decided to go to a bar. One of my favorites. Madame Claude. I only had one beer — one. That’s it. At a bar, filled with alcohol. Guess I was enjoying you so much. You intoxicated me.

 

We stayed until about 4:30am, when we decided it was time to go home. Time had escaped me. I couldn’t believe we had spent nearly 14 hours together. I had mentioned it to you at the bar. How I had other plans just in case our hangout was awkward, and you told me the same. You had been out until 4/5am the past few nights and were really tired. And had you not been enjoying yourself, you would have used this as a reason to excuse yourself earlier.

 

We both laughed harder than we meant to, I think. It was good to know I wasn’t the only one nervous.

 

As we walked home, some random drunk guy asked you for sex in German. Said you guys could do it really fast. You scoffed and turned him down. But he kept trying to talk to you. I really didn’t understand anything at the moment, with my limited German skills.

 

But then I felt your hand slip through my arm, and you pulled yourself closer to me. I knew that feeling perfectly, without you having to explain. So I told the guy to back off in English, and he got my memo.

 

You said thanks shyly, and kept your arm looped in mine. You walked close to me, on the way home. Eventually, dropping your arm to hold my hand instead.

 

“You’re comfortable to be around.” You said, before letting go of my hand so I could open the door for us.

 

We stood at the base of the stairs. Normally, I would walk you to the courtyard between our buildings up to your door to your building. I don’t know why, but I didn’t this time.

 

I just hugged you, and you held on to me for longer than a regular hug.

 

“I know you’re tired, so I’ll let you sleep.”

 

You smirked at me, and said breathlessly between us, “I had a really good time.”

 

“Me too.” I held your gaze for a few silent moments. Even in the dark, your blue eyes were crystal clear.

 

And then I watched you walk away — and I couldn’t help but wonder, if it was a date or not.

 

But I knew, even if it wasn’t, I’d always remember it for more important reasons.

Day dreaming. 

I want your Monday mornings

blanket over your head

legs entangled

hair all over my chest

your nails digging mazes into my back

fight or flight attitude towards a new work week

“lets call in today together babe.”

 

I want your Tuesday night

tv show marathons

you so exhausted with your heels still on

having your favourite tea made already

“just hold me, it’s been such a long day.”

 

I want your Wednesday lunch breaks

freshly squeezed orange juice obsession

putting your cup extra pulp for extra energy

you walking out the door

“miss you already… make sure you finish your juice.”

 

I want your Thursday evening

drink specials for two

collarbones exposed

red lips I love speaking words I can’t get enough of

taking pictures of you when you’re unaware

“just us tonight please.”

 

I want your thank god its Friday

soul shining radiance

smile as wide and deep as the ocean you love

the front of your shirt unbuttoned one more than usual

your perfume filling my lungs

irresistible smile that drops me to my knees

adventure in your bright eyes 

“let’s do something crazy.”

 

I want your weekend

Saturday morning cartoons because

you know I like them

barnes and noble book dates to keep us inspired

your voice reciting my favourite lines of poetry

kissing inside dressing rooms as we shop and advise one another

whether we had one too many scoops of ice cream

before lunch time — knowing

“you’re my favourite flavour.”

 

 

your Sunday morning breath against my skin

the noises you make before waking

praying for forever

brushing your hair behind your ear

your smile before your eyes grace mine

the frantic first kiss of comfort

clean sheets, sun rays through blind folds

the rough whisper of

“lets stay in bed all day.”

 

I want your normal

and your stress, and frustration, and anger

I want your good days and your happiness

your tear filled bad days and clenched up fists

I want your mood changes

and daily complaints

I want your drunk “I love yous”

and your honesty, I want your lazy and your lonely

I want your problems and I want your family

all the secrets you’re too scared to tell anyone else

I want your dreams, hopes, disappointments 

and all your laughter

I want everything about you

every day

in every possible form of you

for the rest of my life
  

Your chromosomes combined beautifully. 

