Lyn’s Garden

Posted on 15 July 2005

“I’m hot.” And not in a sexy, wenchy, here-I-am-guys-come-and-get-me kind of way. The sun is beaming down too hard these days and it’s slowing me down, making me feel like an old woman (though Gill feels the same way), and I wrote a nice long juicy blog yesterday, probably the best I’ve ever written, and it disappeared just before I pushed the publish button. You can imagine the words that fell freely from my mouth. And then I sang what appears to be my theme song these days “Can we start again, please” (from Jesus Christ Superstar.)

It’s still early. At 9 this morning, I sat in a cafe with a cafe creme (after bathing, brushing my teeth, spraying perfume, putting on my wench top – perhaps the reason for the wenchy thoughts above – and my layered skirt) feeling content, unhurried.

Last night, Gill, Rowan and I went down to Lyn’s garden for a barbeque. The folk gathered were my age or older. I feel myself a little out of place in these social gatherings, not sure why, but among the people I met was a man, who looked like a “lost soul”, his eyes seemed timid, almost afraid. He told me about his wife, a Parisian, who left him after 35 years of marriage, about his job as a computer programmer, that he was forced to leave the same year (apparently all who were over 58 were given mandatory retirement.) This was three years ago, he told me. That’s not long ago, I told him. He said that he is not allowed to work now, that his former company pays him a small wage. How can you bear it, I asked. It’s alright. I play tennis three times a week, I paint a little…

An overview of picnic

Three of my favourite women

After the picnic, I drove to Gaillac to pick up Joe, a friend’s son, who (my friend) is one of the most gentle, kindest woman I know, who rescued me more than once when my children were young, whose husband has helped both Rob and me with our business. I haven’t spoken to Joe – the same age as my eldest son – for years, so it was strange to be waiting at the train station near midnight, to greet a towering young man, to bring him home, serve him beer, and talk. He is lovely, easy going, and has just taken off with Gill and Rowan to the lake.

Earlier this morning, Rob called from the film set (11:30 p.m. Saturday night his time) and told he that three friends in the film industry had died this week. One was fifty. I remind myself that life is precious.

Two days ago was Bastille Day. Around ten in the evening, Gill, Rowan, and I set off, on foot, for the lake, to watch the fireworks and dance. We walked because I didn’t know if we had enough gas in the car to make it home safely. (I can hear Rob laugh. I have a tendency to let our car run low on fuel.) The fireworks began and finished before we arrived though we did see them in the air, and when we arrived the music was blaring and people were dancing and the girls/young women immediately joined them. I sat at a table and watched. I love these country dances where everyone who is mobile (from two to seventy) is swinging hips and arms, tapping feet, singing, squealing to the music. Women dance with women, men with men, and everyone appears joyous.

I did dance a little but it was late and I was tired and I had danced the night before.

The three of us – Rowan, Gill, and I – had driven to Campagnac for an all night market with live music – the same band that had played for the writers in the town square last year. The pizza man (called Denise, with accent on first syllable), father of Harold and Hugo, was singing wonderful French ballads. He is as charming as his sons, as roguishly handsome, and Gill and Rowan and I danced (not on tables) together until the group put away their instruments.

You might have noticed that I have only written about our evenings (except for this morning.) Since Marlene left by a late train for Zurich, and, an evening earlier, Ursula, waving her white handkerchief from the old fashioned train window… I have been doing a lot of thinking, a lot of writing in my journal, not dressing till nearly evening, puttering, sewing drapes… A writing workshop, whether it be body/soul or autobiography always takes me inward, exhausts me, and so I am not pushing myself at the moment to push boundaries, to give away my secrets, here or anywhere. Not at this moment…

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