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Icarus, Underwater.


Icarus, Underwater.

It’s quiet down here. I can still hear the wind far above, far away. The moon’s almost full, if I counted right. It’s hard to keep track of what was Before, now that it’s After.

When I press my fingers to my eyes I can still see the Sun, a circle flash of light on optic nerves to my brain. It’s dark down here, and cold. When the fishes swim by they shine with their own bioluminescence. Tiny moons and stars near the ocean floor. The Sun I hold only in my eyes.

There was Before, and now there’s After. The way your childhood feels like a different existence but you’re still the same person you were since you were fifteen. At what point did you wake up? Maybe I wasn’t conscious then. Maybe I am now. Maybe I was, for a while.

But now it’s After.

Sometimes I think I see the world. In dusty colors, murky, dim. The lights on the mountains aren’t so bright. Golden haloes dimmed, even though I couldn’t see them before. Can you believe I sometimes forget I am underwater!

I can still smell it sometimes. The Sun, the wax. The light on the water. Old buildings and quiet afternoons. Dust motes floating in sunbeams. Shadows under roof eaves. Red stucco. I can feel it under my fingers.

But that was Before, and this is After. I woke up and forgot I was underwater.

The light doesn’t filter down here.



Everything Fits Together

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Everything Fits Together

I'm sitting on the wood steps of my new house. It's been almost a week now since I've come home. Yes I can talk about it and I can tell stories but as I discussed with Josh last night nothing in my mind is settled. I hope it's still processing there in my subconscious behind the scenes cause when I had that FaceTime call with Tammy all I could do was stare at the ceiling and I couldn't say anything, I could hardly even say the words "I Don't Know."


 (What can you say after an experience like that?)


I came, I saw, I conquered, I freaked out, I conquered again.

I came home.

The reason I'm out here is because the more I tried to put my stuff away in my room, the more I wanted to take a flamethrower to all of it. Who I am now is not who I was in April when I packed up all that stuff. Yes this is my town but I would rather have gone on far far away with a brand new place and brand new things so I could keep moving forward, cause today when I sat in the computer lab the dusty electric scent of the air and the familiar dimmed quality of light felt like whiplash, like I had gone back in time. Not that there was anything wrong with who I was before but you can't have traveled and lived and worked like that and not have become a different person afterwards, and I want to go forward.


This summer everything I owned fit in one and a half suitcases and I liked living like that quite a bit. When I carried a shameful amount of stuff out of my storage unit yesterday I vowed to get rid of a third of it. There is no reason one person essentially without a fixed abode should have that much stuff. But as I stand in my whirlwind disaster of a room, throwing clothes and books and paper into the sacrificial pile—should I be getting rid of all that? should I be getting rid of more? Like I said I want to take a flamethrower to everything I own but I know it's no good to burn who you used to be in pursuit of who you're trying to be. Every time I've tried to be something I am not, I learned that I can only be who I am.


So what do I throw out? And what do I keep?             


When I came home the colors were more vibrant than I ever remember seeing. Today I went up to the mountains and everything smelled like sunlight and dust.


Yes Germany was beautiful but I was raised on this stuff.


I woke up this morning from dreams of Europe just like every other day. I can't believe I've been gone for a week now but things always change so fast. I'm amazed at how quickly the mind can adjust to something, how after only a day or a week or a month a place can seem so known and familiar, or so far away.

This isn't what you were expecting from my Post-IDEO Retrospective. Yeah come talk to me if you want to hear the stories, you know I like to tell them well enough. But this is what's happening now, sitting on the wood porch smelling like summer in the air thinking about who I was and who I am and who I'm going to be.

Like most of us I'm often a nostalgic but I tell you there was a moment at the end of this summer where I stood alone in the white light of my room and saw my life for what it was, a series of overlapping experiences that come and go and are allowed to end. Of course like everyone else I cling to the beautiful things that are gone but for those few hours I was able to let go and see everything fit in its perfect frame of What Is, not What Could Have Been or What Could Be.

This summer I found an artist named David Shrigley on the walls of the modern art museum in München. On that evening standing in the white light his piece came into my mind again, because I think that I get it now—


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Missive From the Bohemian Forest


Missive From the Bohemian Forest

Or, more specifically, from Red Morning Street.

Silver bike and gray skies down to Kellerstraße.

It took me three months and three days, but finally, I Have Arrived.

Your Storyteller is a storytella, and par excellence.

I’m living in the moment entirely by accident

(And if I do it by accident, then it's par excellence.)

It’s the confidence and the comfort I was promised,

The confidence and comfort that three times I was promised,

And anything You promise, it’s Par Excellence!



(Thank You.)





Ode to the In-Between Space


Ode to the In-Between Space

I tried so hard to write this blog post and I couldn't.

It's midnight and it's so hot in my room.

I've spent the past eight years of my life since I suddenly became self-aware in eighth grade desperately trying to understand the world and my place in it.


All I've come up with so far is that I exist in an in-between space.

In between every social group.

In between every skillset.

In between the trees and the museum as I ate falafels alone in Vienna.


Franz told me that he hired me because he wasn't sure how I fit in.

("Okay, this is Camilla, this is who she is, let's invite her here and see how she can shake things up.")

Tbh I'm not sure how I fit in either.


Last summer when I went to France I learned that the power of architecture lies in the in-between space. That there is a color of the space between things, and that color is called Other White.


And now I find myself once again in some in-between space.

In between being a student and actual employment.

In between Europe and America.

In between futurism and being a Slovenian peasant.


Volker told me that I'm going to be so confused when I go home. At first I was like "What?" but I think that he's right because when I saw PJ's Fourth of July snapchat of people dancing to country music in unison it felt like a hallucination.

But at the same time when I couldn't pay with a card in a store today I walked out of there and sort of almost cried on my way home. As it turns out delayed culture shock is a thing and I don't have enough time left here to correct it.


Most of all though it's between being a kid and being an adult.

People all the time tell me I'm SO YOUNG.

("1994? Awww, how cuuuuute!")

And of course I feel my youth and inexperience so very keenly.

But in the past few months I have random intense memories all the time of being a kid.

And I've become aware of things like how you can't wear a crappy watch cause you might be meeting corporate people.


They say that growing pains are how you're going to get places.

But it turns out the pain part is a really big thing.

All I've wanted is for my life to make sense,

But instead I find myself in-between—!


IDEO, or, The Dream.


IDEO, or, The Dream.

I told you all I would blog all of this. Maybe you’ve been wondering about my radio silence from the sky.

But here’s the deal. I realized that Paris was my magnum opus. My baptism by fire into international travel experience. I had never pinned all of my thoughts and emotions and hopes to a place as I had to that city. That was the one place in all the world that I wanted to go. And so when I did, after seven years of waiting, I wanted to capture every moment in words. It was a labor of love—and it was completely exhausting.


How to Get an Internship at IDEO During Finals Week—A Comprehensive Guide


How to Get an Internship at IDEO During Finals Week—A Comprehensive Guide

It’s finals week right now but I’m telling you a story that happened four months ago, during finals week in December. This happened four months ago but it still doesn’t seem real. Intern at IDEO—who does that? You don’t get internships at IDEO. It just doesn’t happen.

But apparently it happened.

So how did this happen? How did this happen? I am leaving in less than one week.

Here's a comprehensive guide.