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Tales of a Post-Grad Nothing

Friday, April 06, 2007

Letter to an Ex

Dear Chris:

Two years ago, you and I went to Sweden at the worst time of the year to go to Sweden. It was dark and cold and I was terrified of the flight over, but we managed and when we got to our tiny room on our hostel/houseboat, the hour-long bus ride to the Paris airport followed by the terrifying flight followed by the hour-long bus ride into Stockholm seemed worthwhile even if we did only have 3.5 hours of daylight each morning. It was freezing in the most literal sense of the word, but that didn't stop the Swedes from bundling up and venturing out into the cold like pioneers hellbent on finding joy and camaraderie amidst the bitter temperatures and impending darkness. Those days were based on warmth. We dressed for it, ate for it, drank mulled wine in the snow-covered streets for it, ran for it at night, breathed it in tiny country shops when the wind overpowered us outside, held hands to conserve it, slept in a tiny twin bed in a fruitless effort to trap it between our bodies for just an instant until it escaped to the sea outside our foggy port window. When I think of that trip and I think of all the spectacular things we saw and did - of the Indian food we ate and the ice sculptures we saw and the sea dogs we played with and the skating we fumbled through on a bed of pure glass set directly in the middle of a city filled with pink-nosed children breathing clouds of smoky breath into the sky - it's that warmth, or rather the doomed pursuit of it that I remember with all the best parts of me. And tonight when it was unexpectedly chilly in one of the warmest places in the country, I thought about how much better it was to be cold with you and to blindly chase after a promise of perfection.


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