Captured in part

by You Have My Word

Allow me to paint the scene for you:

I’m sitting on a wind-worn-white plastic beach chair with my bare feet propped up on a small wall that surrounds the top-floor balcony of a story-filled block of flats. Just inside this particular home comes the melody of an easy morning – piano keys kissing finger tips, not desperately but like two lovers that know each other well. My body, outside, feels like it’s thawing in the sun – winter-blanket heat from the rays, mug of tea in hand – not because I’m frozen but because there’s frost in the air blowing off the mountains.

The mountains are glorious; that’s the only word I’ve found apt since I’ve been here. They frame the city, like someone painted something magnificent and wanted only the strongest frame to keep it properly, permanently set. The frame of rock in itself is near-magical; sometimes it simply appears as cotton clouds kiss its feet, sometimes it is black as rain threatens to tarnish, sometimes it simply is – proud and pure as it was carved out to be.

The streets below both the balcony and boulders breathe deeply, sometime coughing like the city has something stuck in its throat. Enough cars to confuse traffic with the ocean – it’s that close – but not so many as to drown out the sound of birds, and wind, and conversations happening at that traffic light over there. I’m still on the balcony but I could be a million different people in a million different places if I closed my eyes. I never want to close my eyes here; so much to see and do, so many people to meet, so many tastes to try, so many lives to listen to.

How is it that a place can feel so much like home and so much like a really well-preserved artefact at the same time – like I shouldn’t touch anything, but everything is mine? Perhaps this is the wonder, perhaps this is the way it has always been.