Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Cities Have Shaped Me Into Me:

Again I find myself sitting on my balcony, though this time on a cooling springtime evening. There is nothing worrying about this; I have fallen in love with this balcony, and, even more, the plants that line its edges, creating an engulfing wall of green. I feel as if I am finding my voice in my writing, and coming into my own, as my mind continues to expand and take in the world. Europe and Amsterdam have, thus far, enriched and allowed my life to bloom in many ways that I could have never anticipated. If I were to truly zoom-out, which can be so terribly difficult at times, my life is unfolding wonderfully. And I might tell myself that I should tell myself that fact more often. Spring has finally arrived (for real this time), in Amsterdam. Happy am I that the summer days have returned, as has the high spring sun.

A church bell-tower rings in the distance, as the city strikes another hour. This signs the extension of light for at least another––if not more–hour. Many of the reasons I decided to move to the European continent surrounded many old and new world notions I admired, absorbed, and adopted. The USA has influenced by younger years; Europe the later ones. I wanted to design my life, and my lifestyle, which I had, over time, envisioned for myself; ideals accumulating, layering like a snowball, of who it is that I want to be in the world, and what I want that world around me should, and could, look like. Of all the city's I've lived in, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, and San Francisco have inspired me the most. There is, of course, a heavy accent of inspiration dashed upon my current city, though it was San Francisco that propelled me into the world.

The 'City by the Bay' was the first city I lived within, in which I chose to live. I was on my own, surrounded by no-one and yet everyone simultaneously; an ocean, public streetcars and–in this rare instance in the USA–trolleys, and lots of gay people like me who I knew would, once again, open my mind and my eyes to world I was nothing less than eager to experience, because I was so very unexperienced, in so many ways. What I did have was: ambition, talent, and California sun that made my soul sparkle. That summer spent in San Francisco allowed my self confidence to firm, my insecurities to no longer viewed as such, by myself; the 'professional' workforce I had entered, and in a city that made me glitter, radiating infectious happiness to the energies around me. Exploring the city was my favorite pastime, as was running, reading, and going to the beach and the park. All components present in my life right now? Check.

Fashion I have begun to understand and decipher, drawing upon my observations and interactions from my time in both Amsterdam and Copenhagen; muted solid colors, all types of brown boots, and uncommon silhouetted pants have become my friends along this journey of mine. At this moment, I am able to support and enrich my life, and have, in many ways, become the self that I have always wanted. My life in this city continues to shock, surprise, and delight me. In many ways, I have planned most aspects of my life; after gaining my foundations–beginning alone in San Francisco–my life has within it everything I could have ever asked for, and more. Amusing it is that life cannot be planned. If I were zoom-out, again: I am happy, healthy, housed, and very much loved. No city alone could have given me all of these qualities; so, I am grateful going forward, for my experiences within them all. Cities have helped me shape me, into me.