My life’s path was about Constance. Everything I did or didn’t do was tied to her needs. Without a magnet pulling me, my compass twists and turns. Now, I can’t tell my up from down. I’m an interabang.
It is common when traveling or relocating to see people who remind you of old friends far away. I don’t have that. Instead, I have ‘happy family’ crushes. I see families with their kids and I stare. I imagine. I pretend.
I’m living in a dystopia of devastation and those around me are floating along in a Norman Rockwell painting. They are as different as chalk and cheese.
Every day, I have to experience not having the day with my baby girl all over again. It’s maddening. I am in this deep endless drowning ocean of despair. Well really, I am in a pub in Salisbury eating pasta.
Walking around Salisbury, I saw a line of TV news vans and a man in a suit standing in front of a house. I decided immediately to engage in the official past time of Americans abroad—not minding my own business. I interrupted an engineer at work. I asked what was happening. He inquired, “That’s the Skripals’ house. Do you know who the Skripals are?” Recalling the Russian spy poisoning story in the news, “Are they the spies or the crack heads?” I asked. Then, correcting myself, I said, “It must be the spies because crack heads don’t own a house. At least being a spy is a profession.” The engineer agreed. The crack addicts were a couple who found the container of poison after it had been used to poison the spies. They tried to ingest it to get high. They also died. Now, having established myself as the town loon, I resumed my walk around the hamlet.
For me, the profession of town wackadoodle is more appealing than spy or crackhead. I suppose that is good because that is the role I’m most prepared for. The worst jobs are the ones where there isn’t a retirement plan because they conclude with you either being murdered or accidentally killing yourself. In terms of ranking, I guess the best job is the one that is so enjoyable that you’d do it for free and yet is so impressive that it convinces attractive people to have sex with you. I don’t know what that is. Bakers, maybe? I certainly have fond feelings for every barista I’ve ever met.
To try and figure out what I want to do with my life and where I want to do it, I made a list of things I value. I immediately thought of three dozen things. All I discovered was that I don’t have the discipline to prune a long list into a short enough one to be helpful. That’s not exactly the Rosetta Stone.