“You doing okay?”
He follows me down Cache La Poudre, making a U-Turn on Cascade due to my swayed walk being far too slow, my swayed walk too content with the one AM mosquito parade, my swayed walk too at peace to be bothered to pick up the speed for the sake of safety, but what is safety but an illusion that everything is okay? He passes me again, but this time only observes. Doesn’t speak, but lets his headlights flash my green thighs and carved arms.
I giggle like a school girl inhaling her first puff of Marlboro branded nicotine. Am I doing okay, Mr. British CC Security From London Who Has Spent Many Years in Laguna Beach And Hopes Hopes Hopes For Me That I Will Be Accepted As a Full Time Student in January Because This Place Is Lovely Despite the Roaming City Kooks Andy?
“This is my home,” I will tell him later. “My home.”
Dear Andy, can’t you see? Can’t you seem my gleam? Am I not floating down this entirely vacant street totally at ease? For the last six years I’ve tumbled from place to place in pursuit of an answer for what I should do, where I should be. Berkeley, France, Spain, Colorado Springs, Chipita Park, Italy, Ireland, Arcata, Orange County again and again and again, only to return to the most obvious yet seemingly unattainable of places, Colorado Springs at CC — this small brilliant university where I once finally slept during 2010’s humid summer afternoons, dizzy on the grass in the Armstrong Quad wishing wishing wishing that the quad was my place to be, a place to call mine, to call home, and now finally in a sense it is. For the last six years I’ve stretched and pulled and screamed in pursuit of a direction. Where? Where? Where? Nowhere fit. Contentment was a fantasy. I had no plan. No hope or idea beyond my foolish word dribbles. I had no where to go.
But now I am finally here.
I cross the quad as Andy watches from his car. I’m smiling, grateful for his protection, but also grateful that he hasn’t abducted me into the safety of his proximity for the night is kind to me. The shadowed ancient cottonwood, the warm grass, the stability of Armstrong and Tutt and the chaple. To be pulled away from the countless stars’ shine would be a tragedy — those stars are what keep me aligned, watching me, giving me light, words, flickers of candle wax to drip into my open ear so I always remember to listen, listen, listen to what is unable to be heard, listen to tsunami waiting to unroll.
I am here. I am here. I am here.
I approach the apartment and Mr. CC Security Andy pulls up beside me. “You doing okay, love?”
“This is my home,” I smile. “This is my home.”