Monday, August 02, 2004

having a life.

i'm tired. tired. tired.
it's this having a life thing, you know?

i'm alone at home again on this monday morning, and it's good to be alone. i've got quite a lot to do today (trip to the laundromat, shopping, studying, working out), quite a lot to do this week (studying), but in an effort to not get too stressed out too early in this 32°C day, i think sitting down and writing is a good thing to do for now.

it's been a nice few days, these past ones.
last wednesday, tammy arrived from canada. dirk met her in australia in 2001; she joined kolja, sebastian and dirk in their van, they later picked up ullrich, and they travelled through western australia for a few weeks.
you know how sometimes when you meet people that you've travelled with, you don't have anything to tell them because all that ever connected you were your travels?
for dirk, seeing tammy again has been anything but that. the two of them have gotten along as well as back then (i'd guess), and i've enjoyed her stay as well. she has been a lovely houseguest, the most easy going and easy to please i've ever had, and her stay has been the much needed mini-holiday i've been longing for.

they've been busy in a highly relaxed way, these past days. there's been lots of going places, lots of hanging around, lots of talking, lots of fun.
tammy got an extended version of the obligatory city tour: she was appropriately impressed. the city made quite an effort to show itself from its best side: constant sunshine and bright blue skies made everything look even more cute and lovely than it already does anyway. we climbed up the spire of the cathedral, walked through the little streets, hung out on augustinerplatz, chilled in cafes. thursday night, we met up with michi to watch fahrenheit 9/11. on friday, we took the train out to schluchsee and hung out and swam all afternoon, a nice wind making the sun bearable, the place thankfully emptier than i have ever seen it. very relaxing, indeed.
friday night we went to a reggae party at susi that michi had organised, where we danced and drank cocktails till 4am, ogling pretty people, being amused by all those very blonde, very european girls trying oh-so-hard to be african queens by having blonde dreads and smooching rastamen. we rode our bikes home at 4am, in a warm night, under a full moon.
tammy was lovely company at the party, we laughed lots about the same things, ogled the same boys and danced: i could do with someone like her around at all times. she's smart and interesting, she likes her challenging job with autistic kids and she's relaxed and easy going and fun to have around. we got along really well. when she left yesterday, i told her that she should move here. i meant it, yes.

after way too little sleep, i spend saturday alone in bühl, watching the lukchallenge time trial 2, and with it lance armstrong, george hincapie, jens voigt, thomas voeckler, bobby julich, uwe peschel, michael rich, christophe moreau, patrick sinkewitz and other elite riders.
it was cool to see the race, but quite a harsh difference to last weeks tour experience. the audience was primarily german, and hence neither interactive nor enthusiastic. there was almost no serious cheering (there was no way to get an aussie-aussie-aussie-oy-oy-oy cheer going for michael rogers), there was no serious fun and i didn't stand next to anyone willing to chat. it got a bit boring and lonely at times, indeed.
many spectators weren't real cycling enthusiasts, either, so i felt a little freakish, being surrounded by people who didn't even know why didi senfft was running around in that devils costume, and who knew none of the riders and kept confusing the teams.
the spot that i was standing at was good though: it was right near the starting ramp, with good views of stage for the team and prize presentation, right near the starting ramp. for the actual race however, it was anything but an ideal place: located pretty much in the middle of a straight 4km part of the track, the teams raced by at more than 50kmh. yeah. that much for good middle of the race photo ops.

overall, it was worth it, though. i saw lance, after all, from up close, too, while sheryl crow was sitting in an usps car happily looking on as lance and george hincapie waited for their start. that was cool, of course. not so cool was the fact that the organisation played sheryl crow songs as the lance and george were waiting for their start. very non-subtle. marcel wüst commented the entire race, close to where i was standing, so he offered a good distraction as well. so the trip to the race was good, a sunny day by another roadside seeing people excel in an exciting sport. it was so good to see jens voigt and bobby julich win: i am sure it was good for voigt to get the appreciation after the bad experience riding up l'alpe d'huez when enraged ullrich friends kept shouting "judas" at him, because he had chased ullrich down the day before to protect his teammate basso. the only downside really was the loneliness.
oh, and yes, there are photos.

