This August I spent a lot of time chasing sunsets. I had little planned to do, except for rest. Resting implies handing out with family and friends, preferably over coffee, and wander the streets just because I have the time for it.
One thing stood in my way and that was heat. I like the amount of unplanned time in summer, but the high temperatures are reason enough for me to enjoy summer less than all the other seasons. So I don’t plan much. Some work, some rest, some walking. And always, always, a little more time in my hometown.
Spending summer in my hometown is a privilege I don’t take for granted. I like the late mornings with my mother, who refuses to drink coffee I make ever again after the first day when she is open to try it again and see if it’s too strong, after which we start talking about the nothingness of the day-to-day, reminiscing about the past and showing one another pictures we received on whatsapp from our friends.
It sometimes implies doing things with my brother, like going to the cemetery to visit dad, followed by a short trip to Lidl. I always appreciate how we have the same shopping style, meaning that we always get the same things, always in our hands and never skip looking a little in the middle. Or we sometimes take long walks in the city because we’re brothers and we both like this.
It always implies longs walks with my friend, Adriana, coffee in hand. It’s funny to think that our friendship actually implies a foursome because walking and coffee are simply part of our relationship. We became friends by walking to high-school together [with coffee mom made for me at home] and, as we had a 22 minute walk, we always talked and that’s how we got to know each other. We also went to see Oppenheimer in the theatre, which is my most watched movie in the cinema.
It also means meeting the friends from high-school, with children and husbands or boyfriends. Some things, fortunately or not, change, and it’s nice to know there is a group of people that remains constant. Those who know you so well and for so long that so much is being said by using only a few words.
Oh, and let’s not forget the coffee, the amazing coffee I get when I go home. I have a favourite place and a favourite barista, but besides being loyal to this one place [despite their refusal to sprinkle cinnamon in my coffee which made me anxious to ask for ice – but I did and they gave me flat white with ice and it was, of course, amazing] I always try new coffee places too.
And then there is walking. Walking on certain urban trails, like on ‘my street’ which has the little wonderful townhouses I admire so much, or to the black and white towers, or to the fortress, or on Sub Tâmpa street, or in the neighbourhoods where I grew up. There is so much meaning on these streets for me and I like how it’s always refreshed and updated. I enjoy seeing how the city changes, mostly for the better, and how it blends the familiar with the novelty.
After the busy year at work, it was kind of hard to actually take a pause and relax. It’s not that it was not needed, but when there is a lot going on, it’s not easy to decide to read no emails and to open no spreadsheets. I am grateful I had walking though.
I hope you had a lovely summer and that you’re now ready to go back to work. Because if there’s something this summer’s tragedies reminded me, is how important it’s to do the best you can at work.
Make today count!