On missing Santa Cruz

Picture of Interstate 90 descending Sunset Hil...

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Sometimes I feel like I am living in an alternate universe.

It’s as if I walked through a wormhole and I ended up in Spokane while my other self is still living in Santa Cruz. Sometimes I can feel my other self when I think about Santa Cruz. I will focus on a certain aspect of that place, like our walks through the Redwood Forest. If I am still enough and I focus enough I can smell the pungent scent of the Bay Trees. I can feel the cool shade of the forest.

Or sometimes I will remember our walks on the beach. And I swear I am there again. I can feel the sand under my feet, the cool breeze as it sweeps off of the ocean. I can hear the people screaming on the Big Dipper, mixed in with the sound of the waves crashing on the shore.

When we go back to visit it feels like I’ve never left. It feels like I am where I belong. I am reunited with the Santa Cruz Monica, and I feel whole again.

Maybe I left part of myself back in Santa Cruz. And maybe that part of me is still enjoying the beach and the Redwood Forest.

Maybe the Spokane Monica is the person I would have been if I stayed here and not moved away when I was 19.

Maybe being here just reminds me of the person I might have become had I stayed.

Being here makes me feel numb. I don’t know what it is, and that bothers me. I can’t put this feeling down into words. It’s frustrating. I don’t feel alive here. I feel blah. I feel like my life is just passing me by at a million miles an hour and I’m just standing here watching it go. where has the past 4 years gone? I kind of want them back, I think.

What is it about this town? I have always felt blah living here. I remember one day in the winter when I was living in that horrible apartment on Maxwell. I was driving to my friend Dawn’s house and I was stopped at at stop sign. I remember just feeling completely bummed out. And thinking to myself, why can’t I just be happy? Why am I not happy? I had no reason not to be happy. I had lots of great friends. I was young. I was out partying and having fun. But happiness eluded me. I didn’t know what happiness was. I chased after it.

When I moved to New York a few months later I remember driving to a dance club with a friend and it actually hit me. I felt happiness. It felt so strange and foreign. But it was happiness. It felt great. more than great. fucking fantastic.

When I lived in Santa Cruz I felt that happiness everyday. I would walk around and just feel joy at being there. I was so blessed. I loved that place. Truly loved it like I would love a person, or a pet. And i miss it the same way.

I loathe Spokane though. I am beyond hating this place. I loathe it. Why is that? What is it about this place that makes me so unhappy? I would really like to find the answer to that question.

3 thoughts on “On missing Santa Cruz

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