Saturday, October 13, 2012


Freak - noun, adjective, verb

2. A person or animal on exhibition as an example of a strange deviation from nature
5. Philately:  a stamp differing from others of the same printing because of creases or dust 
a. a person who has withdrawn from normal, rational behaviour and activities to pursue
 one interest or obsession
b. a devoted fan or follower, enthusiast
c. a hippie.
8. unusual; odd; irregular become or make frightened, nervous, or wildly excited

Hello, world. I haven't written in a very long time, and my life has taken sharp but expected turns. This is all fine. I am now in England - Hatfield to be precise. School is in session and I read, study and discuss my way through new and interesting topics. But although I've talked about nothing else for a year than the joy of being a student, and everything that (in my mind) happened last year was school related, I doubt this year will be like that.

I am a freak, and I've always been one. I feel weird and uncomfortable in large groups of people. I find great pleasure in the darnedest things, like badly taxidermied animals (preferably in clothes), owls and pictures of  unsquished dead people. I fill my life with colour and whimsy, cry when I'm angry and spontaneously burst out in song at the least opportune moments.  I either dress like a 70s art teacher or a really old lady, but can't resist hats with ears, striped mittens or headbands with feathers, flowers or butterflies. All this a smidge to the left of whatever "the norm" is, but the world in general and I get along.

And then there is that lovely perk that comes from being a curious freak. The instant radar that beeps and lights up if anyone within a radius of 20 metres is lonely, awkward, different, or just in that second feels he or she doesn't belong. So I smile, I nodd, I compliment and small talk, and from all these random encounters, my freak magnet drags the best ones along. And like this the groups are created. Oddballs and spear parts and half broken toys. Non of us fit, and certainly not each other, but we chat and we laugh and we find a middle ground.

I feel like Dorothy,  picking up an entourage on my way down the yellow brick road. We're all hoping to find different things. The Tin Man doesn't need a heart, he's got a really big one. He would, however, like to find love, by the end of the road, or along the way. The cowardly lions (I've now got two) are unbelievably brave, but hope to find proof so they can see for themselves. And the beautiful scarecrow - as sharp as they come - will hopefully find the self confidence to shine like The Tin Man. Some are looking for direction, most are searching for love, some I hope will find mirrors that show them their beauty, others I hope will find guts to speak up for themselves. So we're all searching for different things, but we stick together nevertheless, just because it's safer to navigate these woods as a group.

As for me? I hope I find more freaks along the way, to fill the void as these move on, find what they're looking for or go back to where they belong. Because this is just Oz, we're not in Kansas anymore, and for most there is no place like home. Not so for me. I keep returning to Oz. I don't want to find the end of the road, so I stay barefoot with the ruby slippers in my hands. As long as I have my basecamp, I'll never stop doing this hike.

For here, in the land of freaks searching for meaning, I can ask the question "Does Floridian blood smell like orange juice to vampires," and get the answer "probably." There is no place like home.

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