Hi, from CAPRI, ITALY.
I know – caps means over-exaggerated excitement – but, I mean… it’s necessary with this place. It is out of this world beautiful.
We landed in Rome, somewhere I’ve never been before. And I know what some (people who know me or are regular CIC readers) are thinking – you don’t even know where that is on a map.
No, I don’t. I failed a geography test in middle school… remember? (It has never left my brain.) So, I’m somewhere in this world that I couldn’t put a pin on my globe in to represent my presence without labels and words available, but I’m here. And I’m still going to put a pin in my black and gold globe (with BA’s help and keen sense of direction) sitting on my desk at home right next to the random paintings I bought in New Orleans, just because.
I bought the paintings in New Orleans because the French Quarters did something to my insides. It shook me to my core, waking me up in a different sense. It showed me art, passion, people, souls. It showed me what mattered – and with that, what didn’t. For a quick second, I wanted to pack up my bags, my dog, my boyfriend and move there. I couldn’t, I can, I might, who knows. But I couldn’t. I had to travel home to figure out how I would manage to ship all my clothes out that quick first. So instead, I bought the paintings. I brought a piece of the French Quarters home with me. Three random paintings, all different colors, with stick figures playing the saxophone, random apartments, and a sign reading Cafe du Monde.
The paintings, small but just big enough, don’t match my apartment color scheme in any way. They don’t match what I want my apartment to look like, at all. They aren’t white, they aren’t coordinated, they aren’t perfectly even, they aren’t anything I’d expect to see hanging above my empty pinned globe due to lack of pins and geography skills. They aren’t the pictures you wait in line at museums to see because they make your jaw drop even though you have no idea what they are. But, hey, those famous pictures would easily match your apartment and everyone else is in awe for some reason, so you drop your jaw just to fit in.
Not these three random paintings. I got them because I felt the passion the second I laid my wandering eyes on them. I felt something, and I had to have them.
I should correct myself, BA bought the paintings for me, simply because he is BA and he is someone who see’s passion in my eyes when I feel it. I don’t have to explain, I don’t have to ask. He knows. I’ve said it before, I’ll say it a million times over: you’d make him yours too (if you could).
Paintings, all different colors, splattered over the wall above my desk. Paintings, that don’t match my ‘theme’, that don’t go with anything around them.
That’s what I saw the other day – a disorganized wall of colors.
What I forgot to remember was the feeling, the vibe, the smell, the souls, the passion. When I really look at them, that’s when I remember. I remember the very street and the very lady who sold them to me. I remember the artists and the air. I remember that I was there to watch my older brother graduate from college after already graduation from the Army. I remember why.
I walked into a church in Rome yesterday and I remembered. I remembered why I got those paintings.
The art on the ceilings and walls and even the floors of this church I stepped my tired feet into forced my mind to forget the tiredness, the heat, the swollen feet and frizzy hair. The art, the people, the passion; it all became one. I lit a candle and I talked to God for a minute. (I’m sorry if you don’t believe – no judgement, just my story). I talked to him, and I looked around. I felt comfortable. I felt at home, millions of miles away (how many miles actually?). I was drawn back to the sight of the paintings on my desk. The paintings I bought because of the same feeling I was having in this church.
It’s funny, you know, how life works. How perfection seems to take over, and perfect designs with perfect couch and perfect white fluffy pillows that don’t have bright pink nail polish spilt all over them take the lead in this thing called life.
It’s funny, how you forget to remember. I forgot, for a little bit, to remember why I bought the paintings in the first place. Why, for the love of God, I put random colors that stick out like a damn sore thumb in my swept and bleached (for the third time that day), dog hair free (for an hour), color coordinated (kind of) apartment.
It’s funny when you forget to remember. You may even laugh, like I did. Not a loud laugh, but I did a secret laugh, in this church in the heart of Rome that I can’t remember the name of (ironic, right?). I smiled softly, thinking about the paintings that I’ll never get rid of. Thinking about why they are on my desk, and how they are supposed to bring me back to the deepest part of life I’ve ever known from walking one single street in the city of New Orleans.
Forgetting, one of the hardest things we come across in life at some points, can also be one of the easiest things we do.
Those paintings, un-matched and uncoordinated, will never leave. They will get bubble wrapped and shipped off to my next phase in life, whenever the time comes. They will forever remind me of what I want to do and why. What makes me want to keep going, to keep pursing, to keep pushing.
They will forever remind me of importance rather than what people see. They will remind me to look deeper, not just at the matching pillows and perfectly aligned candles that cost more than the coffee maker.
If you ever get the chance, walk into a random church in Rome.