Napa County, California
May 3rd, 2018
I stood amongst familiar walls once adorned with the faces of my beloveds. “The building looks very empty now, with everyone gone,” Anggun, a friend from Indonesia, commented. I was once again back at my dorm on California Street, San Francisco, my home for the past many months. Except this time, I was a mere visitor, on a transit to kill some time before my flight. Out of curiosity, I walked towards where my old bedroom was, with the wooden white door now stripped of my name. I tried to turn the handle; it was unlocked. I felt a strange, strange feeling.
I wondered how surprised I would be when I would flip the door open and find a room I could hardly recognize. But when I opened the door, I was familiar with exactly what I saw: a bedroom stripped down to a mere blue carpet, dingy but pretty furniture, and a mattress. The walls were empty. The window was open. The fridge looked sort of tiny for two people to share, but I wondered what it would feel like to have this fridge if I had an apartment of my own.
And then it dawned on me. This looked almost exactly like the room I walked into months ago, with my suitcases, a loving family, and a curious mind. I felt exactly like I had that day; curious, nervous, and excited. Except for this time, I felt a foreign emotion in my own bedroom: nostalgia.
After a few minutes staring at the blank walls and tampering with my old study lamps, I left the room. The Ezza who entered the room months ago and the Ezza who exited through the door were also two entirely different people.
It was no longer my own, just a beautiful memory in my mind.
After an hour or two, I was at San Francisco International Airport, ready to embark on my flight to the great Midwest: North Dakota, in particular. Of all the states out there, why had I almost impulsively bought a return trip to North Dakota, where “nothing ever happens” as some would say? This was a question whose answer I yet had to find. Maybe because it sounded like something fun, and something adventurous. Maybe because a dear friend had invited me. Plus, with tickets so cheap, a college student like me yelled: “sign me up”. I still think it was an impulse, a very adventure-spirited, Ezza impulse. An impuls-Ez. Impulsez. It is not a typo, no.
I shake my head, munch on a Golden Oreo, and strap my seatbelt for takeoff in my lovely Frontier aeroplane.
Next stop: Denver, Colorado
With just a backpack on my shoulders as my only luggage (hint: cheap flight tickets), I exited the plane at 5 am with the sky outside still fairly dark. My layover was to last approximately 13 hours. Yes, 13 hours. And I decided that the best way to kill some time, was to sleep. I scrolled through many helpful websites highlighting places to sleep in the airport but stopped when I almost stumbled upon a person covered in a blanket, sleeping on the floor. And another. And another. And another. They were all tired travellers around the airport lounges just waiting for their next flight. And I became one of them.
Nothing’s better than a good night’s sleep.
To be continued…