There is nothing like the smell of old books.


Just as Holly Golightly heads to Tiffany’s when experiencing a case of ‘the mean reds’, I scale the shelves of a second hand book store at the bottom of my street.

I adore opening them, getting that musty smell from pages and searching for scribbles from previous owners. Every weekend I do this without fail, armed with black coffee and whatever 60’s tune I’m obsessed with at that point repeating in my ears.

It provides a wave of calm for me.

It’s about the only time my mind is silent and I feel nothing but absolute bliss. Nothing about me in this place is like me outside. I have zero guards up, I move slower and I feel comfortable. There aren’t many people about and the adventures I could have are endless. I am not alone, but I get the perks of it.

I am not afraid to be alone. In fact, I relish it. For the last three days, I have spent most of my time alone in my apartment. I have been writing, reading, working, listening, drawing, creating and learning things.

Surrounded by great works of brilliant people, like Bowie or Brian Wilson. Deciphering pieces of myself and how I feel about things or people.

I don’t care much for people on a personal level. There are particular people in my life that I have grown attached and accustomed to. I detest it, because they cannot always be a part of my life. But I love them completely, even when my brain seems to switch into auto pilot mode and I can’t feel a thing. I love you, despite you leaving me to experience life then telling me all about it, and I want nothing more for you.

It’s terribly brilliant.

Lately, I have been trying to figure out if I am falling in love or not.

I have been in love before. It was equal parts bliss and absolute torture. I’ve had flings before, things with definite expiry dates and I’ve been in relationships for the sake of being in relationships, where I was more like an authoritative figure to be relied as opposed to a partner.

When I was in love, I was restless. I pushed the boundaries of my relationship until I snapped them. Which is funny, because the person I loved had already snapped them, but I’m not used to someone doing that. I am always the snapper. The pusher. The impulsive and elusive piece that you can never find because its gone walk about.

But this time I didn’t do that. I stayed and I built something. Then I turned back to my old ways. How could I be 22 and be empowered if I had never even had a one night stand? Worse, that when I attempted to have a one night stand, we fell in love straight away. Even when we fell out of love, I continued to push them until they really did snap. Blocked. Silence.

I don’t know what I want. I don’t know what they want. Therefore, no-ones knows what is ahead.

I write what I think is ahead, romanticise things and I talk about it to people who are lovely enough to try decipher my brain & its feelings. The funny thing is, you can tell people your honest feelings about something and they can still choose to not believe you. Like there is a hidden meaning or that you are holding back. But I never do that, I will tell you how I feel.

Unless you are the person I hold the feelings for. That’s when I get hesitant. Then it takes all types of courage and energy, sucks the very life out of you. And even when that happens, it is usually followed by a response that makes you feel so deflated that you never want to do it again.

But you’ll do it again.

And again.

Because for some reason, the feeling doesn’t go away or the crazy voice in your head is telling you that there is still some possibility. But sometimes that voice isn’t nice about your hopeless romantic side.

Instead, it tells you how worthless you are.

Irrational. Not pretty. False. Disgusting. Unloveable. It forces you to reflect on all of your failures and forgets any achievements.

And you listen to it, turning you into cynical, cold person that can’t be around happy people. You seem angry and stone like, so to be happy you start drinking whisky. Then you feel like people like you again.

Its not cool to be numb and detached. Its hard and painful – it sucks the life out of you just like love does. But at least love usually means someone is there and they can make you feel something.

I don’t know if I am in love, but I feel something. I cannot tell you what it is.

And I am not sure if I can be vulnerable again, but I know I want to be.

That vulnerability of being ok naked or actually explaining to someone what you head is doing or what you’ve been writing. Things like entwined fingers, holding hands under tables because of nerves or soft cheek kisses and arms around waists.

Sex isn’t regarded as the ultimate intimacy anymore. It’s the little things. In fact, sober sex with someone is a high, rare level of intimacy. Touching someones face or fixing their hair in public – that is intimate. Lying on the floor, staring at each other drunk while talking about childhood memories – sad and happy. That is intimate.

If someone can make me feel like I do at that second hand bookstore every Sunday, with my coffee and 60’s tunes. What does that mean?

If they make my mind silent and I feel nothing but absolute bliss? That nothing about me around them is like me outside with other people. That I feel like having zero guards up, to move slower and feel comfortable. There aren’t any other people and the adventures I could have with them are endless. I am not alone, but I still get the perks of it.

What then?




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