I’m writing this from a room overlooking “my city.” Earlier tonight, the sun went down and turned the entire skyline rose-gold, a color that I’ve never seen in any other town but makes its presence known all over San Francisco on clear nights. This place, already magical and beautiful, becomes sparkling and otherworldly in that light.
Before leaving Encinitas, I wondered if it was a mistake coming here so soon. Two days in, I’m not sure if I have an answer. I’m having the most wonderful time, and I feel like I’ve just been away on an extended trip, and now I’m home again. And whoa, danger danger, because I’m not home. I’m leaving in a few days, going back to a place that still feels unfamiliar and lonely. I hugged one of my closest and most longtime friends today and got teary-eyed. I hadn’t realized how alone I had been feeling, and suddenly it all rushed in. I couldn’t breathe for a moment, drowning in the familiar and comfortable. It shocked me back to life, that feeling of home.
But here’s the thing: it is easy to love a rose-colored city when you’re not facing the reality of daily life. When the sun is shining and there’s ice cream a short walk away, when you see most of the people you miss within the span of a few days, when there’s no work to be done or laundry piling up or bills to fret about. In these moments, a place is perfect. Then, you get on the bus with a crazy person who nearly knocks you over, and you get on another bus with a person screaming horrible, abusive things to everyone. You see yet another favorite business that has been evicted, or another tiny, teeny condo selling for nearly a million dollars.
I’ve been struggling with the blog for a while, and I think a lot of that is just that personal blogs feel much more challenging than they used to. We’re also all getting older, and for me, that has dramatically changed my feelings about privacy, among other things. But lately, I’ve also wondered how much Bright Yellow World is tied to San Francisco. This website started here. Does it even fit somewhere else? Do I fit somewhere else? Again, I don’t think I have an answer yet.
I’m glad I came to visit this rose-colored city, and I’m glad I have a few more days. I’m not sure I’ll be quite ready to go. But I also see, quite clearly, that the lens I’m looking through right now would fade with time. The crazy bus people, changing landscape, or smells of city life would push out the blush of the light on the buildings. And there’s something wonderful about staying just long enough to enjoy the romance without the housekeeping. I’ll love this town forever, and I hope I can come back regularly for all my life. And, with any luck, not living here will preserve the rosy glow. Here’s hoping.
But for now, ice cream and pink-gold glasses.