An ode to a Spaniard.

Sometimes this blog can be a hard thing to write. And other times, I’m taking a shower and it starts writing itself and I just think, “When can I write this down before I forget it?” Or other times, I know I want to write something, I know my mind is bubbling over with thoughts, and yet I just don’t know how to properly formulate them into words. This blog, written about no one in particular, not a specific Spanish girl who stayed with me for the last thirty something days, is making me feel like that third thing I just said. I wrote a blog a few weeks ago about my relationship with a certain Spanish friend, where I was Lucy and she was Ricky and one of her criticisms about it was that it was too bland. Initially, I didn’t understand what she could be talking about, how she would dare to critique my work, and then I begrudgingly¬†accepted what she was saying as true. The whole reason I created this blog was to initially give insight on my journeys across the world, and then later to just give insight into my mind and thoughts that maybe people could never realize. I would say for the most part that I’ve stayed true to those ideals, that I’ve written strictly from my perspective without worry of what other’s may feel and for that reason I’ve never censored my thoughts. Except I did in the last thing I wrote. If you read it, I just mentioned lots of confusion, not understanding what was going on in my head, etc. etc. While that was true, a lot of the reason I write this blog in the first place is to help decipher the own things going on in my head. Which is what I intended to do with that post and instead I restrained myself when I thought I would say something that makes things awkward. But why did I even do that? Because if anyone knows me, awkward is part of my game anyway. It’s not like I go from smooth, charming, and charismatic to awkward just because of one thing I wrote. I should say this because it’s not like anybody knows this, but since writing what I just wrote and me writing this same sentence has been around three hours. Why such a delay in between? Because of as much as I harped on about how I would make sure to be completely truthful, completely honest, it’s still scary. But then I just have to think about what a friend told me, and this is totally not the friend about who this entire post is about, not at all, who said “Just be honest and write what you feel because no one is going to remember it two days from now anyway, except you.” And she’s right, I’m not writing this for the masses, I’m writing this for myself, and maybe for a person who could totally be any Spanish person throughout history. So with that said, let me start on my ode.

