Sunday, June 29, 2014

Goodbyes… beginning

I promised myself I wouldn't start saying goodbyes yet.  The emotions that flare up are too strong, and I can't stand a whole week of that.  So for everyone who said something at the party tonight like "I can't believe this is all ending so soon." I responded something like, "it's not ending tonight.  we are not saying goodbye tonight."

And yet, a few hours and a few drinks into an evening of incredible beauty at the Chinese Garden, I couldn't help but feel that some of these conversations might be my last meaningful ones.  I will see these people on site again this week in passing.  But will we ever share an unhurried moment again?  Open our hearts to one another?

Goodbye, Marina.  Goodbye, Alya.  Goodbye, Eva.  Not to mention Gael, Olli, Riki, Umi, Annette, Guilhem, Sarah, Francis, Jeff, Tara, Svetlana, Massimo, Denise, Genevieve.  (and previous losses: Ante, Pippo, Fabio, Louis-David, Joe.  Should we even mention Mark, Rachael, Odessa, Rosalie, Nakotah? the list becomes long… Kate, Kai, Michela, Ade, Sasha - you are not forgotten!)  Our life's spheres intersected, just barely, just briefly, and now we're rebounding back into the universe again.  These friendships were never as in-depth as we might have wanted.  We were just too different.  But my life is still richer from having known you.

The women I have spent my time with, and their husbands and children, go into a separate category.  I will not say goodbye just yet to Nastia, Tanya, Melanie, Olga, Oyuna, Natasha.  Or to Aliaksey, Dima, James, Micha, Tamir, Zhan.  Men who are amazingly strong and amazingly gentle; fallible and imperfect; in the end, men who care deeply about their families and take care of them at all cost.

My mind is reeling from the conversations tonight.  It was an exquisite party venue.  I want to hold on to the threads of the evening, to capture them somehow, to not let them spin out of the world into empty forgetfulness.

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