Saturday, December 10, 2005


The snowy landscape in the high Sierras is beautiful, giant fields of white with the gray rock underneath poking through, where the sun has warmed away the ice crystals. Blue skies with the surrounding peaks neatly etched into them, it’s warm enough to trek across in cargo pants and sneakers, squinting at the brightness of a July sun reflected in the snow.

On the trails, at lower elevations most of the snow is gone. All that is left are dirty, scattered, clumps nestled in the shade. Growing smaller as the sun melts them into dirty little rivulets of water making tracks in the dust.

There was a visitor in the lab this morning, his name is Rich and he used to work there.

Rich is also part of the Class of 2005 and we shared a class our last semester.

Rich is an objectively handsome man, but I am not attracted to him. I like him very much as a person and our relationship has always been cordial, I wish him the best.

Rich spent some time in Italy, where he met an Italian woman name Elena. I know because during the spring of this year we spoke fairly regularly about his frequent correspondence with Elena, how difficult it was to try and stay in contact while he was in California finishing school and she was in Italy, how he hoped to move to Italy after graduation, to live with Elena. I can only surmise: he loves her very much.

And here he was this morning, sitting at the table. Talking about living in Italy, and how much he enjoys it. Teaching English to old ladies who would like to vacation in the UK, young couples who want to learn together, businessmen. And he is living in Italy. And he loves Elena.

And when he leaves in a small, hidden, part of my heart I melt at the thought and I love he and Elena both. Glorious, glorious, in their warmth for each other, no immediate pinch of ambition. Just a classroom where he sits and chats in English so that he can pay rent.

So I’m leaving. I don’t know where, or when, or how. But this town is dead, I’ve used it all up. It was beautiful, vast, snow-filled landscape, brilliant, shining beacon when I needed it and I love it. But now I’m walking below and it’s dirty clods of dirt and ice wetting dark webs into dust.

So tomorrow I plan.

And tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow.

Rabbit runs.

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