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there’s a world that was meant for us to see

I meant to write a blog post today expressing my thanks, talking about Christmas a little bit and drawing some meaningful, poetic conclusion of the last year. I’ve been writing it in my head for days. But all I feel today is frustration, sadness and anger, and I cannot write it.

The truth is, I don’t like New Year’s Eve (or Sylvester, as we call it in Germany). There is no real significance behind it, yet everybody makes such a big thing out of it that it’s easy to feel left out. Especially if you have nothing to celebrate, or do not feel ready for a new start.

All the end-of-year lists, the summing up, the best-of lists… They make me anxious. I feel under pressure. It’s true that for the past fifteen or sixteen years, I’ve sat myself down in a quiet corner some time during the afternoon of the 31st of December and written some kind of conclusion of the year, of my year. It’s frequently helped to ground me, to focus on the big things. It’s strictly personal, however, and nobody will ever read it until I’m dead.

Two days ago I was taking a nap on the couch, more or less because I was bored and didn’t feel like doing anything else. When I woke up, in that little space between sleeping and being fully awake, I had the idea that I wanted to write down wishes for the new year. Not resolutions, because they don’t work for me, not things I ‘have to’ do, or ‘should’ do. But write wishes, things I want, things I wish for. And because I want them to have significance, I wasn’t going to write them on normal paper, but make beautiful, unique, personal cards in a rainbow of colours and pictures and write my wishes on those. So I made cards. They haven’t turned out perfect – far from it! – because I’m not good at crafts. But I like them. They are personal and they are pretty enough to satisfy me. Now it’s early afternoon and I have the cards, but I haven’t written anything yet, because I’m still in that mood of anger and frustration. I want to get rid of it. I don’t like starting new things with old things hanging on. I like clean sheets. Figuratively as well as literally.

And while I try to get into a better frame of mind, I’m listening to the song that I’m going to wear on my banner in the next year. It’s a song that holds a special place in my heart. It chides me and at the same time gives me infinite freedom. It challenges my comfort zone and never once gives me the feeling that I’m not capable of anything I set my mind to. It has such mystique and power and freedom and a deep wealth of pictures and emotions. This is the song I want with me throughout the year, the song I need at my side. This is my personal anthem for 2013.

Oh, there’s a river that winds on forever

I’m gonna see where it leads.

Oh, there’s a mountain that no man has mounted

I’m gonna stand on the peak.


Out there’s a land that time don’t command

wanna be the first to arrive.

no time for pondering why I’m a-wandering



To the ends of the earth, would you follow me?

There’s a world that was meant for us to see

To the ends of the earth would you follow me?



Oh, there’s an island where all things are silent

I’m gonna whistle a tune.

Oh, there’s a desert whose size can’t be measured

I’m gonna count all the dunes.


Out there’s a world that calls for me, girl

headin’ out into the unknown.

If there are strangers and all kinds of dangers,

don’t say I’m going alone.


To the ends of the earth, would you follow me?

There’s a world that was meant for us to see

To the ends of the earth would you follow me?



I was a-ready to die for you baby,

doesn’t mean I’m ready to stay.

What good is living a life you’ve been given

if all you do is stay in one place?


I’m on a river that winds on forever

follow ’til I get where I’m goin’.

Maybe I’m headin’ to die but I’m still gonna try

I guess I’m goin’ alone.

 *I can’t make out these lines… Sorry.


dancing on the beach

Yesterday afternoon I danced on the beach.

Now, before I go on with my story, I need you to rid your imagination of any romantic pictures these words might have conjured up. I did not twirl prettily in a flowered summer dress over the sand, nor did a handsome stranger invite me to dance a waltz, a rumba, a samba or any other dance, barefoot, under palm trees.

Instead, imagine a thirty-year-old woman, dressed for warmth rather than fashion in three layers of jumpers, wearing seagreen sneakers and a very boring, basic-navyblue scarf, standing on a pebble beach, toes perilously close to the waves licking up the slope, face tilted towards the autumn sun that peeks out from behind the clouds, eyes closed while the wind is whipping strands of hair around her face, earphones firmly in place, playing an air guitar and every few minutes breaking out into furious air drum solos or those kind of jumping, skipping dance steps that would not look out of place at a rock or ska concert… Have all that? Congratulations, that madwoman was me.

Instead of listening out for the police sirens coming to escort me to the nearest loony bin however,  I concentrated on my new favourite album, Lord Huron‘s Lonesome Dreams. At just a tick too loud and with the view of white-crested waves on a grey-and-mint-green sea and having to jump back with every third or fourth wave when it rushed up and then left salty foam on the wet, sunlight-glistening pebbles, I couldn’t have chosen a more fitting place to indulge in this album.

This music is all about space. It’s big, wonderful, airy music full of oxygen and bursts of wind and energy. Or like the sea, with its powerful currents, sometimes lapping sweet and gently on a beach, sometimes raw and direct and dangerous. And I realize this description won’t do anything for you, until you’ve actually heard their songs. After that, I’m pretty sure you’ll agree with me. So listen to this:

And then listen to this:

Did I mention that they have the weirdest, most wonderful videos?

When I first came across Lord Huron’s music, I was doing a very demanding university degree and going quietly insane with assignments and I had two of their songs and I adored them because they kept me sane and calm with their cool, airy sound (like breathing fresh mountain air!) and I just played them again and again and then begged my music-savy friend for more of their stuff and he immediately understood my need and sent me all he had.

(I should add that I’m very, very much in favour of space and solitude and sitting alone on the beach or a mountainside and just being there.)

So maybe you can understand that I was looking forward to this album with an intensity that almost hurt and when I actually forgot the release date during my recent travelling, but then was sent the album by the same wonderful friend and had wiped away the tears, I did not immediately put it on, but kept it for exactly that: listening to it, just a tick too loud, on the beach, with the whole ocean right at my feet.

I’m going to leave you with this. I’d like to point out some of the lyrics, but that’s practically its own post. So maybe just a few lines that I especially love.

I was a-ready to die for you, baby
Doesn’t mean I’m ready to stay
What good is livin’ a life you’ve been given
If all you do is stand in one place

Ends of the Earth

I lie under starlit sky and the seasons change in the blink of an eye, 
I watch as the planets turn and the old stars die and the young stars burn

Lonesome Dreams

We’re all gonna die but I’ll never believe it
I love this world and I don’t wanna leave

The man who lives forever