Saturday, January 16, 2010

The Diarist

I've never been a diary person. Never had one as a kid, and honestly, am pretty lazy about keeping one updated. When I was 20, though, my friend gave me a blank book to use as a diary for my 5 month sojourn in Europe. In 1982, I did a summer job exchange in Switzerland, working in a supermarket for a summer. After that, my best friend and I traveled through Europe on the college-student's-best-friend Eurailpass for 2 months. During that time, I wrote in my diary every day.

I kept it up for a while when I got back (if I recall) but never to the daily extent of that summer/fall of 1982.

After that European adventure, I went on a study abroad program in Germany. That was a year-long program and I thought I'd start a new diary. But ... when you live somewhere for a year, things start to become a little repetitive and you forget to write. That diary is not nearly as robust as my 1982 diary. I sort of regret that, 25 years later, but them's the breaks.

Periodically over the years I've started and stopped writing diaries. I am always sucked into the beauty of a small blank book at a bookstore, lovely leather cover or a beautiful picture cover, blank pages just waiting for me to divulge my most intimate secrets. I buy the book, hide it away in my purse for those free moments anywhere that I think I must write and ... nothing happens. The few times I do write, I find my entries shallow and uninteresting. I always feel that diary entries should be full of depth, true soul-searching and mine always seem ... mundane.

I read my last diary last night. Months and months pass between entries. Names I've forgotten pop up and I laugh at the childish things I write, even though I'm an adult. The beauty of this particular diary, though, is that I have a few entries from when I first met C. I even wrote down when he first told me he loved me. What a beautiful feeling that evoked, reading my words about that time again. I'm happy reading that entry, because after nearly 7 years, I realize none of those feelings have diminished, only strengthened.

This blog is a diary of sorts, easier to write than using pen to paper. I know that somewhere along the way I'll still be sucked into buying a beautiful new blank book and that it will lie barely used somewhere in my house, but at least I know that somewhere in my mind, I'll put pen to paper, whether literally or figuratively.

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