saturday night, when i came home after the sunfilled day at the race, i was wiped out and tired, so all dirk, tammy and i did was some more hanging out, a cheapo laubfrosch pizza on the banks of the dreisam, and walking up schlossberg to sit and talk and drink red wine and look at the moon and the fireworks over seepark. i fell into bed soon after that, while dirk and tammy went on to party at grether ost (mainly because juff was there, who tammy instantly liked at the reggae party) where they hung out till 4am once more.

sunday was supposed to be travel day for dirk and tammy.
dirk had discussed with michi that it would be cool to roadtrip with tammy to lake constance, to neuschwanstein near füssen and then on to munich, from where she wants to head to hungary to meet family. michi wanted to head to his bavarian hometown for some three day beer-fest this week anyway, going past lake constance for a music festival where one of his friends is working.
yesterday morning, it all got me quite upset. for the past days, ever since tammys arrival, really (ever since realising how lovely she is) i've been wanting to come along to the first leg of the trip. lake constance isn't that far away, and i thought it would be cool to hang out for an afternoon, go to that festival, camp and/or sleep outside and head home by train the next day. sounds good, eh? a little too good, maybe? yeah.

being underslept and underfed sunday morning, i got mightily stressed out. i really wanted to roadtrip with tammy and dirk, but felt like i didn't deserve even one more day of holidays because i pretty much didn't work at all last week. i got stressed and sad (as can happy easily when i'm underfed and underslept), i got into that old familiar depressed headspace about not deserving this and cried and couldn't make up my mind. after an hour of teeth gnashing, i finally decided that i would come along and that i would feel good about it and enjoy myself. if not now, when?

however, as i am obviously here in freiburg this monday, so something mustn't have worked out, right? right.

the plan had been to leave midday. like 1pm or 2pm.
dirk, tammy and i were all packed up and ready to go by then.
so we waited. and waited. and waited. and waited some more. then it was 3pm. dirk called michi, who said it was going to be another hour. it was 3:30pm. it was 4pm. it was 4:30pm.
the overall mood started to sink quite dramatically. especially mine. i called michi and he got all pissed and said he'd come when he was ready. we waited some more. i got annoyed. and then i realised that by that time, it just wasn't going to be worth it for me to come along.

the drive down to lake constance takes about 3 hours. there wouldn't be any swimming that afternoon. i'd be annoyed by michi (as i have been for his lateness many a times). it wasn't going to be worth to roadtrip to lake constance just to sit in a car with tammy and dirk for three hours with a pissed off michi and to go to a concert i wasn't interested in.
hell, even if we had camped out at the lake in niederrimsingen (30 minutes from here), where we've camped last year, i would have deemed anything past 5pm way too late to leave. why is it so hard to get ready to go somwhere at a time that it makes sense?

michis lateness annoyed me in so many ways. it stands for so many things. i knew that if i needed a lift to the train station the next day, i surely wouldn't get it from him.
and so it dawned on me that it just would not be right for me to come along after all.
why roadtrip stressfully? i'd rather not roadtrip at all.
it was a sad realisation, for me and dirk and i guess for tammy as well, who kept asking whether i couldn't organise to stay for two days, but i really couldn't and didn't want to.
i felt a bit like a drama queen for changing my mind. but then, i was still tired, still stressed. why risk dragging all that into the week by going on a hasty roadtrip that would not include the things that i had expected from it?
by 5pm, tammy, dirk and i went to the downstairs cafe to have some beers to spice up the waiting. two beers later, michi had decided it was time to go and turned up. it was 6pm by then.
i said goodbye to dirk and tammy, i felt just a little sad about staying behind, walked home, bought myself dinner, watched the telly for a while and went to bed super early.

so this was the roadtrip that wasn't supposed to be. and i'm alright with it, happy that i am at home today, not already sitting on a train tripping back to freiburg in this heat, worrying about everything i got to do today and this week.

so that's what life has been like this past week:
full and fulfilling and good.

now it's time to get some things done. got so much more to write/think/say, and will, soon.