It’s so nice to get out of Bogota. To be in Manizales. To be playing with a golden lab named Luna who’s obsessed with a bottle. To not sleep on my air mattress in my apartment that has nothing and worry about whether my neighbors are going to come home at 2am and start blasting shitty music. To be tranquilo. To be in the hills. To maybe drink coffee. To maybe not drink coffee. To make homemade pizza last night that sort of turned out and was semi-delicious but also had crust that was the relative consistency of a hockey puck. To travel. To get on a plane. To eat torta de milo. To drink the shittiest aeropress I’ve ever had in my life by a guy who’s probably never had good coffee.
My friend Natalia and I went to a coffee shop yesterday called La Vieja Escuela. Actually, you know what? I don’t want to talk bad about the cafe. Who cares. It was coffee. There are better things to talk about. Like Luna. Luna is a golden lab. She spends all day enclosed on a balcony because her owners are afraid that if they let her out she’ll maim other dogs. Luna has probably never hurt anything except the plastic bottles she likes to chew on. They let her out once a day in the evening. She goes crazy. She has the time of her life. She smiles and pants. She doesn’t think, “Ohhhhh boo hoo I only get to be outside for a half hour so I’m going to mope around.” She doesn’t resent the people who keep her caged on the balcony all day. She forgives and forgets rapidly. She loves them because they give her food. I want to be like Luna (except for being enclosed on a balcony).
I’m not going to be in Colombia much longer. I’m going to wander once again. I’m trusting my instinct. I’m sick of trusting my instinct. Or rather, I’m sick of not trusting my instinct. Of not trusting my instinct every minute of every day. Of taking breaks. Sometimes I make decisions and I think to myself, “This is not the right thing. You’re not trusting your instinct.” But then I do it anyway! It’s like Sam Harris says in his book Lying, “We often behave in ways that are guaranteed to make us unhappy.” Like the other night when we went to the club with those girls in Galerias. Like when I got my stupid apartment. Like when I smoke cigarettes. Like when I eat shitty food. There’s this little voice that says, “Mark, this is stupid….” and then I do it anyway. I’m sure we all struggle with this. Or rather, I’m sure there are people who don’t struggle with it. There are people who are ultra-disciplined and then there are people who aren’t disciplined at all. There are people who’ve ignored their little voice for so long it doesn’t even speak to them anymore. And there’s people whose voice is a crazy person.
I’m going to make some eggs now. Some delicious eggs with onion and mozzarella cheese and a yellow pepper. Luna is next to me. She’s panting. She’s smiling. She’s wagging her tail. She’s slightly overweight. Luna does not want you to pet her. She only wants to play with the bottle. Anytime you try to pet her she either bites your hand or lunges at the bottle.
After I make eggs I might eat some more of the pizza. I’m going to do laundry. I want to go to a cafe and work on an article I’m going to submit to the New York Times (the New York Times is unique in that anyone can submit; of course, not anyone can get published). It’s about my friend Leider and social classes in Bogota. I don’t even want to write about it. I’m only writing about it because I think that’s what real writers write about. Social issues and shit like that. But I know what I really want to write about. I want to write about going to cafes. I want to write about the guy yesterday who gave me the coffee to smell, as if it was some excquisite harvest that couldn’t be found anywhere else, perfectly roasted, even though the first thing I thought when I smelled it was, “Geeze, that is bad coffee. This is going to be bad.” And sure enough it was. My friend Natalia liked it. I liked the cake. And I like playing with Luna. And making eggs.