July 15, 2010 in Personal
I like it that way.
I learned my appreciation for dim lighting and low-level light sources such as table lamps from my grandparents, whose home was always dimly lit as far back as I can remember.
I just took a shower and now I’m standing in front of the mirror trying to assess just how old I look these days. How attractive am I to the opposite sex? It’s been close to thirteen years since I slept with a woman other than my wife. The idea that there are other women I could potentially have sex with out there is practically inconceivable to me at this point in my life. It’s not going to happen. But I still like to look myself over and evaluate what a stranger might think upon seeing me naked just before a sexual encounter. Am I muscular enough? Big enough? Tall enough?
It is already dark outside. I put on my shorts. My hair is still wet. I feel a single drop of water wind its way down my scalp, toward the nape of my neck then down my back until it reaches the waistband of my purple boxer shorts. I throw on some clothes—cargo pants, long-sleeve t-shirt, Havaiana flip flops. I stand by the windows and open the shades. I see the city lights spread out before me, some of them are crawling up into the foothills of the Andes mountains off in the distance. I can also see the airport not even a mile from my hotel window. It is comforting to know that it is there. That I can always get there quickly and be on the next flight out of this impoverished little town they call a city.
This is not my first time here. It is not my favorite place in the world but the hotel is pretty good and very reasonably priced so my stays are always comfortable. The food gets boring after the second day, though. There’s only so many times you can eat a bland piece of meat or a boring peace of fish mildly spiced in a hotel kitchen before you develop the need for something better. The beer, however, is quite good. It’s nice to see there is respect and even demand for a well-brewed local beer down here. These folks are not the sharpest tools in the shed but at least they know how to make good beer. I’ll give them that. They’re also nice. Even if they’re not the brightest bulbs in the chandelier, they make up for their dimwitted nature with their earnest willingness to work hard and be helpful.
I am here to see a doctor. Word has it he can cure anything arising from a neurological pathology. That’s his bag. I have been unable, without the aid of strong psychoactive drugs, to write more than three pages of text without losing my train of thought – and giving up in exasperated fury – for over three years now. Before then I took these drugs – the ones I just spoke about – for almost ten years. At first they seemed to help but over time I noticed that the benefits were receding, and a whole new bunch of drawbacks were making themselves known. Drawbacks such as depression, anxiety, paranoia, impotence, fear, chronic fatigue and chronic pain. I felt as though I was not just burning out, but rather – literally – frying my very synapses.
I needed to stop.
So I did stop. And I left my job in the process because being a litigator without Ritalin is like being a fisherman without a boat. You can still do it, but you ain’t gonna get very far.
And that’s why I am here. In these miserable, piss-ant backwaters at the foot of the Andes, to see a certain doctor about my brain troubles. Hopefully he will be able to fix my broken numb-skull and make it useful again. Because this is, by far, the most I have ever written in over a year.
I will keep you posted.
So long for now, amigos. I’ll write more when there’s something interesting to report.