i am here again and it is bittersweet. it seems i always come here when there is a great calamity afoot in my life.
here is so much family and the accompanying joy of seeing them, subsequently followed by the pangs of having to leave them knowing that it will be years again before i see them. here is my father, who i met only 8 years ago - the answer to many of my questions about myself (between him and what i am told and see in pictures of my grand father). But these times are always underscored by the pangs of longing afore i even leave, and the dwelling on years lost without his presence, the years lost with my step-dad and the relationship we never had. I am reminded of the grand father who survived 5 concentration camps, was hailed as a hero for the hundreds of lives he saved while there, who wrote a book and started a foundation for survivors... the grandfather it was my destiny never to meet. the sight of an aunt who resembles my grandmother, now gone, and her last few years in a myopic state of reality.
the ever present doubt about faith in anything, and the ever growing hatred for religion; here in the land of Muslims, Christians and Jews, with churches and synagogues and mosques and plaques and monuments and flags - all standing for one thing: death. Founded for the purposes of control, used as a call to murder, organized to exploit the monies of the mostly poor and wretched. Three quarreling mobs screaming of their righteousness and access to god, each the true faith, the true path, each trying desperately to convince you of the better life to come so long as you endure your place and fund their wars and luxuries.
the loneliness in which i always end up finding myself for at least a week of every trip. wandering the streets obsessed with thoughts of the disintegrating life back home, jealous of those who are in the company of others, yet glad to not be the "tourist".
some new horizon always awaits me at home, this time it is a new school. With my first year of teaching under my belt, a year spent in misery because the acceptance of my students and colleagues is to hold no candle to the power wielded by a principal over your very desire to live. Now i find myself looking with excitement to the coming year - new students, new colleagues, new boss, new venue... mistakes made and learned from, ideas for the future, a year of grad school under my belt...
calamities we all have enough that of other's we need not hear... one though, that I think many people share is the dependency on NYC. Oh, the needle in my vain the width of a subway track! It is dirty and far from nature, it is expensive and ridden with difficulties... yet the more i imagine living elsewhere the more it hurts to discover that it may not be possible. Time will tell.
"This too shall pass"