It’s been a month that I’ve been living in Yerevan and I can’t quite put it into words, but I’ve never felt more alive. There’s nothing particularly glamorous about my life here. On the surface, I do exactly what I used to do in LA, but the sensation is very different. Just like in America, I wake up in the morning (albeit a bit later; after all, life here starts later), set up my computer and start working. Sometimes I meet a friend for lunch, sometimes I eat at home. Then in the afternoon, I either go to a cafe to continue working or sometimes when it’s a gloomy or rainy day, I stay at home all day.
The first difference I noticed about my routine is that I’m enjoying my solo time a lot more here. In LA, it was rare for me to stay indoors all day. Maybe that’s because there it’s almost always sunny. Here, if I’m done working early, I’m inspired to read a book, watch a documentary (no Netflix here), write, and think. No hour-long commute, no rush, no go-go-go lifestyle. And so I have more time and creative appetite to do these things.
I’ve also noticed that my day-to-day scenery is much less idyllic than it was in LA (palm trees, beaches, blue skies, beautiful people, fancy cars) but there’s a rawness here that I’m starting to appreciate. It’s much harder for me to get around without a car (those who know me know that I don’t love to walk) but I’m enjoying it and realizing how beneficial it is to my health and spirit. Here, even if you don’t have plans, someone always calls, something always comes up, and it feels more organic that way versus scheduling people in. The perfect example: yesterday I got out of the dentist’s office, happened to run into my mom’s friend, she was headed to the Dolma Festival outside the city, so I tagged along and had such an adventured-filled time. It’s harder to be spontaneous in America because there’s the issue of distance, traffic, and jam-packed lives, but in a small city like Yerevan, things happen more naturally.
There’s creative energy, a cultural pull, and people from all parts of the world who are working on something exciting. It’s a small pond with big fish and the potential to create something new is endless. In America, anything novel you think of has likely already been done, and if not, it’s not so easy to go about creating it. Of course, only time will tell if this sensation will get old — or rather normal and thus less exciting — but for now I’m soaking in every second of it.