Thursday, May 07, 2009

in a week....

A lot can happen in a week. I went to NYC last week for 7 days, and took a train. The train takes you to land you haven't seen, slows you down, lets you think. I arrived in happiness. I had forgotten to bring my charger for my phone though, so I was "cut off" for a day until I could buy another...yay! Add it to my collection. But as soon as I was able to charge it up, I realized I had three frantic messages from my best friend back home. Her brother had unexpectedly died. He was only 37, leaving a wife and a new baby behind. I felt terrible....this is a friend I had always promised to be there for if anything like this (like it happens to us all) should happen to her. But I was helpless and really unable to arrive. Of course she understood, but it hurt me none the less. And so the week progressed.
First a long conversation with a friend about how we are all connected. Then I went to see the play "Exit the King" by Eugene Ionesco. It starred Geoffrey Rush and Susan Sarandon. Well, to me it starred Geoffrey Rush. What an incredible actor because at no time did you really think about the fact that it was Geoffrey Rush. Anyway, the play, as you are most likely unfamiliar with it (I know, there's a few...) is entirely about a mythical king, dying. It's an absurdest play (my favorite kind). I suppose I would venture to say that the general "theme" was to not worry too much about dying, because it is inevitable. Something we all know deep down, but few of us wish to concentrate on, or think about for more than a nano second. It is, indeed better, to enjoy life while you can. (At this point I would highly recommend that you go back to the top and read the quote in the header of this blog). And so the week progressed. I saw my aunt I had not seen since I was twelve. I hung out extensively with my best friend from college (it was she who had brought me there) and we talked and laughed, and ate, ate, ate.... I connected with many friends from they seem to have all moved to NYC. I listened. The world never stopped, and exhausted I got back on the train to come back home. I had long conversations with three people I had never met. It is amazing how on the train one doesn't necessarily have conversation that are the mere pleasantries of how we talk in day to day life with strangers. Suddenly the door swings open to have that serious conversation that you are always hoping to have. Suddenly you learn life stories of people that you will never see again...and that's okay. I have a feeling that most go through these exchanges without ever learning names. But I don't believe in such things. Calista was the first person I met, on the way there....there was another girl from Oklahoma, who was studying to be a doctor, but perhaps I neglected to ask her name. On the way back it was Angel, Irma, and Jean.... I wish I could fully explain these conversations I had with them, but it would be impossible. I can only say that they reaffirmed my belief that everything happens for a reason.

And eventually and finally I was back at home with my son greeting me at the station with my husband. My son cried because he was so happy I was back, and that was a great thing. So the bustle is gone, and I'm just sitting here writing this. The cool breeze is back on a sunny day. I live in the country, far away from tall buildings and millions of people. The cows are grazing on the neighboring farm. And my friend...her brother is now gone, and he was not before I left. I have known both of them since I was teenager. He died in his sleep. I hope he was dreaming of something that made him happy.


daisies said...

i am so sorry for your friend's loss ... xo

i read that play in university, sooo good!! how wonderful that you got to see it with such amazing actors!! :-)

KGMom said...

Hi Miriam--I knew you were in NYC from reading Neal's facebook.
And of course I saw the pic of you, Neal & Leoda. As I said--3 Climenhagas in NYC--dangerous.
Interesting that you hadn't seen her since you were 12. Wow!
Sounds like it was some trip for you--where was college, btw?
Nice to connect--virtually.

Climenheise said...

Hey, now I know where blog is too!

Climenheise said...

I envy the train trip. Growing up in Zimbabwe we travelled often enough by train -- to Zambia or to Cape Town. I know also the sense of connecting with people in that setting, similarly on board ship.