My days in the writing cave for the current novel-in-progress are nearly ended; the last page is in sight, hallelujah, and I still have a week left in the month to contemplate how best to make the reader think the house in my story is the ghost in my story. Ponder that if you will.
But today, before I head back into the labyrinth, I must confess that with all this talk of “going back to school” I am strangely yearning to yes, drop everything, buy some new notebooks, leave my house and most of my belongings and responsibilities, grab my favorite roommate, and head to a campus where you simply live and eat and breathe learning and no one expects you to do anything else.
Is that the ideal existence or what? Forget that at the end of those four years of didactic bliss you will have to start paying for the experience. Let’s not spoil the dream by throwing THAT into the equation. We’re dreaming here. And that is free.
Just imagine it. You take only what you can fit into the backseat of your car. That means only your favorite things. Your favorite jeans. Your favorite PJs. Favorite cup. Favorite books. Favorite photos. You drive to a campus that sent you a letter inviting you to come. You set up residence with your roommate. You place your favorite things around the tiny space that is your only bit of the life you left. And then you begin the new life on your feet. You don’t drive to class. You walk there. Your new, freshly minimal life is a life of travel on your feet. You carry a book bag and nothing else. You sit for hours in rooms whose only purpose is to shelter a gathering of learners. You absorb, ponder, question, dissect, digest; sometimes quietly in the classroom chair, sometimes around a library table with others just like you, sometimes at the campus coffee shop where every table sports an open taptop, piles of books and cups of coffee half-drunk.
You make lifelong friends.
You learn to love again simple foods like peanut butter sandwiches and bananas.
You don’t have to worry about the alternator going out or the water heater or the dishwasher.
You don’t have to clean out a fridge that is taller than you and deeper than the reach of your arm.
You don’t have to walk a dog or clean up its hair on the stairs or scoop its poop in your backyard.
You don’t have to water the grass or prune the rose bushes.
You don’t have to punch a time clock or produce for the Man or make the sale or climb the ladder.
Your existence is simply defined: You listen, learn, read, write, discuss.
Back to school? Yes, sign me up. I have my roommate and I think our parents could drop us off. They might actually want to join us . . . Of course they would.
It would be divine.
Listen. Learn. Read. Write. Discuss.
Bring it on . . .
. . . please