Wednesday, November 29, 2006
Meanwhile I keep track of the guy with my name that went missing in Florence. There have been 5 more sightings, only 2 seem noteworthy.
One sighting was on the ferry from Glasgow to Ireland where a woman said a guy who looked like him got scared when they announced they would be checking passports. Another sighting took place when three Scottish guys met him in Galway. He asked them directions to a hostel.
It would make sense ot me to go to Western Ireland. If I was looking for myself, I would start by going to where my ancestors originated. Galway is the biggest city near the parish of Kilfree, Gorteen in Western Ireland, where our family name can be traced.
I went on a similar pilgrimage that I imagine he is on. In my early 20's I spent time in Kilfree, Gorteen. I was looking for some kind of connection to past. I believed that a connection to the past would give me a connection to the present- which I sorely lacked. I was convinced that when I got off the plane and my feet touched my ancestral homeland I would suddenly feel complete, the part of me that was missing would magically appear. It didn't. I wasn't worried I knew that when I ran my hands over the ground that my ancestors farmed or held a stone to the cottage an overwhelming feeling of wholeness would sweep over me. It didn't.
I can only assume thats what the missing Misplaced had hoped for. Had he gone to the graveyard next to the abandoned church? Was he as interested in the grave of someone with his name born 1864, died 1888? He probably spent time at that grave and imagined it being his own grave just as I had done. Was he reminded of his own mortality and how quickly he'll be forgotten. Did he become depressed questioning what is the purpose of all of this?
He probably did what I did and stayed in Kilfree Gorteen, soaking up the atmosphere, waiting for any connection until boredom consumed him. He would then leave it for greener pastures, just as his ancestors did.
The loneliness became overwhelming for me when I was there. To always believe that
this is where you belong and to discover that you are only a tourist and that is all you will ever be. I wanted a wife for the first time, in that loneliness. I wanted to force myself into this ancestral homeland.
I wonder if he is as wacked out as I was- probably more so. Did he make his way to a larger city, Dublin maybe, to meet a girl. I didn't go to Dublin, my vacation ran out. I'd spent my time in Western Ireland and then I came home. I touched the ground with my feet when I got to the Midwest and felt nothing.
He didn't go home and still hasn't. He isn't on vacation, he has the time and the balls to discover his place. What will he do when he discovers that his place is to be lost and disconnected? Will he get a job in advertising and drink until he falls asleep every night? Why am I idolizing a 24 year old kid that ran away from home?