I will bring coffee.

I don’t exactly know how I ended up in Lithuania. I mean, it’s not the sort of thing most people do accidentally of a Wednesday afternoon.

Still, here I am, and it is a decidedly strange place. As I left the station in search of a hostel, having not slept for so long that my eyes felt bruised and I couldn’t remember my name, I found myself weaving in and out of haggard-looking people who were stoned out of their minds in a way that made them look like a nation of zombies. This was not particularly encouraging. Eventually, though, dodging the millions of small boys asking for cigarettes and money, I found someone who looked vaguely lucid, and greeted her from underneath my mountain of baggage (both physical and emotional). “Do you speak English?”

“No,” she said.

2 hours later, I stumbled into the hostel that had been a five minute walk from my original starting point. I fell into a grotty bunk, still fully clothed, and slept for 16 hours.

If I expected it all to become clear and OK again when I awoke, I was mistaken. For an hour, I lay awake thinking something along the lines of “Oooooooooookay… I’m in Lithuania. What the hell am I doing in Lithuania? Where am I going to go? What will I do? I have no money! He doesn’t love me any more. I want a hug. I don’t want to give up and go back home. What the hell am I doing in Lithuania?! I don’t want to travel on my own. I want to go to the Song Festival… but I wanted to go with him. I have no clean clothes. What the hell am I doing in Lithuania?!!” and so on and so forth.

None of this was particularly productive, so I got up and went in search of coffee. Dave’s comment on a recent post had inspired me to look for something other than “just anything for the necessity of staying alive”, which would have been McDonald’s, so I made an effort and looked for somewhere cheap and yet interesting to eat.

As it turns out, for all its scary people, Lithuania is a good place for this. It is very cheap. And so I took advantage of the opportunity to have a proper breakfast, and sat down at a pavement table of a fancy hotel restaurant. They did bring me a wine list, which struck me as a little odd at 9am, but maybe it’s just that sort of country. Anyway, they helped me with the complicated Wifi settings, and then the waitress looked at my red-rimmed eyes, pathetically tear-stained face and unwashed clothes. I expected her to say “You cannot eat here. You must go to McDonald’s.”. Instead, she touched my shoulder in a sisterly way and said simply “I will bring coffee.”. I felt like throwing my arms around her and sobbing like a child, pleading with her to be my new best friend. Instead, I drank a lot of coffee and felt marginally better.

Four coffees, a huge omlette and salad, four bread rolls and a soft drink later, I paid about €4 and left. €4! I won’t starve here, anyway.

Everyone seems to think I have a plan. I have no plan. Tonight, I may still be here. Alternatively, I may be on a train, or in Poland, or on a flight to Belfast. I dunno. Had I not been so foolish as to fall in love when I said I would never do it again, things would be different. Being on my own might not be an issue. I might be happy and excited and resourceful. As it is, I can’t think for longer than about a minute without being punched in the gut by one of the “he doesn’t want me any more” feelings, and that’s not an ideal condition to be in for enthusiastic travelling, surrounded by happy couples and scary-looking locals. I want them all to go away, or at least be as miserable as I am.

I don’t know what to do. Where to go, how to get there, who to talk to, how to feel. I’ve been the sensible counsellor of broken-hearted girls so many times in the past. It’ll get better. Give it time. It won’t always hurt so much. I love you. You’re not alone. It all seems so much easier when you’re the one doing the comforting. I want to cry and hurt and maybe get drunk and cry and hurt some more, but I can’t. I have to figure out how to actually survive, instead, and I’m not sure that I have the strength right now.

Thank you for your comments, though. You have no idea how much they’re helping. This blog is my link to a community of people who, no matter how widely scattered across the globe, want to know where I am and what I’m doing, and aren’t leaving me to be a complete mess all on my own. From being a sarky, quippy travel blog, this blog has suddenly become an intense, messy spillage of tears and bits of broken heart, and I’d forgive you for rolling your eyes and unsubscribing.

But then I’d have to call The Samaritans, so thanks for sticking around. I’m told it’ll get better, so I’ll tell you the same thing.


14 thoughts on “I will bring coffee.

  1. Blogging: a surprisingly efficient substitute for calling The Samaritans.

    It will pass, and it will get better. And until it does, there’s always coffee to help.

  2. Thanks, Ed. My blog is my therapy. :) And coffee is like the box of tissues the therapist would pass me as I bawled… absolutely essential!

  3. Hails as part of your online therapy programme your next task is a new blog post @ http://itjustmakesmehappy.wordpress.com
    The first post can be fictional, but the 2nd and 3rd have to be totally honest.
    You may have encountered on your travels the one and only Lord Taoist. Don’t follow his example in writing. I read the 1st chapter of a book he’s working on, 6 months ago and had to ask him tonight what about Chapter 2.

    Ooh, I do love being annoying ;-)

  4. Oh poor baby. Look out for two middle aged Australians named “Dulinskis” they’re my son’s parents-in-sort-of-law (he’s not married their daughter yet) they’re holidaying in Litho as I type. You make the page as soggy as you like. A good cry is quite cathartic!

  5. Nelly says:

    Desert you! In your hour of need? Never!

    Hails, we are with you every step of the way. Some day you and I will sit over a coffee and we will laugh and laugh together about Lithuania and other things. In the meantime you have adventures to be getting on with.

    Two words. Gloria Gaynor. I know! Corny – but true.

  6. You’re a very very special young woman, Ms Hails!! I wish I were there in Lithuania to give you a hug and a shoulder to cry on, but a comment is the best I can offer at this time.

    Focus on the road ahead that leads you towards better times and as you do, the sorrow you feel now will surely fade into the past.

  7. Bevchen – aww, thank you. And I’ll overlook the happy couple bit, since it’s you, and your comments always make me feel appreciated! ;)
    D@ve – I have indeed encountered him on my travels, and had no idea he was writing a chapter a year of a book! I admit to being a bit like that myself. But I will rise to the challenge and write a seemingly impossible post at It Just Makes Me Happy. Helps to have an aim for the day!
    Grannymar – *hug*
    Baino – there are Australians all over the place, so I’m unlikely to pick them out! :)
    Nelly – Oh, help. I am back to the Gloria Gaynor days! Damn… I said I would never, ever let myself be in that position again. There’s something so tragic about the Gloria Gaynor phase. And yet it is necessary. Just not the same without The Sister to dance with as we yell the lyrics very aggressively!
    Maureen – Comments are the next best thing in the absence of someone actually being here to cuddle me! I am grateful for every single one.

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