midnight swims and mining shafts

washed my linens by hand today cause i’m too stubborn to ask to use the washing machine at the dorms. and then ironed them after they dried in the sun. it all proved to be preeeetty difficult and i doubt i’ll be doing that very often. plus they feel like sandpaper now. despite my ‘ironing to make them softer’ attempt.

after i was done being super ukrainian, went for my first run in a month. my feet felt as heavy as lead, almost as though my body forgot how to run. every movement felt disjointed and clunky and my brain kept telling me ‘walking is much nicer’. but i did my best running on the farm lined dirt paths beyond the dormitories. a few cows stopped grazing for a moment as i passed and lifted their heads with such melancholy to follow me with their big curious eyes. like the cows, didn’t know where i was running to. i just kept running. i ran parallel with towering power lines whoes cicada like buzz of electrical current, was the only noise to accompany the flattening of rocks beneath my clunky feet.

i ran through field after field, trees and of nothingness until i turned into a field and i stopped. at that moment i realized ‘this is my field’. the place i’ve been looking for since i arrived. somewhere to call my own, to sneak off to and read a book or lay in the sun and bask in the beauty around me. it felt as though i’d finally found that house i’ve been searching for. i just knew it was the one the second i laid eyes on it. if someone else were to see this, they might not see much, but like the parent of an unattractive child, i think it’s the most beautiful thing. the dirt road opens up to a tree lined secret field. some straw still blows in the wind but most has been cut away and some new green begins to grow. i spot one tree towards the middle of the field and go bounding for it, crunching the remaining cut down straw with every step. i ran to the tree, looked around and noticed a lone man, herding cattle at the other end. standing with a staff like a massai man, tall and lanky under the bright sun. i looked up to the pure blue sky and across the horizon to see the two towers from the near by mine, commanding my attention. i acknowledged them, and they me, and i continued on my run.

serge, a visiting artist at my school, invited me out for a late night swim at the river with other ceramics people. i was so scared to go in the water i had refused all pleads from jeff to swim in it. the fact that there aren’t any lights made me even more wary. everyone jumped into the calm dark water, except for me who stood nervously at the end of the barely lit dock, debating whether to go or not. as i stood there the nice old german speaking man offered me his hand and helped me jump in. like a child going for their first swim, the minute i splashed the water i felt a relief that it wasn’t so bad and suddenly it wasn’t so scary. as long as i didn’t think about it. i swam, stomach up to the sky gazing at all the stars in the milky way. then i understood why they swim at night. it was breathtaking. well worth the risk of swimming in questionably sanitary water.

the ceramic people from poland are coming tomorrow. drinking will be done.

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