Anik Marchand moved from New Brunswick to Southern Ontario at a young age, lived some crazy moments in Montréal, and is now based in Madrid, Spain.
E-mail: [email protected]
5 Things I Discovered When I Moved to Madrid.
1. People pee everywhere. When I first moved to Madrid a few years ago, I moved to a neighbourhood in the centre of the city called Lavapies. It looked cool during the day, people out everywhere walking, going to work, walking their dogs. It seemed really great, vibrant and fun. However, after some time of walking to and from work, I realized that I always smelled the scent of pee everywhere I went. Embarrassingly enough, I somehow thought it was me? Did I pee myself and not know? That’s absolutely ridiculous…Of course I didn’t. Then, as months went on, I realized that it smells like pee everywhere because people here clearly have no shame in peeing anywhere. They will pee on the sidewalk in broad daylight! WTF! I was stunned. The worst is when people go out to clubs and they get drunk and need to pee, they will literally squat next to a parked car and pee. I once was driving near Tribunal metro and say a girl’s whole bum as she squatted down next to car tire to pee…I mean…yeah…not classy.
The Day I Decided to Get Dreadlocks.
From the moment I could grab things, I would grab my moms nylons and throw them on my head and pretend I had long braids. I would twist them and make little nylon buns on top of my head and, the worst part of all of this (haha!), is that my mom would encourage me. She would help put the buns up and tie them and let me prance around our house. From there, I would beg my parents to let me have long hair and stop giving me bowl cuts and put weird 90s butterfly clips in my hair.
Maybe I didn’t get the cool art job I wanted in a museum and maybe I’m not with the hottest, richest man and yeah, maybe I could lose a few pounds and perhaps put some nicer makeup on and look more girly and maybe I could stop getting tattoos and maybe my stretched ears are too much for some to handle and maybe, just maybe I could stop comparing myself to all the fake lives posted on Facebook and Instagram with the fake smiles and fake poses and fake bodies photoshopped and set up photo shoots that make you look desperate for attention and likes.
I started liking heavy metal when I was eight-years-old. This was my mother's friends fault. My mother had two good friends, Maria and Kerri-Ann. Maria and Kerri-Ann were the most amazing and coolest couple you can know as an 8 years old. I mean, I loved them. I used to spend weekends over at their house watching horror films and eating all the best snacks. They used to show me a kind of love and affection that no one outside of my family had shown me. It was like I was one of theirs. It was a great feeling to know you were that loved and cared for. This was especially important to me because I had just moved to a new province and I was away from everything that was familiar to me. Thus, their protective nature over me was comforting as well as their love for me. They really had taken me into their family as their own and it felt great.
There will be a moment in your life when you will feel what it’s like to live without someone. And, I’m not talking about living without an ex-boyfriend/girlfriend. I’m talking about actually having to live without someone because they passed away. There will be a moment when you sit down all alone in your living room and think of what that person would be doing right now and it’s going to hurt. It won't hurt as much as it did the day they left, but you’re going to see and feel that empty hole in your chest. You’re going to be painfully aware of this cavity that cannot, and will not, ever be filled. It seems as though this hole in your chest is encased with precious museum quality glass and allows everyone to see right through you…
I Bought Doc Martens, Again
I guess this was expected. Moving to another country, knowing no one, being alone and lonely. But, I never thought it would feel like this. You know, when I lived in Montreal I was a bit lonely but that was self-inflicted, I didn't want to go out much but, here, in Madrid, I do want to go out and live but, making friends has been my biggest challenge as of yet. I just don't fit in with these people...
Simon Says, Break Down
We’re always worried about money, today was no different. We were on our way to Portugal from Spain. We had all our luggage with us for our usual bi-weekly vacation back to his hometown. After 40 minutes in the hot metro, we finally got out. So, here we are, carrying three bags and one suitcase for our 15 minutes walk on the car and finally, were there! Yah, thank god. I haven’t eaten anything since the night before and I’m hungry, I’m tired and I just want to sit in the car and play on the new tablet he just bought me.
I guess I never will want to admit this to myself. This incurable unhappiness stuck so deep inside me. This cemented, anchored, armoured heaviness in the core of my being which refuses to leave. This feeling of never being satisfied. Eating, but having a hole in your stomach. Running, but not moving. Breathing, but fucking suffocating.
The “Give Me Time” Guy
Here you are, after finding a great guy on Tinder (yeah let's be honest, that’s where everyone meets each other these days, no shame in that) who doesn’t seem too fucked up, or not too weird and actually has a good set of morals (your momma did good, boy!) You’re thinking to yourself “Ah, okay I found a good one, I can’t fuck this one up”. You go to the bathroom to get ready and make sure you don’t have lipstick on your teeth and ensure that your hair stays in place so you look #flawless alllllll night. You wink at yourself in the mirror (a little confidence boost) and put on your best outfit and out the door, you go!
How Creating a Vision Board Inspired Me to Dream
Lame and cliché title, I know. BUT! Hear me out, (please). A few years ago, my father and I were sitting in front of the television while I was visiting and, as per usual, we weren’t doing much. We weren’t really talking either, things have always been awkward between us so we just stay quiet most of the time. Anyway, I picked up the book he had laying on the coffee table, it read The Secret. I looked through the pages reading philosophical passages about this mysterious “Law of Attraction” and things like “The Law of Attraction is one of the most powerful laws in the universe. What you think about is what you bring about into your life. You can improve your life drastically by improving the thoughts that you dwell upon and the actions that you take.”
The Moment I Realized Love Did Not Exist
We had this cute love story that lasted a while. We knew each other for two years and fell in love right when we met. Our mutual best friend had introduced us. He was tall with dreads. He was from France and had a fancy accent. Actually, I had a hard time understanding what he was saying even though we spoke the same language, but nonetheless, his soft brown eyes made it all okay.