Friday, June 20, 2008

keeping my vibe down

"i am someone easy to leave"
"even easier to forget"
a voice, if inaccurate.

did you ever have one of those days? well, it was otherwise a good day what with the retail therapy and all, but it's definitely been one of THOSE evenings.  

"i'm the one they all run from"
diatribes of clouded sun
someone help me find the pause button

you are all painfully aware of my kitchenless state. however, i was able to begin using my new kitchen sink today, which was a step in the right direction. tho' several times i still found myself taking dishes out to the bathroom. amazing how quickly one learns new habits and has to unlearn them.

all these tapes in my head swirl around
keeping my vibe down

so, inspired by having an actual sink, i bought salmon to cook on the grill. and i bought a mandolin to make a lovely salad of the fennel, zucchini, baby carrots and fresh new garlic that came in my dogme box from årsiderne today. i even went and got salty macadamias from Irma, although i don't even want to think about the food miles on those. i put the salmon in a pan in a bed of lemon, doused it in gorgeous, yellow, local, organic rapeseed oil and an inspire chardonnay blend from spiers (one of my favorite south african wineries--moyo, their restaurant is AWESOME, but i digress) and covered it in the fresh dill that came in the box so it could poach in the pan on the grill. in short, i actually felt inspired.

all these thoughts in my head aren't my own
wreaking havoc

silly me.

"i'm too exhausting to be loved"
"a volatile chemical"
"best to quarantine and cut off"

the kids set the table in the circle.  the sun was shining. the rest of the spiers bottle was chilled and sweating beads of moisture onto the bright linen tablecloth.  the fennel salad and a bowl of tzaziki were on the table awaiting the delicately poached salmon.  

all these tapes in my head swirl around
keeping my vibe down
all these thoughts in my head aren't my own
wreaking havoc

i called everyone to the table. the pan was hot and i had no gloves, relying on my inner chef's asbestos hands, so i set it on a chair that was next to the table.  and before i could do anything, it fell on the ground.  upside down. spilling my lovely salmon into snail trails, leaves and dirt, spoiling the whole thing.

"i'm but a thorn in your sweet side"
"you'd be better off without me"
"it'd be best to leave at once"

initially i swore up a storm, even inventing a few new swear words in the process. to salvage things and feed my family i went down to the grill where you can get quite delicious rotisserie chickens, which we could at least eat with the fennel salad and tzaziki i made.

all these tapes in my head swirl around
keeping my vibe down
all these thoughts in my head aren't my own
wreaking havoc

looking back, i think where it began to go wrong was when we opened the mail and received this invitation to a symposium in honor of my father-in-law that will be held this fall:

he died just after the first of the year two years ago. he was such a special person and we have so many of his books in our home. the invitation has a watermark of his signature in it. and it got me all on the wrong foot. he was very dear to me and made it clear that he loved me and accepted me wholeheartedly into the family. i worked closely with him on his technolution project, translating and editing for him to ensure the english was correct, my translations even being part of his exhibition at the library in alexandria, egypt a number of years ago.

when i ordered the wegner chairs today, it was to complement the first 4 he gave to us. as i photographed my bookshelves yesterday, he was on my mind, as our whole evolution collection was his. i love so much enountering his marginalia as i read his books, but somehow seeing his handwriting makes me realize he's no longer here.

he was a brilliant man. he invented a field of study of which he was the first professor at lund university in sweden. he surely had so much left to think and write and discuss. and i suddenly miss him so much.

but listening to alanis morissette helps me and it's her song tapes which i wove into the beginning of this posting.  sometimes you just have to wallow in your sorrow and cry your eyes out.


Jaime said...

Offering you a big (((hug))).

I'm sorry for your loss.

polona said...

gosh, this is so wonderfully woven together... some things are just too much to bear...
hope you find peace of mind

Barb said...

What a touching post and lovely tribute to your father-in-law.

I send you a big across the ocean and hope somehow that as you feel this sorrow you know that there are many around the world who share this with you.

Thank you for giving us your faithful blog readers the chance to express our heartfelt feelings towards you and your sorrow. B

julochka said...

thank you, all 3, so very much for the kind words. i'm feeling much better this morning.

it was so strange the way the sadness hit me yesterday, more than 2 years after he died. i think it was all those little reminders of him and then seeing his signature as a watermark just pushed me over the edge.

as i said, i think sometimes you just have to have a good cry.

hele said...

You sensitively described your feelings. It made me feel like leaving a delicate flower on your doorstep.

Phyllis Hunt McGowan said...

You managed to articulate your sadness so perfectly, that we all feel for you.
I of course didn't know what sort of story you were going to tell. I was initially feeling bad that you spilled the food, and slowly it dawned that something more grievous was lying underneath it all.
"but somehow seeing his handwriting makes me realize he's no longer here." That's inexplicable, and yet so understandable. It's a mystery of life how such things can be like that.

I'm glad to hear you are feeling better. Those days are, in hindsight, so very necessary.
Thank you for sharing this with us.

d smith kaich jones said...

This is really wonderful. Not what happened & not your feeling sad - although actually, it's because your father-in-law was so wonderful that you felt sad, so maybe the sadness is just fine - but your story. And how you just got yourself together & fed the family anyway - nothing to be done but keep on keeping on. Just like you've done since losing your father-in-law.

Really, really wonderfully written.

Take care.
Love, Debi

julochka said...

hele--did you send a tortiseshell cat with the flower, because one of those showed up on the doorstep this weekend.

elementary--it's interesting that you say that it "slowly dawned that something more grievous was lying underneath it all"...that's exactly what i realized as i wrote it! i sat down just to write about the food and how frustrated i was about that and realized myself there was more to it.

debi--thank you.

Elizabeth said...

Some losses never leave you.