My mother calls me once a day. I usually get up at 7.45, eat cereal and an apple, take a shower and start my day by checking my email and catching up on correspondence. I read whenever I am not in class. Sarah and I think about the possibilities of culinary exploration. I do yoga 6 times a week, taking the time to breathe, stretch. I try to travel on weekends. I write often.
When my mother calls there is sometimes that silence that hangs when we’ve already rushedly spilled the news of our days, usually she has more to say than I do. My life is quiet, meditative, simple. In response to the silence, as if it were a question, I say that there isn’t much else to report. And, in fact, there isn’t. I go out for an aperitif with classmates every now and then, Wednesday I usually get over hump day by breaking out in party like the rest of the student population. Otherwise, I read.
My life at Harvard would usually be burgeoning with activity, rushing to classes, completing daily reading, writing papers, going to yoga classes, chilling out at Spoken Word. Here I take the time to really pour myself into what I am reading, because really I don’t have much else to do. I might check out a yoga class in these parts, see what that is like as an experience.
I keep saying that there really isn’t much to life here, but it isn’t necessarily a bad thing. There is plenty of time to think and reflect, plenty of time to just chill out and chat, plenty of time to really absorb the words that are in front of your face. Sunday, for instance, I went for a walk to check out the usual Sunday activity in Ferrara and spent the rest of the day resting, writing and watching Grey’s Anatomy. Calm just soaks you right through, very peaceful. Reading for class thus transports you to other worlds.
So for now, for the next few months, I will have plenty of time to grow, to dream, to learn, to travel, to sit, to think, to stretch. This simple life is a contrast to city living, university insanity, urban drama. I draw inspiration from the intense life of the city, the concentration of lives interconnecting, the richness of stories and shadows. My ears and eyes will for now attune themselves to a more peaceful life. When I return, I’ll be able to take in the city with fresh eyes and rediscover what truly inspires.