Wednesday, June 24, 2009

San Francisco sensations

The following was something I wrote a while ago that I am intensely relating to today. When I wrote it, I was reading Hopscotch by Julio Cortazar and it was enticing me to stay up late with it, fingering the pages, writing and drinking coffee. I had flown to San Francisco to run a half-marathon, and was feeling a tingling energy at the tips of things, as if all my endeavors had nerves. If you've read the book, you can see the influence in my sentences.

I have been pining for San Francisco lately, the San Francisco I discovered when I flew there alone in July of 2005. The hot rays of sunlight that puncture the city fog some days, most days, rays like lasers on my stomach as I lay in the grass reading Lolita at a jazz festival, surrounded by people doing whatever they wanted with their Saturday afternoon. Sipping mojitos at a bar while reading about Mormon fundamentalists — and being able to tell a woman that and have her not think me strange and instead invite me to hang out with her group of friends. Riding on a motorcycle through the Castro, to bars as foggy as the city, getting lost in the tangled marriage of novelty and good conversation. Stepping on buses without the slightest clue where they'll take me, ending up at various parks in the Haight. Talking to people with no expectations, exchanging smiles to those walking around the city with bags from the running expo, as if we wore the same badge of ideas and actions, as if we had the same past, and we acknowledge it with eyelids up, down, up again and a curvature of the face saying, yes, we share this piece of the universe. The excitement of movement, running, legs like pistols, and breath, the air invigorating, like peppermint.

I went to San Francisco in March 2009, and finally, I felt that same connection again.

I wasn't meant to move there in June 2007, when I tried to go there with Ian. Maybe I needed to do some evolving first. And maybe... maybe I'm ready now.

1 comment:

  1. Es curioso. Me preguntaba cómo habrías leído Rayuela, aunque si lo nombras Hopscotch ya sé la respuesta. Siendo así, ¿cómo diablos puede traducirse la expresión "Cebá otro mate, vieja" o "Che, pibe", que ya para un español tiene resonancias muy concretas? Creo, en todo caso, que la lectura del original sería mucho más productiva (también más ardua), pero por el tiempo que dices que llevas en España ya podrías arriesgarte, ¿no crees? Además, el gusto de Cortázar por el jazz, la musicalidad de ese ritmo, está sumergido en sus frases. Es una pena que ese rasgo no sobreviva en las traducciones, pues en eso, en musicalidad, en ritmo, el castellano es incomparable. En fin, fue un placer conocer a una chica de Colorado (donde el Gran Cañón), aunque no profundizara, aunque quizás te infravalorara, qué sé yo... Habrá más fiestas, quiero suponer. Enhorabuena por el blog, por cierto.