April is probably my favourite month. It's not too hot, but warm enough to sleep with open windows and spend hours sitting in the grass reading a book without a scarf, flowers are in bloom, the schoolyear is almost over and wait for it, I have a two-week holidays.
This month is also full of memories, beautiful and happy ones, and I am so excited that this year Budapest will be added to the list.
Two years ago, I finally went to Japan. During this trip I visited a bunch of cities, met many people, ate a LOT of good foods, drank various types of liquids, sailed, flew, took the train and little buses, car, taxi, I got sick and lost, had the prettiest mornings and spent some of the best nights of my life.
Among them, my favourite was probably the one I got to spend in Nara, in a very traditional and beautiful former tea house. When we arrived it was raining, and so was it when we left. The sky was grey, and Nara is a dark and wet city in my mind, however the time we spent, though short (too short) was so peaceful and すてき that I have only one regret : not spending longer in this ancient capital.
Our room was the biggest of the house, the man working there told us. "It's a very special room, for the tea ceremonies used to be held here" he added with a smile. Despite everything being simple, wood, tatamis, two bowls and thin paper doors(shoji) the place was impressive. In France, impressive always involves some huge statues, gold chandeliers and high ceilings. Here, the smell of wood, the silence and the shadows of the trees dancing with the wind left me speechless. "Is it okay for you?" I nodded enthusiastically : "It's perfect, it's ... beautiful". I couldn't think of any other words. I took off my backpack and sat on the floor. This was so different from everything I had ever seen before, in fact, I had never been in a place like that. I could feel my heartbeat slowing down, my breathing becoming deeper and my lips drew a smile as I just sat, staring at the plain walls. The whole house was as pure and simple as the room, yet it felt like the house of a queen or rather, the house itself, felt like a very majestic and important entity, full of peace and serenity.
I'm not a really noisy person, I'm pretty calm and quiet usually, but in this silent house it felt like even my breathing was loud. The house had its own rythm and flow, and it invited you to follow.
I felt immensely grateful, in that very moment, and even more at night, laying down on the white futon, in the softest silence and the proximity with the nature, just there, a few millimeters of paper only between us. I wanted to sleep, I was exhausted but sleep seemed like a waste of time, a waste of precious moments that I knew, I could never find anywhere else. Eventually the traveller's fatigue won the battle and I fell asleep, my head on the soft futon.
Is there a night (or two!) that still looks like a dream to you? or a night that you cannot remember? let me know! :)