My sister called me from the carwash yesterday to report that her daughter Lucy, age 3, is making friends with her cousin Anna, also age 3. The two girls were sitting together eating pizza when Emily came in.
"Anna is the King," Lucy announced. "And I am the Princess."
And the first stirrings of theatre begin.
Last night I went with a friend to hear Kitka perform for the opening of the Jewish Music Festival in Berkeley. Fantastic Jewish and Romany music (and some contemporary thrown in.) Rich, minor key subtle harmonies, lament and poetry. A beautiful blending of ancient and new. My friend Catherine Rose Crowther performed with Kitka. She grows more beautiful every year.
It was hard to keep sitting when the fiddle started. That music calls out to be danced to. There were two belly-dancers, supple as eels, and finally, at the end, everyone got up and danced in the aisles. It made me think of this book Cynthia Winton-Henry has been touting, called dancing in the Streets by Barbara Ehrenreich. It's about communal ecstacy and how that used to be built into our community experience. Now we have a spectator culture where we sit and watch and listen while experts perform.
A friend gave me a FUCK BUSH T-shirt--charcoal on black, very tasteful, and I wore it to the video store when I returned my 6-day's late video ("Sherrybaby"--excellent!)
"I'll knock three days off the late fees," said the clerk. "I like your shirt."
G and I played tennis and I thought of an essay idea--I could wear the shirt to various communities, go into shops, cafes, etc. and write about the reactions I get.
"Okay, but just to be clear, if they start throwing rocks and coming after you, we are not together," G said.
"Thanks for your loyalty. It's touching."
Yesterday I managed to book my tickets to go to Detroit for the workshop production of Saying Kaddish. I got confused at first and booked a flight for Chicago on the East Coast theory of the midwest as one big flyover blur--inexcuseable, I know. Geography is not my strong suit. Then spent hours, literally, playing Sudoku on-line. I've been hooked on Sudoku more than usual lately. Beth says it's how I manage my anxiety. Maybe so. I am anxious, I admit it. What do I have to be anxious about? Things are going so well. I'm receiving so much abundance right now. And I'm grateful and happy. Happy to have a full plate of good work and love and family and friends and art in my life, and anxious about being worthy of it, showing up for it with enough to offer, being on time for it, taking care of it.
I am always noticing how people around me take better care of stuff than I do and it's humbling. Sumati bought my old rattler car and she's cleaned it till it's immaculate and is loving it up. Julie transformed my home with elbow grease and vision. Masankho takes time out of his crazy schedule to make reservations to fly to Detroit to see my play workshop--without me even asking! He just made a committment to support me and this play and he's doing it. A new friend gave me whimsical black and white Zebra socks; Erika gave me the FUCK BUSH T-shirt. Emily took time out of her hectic life to call me. All my siblings encourage me to stay connected with my nieces and nephews.
It's beautiful suppor--thoughtfulness to an extreme degree, and I remember times in my life when I wanted to die, when the words "I want to die," would surface spontaneously into my mind--because I couldn't feel my essential connection to others. I'm grateful and awed by how much that has shifted. It can't all be the Prozac, or the exercise--Prozac and exercise don't make a great community happen. I feel humble, I feel grateful, I feel like I want to do better by the people in my life--I always want to do better. Meanwhile I'm going to get my butt in the pool now and swim if it's the last thing I do. I made a sacred promise to myself that I would keep fitting into my pants and take care of this body that is faithfully carrying me through all these adventures.