Thursday, August 09, 2007

Back to reality

The weather is rainy and grey here in Cologne, where I am about to begin rehearsals for my concert at the Rheingau Music Festival this weekend. I look out the window and the heavy, bleak sky and see my mood reflected in the heavens.

After six weeks in the idyllic, isolated intensity of Marlboro, I feel like I have been born again, in a way. Delayed for four hours at the airport in Boston on Monday afternoon, I felt like I had been dumped out of a warm, safe, womb-like place into the harsh elements of reality all over again. After being constantly surrounded by such wonderful people for weeks, the loneliness that comes with my livelihood on the road feels much more overwhelming than it has felt in a long time. It has not been a very nice feeling.

I think that part of the problem was that I had to leave a week early from the festival, and so I was robbed of a sense of closure. My goodbyes were rushed at breakfast on Monday morning, and I only got to say goodbye to the people who happened to have early morning rehearsals and were therefore awake that morning. Also, the sense that things there were going to go on without me after I left was not a pleasant one.

I’m surprised how much I find myself missing the new, intensely close friendships I made up in Vermont and our relaxed evenings after long days of rehearsal in which we played hearts and gin rummy, discussing our lives, music, and the day’s gossip. I never expected to form such close bonds with people so quickly, and I am as grateful for them as for the incredible musical experience I had there. I now feel like I didn’t quite get enough time with them, and I find myself wondering and worrying about how well we will all stay in touch when dealing with the challenge of stepping back into our real world lives. I hope that these new friendships will grow through this next step easily, and that we will see each other with frequency and remain in close contact. This is a plus of moving back to New York City, I guess – we will all be in close proximity to each other.

I am grateful that most of the time that I am Germany, I am staying with my good friend, Nadine (who is helping me ease through this transition back to reality), and that I am not alone in a hotel room this week. That would have been unbearable.

To my friends in Marlboro, many, many thanks for one of the best summers I’ve had, and I wish you the best for your last days of the festival. I hope the final concerts go well and that your transitions back to the real world are as easy as they can be.


Stephanie said...

Amazing how brutal reality can be sometimes! Be consoled by the fact that if you weren't so amazing you wouldn't have such a lonely reality. You're fantastic! Did you get to know Tammy Mumford at all while you were at Marlboro? Fellow USU graduate and a fantastic girl! Hang in there! Reality may be bleak, but it makes the surreal moments that much better!

Lou said...

while u're on the road by yourself, u're never alone and i'm sure u know that, but i just wanted to remind u. i definitely understand that sense of closure u felt was missing (it's always hard to part ways without a sense of closure) and i know too well the wonder of how strong new friendships may turn out to be.

anywho, i paid my own rent today for the first time! woohoo!

Anonymous said...

we miss you too!!

danielle said...

Hey Nick! Are you really moving to NYC? I'm in Princeton (about an hour away) and I'd love to come see you some time! I am so glad you had a wonderful summer, and sad that you are lonely for them!