Bitching Brew

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Fin de siècle, or Now What?

I have one exam left on Wednesday, but I've found it impossible to study today. I'm burned out after the first four. Must get going tomorrow morning.

Anyway, the existential angst is rising. The bottom line: after Wednesday, What Do I Do? All my life I've had something ahead of me; I didn't realise at the time what a comfort that was. Yes, I'm going to Toronto in September, but there's nothing structured about that either. What Do I Do there? Or for the next three months? Or when I return from Canada?

It's not just the lack of direction in my own life; my whole social scene is about to dissipate. Sure, I'll see plenty of them around over the summer, but even then, it'll be far less frequent. And what about the ones leaving? Most of my closest friends - and plenty more besides - are about to disappear to foreign lands. When will I see them again? A year? Two? Five?! On top of that, I'm about to vanish for a year myself. It could be longer than that if, upon my return, I head straight back off to Britain for postgrad. I won't see my Irish friends for at least 12 months, possibly a multiple of that. So those friendships are going to be affected too. Whoa.

It's been brought home to me in the last few days. In six days, my long-term sidekick in Economics is leaving. We've seen each other practically every day for years now. I don't know when I'll next see her. It could be years. Another good college friend leaves for America soon. I might see him while I'm in Toronto, but it would be brief. One of the few (only?) friends left from my schooldays is emigrating to Australia in a few weeks. These are just the June departures. Even more vanish before September. I am going to really miss all these people.

But, you say, you yourself are off to Canada! You're not going to see anyone for a year, of your own volition! What's the big deal? Simple - I'm probably coming back here afterwards. When you throw yourself into a foreign land, you have to sink or swim. I'm going to get out there and meet a bunch of new friends. It'll be great! It's not like that when you're at home. There's a big difference between the two scenarios of all your friends leaving, and of leaving yourself. I'm not sure which is harder. The latter is a greater risk, and a greater challenge, but it's my choice, and the rewards are bounteous. The former is less risky, but is unchosen, and offers few rewards, if any.

Whew. I'm going to be saying a lot of goodbyes in September, but I know I'll be back (at least for a while), and that an amazing experience lies ahead of me. Before Saturday passes, and then over the succeeding weeks, I'm going to be saying just as many goodbyes; only in these cases, there is an air of finality. I may never see some of them again, and as for the rest, the time of reunion is distant and indeterminate.

I know they're off to a better life, but for my own part, it's scary. I guess this is the very feeling I'm soon to subject my own family and friends to. :)

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  • ok xo let me be the first reader to post a witty reply (hope it is.. love the bitchin let it all out but then again you had a good reason to bitch and the more you practice the better you get... enjoy it!

    By Blogger Shortypam, at Tue May 30, 12:47:00 p.m.  

  • Thanks! I've gotten very good at bitching here recently... all the other stuff seems to have vanished. The bitching is spreading into emails and IMs too. Bah. I'm not a robot or a punching bag. Like you say, bitching is warranted sometimes. ;)

    By Blogger Martin, at Fri Jun 02, 01:19:00 a.m.  

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