Friday 6:05 pm.
For a second, I feel like tonight could be a promising night. After an hour of indecision, I finally decide to join my friend for a night of storytelling on the topic: “A Crazy Little Thing Called Love.” Just after I decided to go to the storytelling event, another friend invited me over to his place to have dinner. I have a bad habit of stretching myself too thin, saying I will go to so many different events, that in the end, I have to cancel a few to stay mentally and physically sane. With this friend, I had cancelled a couple of times already, so I felt a little guilty and had to say yes. I even invited him to join the storytelling event. And so, after a homemade dinner, we were on our way to meet my other friend at the storytelling event.
We arrived a couple of minutes early and took a look around the room. It wasn’t very crowded and the majority of people seemed to be older than we had expected. The entrance fee, which we were unaware of until we reached the door and talked to the lady at the cashier, was 8 Euros. I started having second thoughts: Do I really want to pay 8 euros to listen to stories of strangers sitting in the middle of a crowd that, already, without even having started, looks quite bored? The answer: No. So my friends and I decided to try to look for another plan and headed out of the building. On the way, however, there was a place with busting party music, and some guys were hanging out just in front of this place. My extremely outgoing, extraverted friend, who, in my opinion, could REALLY be a bit shier (he calls it being “truthful”; I call it being embarrassingly honest -I can feel my stomach sink and my head wish a black hole sucked me into the darkness just thinking about the things he says to strangers), started talking to the guys hanging outside the party place and, somehow, we ended up in this office party. After an hour of awkwardly introducing myself to these strangers who all worked together at this marketing company that is just soooo cool that holds office parties every Friday, I was ready to escape to the uncool comfort of my home. But no. My extraverted friend found out some of the office guys were going to some bar near to his place, and decided to invite them over to his place. I didn’t want to go and join their crazy “sex, drugs and techno” party, but alas! I felt responsible for my other friend, because she had just met my extraverted friend and, thus, I could not leave her there alone. And that is how another two hours of tortuous awkwardness and a long journey into disconnection, borderline alienation, ensued.
Saturday 1:10 am and 10: 17 am.
I am heading home, feeling abysmal disconnection. I wonder what has caused this intense, shattering feeling of disconnection. The people we met were really nice. They were open-minded and fun. And yet, there was I, suffering from early hungover disconnection after what felt like drunkenness caused by lethal cocktails of soullessness. And the feeling lingers. It follows me throughout the next morning and into this grey afternoon. It roams around my room, waiting for me to acknowledge its presence, to ponder about it.
Saturday 4:27 pm.
Still feeling hungover from the powerful cocktails of disconnection, I lazily lie on my bed, thinking about what causes two people to feel connection or disconnection. Is it their looks? No, I can’t count the times I have felt insurmountable disconnection talking to physically stunning people. Is it common interests? No, I can’t count the times I have felt disconnected to people who share my interests and even passions. Is it common beliefs? No, I can’t count the times I have felt disconnected to people who share my political beliefs. It helps, but I also had wonderful friends who were leaning to the opposite side of the political spectrum. Is it similarities? No, I can’t count the times I have felt annoyed at people who are similar to me. Is it differences? No, I can’t count the times I have felt a gap so big, that no matter how much I try to jump to the that other side, I fail.
What causes, that evasive, almost inexplicable feeling of connection? And what does connection feel like anyway? Defeated by the first question, I shyly and clumsily try to answer the second question.
Connection feels like the early discovery and appreciation of a garden.
It is that garden that makes you want to stay.
It is that garden that, you might not know but would like to know.
It is garden that might not have the flowers that you like the most, but still mesmerises you with the beautiful splash of multicoloured petals.
It is the garden that slowly, shyly reveals itself,
each time leaving you wanting to see, hear, smell, breathe more.
It is a garden where birds sing beautiful melodies that make your heart dance.
But connection, most of all, feels like a warm hug.