Saturday, February 28, 2009

thoughts on "astral weeks"

A moment stands out amongst my memories: I was driving down windy Mulholland Drive on an early June afternoon. I was in the home stretch of my senior year of high school; classes were already over, exams were winding down. For the majority of my life, my weekdays were accounted for, but suddenly, for the first time, I had no obligatory place to be. I maneuvered the curves of the road with ease and pleasure, probably driving too fast, with the music too loud, and the windows down, too. I pulled over at one of the many lookouts over the hills, this one facing North over the San Fernando Valley. I got out of my car--left the engine running and the music blaring, and watched the houses sloping down the hillside below. In a few days I would be graduating high school, and days after that I would be leaving home on a daredevil 2-month trip across Europe with an adventurous friend. Everything was ending (or so it seemed.) And, better yet, something was beginning. I stood atop the city and I precisely remember asking myself whether my life was about to begin. I stood there, weightless, the wind from both sides of the hills pushing and passing through me, and I still couldn't fathom that my life had begun long before I knew it. How sweet I was: so full of feeling and so stubbornly blind to it. Maybe not so sweet. Naive, yes, but "sweet"--I don't think so. At this momentous peak in my life, not only did I find myself perched above the city I grew up in, but from the open doors of my car I could hear the inspired incantations of Van Morrison on "Astral Weeks". How charmingly felicitous.

words from people who say it better than i could:


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