Sunday, 6 July 2008


...Come, my friends,
Tis not too late to seek a newer world.
Push off, and sitting well in order smite
The sounding furrows; for my purpose holds
To sail beyond the sunset, and the baths
Of all the western stars until I die.
It may be that the gulfs will wash us down:
It may be that we shall touch the Happy Isles,
And see the great Achilles, whom we knew.
Tho' much is taken, much abides; and tho'
We are not now that strength which in old days
Moved earth and heaven; that which we are, we are;
One equal temper of heroic hearts,
Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will
To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.

Ulysses, Tennyson


When I make my next blog, I'll post the link here so y'all can see it. I'm thinking it'll be just a record of the parts of senior year I want to remember. Any thoughts for titles?



Undiscovered Country

Back in the U.S., and things have never felt so different. Everything realy IS too big around here, people DON'T dress HALF as fashionably, and for the country with some of the greatest expanses of forest and wildland around (which are especially visible from the air), we are a country with some of the grossest excess imaginable, as if cities and towns were trying to spread as far as possible and failing. Just the gas it requires to get from place to place! And the brand names and the strip malls...

I'm sorry. I flew into Newark. It's not the best first impression of America. I was suddenly reminded by the Jersey Turnpike how much New Jersey resembles Bosnia.

But I guess that's all to be expected. I've got plenty left to say on my re-adjustment, as the wardrobe door slams shut, but I don't think I'm going to say it here. Not yet, at least. I think I need time to digest all that.

And so, with England done, this blog is going to come to an end ... so to speak. I'll leave a post above to tag any thoughts, things I miss about England, and I'll keep that one post updated. There's a lot about this blog that I haven't finished - such as the infamous post about Ireland, which maybe will come up in later blog-related writings - and a lot I haven't been able to put into words, but I think, for the time being, that it would be better for me to keep those things unsaid. Digest them first. They'll come back around at some point. "Nothing is forgotten, just not remembered until the right time," and all.

So I'm taking a quick hiatus from reporting on and analysing my life in a narrative format, but I'll continue again with a blog about senior year - it'll probably start up mid august, if any of you are interested.

I just wanted to take a quick second to thank all my readers, I hope you've had fun, and I've enjoyed your comments and your patronage.

It would be a mistake to get overly sentimental about England passing into the background. It would be just as much a mistake to deal with the subject in a cold, objective fashion. Suffice it to say that one of the more important things England has left with me is the knowledge that we, as Americans, are not the only crazy ones. Nor are the English, Scottish, Irish, Swiss or Germans. I'd even venture so far to say that we are, in fact, all pretty sufficiently crazy. I remember writing something in my moleskine like "the West Country puts American political troubles into perspective: 'Yes. We know. That country is run by madmen who can bomb each other to bits and ruin lives and manipulate the country against itself for their own ends. That's just what Americans do. Good. Got that settled. Now let's go have some scrumpy.'"

And although, after nine months, it's very obvious that England isn't just a fantasy land, there is a kind of enchantment that lives on there in the culture, somehow. I won't try to put my finger on it. It'll ruin the mystique.

I have yet to find the same enchantment here. But I'm only really just starting to look.