Inside the Room

I have a giant calendar with the map of Japan, but it fell off the wall some days ago. I tried to put it back in place, but it kept falling again and again, so I’ve let it drift around the room. It doesn’t look graceful at all. It lingers on top of boxes and suitcases like a stiff lady who refuses to lie on her chaise longue. Behind it, my guitar has fainted against the bookshelf. I look at it and wonder if I’ll ever play it again. The thought of my nasty neighbor listening to me is enough to make me desist. I miss singing, though. I remember all those afternoons after school when I’d play for hours on end. I used to write songs. We performed some of them live once.

I have a lot of new books from Maruzen, but as long as I’m not done with Tsukiji I will feel guilty for entering the fascinating world of Ha Jin or getting lost in Asimov’s futuristic imperial universe instead of clapping at this American anthropologist who had to stop taking his Japanese students on field trips because they understood fish merchants’ language less than he did. It took a soothing explanation from another anthropologist (thanks, Gianrico) for me to retake the book… less than a week before my presentation. It doesn’t matter, though. I hate doing stuff I’m not interested in.

I miss reading just as I miss playing music. Just as I miss writing—but I’m writing right now. However, this story is nothing but my story, that boring tale about a girl who has finally begun to hear the words in her head again after maybe years of silence. One day, this story will become one about somebody else, and the setting will not be the dying grayness of this abandoned yet inhabited forest—or maybe it will be so, with a different name and a different way to fight the coldness which refuses to leave the room despite the poor efforts made by that old coughing heating device. I’m starting to believe the machine is allied with the weather to spite me. Maybe the neighbor has summoned evil spirits to make this winter ever so bitter inside this room, only inside this room.

The suffering —and the rambling— should not go on forever. I must go out and face the wind, if only for a little while.

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