Intrepid Girl Reporter

Sunday, 6/8: on clothes
June 8, 2008, 1:52 pm
Filed under: life progress, the future, travel, U S of A

When I first saw New York I was twenty, and it was summertime, and I got off a DC-7 at the old Idlewild temporary terminal in a new dress which had seemed very smart in Sacramento but seemed less smart already,…and some instinct, programmed by all the movies I had ever seen and all the songs I had ever read about New York, informed me that it would never be quite the same again. In fact it never was.

– Joan Didion, “Goodbye to All That”

I have this feeling that when I open my suitcase in Johnson City, all the things that I bought in Korea will turn into dust. Never mind that I did this once before. This time I’m coming home for good, at least for a little while, and I can’t imagine that the colors will stay, that I’ll be able to pick up my clothes without watching them disintegrate in my hands.

I have a little less than a month left here, depending on when I finally decide to leave. I’ve been putting it off. I can leave as early as July 5th, after which I’ll take classes at the state university in my town, and…then what? I know I can’t stay here, but I haven’t heard back from a single job (except for the one that told me that they would interview me if I were only in the States). I know that if it weren’t for my friends and my family here, my time in Korea would seem like a dream, so far removed is it from the region its promoters so optimistically name The Mountain South. I’m pretty distant from the Eastman Kodak plant here.

I have no problem going home as long as I have something new to which I can move on. I’m not ready for this to be the pinnacle of my life. I’m a little scared of how fast I’m afraid this experience is going to disappear from my life, but I might be more worried that once those shirts and dresses that were so beautiful here disappear, I’ll have nothing to hold in their place.


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