My childhood has been defined by something that most people don’t really associate with children. As long as I have been in school, there have always been olive trees. Whether they be hidden away in the ‘out of bounds’ area, by the edge of the rugby field, or along the side of the road by my bus stop. There was always olive trees somewhere, and I would see them nearly every day. As I was younger, my memories of them were fonder. My friends and I would mush them down in our empty lunch containers, in a feeble attempt to make something edible. I would throw them at my little brother, trying my best to inflict some kind of injury. Hoping that one would be fatal.
But as I’ve gotten older, and now my twenties are looming in front of me, like some unfathomably high mountain. I don’t see olive trees anymore. Apparently olive trees symbolize friendship and peace. And while I still have plenty of good friends, I don’t have an awful lot of peace. But then again, I’m sure that’s not any different to any other person on the planet. I would say that the dove returning to Noah on the ark with an olive branch in it’s beak would be a better metaphor for what I’m trying to get at. While I’m certainly not christian-ly aligned in any way, the stories do a good job of getting a point across. The dove brought Noah the branch to show him that there was land out there. There was hope yet. I suppose that’s what I’m looking for. The same kind of hope that can be offered, to let you know there is a better place out there in which to start a new life.
While I was still in school, I guess I still had that kind of hope. I was so engrossed in the present that a future never seemed far out of reach. However now, the things I want seem further and further away. But at the same time, have never felt so close. It’s the strangest sensation. I’m like Noah, standing at the helm of the ark, eagerly awaiting the dove to arrive with it’s news. With an olive branch, or an empty beak. It is a pivotal time. And I’m a whole big ugly mix of excited, driven, and utterly petrified. Every part of me seems to want to scream as loud as every atom in my body will let it. My whole being wants an answer so badly. I am looking forward to my future. I am waiting for a sign.