One year in Barcelona
But that's part of becoming a mother- learning unconditional love, sacrifice and more unconditional love.
I gave up this apartment in Decemeber 2012, with the help of the partner-in-crime of the one in the belly. We moved it all out, sold some of it, gave some away, and put some in storage. If you are ever interested in how you move in Barcelona, you can have a look at my Tidningen RES-blog here.
If I could have any alcoholic drink right now, it would be a Campari and soda. The soda would be from the classic and beautiful oh-so-Barcelona soda-bottle. Picture further down. They are sold here in Ibiza as expensive vintage second hand items. In Barcelona you get them for 80 cents in the old bodegas, and you're supposed to bring them back to get them re-filled. I would sit on top of my washing machine which sat crammed into a corner in front of the gas-thing and next to the toilet, all situated on the former balcony. I guess before there was a mini-toliet/shower there, it was a balcony and just a balcony, and the toilet was on the back yard of the four-storey-building, more than 150 years old.
This is me, by the way.
Me and Tine made wednesday evenings, after her guitar class, our meeting night. Beer in a bar or wine in my place. A lot of talking and smoking.
This is the view in December from the top of Parque Guell, another Gaudi-disappointment. I still came here a lot, the reason being 1. showing it to visitors and 2. taking my dog here for forest walks. This particular December sunset was enjoyed together with my most incredibly beautiful soulfriend Elin, who came for a few days to visit me and heal me and herself.
And then... he left. As I came back from the airport after saying goodbye, I opened the door to my apartment. Xucla greeted me very happily, and then she stepped out and looked down the stairs, wagging her tail, waiting for Noam. she just stood there, and waited. And the tail slowly stopped. I cried. I felt I had lost something that I had just been ready to receive, but I had been taking to long to be ready.
I spent the year in Barcelona doing things I didn't really want to do. I did five jobs, one degree, rented out rooms in my apartment. I lived away from the one I love.
But what I always really wanted to do, was to write a book. To be a writer. Why had I come to the age of 33 and still not done what I really wanted to do in life? So it was then or never. The time had come not just for the one I love, who had gone to Africa to fulfill his childhood dream. It was also time for me to fulfill my dream. The time had come.
I kept looking for the soul, the essence, the centre of this city. I couldn't FEEL it for so long. I kept enquiring and searching for the soul of this fleeting and temporary city. And there, after cycling and running in the rain with Xucla, as we entered La Confitería in Raval but close to Poble Sec, I realized where the essence lies.
It lies right there, inside the bar, on the floor. With the cozy bar surrounding it, the floor, this classic Barcelona tiled floor, is the base and the bottom of this city. Life happens in the bar in Barcelona, and the floor is the thing we stand on, walk on, and sit on. And the floor is beautiful. It has personality and style.
This seemed to be the subject of the year in Barcelona. The temporariness of everything. I had a temporary life, temporary friends, temporary jobs, and temporary activities. There were many beginnings and many endings.
I was too afraid. Afraid to lose. Lose what? Myself. Because I felt I hadn't done all the things I wanted to do with my life yet. I hadn't become what I thought I would be. I felt unfinished. And I felt a surrender to a love relationship would make me less. Not more. I felt as if love weakened me. As if love robbed from me. As if I became a nobody when I was giving myself to love.
In a very cool shop in Joaqin Costa, Raval. Another part of the project.
A temporary illusion.
I knew what I was waiting for.
I'm drawing a heart so I can see the world again.
Only though the heart can we see clearly.
A house wall in the barrio of Sants. I only came here to visit my friend Tine. It's a very different barrio. Not a single tourist. Very refreshing.
When Tine announced she was pregnant, I had very mixed feelings. I was very happy for her of course. But it stirred up emotions that I had been supressing. I was living a life of temporary happiness where I did all the things I loved, I was writing and taking pictures and I was wandering the city with Xucla and I was drinking in cool places and bars and plazas with my friends. But now me and Tine could no longer have our wine and our deep talks which seemed to come out of the depth of the empty wine bottles. I was disappointed somehow that the illusion was broken. And I was fearful of the truth which had come from the mirror of where her life was headed. I thought about the one I love, who was in Africa. But it was too painful to admit what my heart was really longing to see.
From the little flat in Carrer Verdi, Grácia, Barcelona, I tried to create the life of my dreams, in a temporary situation, in waiting.
This is NOT Xucla.
Just like Barcelona.
Empty, transient, temporary and lonely...
When the one I love came back from Africa, wearing a safari hat, I knew immediately as I laid my eyes on him that I love him. I love him the same I loved him the first time I saw him and I loved him the same I love him today. The love was always there and it never changed.
The only thing that changed was my fear of love.
I never wanted to be in Barcelona.
I wanted to be with him.
But I hadn't known how much I wanted to be with him. I was afraid of admitting it, so I was hiding behind isolation in Barcelona.
Bittersweet Barcelonelyia. I have no regrets. I don't "do" regrets. It was a beautiful time.
The book was finished just before he came back. I sent it to a few publishers last summer, but it was rejected. But I didn't feel rejected. Because I had accomplished the one thing I dreamed of: I wrote a book. I did it. I fulfilled a lifelong dream. And that was enough to be more clear about myself and life. So I guess not until then was I ready to open my arms again to love.
The one I love had an amazing, but very lonely experience in Africa.
The road from then on lead us to Cadiz. A roadtrip full of decision.
The road then led to Ibiza and to a complete disaster and breakdown.
And then re-birth.
No one said life is easier just because you have love.
But it's definitely more real.