13th of September, 2012

I have known you for a little over 3 wonderfully hard years, and do you remember when I sent you roses from half way across the world, or the day you told me that being alone was your greatest fear?  
Because I can remember the time you asked me to tell you something I’ve never told anyone else, and though my heart wanted to say “I love you,” I kept it to myself,

and instead I told you I was a writer.

And I think you thought I meant I put words on paper, and you tried to impress me using a metaphor of how you hoped I wouldn’t disappear like water vapor. 
Because if I was water, you wanted to savor, every last taste.

I studied biology once while I was still confused about my life and its meaning, and I learned that our bodies are made up of 70% of h20. And I took this to soul, and since you compared me to water theoretically, I always only gave you 70% of me… maybe even less. 

And you like gold, gave me 100 percent. But I couldn’t let completely go, and so I just let you rent, out my heart while I stayed the landlord 

but I began to feel new things, and I realized maybe I wasn’t the one who could afford,

to lose you. 

  
Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Δ XVI always. 

6/11/2015

I am a hopeless romantic. 

There, I’ve said it. 

I know how it sounds, optimistically dangerous. Some might even say foolish. 

But I wait.

Because right now, I’m not ready to be in love. 

Been there, done that. I’ve loved someone who loved me back. I’ve loved someone who had no idea. I’ve been loved and couldn’t return it. 

And all the same, every experience has led me to the same conclusion. 

I want to be my own soulmate. 

My future plans only rotate around me, myself, and I.. and honestly, I don’t need nor want anyone changing that. 

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not against being in love.. in fact, I love being in love. Adore it even.. it is one of the single most greatest acts you can commit — to love and be loved in return. 

And that’s why I don’t want it now. 

Now all I want is the freedom to be whoever I want, wherever I want, whenever I want. 

I have no desire for anyone to shackle me down with expectations or promises of everlasting love. I don’t want anyone trying to be my better half, or wanting to understand me more than I know and trust myself. 

I want to know I’m completely whole all by myself and that may happiness cannot be stolen by another. 

There are too many sunsets I haven’t seen yet. 

——————–

I slipped the ring on my finger out of curiosity. It felt odd — the cold metal snaked around my skin — I’m not much of a person for jewelry, yet alone gold. 

A simple band with a hexagon shape. It suited me, and symbolized my eternal love for the number 16 and all its important meanings. 

So I bought it. As a promise ring to my soul. To love myself fully and unapologetically. To become my own lover, my own best friend, my own family… my own delta. 

To always remain true to my heart — and never settle for anything less than I deserve. 

  

25/11/2015

8 o’clock casually takes her anticipated welcoming. 

But when she arrives, Joy is spread within the confines of the four walls of my job. 

It’s intoxicating how invigorated my coworkes become. 

We’re all excited for the upcoming holiday, especially after having our own mock Thanksgiving for lunch. 

Lisa suggests to me to take leftovers to the homeless after work. 

I oblige enthusiastically. Here is a good, genuine hearted human I’ve grown fond of in the course of a few fast months. 

Someone who makes me want to be better. And isn’t that what friendship is all about? 

——————–

Scouring the city for homeless people proves to be more challenging than we initially thought. 

So Lisa and I spend a little time exploring the streets around downtown. 

While I drive, I listen to her adventures in New Orleans. She met many people from around the world, engaged with different minds and different cultures, exposed to new smells and unfamiliar but delicious tastes. 

She’s returned home changed, more motivated, more happy, more mentally stimulated — more her. 

I fall silent over her musings. It’s comforting to recognize this feeling in another person. The wonders of traveling — and how the experience changes you. 

Around the park, we see a hooded figure slumped over a public trash bin. We pull to the side, and approach her with open hearts. 

Lisa asks her if she’d like some food. The woman shows us a box she pulled from the trash and non chalantly musters a, “I have a pizza.” 

Some weird combination of chemicals trigger my neurons, and I become very aware of the bass of my heart beat in my chest. 

I am overcome with conflicting emotions. I am sad for this woman’s disposition, but I’m also extremely gracious to be alive and in good health in this moment. 

