Saturday, May. 12, 2012 @ 9:21 pm
Today I feel an acute sadness, a loneliness for someone who knows me. I've spent a week with coworkers that I just met. The older men are caring and inclusive, but they assume that I am a certain way, and I rarely contradict their assumptions. And I slide into silence, slipping away from the dinner table to sit alone in my room.
Yesterday a veteran surveyor took me out for a couple of hours. I'll admit to some harmless flirting; Chris is lean and geeky and loud and brash and funny and energetic and quick and so fast paced that I stand there with my mouth open in laughter while he goes a mile a minute. Polar opposites, standing as far north as I've been, amongst clapboard shacks of the original geologist camp.
He takes me into the woods and down a slope of construction scree to place electrical poles. He drives fast through deep puddles on the haul road. He turns up the music that he thinks that I like, and I howl with laughter as he rolls down the window in pretend urban cruising. As we turn into the laydown, he passes me a bracelet from his wrist. I turn it around in my hands and leave it on the dash. Did I warm over his heart? I'd choose him over the rest.
The sun sets on my seventh night in camp. I lay on my single bed, listening to music, my window cracked open to let cool air wash down my face.
A man I met on Monday remembered my name when I ran into him today. The chef teases me about choosing eggplant over steak. The safety man calls me young lady, and my coworkers probably think I'm a million years old. I'm ok, I'm still ok, and I'll get through this. More smiles, more openness, this is now and here is now and this is destined to be one of the great experiences of my life.
Breathe the cool mountain air. I'm loved and cared for and I'm luckier than I even know.