Effy, Estefania, I mean…any Spanish person reading this, I want you to know that I do really and truly love you. I know this isn’t a big revelation since I’ve said it to your face but I want it to be written down as well. When I wrote Modern Romance two years ago about first meeting you, I was on a romantic high but I didn’t love you. I barely knew you, it would be absurd for me to feel that way. Instead, I wrote beautiful prose about your big brown eyes, your fiery spirit, and other superficial things. Granted, I wasn’t lying about those things, I still am entranced by your beautiful brown eyes, your skin that’s barely browner than mine, your fiery Spanish self that also ignited my own passionate self from time to time. Sure, I think you’re great, you look great, except I can say so much more now that I’ve dug into the depths of your being. For one, I would like to congratulate you. I would like to congratulate you for spending 30+ days with me, and still having a little tinge of sadness that you were actually going home. Yes, I don’t want you to think that I think you’re perfect, that you can do nothing wrong; however, I don’t think it does any good to list off my annoyances in this post. Plus, if there was anything ever truly terrible that I couldn’t stand, I would have mentioned it anyway so I don’t want you to think I was in a constant state of having a grudge against you. Probably didn’t need to include that line at all, since it’s not very relevant to the point of what I’m trying to convey, but I did say I would be completely uncensored and unfiltered so I’m just letting everything out. What I myself didn’t like about my earlier-this-month blog post was that I was dealing with a conflict of feelings, and yet afraid to even let anything out. When I first spent time again with my friend, no matter how unromantic the last year and a half of our friendship had been, I was transported back to how I felt in Ireland all that time ago. A bit understandable, since this was my first time seeing her in person again, but I was also disappointed in myself because putting her in such a specific category is entirely unfair to her. Not that I don’t think she’s great, she would be a great date, a great mate, but holy shit man, she’s just so much more. The problem I have is that I don’t want this come off as a confession of love because it is isn’t. I mean, the love I feel for her is real and strong, but in no way am I making this a romantic declaration. It’s more just a declaration of greatness. I should also mention that when I do remark on how similar she and I are from time to time, it should also mean that I’m directly saying that I’m considering myself great as well. It’s like, I don’t even know if there’s a point in what I’m trying to say now because I’ve tried to convey at least all of this while she is here. It’s not like I had some hidden messages that I was waiting to mention as soon as she left, it’s not like I’m finally getting something off my chest because I won’t have to live with her if she takes it the wrong way. When I tell her, or make jokes about us getting married in ten years after she proposes, it’s not because I’m trying to date her in the present, it’s because I’ve never been in a relationship before where I thought that about a person. From my experience in relationships, I’ve only ever felt a desire to not want to be with them forever. Not saying I was unhappy at the moment, but deep down, I could tell that there wasn’t a future there. When I mention marriage, I just say that specifically because it’s intended as a lifelong bond. Because again, that’s what I told her, I don’t care what the future is between us, I have no friendship or relationship goals, all I know and all I want is to always have her a part of my life. I told her again, I would be happy with a wife, I’d be happy with a sister, I’d be happy with her as a live-in-maid, the role that she plays isn’t what matters to me. She is what matters to me. It is an interesting to me personally to think about though, because people will say “If you think so highly of her, why wouldn’t you have romantic desires for her?” and I feel so pretentious saying that narrowing her down into a specific box just seems like a disservice. It’s true though, I feel like an overwhelming and strong love for her that I can’t just affix to one style of thought. I just truly, and honestly believe that she’s an amazing human, and again, she has flaws, she has faults, she’s not perfect but it’s not like distort her value in my mind. I even know that she thinks highly of herself (for good reason), and she’s an outgoing type who travels around and makes friends like it’s a piece of cake. So she might read all of this and think “Ah, yes, another fan of mine,” and if she does, then I’m completely okay with that. Because she knows me well enough to know that I’m not the type of person that can just go anywhere and make friends, that I’m not the type of person that is genial and outgoing and loves everybody. That I’m a bitter old man trapped in the body of a late 20s boy who finds things to bitch and complain about in every single person and prefers to point out the negativity instead of seeing the good in others. I’m saying this because, at the very least, I hope she knows that it’s hard for me to write all this knowing it’ll be around forever. Though she knows I shared plenty of countless nice things about her, under the influences of alcohol, under the influences of pre-workout, and sometimes under the influence of sobriety; she also knows I’m the same guy that would say he felt like he has to act mean the next day to counteract the kindness he said before. Again, more props to her for putting up with all of this for the past month. I’m already losing my train of thought after realizing this could be my longest blog post and wondering should I try to rein it in? No, I’m not going to try to rein it in. What else is there to say though? Am I glad to have a person that will call me out on the bullshit? Yes, that’s appreciated. These are things I’ve also noticed throughout a month long stay with a person. I’m glad she stayed so long because if we had only those 10 days or so when I first wrote the blog, just because it gave me more time to think. Even though that’s probably a problem for me when it seems a criticism of me could be that I think too much. Because again, I was in a state of confusion, I was in a state of romantic thoughts mixed with an evolution of a friendship, and it was mind boggling to me. I also didn’t like it because I felt like I couldn’t be my true self, I felt like I had to portray a person that could be seen as a desirable person back. I can honestly say that if you spend so much time with a person, hours a day just between the two of you, you will see every facet of someone’s personality and they will not be able to put on a show for that long. You see chinks in the armor, and then you see their true selves come out. We had petty fights over stupid things, arguments over nothing, disagreements that had no point, and yet we still stuck together through it. Probably because she didn’t have anywhere else to go and I wasn’t going to move out of my own place. I say all this not because it’s important, not because it makes sense, and frankly I already don’t remember why I was typing this. This thing has been in the process of being written for hours now and it’s very stop-and-go. I just want everyone, the Spanish that shall not be named, I just want people to know that’s been such a pleasure to have this past month. I want her to know that when I called her like a piece of furniture, I meant it as a beautiful compliment, and I could understand how she didn’t understand that because she was just called a piece of furniture. I want her to know that I’m going to truly miss her and it’s already been weird knowing she’s gone. I want her to know that when I did have all the pain in my chest, and I jokingly/cheesily said it was because it’s like my heart’s been pulled out, that a part of me kind of meant that and I felt like I began to have an inkling of understanding when you hear people die of a broken heart. I want her to know that I will make it a personal goal to be outside of Alabama next year to inspire her to want to come back and visit America. I also want her to know that I’m going to visit Spain to see her because I want to see her, and NOT TO RETURN THE DAMN SPANISH FLAG. I just want her to know that she is an inspiration, that I believe we’re two creative souls and together it’s just nice to be two folks that want to help other achieve their dreams. That I don’t know how possible it’ll be for each of us to achieve all that we want to do, but I can 100% confirm that I’ll be supporting her every step of the way. Because I know she can do it, I know she wants to do it, and I just want to see her achieve all that I know she can be. Maybe there’s still some confusion here, but it’s not about how I feel, I know how I feel, it’s more did I write enough? Did I confide enough? I also just want her to know, for everyone to know, that even because I may have bought her birthday gifts, that I write her these blogs, people think “Wow, Hank, you’re so kind, you’re so sweet, you’re just so nice to her,” that’s not the case. I mean, it’s partially the case. I just want her to know, for everyone to know, that I wouldn’t write any of these things, I wouldn’t support her, I wouldn’t clean her dishes, buy her gifts, if she didn’t deserve every last thing. If she wasn’t the sweetest, kindest, smartest, funny, compassionate, creative, super-de-duper person I know. Even if you’re not going to be hearing her say all these things about me, you’re not going to be reading any blogs, I don’t want people to think that she’s the lucky one here. I am the luckiest just for knowing her, just for being involved in her life, just for having a connection to her. That’s what I want her to know when she’s gone. I’m forever grateful for her existence, I’m forever grateful for her friendship, her ideas, her mind, her everything. She’s done more for me than she’ll ever know, she’s done more for me than I could ever write out in a blog no matter how many words I use. All I want for is thanks is a custom Amy Winehouse jacket, obviously. Or all I really want is just to have her as a constant presence in my life because she makes it better. She makes me better, she makes life better, she makes me want to be better. And I think that’s what you look for in a friend, in a companion, you just want them to make you happy while also helping you realize what you can change to improve. Nobody’s perfect, I’ll never be perfect, she’s not perfect, but together I think we help each other get a few steps further to that. I don’t know man, I don’t know, I’ve already written so gosh darn much. I think I’ve formulated enough of my thoughts into words, I think I’ve done a pretty good job. I can safely say that this is the most words I’ve ever written before. I can also safely say that I could probably write another 2,000 but as I mentioned way earlier, it’s not like most of this is new, this is all stuff I’ve said to a certain, it could be anyone Spanish, Spaniard before. I’m not trying to break new ground here, I’m not trying to unveil new truths, I’m just trying to completely dump words of praise onto her. I hope she knows we’re still going to write a musical together, I hope she knows we’re going to somehow figure a way to inject arts and culture programs into low-income areas while also living in a big city somehow, and I hope she knows that we’ll be getting art together. After spending a month with her in the boring life of Alabama with her and feeling the way I feel about her, I have high hopes for our actual adventures of the future. But at the same time, I have just as many high hopes for more of the long, deep conversations that we could be found having at 3 AM. I’m just excited for my own future, I’m excited for her future, and I’m excited to see what the future holds in store for us two. So it goes.


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