We offer her what we have, and she gratefully accepts. As we part ways, she says a phrase very colloquial to my part of the states, “God bless you.” 

It touched my heart, even if my own personal truth doesn’t align with this stranger. She gave me all she could offer, and I will never see her again.

Afterwards, I treat Lisa to a martini at a bar downtown that reminds me of one of my favorite bars in Madrid. The dim lighting and hoisted vintage paintings against brick interior makes me feel safe. I can’t help it, I miss being surrounded by art. 

——————

We don’t stay long, as I want to drive home this night and reunite with my parents. My first thanksgiving home in years; it’s tremendous for me. 

Lisa suddenly gets a call from our former coworker but always friend, Jordan. 

He had hastily just moved back to Dallas the day before, accompanying him his boyfriend. But this distressed his mother, and she denied their combined presence at the dinner during the holiday.

Again, the ever present feeling of the humming of my heart beat filled my ears. 

I couldn’t imagine what he must be going through. Rejection can be so ugly. 

——————–

I watch Lisa’s car pull safely out of my driveway before beginning my own journey home. 

My mood is in a foul state at this time. From what happened to Jodi, and my own personal affairs. 

Thank god for the drive. My mind needs the cruise control. 

I set my phone away from me. I’m tired of responding to my current conversations, and just want solace in my own thoughts. 

I think about the homeless woman. Did she have a family? Where would she sleep tonight? Did we give her enough food? Should I have given her a ride somewhere? 

My thoughts drift to Jody. What will he do for thanksgiving? Why does he have to hide who he is? Why is it so unfair? 

I say a prayer for the both of them, and slowly the prayer begins to transform into a long list of endless names of people I want to send good vibrations to. 

Before I know it, an hour of driving has passed and I’m sitting in my parked car in front of my parents’ house. 

Home. 

As I walk in, I see the light in my mom’s room is still on. I enter unannounced, and she is still awake playing on her phone. My step dad is already asleep, but she wanted to stay up until my arrival. I’m touched with a pang of gratitude. 

My step dad wrestles his sleep away, and gets out of bed. 

“I’ve been waiting for you, let’s have a drink.”

I never turn down a drink, so the three of us make our way to the kitchen. 

Gene is pouring me bourbon and coke, and my mom is warming up food for me. I admire the view, to have such wonderful people for parents. To be so lucky to have clean clothes on my back, food in my stomach, and parents who love me unconditionally. 

My mood lightens up. I recognize this feeling instantly. Living in the moment and appreciating the now that surrounded me. 

Whiskey on my lips, I hear my doorbell. 

I see Ramon’s face, just in time. 

While Gene is also pouring him a drink, I hear my doorbell make its second round of clonking. 

James. 

Oh my god. 

I hadn’t seen James in almost two years. Distance had separated us physically, but never our friendship. I held my best friend in my arms for a little longer than a normal hug. My lungs filled with his familiar scent as I ushered him inside my house. 

And there I sat — a table surrounded by the four most important people in my life, laughing and drinking. Time had altered nothing. And in this moment, I couldn’t ask for anything more. I was perfectly happy. All my other worries disapated from my mind, and I seized this moment — the moment I realized that there was so much to be thankful for. 

And I remembered the reason why I came home. My time abroad had been for me — but this year home, would be for them. 

I went to Spain to improve myself for me, and now I am back for a year to improve myself for all the people I hold close to my heart — to relish the time with loved ones that distance persistently steals. 

I felt home. 

And I’m so thankful. For friends that know me absolutely and are so natural to be myself around. For their advice concerning my heart, and encouragement to be successful. For always wanting the best for me, and being brutally honest, especially when I’m wrong. 

And for my parents. For always believing and trusting in me to make the right decisions for my own future. Maybe they don’t always understand the things I do, but for always, always being so supportive and loving in every action and choice I make. For always loving me, for who I’ve been, who I am, and who I’m becoming. An endless love with no boundaries. 

—————–

I’m so happy to be home, finally.