I am shit at leaving Paris.
Two weeks went by before I even could finish my morning coffee, it seems. Each morning, I’ve installed my little office on the tiny balcony. The first mornings when I woke up, I felt close to weightless. 12 more days! Of rooftops, parks, books and recharging. Sights and smells. The slightly uncharming sewage systemish smell. The tin roofs. The smell of fresh baguettes even reaching me from the streets up to the sixth floor. A newly opened white bordeaux. The green grass. The dust in Jardin des Plantes. L’arbre prend racines, a sign I used to pass almost every day while living here, on my way to la Pitié-Salpêtrière or St. Antoine. To take root, to install, not to move for a very long time. Getting water. Stability. Sun. Wind. Grow.
We take root. We become uprooted. And leaving makes me think of wasps (or is it the bee?) who stings and takes off, but the sting remains with parts of the intestines attached to it, and when the distance increases, the wasp is slowly going hollow. Not compatible with life. Like a woolen sweater, that’s a nicer picture, getting a thread of the yarn hooked on something. Moving away from it, the whole sweater unravels, just like Björks song on the Homogenic album, which I heard first with Maria João. Social relations are roots as physical as any tree. Elastic, but still, you feel the tug. And those who have experienced them severed, know the physical pain.
My dramatic take on leaving is what it is, and I’m not improving my emotional state as I’m listening to Rickie Lee Jones while writing this. Shamelessly, I enroll myself the global community of those who long for a place, but I’m completely aware that I’m in the lowest prioritized group if ever there was a just system for returning. I pray for the people in Zaatari refugee camp, for them to be able to go home. And while waiting, to find a new place to take root. For them and all other people missing places and people.