Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Roma, epilogue

I don't usually hope for anything, much in the same way I avoid promising anything. I'm afraid of disappointment and of disappointing others. So I don't take any chances, and I pretty much avoid anything that might set anyone up for disappointment. However, when I decided to go on my first vacation, I think I harboured a small seed of hope.

My life is devoid of meaning, simply due to how I perceive the Universe. My existence is completely random and will by its finite definition not amount to anything. I'm getting tired of that. When I try to talk to people about it, they think I'm depressed. Maybe I am, but it doesn't feel like it. It doesn't feel like anything at all. In fact, I would like to feel something.

Some of the most memorable moments in my life was when I was in pain. Years ago, I was bitten by a pet rodent and found myself revelling in actually feeling something. I realized in that moment that it had been a long time since I had last experienced pain, and I was glad to feel again, which I suppose also means that I usually don't feel anything in between moments of pain.

Having thought about that for a while, I agreed to go to Rome, in the hopes of feeling something. My secret hope, even half secret to myself, was that it would hold some kind of turning point in my life, that the experience could alter my perspective and force me out of my rut. Even after coming home, I denied to myself that I had had any hopes on the outset, but then I remembered that at every turn during the trip I seemed to be looking for something.

The plane took off, and I hoped that the fear, and my conquering it, would turn me into a stronger person. Maybe even alleviate my fear of death.

I saw the Colloseum, and I hoped that the perspective of history would bring meaning to my own existence.

Marvelling at St Peter's basilica, hearing the angelic choir that just happened to be singing when we entered, I actually hoped that I would find God.

Riding the Metro, I hoped that I would fall in love with a random girl, even if only for a heartbeat.

Nothing at all happened. Everything was very mundane, almost to the point of seeming quite ordinary. Nothing really left a lasting impression. It was my first disappointment in a very long time, and I really don't feel it was for lack of trying or a lack of openmindedness.

The end result is, if anything, that I'm now even more the person I already was. Next time, I simply won't hope for anything. I won't take a chance.

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