Early this morning, on a deserted backstreet in Sofia, just after navigating an ATM in a foreign alphabet, as I was feeling particularly staggered by the sheer weirdness of the geometry of the universe, a song made very familiar to me from countless mornings at Pancake Playhouse burst out from some unknown Bulgarian basement or bedroom. At the same moment, I realized that a flyer on the back of a street sign right in front of me said “Antichrist” (Антихрист) on it in Bulgarian. Funny how many emotions, like a confluence of deep alienation, wistful nostalgia, and unexpected comprehension, don’t have proper names.
And then you get on a bus and ride hundreds of miles through sunflower fields to end up somewhere else. The feeling fades, but the realization that your repertoire of words is woefully limited lingers.