June 19, 2003 | Sunset on a different coast
Ah... San Francisco Bay Area, home. In many ways it feels like I never left. Drowsy with my last bout of traveling sickness from Peru, I can still drive all over the bay area on automatic pilot, eyes unseeing. I'm thoroughly American now, I thought. (Americans do not see?) This way of being in familiar territory, though it brought me a happiness of comfort, security, and being home, it also brought a slight irritation, a subtle let-down of my senses. So used to absorbing and processing so much in each moment, my senses and my mind are having some difficulties with the drop off, regardless of me.
Reading El Comercio on the plane home, I hear more about the terrorist group Sendero Luminoso's resurgence near Ayacucho, and worried about people I hold dear.
Yesterday on a meandering walk I found myself at the Berkeley Rose Gardens, surprised by the roses in full bloom. A serendipitous discovery: I was traveling again. I see the flowers with their velvet delicacy, the pine cones weighty and solid, and something's different: I can not only see them but also FEEL them. Things are more real than I remembered, than I expected, than I have a right to expect. I'm reminded of Ingmar Bergman’s Cries and Whispers, one line that comes to me often: come what may, this is happiness.
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