Today is a weird day. I waved goodbye to the last of my house guests this morning, leaving me alone for the first time in two weeks. After near fourteen days of gabbing non-stop in English, of cooking meals together, of watching youtube videos together, and of sharing late-night conversations in bed after the lights are out, the house suddenly feels a bit empty. I feel lost, like I don't remember how to entertain myself anymore, I can't remember how to speak French, and I don't know how to blog anymore. It was a good vacation, but coming down is always brutal.
On the other hand, today is a good day. It is an exciting day here at Diary of Why headquarters, and the reason for that is a number. I'll give you a hint- it's a positive integer that falls between 199 and 201 and it rhymes with 200th blog post!!!!!!!!! And in the interest of celebrating small and insignificant milestones, I thought, Hey, why not celebrate this small and insignificant milestone??? 200 posts ago today the Diary of Why was born, back when I was a lonely, single, impoverished grad student, with dreams of one day becoming a lonely, single, impoverished English language assistant glimmering distant on the horizon. Yes, in 200 posts so much can change, or nothing at all, and over here it's kind of a mixed bag, really. I'm a little older, hopefully a little wiser, I put my eye cream on every night and my moisturizer with UV protection on every morning. I'm still looking for someone, but I'm a little less hopeful about finding him. Though by now I should be immune to it, I do still get hurt, but now I'm a little less surprised when it happens. Becoming older and wiser and more life-hardened isn't all doom and gloom though (because it really is starting to sound dire over here). On the plus side, I don't take things for granted anymore. I value the friendships I have made and maintained through the years, and I am grateful that I can live in a country that I love, for whatever length of time, that I can travel. I take pleasure in the small things, in the briefest of interactions, in that glimmer of a connection with someone else, in walking the streets in the cold air with other people who are doing the same. And, perhaps most importantly, I know what I want now. In a guy, in a relationship, for myself and for my future, for my life. And if I haven't yet the slightest clue how to go about getting these things, I have to hope that recognizing them is at least half the battle.
I hope you will join me as I alternately wallow in this post-holiday letdown and rejoice in celebration of small victories. And what better way to do that, I think, than a contest? And while I would love to offer prizes like a pair of round-trip plane tickets to France!!! or a new Wii!!!, let's be honest here; if I could afford those things I'd be at home right now hanging out with my family and friends and playing tennis on my new Wii. Instead I offer you my humble gifts, or the winner's choice of the following:
- an opportunity to guest post on the Diary of Why
- a guest post written by me, to be posted on your blog
Or in the absence of a blog or desire to do my dirty work for me, I offer the following options:
- one truth: you ask me one question which I am obligated to answer truthfully and publicly
- one dare: you dare me to do anything you want, which I am required to follow through and report back on, with the condition that it is not illegal or permanently emotionally scarring
And who needs a Wii when my potential public humiliation is at stake, right? All you have to do to enter is leave a comment. Tell me anything: where you live, your middle name, what you had for lunch today. Enter by...oh, say, 12:00 P.M. Thursday, EST. (Though at the moment my physical presence is Central European, my blog is and always will be Eastern Standard). Winner to be chosen by random number generator, ink-a-bink, or throwing darts at the computer screen (whichever feels right at the moment).