far too much writing, far too many photos

The heat passed, the weather waffled its way through several days of indecisiveness before finally settling on a good imitation of autumn. Today: cool, sunny. Real pretty. A good day for hiking. Or mowing lawn. Or something.

The days have been flowing past in that sneaky way they have of feeling slow and leisurely in the moment, until the evening hours materialize around me and I realize it’s all actually flown by at near light-speed. Disorienting. I’ve now been back in Vermont nearly five weeks and can’t say I have a whole lot to show for that time. Not that I need to show anything. I got back, made the long, slow adjustment to being here once again, have gotten some things done and made lists of other things needing to be attended to. That’s plenty. At times, though, I notice me experiencing a weird combination of feelings, of being actively plugged into life, carrying on in a decent imitation of an actual high-functioning grown-up, at the same time feeling strangely, well, not disconnected exactly. Meditative? Pondering deep questions? In need of much more caffeine? One of those.

This evening I cranked up the tube, stumbled across a showing of Love and Death. I stayed with it for a while, found myself thinking about the first time I’d seen it — way back, in a little theater in Morgantown, West Virginia, while visiting P., a woman I’d gotten involved with in college, three or so years earlier, when she was married to one of my theater professors. She and her then-husband, in the middle of their matrimony’s long decline, had decided to try open marriage. (Mostly at his urging.) I got sucked into it, she and I became involved. Big, drawn-out drama, their marriage finally collapsed, life got messy. After my graduation, she got a job teaching at the university in Morgantown, I made the drive down to visit a few times as our connection slowly dwindled and faded.

I found myself remembering being in the small, darkened theater, P.’s hand in mine, Woody Allen and Diane Keaton cavorting onscreen. Post-movie, when we walked out into the evening, light rain fell. Warm rain, the first time I’d ever experienced that. I released P.’s hand, walked out into the quiet street, turned my face up to the sky. Not minding getting wet at all, sudden pleasure blossoming in my heart.

And that got me remembering yesterday evening here, light rain falling outside, me standing at an open door listening to the sound of it. The clouds thinned, the sun broke through — already well down in the western sky, out of view here in the valley, its last rays shining over the top of nearby hills. Producing a double rainbow, a display that lingered on and on until darkness began settling in and the colors gradually dissolved.

Life — not what I’d call tidy or predictable. But amazing.

From ‘Love and Death’:
Sonja: (Rejecting Boris’s attempt at a kiss:) Don’t, Boris — sex without love is an empty experience.
Boris: Yes, but as empty experiences go it’s one of the best.

Madrid, te echo de menos.

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