Between Warsaw and San Francisco

It’s been 5 days since we left Warsaw though it seems like a lifetime away. It’s amazing how quickly distant a place and a life there can become when you don’t wake up to the same sights and sounds you would see every day…

Georgia is as strange to me as ever, though I think that having traveled a lot and having guests in Warsaw the past two months has made coming here not as much of a shock as it was when we visited during December. I certainly feel the same sense of not belonging here as I have felt as more and more years go by since I lived here, though I think that the thing that makes me feel most strange is the change from city life to suburban life.  After living in New York, San Francisco and Warsaw, being able to walk to places and take public transportation seems like such a natural way to go about things when compared to having to drive whenever going anywhere.  Even when visiting others cities for the first time like Berlin or Dublin I felt a degree of comfort that I do not quite feel here.  (When I first moved to New York I felt a real connection with city life; since then I have gone on to enjoy quieter places, but I think city life is still very deep within me…)

On the road, I look out and see the cars around and think that they are much bigger and shinier than what I grew accustomed to in Warsaw.  There is something odd about the scale of the cars to me, that perhaps they are too big for the single occupant of the car or too large for the road on which they are driving.  The shine on the cars seems strange to me as well, as if a little dirt on a car somehow connects it to the rest of the world around it.  I do not know what to make of all of this.

Last night before I fell asleep I closed my eyes and saw Warsaw.  With a smile I walked all around the city, sat a cafes and bars, watched concerts at the various venues, attended the opera, and wandered all around the parks…  The memories are still so vivid, the images of people, the memories of time spent in all the various places we frequented.  Sitting here I realized that I could close my eyes and see New York, Berlin, Paris, Dublin, Manila, Gdansk, Krakow, and many other places I’ve been to.  I can see Lisa, friends, and family I spent time with when I was in these places and smile.  I hope the memories will not fade too quickly, if ever…

Life has been somewhat floating along the past two months and life in Warsaw already seems a distant dream.  Tomorrow we will once again go to the airport, check in our bags, and fly, but this time it is a one-way ticket back to life in California.  I do not know what will happen once we get there: where will we live, where will I work, what life will we live returning to a familiar place and familiar people.  It will be nice to see old friends and to once again be in the part of the world we called home for years.  I am looking forward to seeing how life will unfold…