We have 5 weeks left together. I will be back once in June and in September, but the real number is 35 days. Boxes are being packed--today I attacked the writing room while sipping strong coffee, the kind strong enough to make my hands shake and the heart buzzed more than beat. Bookshelves are empty. Slowly I'm whittling things down.
It's always bizarre to pack up a life. I have lugged so much of it around with me. And bits of you, dear city, cling to it all--the things I keep as well as what goes to trash. You are in every stitch of clothing. You are nestled in the tread of my bike wheels. You are all over the pages filled with words--you are the words, the running pen I wrote them with, the yellow in however I folded it.
It is strange to feel both sad and relieved to leave you. My heart isn't here anymore and you get that--you can tell in the way I navigate through your streets or talk myself out of yet another social event. I've been both safe and bored here. Trust me when I say that keeping you in my heart means leaving. If every seven years we are different people then you've had two of me. That's more than enough.