I often walk past a lot of buildings I once used to enter regularly. There are coffee shops I do not visit anymore. Some changed ownership, some do not exist, and some are snobbish enough for me to avoid them or only get a coffee in a cup to go, all the while watching my watch and the door. Some places burst with people who even sit and talk with superficial superiority. Their insecurities ooze out of them like their money which, sadly, never ends and, even more sadly, perhaps, never finds better use. It only gets spent on a larger car, a longer coat, and a prolonged and annoying pronunciation of words. Eventually, the city knows which places to avoid. Of course, for all those who don’t visit them, there are more who do, and it does nothing to affect the sales, and the places keep running for years.
Then, there is the old school. A campus I often walk by now; it happens to be on the road that leads to everywhere; I cannot really avoid it. It baffles me each time I pass the gate, and sometimes, I see people in the same uniforms, albeit with little changes here and there. It makes me feel so much simultaneously that I cannot put it into words. This is precisely why I wanted a life elsewhere, always seeking an escape with someone else or on my own. The same streets are often a reminder of every step you took along the way. There are people I spent days with here who have left, long on their way to different places all over the world, and I have left, too, but then, this town brings me back to itself. Of course, I will not live my entire life here, but a good chunk of it has been lived already. I cannot change it. But that is not to say it has been terrible by any accord. It has been life—the good and the bad.
But it knocks me out every time I pass by an old place and notice it has changed. The posh, extravagant restaurant we always wanted to dine in is under renovation now. We could never visit it. The board above it has changed already. It was a Saturday, and I walked past it once again, like I have a thousand times before, and like I have walked past many of my dreams, knowing not every one of them comes true. But some do, yes, some do, so we keep dreaming.