No Friends

I’ve just seen my friend Senthil. He lives in Singapore (he’s Malaysian), but is in KL for work meetings. I Miss him. If only he lived here. When we first met, back in 2007, he was here but he moved soon after. I think he’s the only friend I’ve made after turning forty whom I feel about the same as the ones I made in my teens or twenties. The sort I can take for granted and who take me for granted too, but in the best possible way.

I don’t feel like that about anyone in KL and I am no one’s go-to friend here. There isn’t a single person in this city who thinks of me as the first person to call when they are  happy or sad or angry or confused; or when they want to watch a movie or have a coffee or check out a new play. I don’t hang out doing nothing with anyone here. I am no one’s default person and no one is mine.

Is fifty too late to make that sort of friend? Maybe that’s why having a partner is important to me. Was important to me. I can’t rely on that anymore. I won’t. It’s a mistake to depend on a lover, even one supposedly bound to you legally, to safeguard your emotional well being.

Like Holy Wine

A Case of You

Just before our love got lost you said
“I am as constant as a northern star”
And I said “Constantly in the darkness
Where’s that at?
If you want me I’ll be in the bar”

On the back of a cartoon coaster
In the blue TV screen light
I drew a map of Canada
Oh Canada
With your face sketched on it twice
Oh you’re in my blood like holy wine
You taste so bitter and so sweet

Oh I could drink a case of you darling
Still I’d be on my feet
oh I would still be on my feet

Oh I am a lonely painter
I live in a box of paints
I’m frightened by the devil
And I’m drawn to those ones that ain’t afraid

I remember that time you told me you said
“Love is touching souls”
Surely you touched mine
‘Cause part of you pours out of me
In these lines from time to time
Oh, you’re in my blood like holy wine
You taste so bitter and so sweet

Oh I could drink a case of you darling
And I would still be on my feet
I would still be on my feet

I met a woman
She had a mouth like yours
She knew your life
She knew your devils and your deeds
And she said
“Go to him, stay with him if you can
But be prepared to bleed”

Oh but you are in my blood
You’re my holy wine
You’re so bitter, bitter and so sweet

Oh, I could drink a case of you darling
Still I’d be on my feet
I would still be on my feet

© 1970; Joni Mitchell

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It Ain’t Over Til It’s Over …

… as the mediocre lyricist Lenny Kravitz once said.

I will be fifty tomorrow. My mother died when she was fifty six. If I were to follow suit, I have six years to make my mark or erase it. I have done both, simultaneously, for as long as I can remember.

I dreamt of a fresh start this year. It should have begun by now. But here I go again, feeling sorry for myself, wringing my hands and imagining the worst.

Has the worst already happen? Is it to come? Is it happening right now? Who can tell? In twenty years, if someone chooses to remember this time, if someone tells this story, they will be in a better position to judge. Perhaps the phone will ring tonight, and there will be good news. Perhaps we will overcome. Perhaps we will choose to have an adventure instead of believe we are doomed. People face and survive worse. Evey day.

So stop. Just stop.

 

Let’s Stay in Bed

sleepy head by matt blease
‘Sleepy Head’ by Matt Blease (http://mattblease.tumblr.com)

Let’s stay in bed, my body says.

Let’s stay in bed, my head sighs.

Let’s stay in bed, my heart beats weakly.

Let’s stay in bed, say my unseeing eyes.

I am all tangled up in the bedclothes of life.

When is laundry day?

In Which I Come to a Screeching Halt

Debbie George. Lion Jug and Dandelions
‘Lion Jug and Dandelions’ by Debbie George

I am posting this picture because it’s a happy picture: look at the lion’s smiling face; look at the determinedly bright yellow of the dandelions.

I am not happy. Things are not going well. Nothing is certain, although you could argue that nothing ever is. Still, it’s one thing to not know where one is going, but be, nevertheless, on one’s way. and quite another to feel that one has come to a sudden halt, with no prospect of starting moving again. For the first time in a long while, I am not on my way and I am wondering if I ever was. Have I been fooling myself?

I don’t want to speculate on what has been and what might be. Stress does dreadful things to people. It makes them say the silliest, most irrational and rather unkind things. Don’t think about it. Don’t analyse. I will distract myself with happy pictures and the Moomins.

Tove Jansson’s series of books is being discussed by a Facebook group I belong to and I am supposed to lead the discussion on two of them: The Exploits of Moominpappa and Moominpappa at Sea. I thought I liked them the least of the books, but I’m enjoying my current re-read of Exploits. I shall post a review when I’m done. In the meantime, isn’t Edward the Booble the most fabulous name for a ferocious sea serpent?

edward1
Edward the Booble from ‘The Exploits of Moominpappa’, story and illustrations by Tove Jansson.