5,000 Miles

Change is always a stressful thing, but you know that life is starting to get better when a dancer starts dancing in the corridors again. That, my friends, is a feeling I’ve been missing dearly. I’ve only been here for two weeks, but Scotland has taught me a lot already. At the moment, we’re starting small. I’m learning how to appreciate new things, like the clouds. Have you seen them lately? They’re stunning. Sure, we don’t get much sun and there are always clouds in the sky, but have you seen how the sun filters through them? It simultaneously casts shadows and creates halos of light. The clouds diffuse the sun and glow brilliant colors – vibrant orange to coral pink to icy blue to cooling grey. Sometimes, the clouds drift apart to showcase the sky above and a palate of stunning blue tones are revealed.

Then, the wind blows and plays with the clouds’ shapes, casting them to and fro. The sun changes focus, illuminating rivers and pathways and hills. And then it’s gone. The sky becomes placid and friendly, a welcoming sight to tired eyes. But just as I begin to wonder where the sun has gone, it begins to play with the colors of the clouds again. Maybe it comes back, maybe it doesn’t. Yet, regardless of the suns appearance, the sky is always a dynamic palate for the artist above the clouds.

Then there’s the city. I’ve never lived in a city before. All of these people rushing around, darting in and out of shops. The cars, the busses, the bystanders. Suddenly, I’m thrown into the midst of it all and become swept up by the hustle and bustle, moving to the ebb and flow of the city. It’s overwhelming.

But then I stopped. And listened. And breathed. The city was buzzing around me but I was just a speck in the universe. A stranger in a foreign land. And as I took in the sights and sounds of the city around me, I realized that everyone else was just the same. We are not thrown into the energy of the city, we are the energy. Some choose to rush, some choose to meander, each playing off the other but never changing the energy of another’s day. This is what creates that harmonious cacophony. This is what helped me become immersed in a city but not drown.

And while I’m still trying to get used to funny accents, public transportation, transferring to a new dance school, and getting over being sicker than a gerbil who ate too many carrots (or maybe just the common cold), this strange place is slowly starting to become my home.

I’m certainly not in the California suburbs anymore, but this certainly is nice.

~ Ailish


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