las ventanas son grandes

martie 30, 2011

i’m learning spanish – i started 5 days ago. because it’s the one thing i can do to cope with stuff. this is my alternative to dieting: it goes easy, gives me early satisfaction, makes me feel like i’m doing something. keeps me busy on my way to work. mind you, i don’t know how much learning i’m actually doing…since it’s assumed that as romanian i was supposed to be fluent in spanish already anyway…but if the end result is progress-in-language-speaking, i.e. i can add spanish to my CV in good conscience, then cool.

there is a challenge too. of course. i’ve dared myself to learn it in one year. so by april ’12 i should be like a level 7-8. doable, i guess. besides, i go on with the russian and i should get at least to beginner-intermediate this year. gah. things that are generally very muddled can become very simple. limpid. i’m washing dishes, saying to myself : i don’t speak well, but i can speak a little russian/spanish. i like spring. i don’t like to drink too much coffee. the windows are big. the door is white and the walls are yellow. can you help me? maybe you can try to call me. in russian, then in spanish. on a loop, then searching for other sentences i can say in both languages. yay fun.

i am moving out of this place – it was sold, and cynthia is moving in with her boyfriend. i have 2 or 3 months to get out – i’d prefer to be installed somewhere at least beginning of june. of course i don’t want to go, but once it’s over, it’s better to get it over with asap. i don’t want to get out of the plateau…i want to stay in the francophone area, but not really pie IX, y’know? so far all the room posts that look good are for april 1st.

remind me why i didn’t want to live with hipsters. i think it’s time i was reminded of that.

or i could go tomorrow and rent d.’s old room in villeray – last month it was still ‘for rent’ and i bet no one took it in the mean time.

ok, stop it. basta por hoy, like my textbook would tell me.

more tiny things

martie 21, 2011

it’s my roommate’s birthday (this, on a saturday), she’s over at her boyfriend’s but i suspect she’ll be back at some point during the day. but i have to go out fairly quicklyyyy – i run to take a shower; the kitchen is a mess. the sun is crazy and just shows off the dust everywhere. i need to leave in 10 minutes, so i just take a piece of paper and i write her a happy-birthday letter…which, ok, tells her how great she is, but also includes „i know i should have probably cleaned the place instead”.

then i go out in my leather jacket, wearing sunglasses, and it’s glorious.

i go with my friend e. to the bookstore to ‘help’ him buy books, then we pass by the mall and go into M0851 ( where i’d only been once before, but stepped out SO QUICKLY  because i could never afford those things. it’s easier when there’s someone else with me, especially someone who likes clothes. i try on a raincoat made of treated cotton (size 6!:) ) and it looks so gorgeous. 455$.

at the end of my nighshift i want to go in the backroom of the restaurant to pick up my boots and leave my work shoes. the door is closed, although nobody normally closes it, unless someone needs to take a nap in between shifts around 4-5 pm. it’s probably midnight now, so i laugh and push the door open. our cook mohammed is kneeling, in the dark, bowing and barefoot. i close the door back quickly and sit down – someone else in the entry room asks with a gesture what is going on. „he’s praying”, i smile very widely – i feel proud and touched to have stumbled upon that.

somebody calls me from england on sunday at noon. she’s not even a friend, she’s someone i knew briefly 6 years ago for like 10 days, and in a murky context. but no matter. we talked for like 45 mins about what we were doing, and it was ok. i mean the very fact of the phonecall happening was obliterating the content. it feels like somehow she made a rational/i.e. calculated decision to reconnect with people from her past – but i surprisingly don’t look at it cynically, i’m glad she called.

again:i’m having a coffee at the bookstore, flipping through magazines. a guy starts chatting me up, he looks late 30s, i would say arabic. OF COURSE  he tries to guess my nationality. after hockey, guessing natonalities is THE  sport in montreal. i’m not offended, but right there is where one kind of starts losing points with me. then i turn a bit more and i see the book on his table: flirting for dummies. i am not kidding you. i’m a good girl though, and stop myself from giving advice. everyone should figure it out for themselves.

there’s nothing out there, and everything out there. all these useless days will add up to something:)


via sugar@the rumpus:

martie 21, 2011

sofa and a glass of water

martie 14, 2011

i’m trying to keep it simple.

this past weekend i saw/talked to my grandma for the first time (on video chat, but okay) in 2 and a half years. the circumstances that helped this are as follows: i’d been pestering my parents for months to buy a normal/functional computer, and they finally did. before this, we were typing-chatting. also. my grandma is at my parents’ now because she had a sort of stroke so they had to take her out of the village and into hospital etc. now she’s out of hospital but still very weak, and i’m afraid she doesn’t even believe she will be able to get back to her home in her lifetime (yes, i am assuming and appropriating her worry. this is the way my own worrying works.)

i honestly don’t know how to talk about it. i start sometimes if prompted, then it’s painful and i cry and my head hurts then i end up talking about the other bad-things-in-my-life, just because. so it’s not a conversation i would choose to have. because yes i can say how i think i feel about it, but my problem keeps being that it’s not my life i’m talking about. iam…

