You know you’re quite liking a book when you wake up at regular intervals in the middle of the night, reach for your iPhone, open the Kindle app in a panic and carry on where you left off an hour ago… before you mistakenly fell asleep at 3am with your phone on your face and a little bit of drool threatening to seep through the cracks of your only link to Panem and ruin it forever. Goddam FOOL. How could you be so careless?!?
My life has literally been put on hold for The Hunger Games over the last week or so, and I know I’m not alone. I’ve never before rooted for a place like I currently am for District 12, or Panem. Not even England, where I’m from. There were riots in London last year. I watched litter bins blazing from the TV screens in Bangkok, shrugged my shoulders, thought “frickin bunch of baffoons” and went back to my Magnum ice creams and five dollar massages… well, what can I do, all the way over here? Not my fault they’ve all gone mad.
With Panem though, holy shit. I can’t eat. I can’t sleep. Entire mornings have gone by with my ass cheeks pressed into a hard wooden chair at my Ubud homestay and my eyeballs stuck on my phone screen. Cups of coffee have been poured and then gone cold. I’ve barely opened the lid of my laptop, even though I have the Kindle app on there too… there just hasn’t ever been a good moment. Even though it would make it easier. Even though the font would be bigger and I might save my eyesight, thus reducing the need for laser surgery and preventing miscalculated steps into walls and glass panels.
But what if I shut the Kindle app on the phone and it won’t open on the laptop, and I lose my place, and then a giant bird swoops down and steals my phone, and then shits on my laptop, so I can’t finish my book on either device?? What if they’ve run out of the actual books at all the book shops in all the world and I can’t ever get another copy? What if all the cinemas catch on fire at the same time and I can’t even watch a high-res movie version, instead of the one I just watched in Bali, which was clearly filmed on someone’s phone, from someone else’s phone, in a makeshift movie theatre on the moon. YOU JUST DON’T KNOW.
Writing deadlines have come and gone and prior to this I’ve never missed a deadline in my life. Not even when I was in Forks for over a month with Edward and Bella. I was able to tear myself away from them; especially in New Moon when there was hardly any Edward and lots of yawn-inspiring stories about wolf packs. But Katniss. I need to know how she is, I need to know if Peeta’s OK, and if Gale’s going to win her heart over the boy with the bread. I’m only up to the start of Mockingjay so far… so I literally do not know how this will end. I’m surprised I’m writing this blog actually. They’re still there, in my iPhone, on a tiny screen in a tiny font, walking the remains of District 12. I hope they’re alright.
This morning I woke up to a loud banging sound and for at least a minute I thought I was in The Hunger Games arena and one of my so-called-friends was trying to shoot me. I felt a mild pang of relief and then disappointment when I realized it was just a motorbike engine backfiring and that the world I live in doesn’t actually need my help in order to survive. I’ve never felt so useless in my life.
Right. Enough. I need to get back to the Capitol. It’s been at least 20 minutes. Hope the Kindle app still works…