Maybe I've just forgotten, like we all do every winter. But I think it's more than that. In Washington the green is tempered with grey, in New England I remember there being colors everywhere. Flowering trees and lilacs and fields full of orange. Here, in the piece of woods where I walk every morning with the dog, it's just green. Green leaves with green vines twisting like a jungle.
I watched the whole thing this year, the forest shoot up alive after the winter, the lime frost on the branches thickening into yellow fuzz, and then one day, 80 degrees and sun filtering through leaves. Every day I've been in those woods, for hours on end. My two best friends in this new place continue to be my dog and my bike. This might indicate that I've been avoiding the sometimes-tiring work of making real, people friends, but that's only a little bit true.
During the school year I had these weekly bursts of social interactions that always left me buzzing and happy. I sat in the front of the class in Anatomy and Physiology, between two girls who I was friendly with. One of them would crack every bone in her body and then lean in and whisper, "Cheerleading's dangerous." The other one loved bees.
Between these two and the enormous amounts of coffee I would drink during each class, and the fastidious and color coded system I developed to take notes, full of stunningly complicated mnemonics and indecipherable diagrams, I grew quite fond of school and the effortless social high it left me with.
The panic of a Friday night yawning before me with no real plans was blissfully lost on me, as I could always hide behind my text book and the highlighters with the liquid ink that I love so much. I could fall asleep early and feel like a responsible person, not a lonely one.
Every Monday night Dave and I go over to our friends' house and watch Game of Thrones. After the episode we watch the trailer for the next week, briefly discuss the agony of poor Theon, agree that Daenerys has bitten off more than she can chew, and then it's off to our houses and to sleep.
Tuesday I work at the Cider House, pouring out little flights of cider and talking to the men who sit at the bar all evening, and Wednesday I play a game of frisbee with my team on the Asheville Spring League. We always lose, usually by one, and again I go home giddy with the buzz of adrenaline and lactic acid and the charm of that certain awkward, athletic crowd that ultimate draws, the one that's so familiar to me it feels like family.
All that studying paid off in the end. I finished the class with a 99 and endured the teacher, who would often stand in front of me, knock his fist against my desk and tell the class, "Some people don't think their grade is ever good enough. Some people will never be satisfied." And the girl next to me would whisper, "He's so mean to you!" Then she'd crack her neck and add, "Cheerleading's dangerous."
Then one day I woke up with nothing much to do. School was over for the summer, spring league was over, and even my bar tending job sent me home one day because it was too slow. I called some friends but nobody was free. You know that feeling when you're suddenly aimless. When you've been very busy and wishing for a long stretch of free time, and then it hits you and it feels kind of like a crisis.
I'm just a little anxious is all. It seems like I always am.