…to take it from the top: i have chosen to live someplace else. so i don’t really exactly belong to any grief or pain or, you know, real caretaking that is going on in that apartment. it is to some extent my problem, and on the other hand it isn’t. since i don’t want to return to romania (well i do, but not to the point where i leave here and i’m not allowed by law to return), that’s it. what i can do from here is look pretty in front of a screen for a couple hours a week. mission easily accomplished. go on.

i find myself thinking of various coping mechanisms. i.e. ‘what to do now’ because it seems like i have to do something. i was outraged at myself when dieting popped to mind, almost automatically. it’s spring, i can try a cleansing etc. diet. that was what i used to do: short term i was pretty good at it. i mean it’s a common sense thought, no?

a friend of mine way back used to say that when he was feeling bad (physically or of any kind of bad) he would visualize an armchair, and him just sitting down in it and waiting for it to go away. „if i wait enough, it will go away”. another male friend’s idea of happiness was an open window at night and a tall glass of water. when i think of these people and our conversations, and try to extract the positivity out of that, mostly what comes to my mind is that i’m old.

i sat on my sofa this morning, with a mug of water at hand. does it make a difference that it’s a sofa not an armchair, a mug not a glass? morning not night? of course it does. north america not eastern europe, a 31 y.o. girl instead of a teenager? i want new tricks. more than anything i want belief.

i thought about traveling. i don’t want to travel alone anymore. about writing. i don’t feel like i’m able to write at the moment, never mind that my focus isn’t present. about relaxing, entertaining activities. but it takes (! all it takes is!) that frame of mind where a spark of optimism is embedded. i mean i can find reasons to refuse to do anything but sit here and cry my eyes out.

it’s sunny. the weather site says it’s just a bit below zero. i just bought myself a new green-ish spring dress and a pair of cherry-red (shiny) rubber boots. and i’ll soon move to get groceries and maybe take a walk in parc laurier. i’m very tired of being in my life, that is all.

…so what happened was…

martie 8, 2011

no, you’re not getting the break-up story here, sorry. it’s a one-on-one exclusive. i know it’s me – carmen (eyeroll) – so i’m supposed to be blabbing about the sacredest stuff, mais quand même! instead i can tell you about the funny things that happened after.

i am trying to get the things right this time. (and because of this, i’m sometimes remembering all the other times or non-times with rage. so many wasted years because of no closure.) it’s still incredible for me how guilty i feel of my own unhappiness, to the extent where i feel compelled to report it to the entire world. after 2 weeks, it reached facebook status status. so things can only calm down from here on.

but i did the right things, and the cliche things. i talked to friends who are chat/skype/phone-accessible, i asked for and received good advice. that helped, just being fascinated again by how complex relationship things are. i am still acting a bit detached, as if it’s an experiment in recovery.

i drank a bottle of wine alone in the dark one night, ate a whole icecream container another night (ah, while watching ‘american idol’, forgot to mention). the only thing i didn’t feel like doing much was buying stuff. or getting out of the house. which is also not entirely abnormal if you consider my paycheck or the weather lately. so the official version is that i’m…dealing with it.

now about this dealing: i just want to know when it’s going to be over. i want to make a list, a plan of action, to set deadlines. i mean that is what i did. i was so feverish and irritated the first 2-3 days after: waste of time, i kept mumbling to myself. this is what these days/weeks/months are.

they say i have to say hi to the cute guy at the bus stop. butt into someone’s peaceful reading at the library. attend social events. activate my network. yeah, when it feels alright to do that, i will. i don’t think i’m passing up opportunities that were designed for me. i don’t want to be desperate. i want to be ok on my own.

there was a suicide on the metro line last week – i wasn’t on the metro that hit the person, but my roommate was. she was pretty shaken. i was just annoyed about the metro being blocked, although when you hear „un accident sur la ligne orange cause une interruption de service” as opposed to ralentissement du service, you kind of know what it means. but i didn’t let myself think of it until cynthia told me.

and it’s the cold, the too-late cold that gets into the bones to the core.

also, i returned home last night and because it was freezing indoors and sinister i was planning to cook with the radio on. i looked for my headphones to hook up my cellphone and i realized that d. had taken them by mistake and left his own, which i have no use for. i can’t explain better, but the impossibility of playing top40 music and hearing distinct québécois voices RIGHT THAT INSTANT was a pretty big hit to my mood. the silence was so creepy and absurd – then i realized why. cynthia’s perruche was dead, stiff on the bottom of his cage.

we don’t know how he died. sudden heart attack is one version. i panicked a bit and called cyn…then i packed the body and took it out. somehow i fell asleep reading feministe. in the morning the snow was covering a quarter of my tall window, and kept coming down with the blizzard. i sat down at the table with coffee in the birdless livingroom. 7 am. and i had a good cry.

now it`s all going to be better.