There is a quote from Ernest Hemingway something like writing is you go to a typewriter and you bleed (actually the quote is ‘There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.’). Do I write better when I bleed? I think I do. Or, I’m most glad that out of what seemed useless, unutterable, oblique, I can write something that brings me to a place where I’ve already bled and roses have grown.
There was some discussion about New Year but as described we’d already partied towards the end of the year. For me the joy was mostly in being in uncommon situations, aside from the situations themselves. When we go to bars I receive more attention than I’m used to because I’m obviously a foreigner, but my Mexican friends says no, I must just feel differently.
On New Year’s Eve itself we went to the estate of my friend’s aunt. An unexpected tradition is church on new year’s eve, overflowing, popular church. The priest’s message, translated, was something like ‘sometimes when we get into a routine we forget our blessings, but yet, just being there is a blessing’. Similarly, a few nights before, we saw the movie Stranger than Fiction, which had the line, only a bit icky: Sometimes, when we lose ourselves in fear and despair, in routine and constancy, in hopelessness and tragedy, we can thank God for Bavarian sugar cookies. And, fortunately, when there aren’t any cookies, we can still find reassurance in a familiar hand on our skin, or a kind and loving gesture [etc]…And we must remember that all these things, the nuances, the anomalies, the subtleties, which we assume only accessorise our days, are effective for a much larger and nobler cause. They are here to save our lives.
I think of my grandma and envisage the space of her kitchen, which has just what she needs. I suppose this care comes from once having little.
We had dinner late and when it was midnight hugged everyone in turn. The aunts and parents said they were very happy to have me there, and I said I was very happy to be there. I asked about going outside to see fireworks but one of the aunts said something about people liking to shoot at new year. Nevertheless, we braved some fireworks from the porch, spectacular. Then we sat down and everyone said some words and toasted the new year. It was touching that the aunt said her son is a perfect son, although she had complained a few days ago to my friend that his life is a mess.
This evening, the first of the year, my friend and I had a family dinner. G suggested focusing on our strengths. We shared a bottle of syrah and listened to Lily Allen by candlelight, it was quite beautiful.
I can also write with the end clearly in sight, but I like this less. I’d rather learn something by the end, examine some gizzards, light in the veins, stones.
At dinner G said she thinks this is going to be a good year. I said I had thought that last year. But this year I have no idea, the quality is unknown.