Colors of Adolescence: Prologue


Graphic by Christine Jeong (12)

I awoke to the drift of French bread wafting through the hotel every morning, and was lulled to sleep by the symphony of crickets at night. Sipping on cherry-ade, my sister and I, we’d sit amidst the tall grass and watch the cathedral of Chartres swim in the neon lights of the illumination festival. My subconscious would drift away from her babbling about the local pizzeria’s overly acidic salad, and I let myself sink into the soft, foreign murmurs floating in the air. Stars were journeying across the inky sky— and curiously, this very navy seeped its way onto my mind, and poured like paint onto a white paper in my head.

Yes, my mind would exalt: a new color.

Everyone has a different story; and mine has always begun with colors.

Ever since childhood, my head would cloud with smokes of beige when I was tired, just as fuzzes of purple would vibrate when I was hungry. Although it is not as frequent an occurrence now, and I still struggle to understand why, I’ve learnt that certain emotions ‘unlock’ new colors, and have hence been jumping into footloose experiences in the hope of treading upon a yet-unseen-color.

Luckily (-or unluckily) for me, I have been constantly readjusting on a two/three-year-basis under my diplomat father, and have been given the chance to explore varied cultures that satisfied my curiosity for twists of colorful patterns and three-tone gradients. Whether it be the dim grey that splotched onto my mind when I met an ill child affected by unclean water, or the lime that sprouted when I first learned to pick up vibrations of music from deaf dancers— I would like to welcome you to the colors of my adolescence.