Archive for the ‘Musings’ Category

Wise Friend,

Travelling around the world for a few years was vital. Now I know, what I mostly miss: having close friends, with whom I don’t have to censure what I say. I had a friend like this in LA. Lately, I’ve been living in a friendship hiatus.

Yes, I can call anybody around the world, but a close encounter (face-to-face) weighs a lot in gold.

A beautiful relationship would answer this void, but it seems I don’t get any help here. I’m so surprised, and I’m asking myself: how do I appear to a good, intelligent woman, what do my manners, looks, face convey? I have no answer. So I’m not concentrating on women now. One day, I caught myself praying.

Wandering Friend,

I think you brought it as close to God as you could.

Wise Friend,

It is time to let it go.
I’m now concentrating on just being relaxed, always, which I’m not, on being warm, always, which I’m not. I scare myself when my tone is too blunt and frustrated when I feel heavy because I have no other reason to be like this besides of this internal garbage I still seem to carry.

Wandering Friend,

You are a passionate person in any area, in the art you love, books you read, museums you visit, in friendships, and love.

Wise Friend,

I blame my current isolation on being a passionate person. I’ve become more and more aware that this passion I have isn’t surrounded by clean feelings, it doesn’t live in a background of serenity.

It comes surrounded by garbage, by losing sight of the other person, and the uneasiness this other person might feel, by a momentarily strong willingness to have my ideas accepted and acknowledged and, importantly, bought-in.

It’s almost as if I enjoy a subject too much and expressing it ends up hurting me, not because of the impression others have, but because it manifests itself with a self-destructive attitude.

How to continue, how to relax, detach, be conversational, charming without passion and without apathy?

In fact, how to separate the passion from the garbage that wraps it? How to bring it first wrapped in serenity, and if possible lightness and happiness around it?

I don’t have a solution, besides ensuring I have to feel the serenity for long spells, choose this state, talk detached, and not let anger touch me–only in exceptional cases, but even then I don’t want it ever.

I don’t mind sadness, but anger is my biggest enemy.

Wandering Friend,

Serenity with no passion? Who will you become?

Wise Friend,

The real me.

Wise Friend,

I can’t find the words to describe what’s going on within me.

I tried telling select details to people close to me. Yes! Only “select details”, and I wish they understand all of them.

While I talk, I hear myself, and I can’t find the words to describe accurately as if I don’t want to give it all away. Yes, I try to be reasonable and avoid being dramatic. I want to be decent, not to overwhelm them, and not to impose on them.

I want them to support me, and not to drive me nuts either.

I drown, and words might pull me out. Where are the words?

Lovely Friend,

We pain for different reasons. I won’t be ever able to know precisely your pain. How could I? Nevertheless, I break down for you. Empathy is never accurate.

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“Not To Be Reproduced” by Rene Magritte, 1937

Our hidden unhealed pains surprise us when the suffering of others moves us to tears. Maybe we cry for ourselves.

Wise Friend.

I have a highly educated friend working in garden maintenance.  He asked me to join him for two weeks. I wanted to do some physical work. I accepted.

We joke with quizzing customers about both us having masters and somehow having become blue-collar workers.

Wow Friend,

How do you cope with the physical work?

Wise Friend,

Gosh! It is hot and hard! At the end of each day, I’m tired and euphoric, intoxicated with feeling great. I love being outside, and I love hard physical work.

Wow Friend,

Shall I envy you?

Wise Friend,

Yes, please do!

We chitchat a lot. My friend mentioned that one little conversation back at home becomes the obsession for a man if he works alone and nobody distracts him. This is the risk of men doing manual work by themselves. He returns home emotionally worked up. Sensitive to extreme he demands assurance to rebuild his trust. The wife resents it.

I attended a book club today. Mainly women. I repeated to them what he told me. You should have heard them. This is what they said:

“Women are extremely good at making an elephant out of a fly inside their heads.”

“It’s a myth that women don’t obsess on small comments and gestures.”

“They speak with all their girlfriends, and they expect full support for the ‘seriousness’ of the issue. If the friend tried to shake them up, to check their priorities, the anger would be endless.”

“Back home, she lashes out emotionally.”

I was speechless. Did you know that? How clueless am I?

Wow Friend,

Somehow, yes. How is it in your home?

Wis Friend,

Sometimes, we both lash out. We take turns. Probably, it depends on who obsessed that very day. You don’t want to be a witness. Thank God, we love each other.

Wise Friend,

I’m looking back at conversations, emails, and turmoils people shared. So much pain due to broken trust.

I elevate trust about love. What’s love without trust?

Good Friend,

It’s NOTHING. No trust, no love.

Lovely Friend,

Your ache is your way to doubt yourself and still attack yourself; knowing that aches me. Right now and for a while you’ll continue to be unfair to yourself, but this is such a complicated pattern to break.

OK, OK, you still want to turn this pain on its many sides. I promise you it will go away.

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You seem to refer a lot to the physical part of you: to your looks and weight. I can only tell myself you have an unusual sweet smile. Your voice! Your voice is so pleasant one can drown in it. You are caring, intelligent, giving, with a great sense of humour. You brought so much to my life and to many others who crossed your path. Consider your children and your relationship with them.

Michael didn’t appreciate these in you, and he never had the skills to lavish himself in this generosity. You were the best thing that happened to him, and he didn’t know how to handle it, so he chipped at you and proceeded to destroy you. I know you know all that and the pain drags you down.

Each one of us, man or woman, has deep needs one wants the other to fulfil them, even without being aware. It goes both ways, though in many marriages or liaisons, one may give, while the other not.

I don’t understand why partners, who don’t give, destroy. But right now, each time you feel the pain you are hurting yourself. This is tough to unlearn.

Wise Friend,

If I hang my head in shame, what will you think?

Lovely Friend,

I was sure you’ve concocted enough shame. I didn’t imagine there is more room. It seems the container is made of live skin, and it expands.

Take a little plastic bowl and for each shame and anger drop a small pebble inside.

I will continue and risk repeating myself. The way you use the English makes it a song in itself. I always wanted to hear more and more of it. When you called the Offen(s), they both remarked the voice, and they mentioned that. Lana inherited hers from you.

Wise Friend,

This is such a beautiful letter like an arm around me offering love.

By the way, I love getting little musings notes from you. There is so much nice energy, despite your addiction to Latin and “mea culpa.”

In one note you wrote, “Despite his perfect words, Elvis was a bastard.” I like this. Why didn’t I think of this? I would have written “in spite of” instead of “despite”. What’s the difference? It’s “in spite of” and there’s no difference in meaning or use, I suspect. I find “despite” neater.

Going to bed now; I send you my best thoughts and loving fond wishes.

Lovely Friend,

Latin and “Mea culpa”?


(image “Glass Tears” by Man Ray 1932)

Wise Friend,

Years ago, I attended an evening with an author. I’ve found the notes I took. I didn’t write the author’s name.

Sensitive Friend,

So unlike you!

Wise Friend,

Yep. I looked up the quotes or expressions he used, and I found none. Why did I go? Was I interested in his books? No. So why? I tend to check things out.

His father was black, his mother Jewish. He talked with the usual American accent of a person who read and studied a lot.

When he read from his books he used a fast black accent.

I looked at him in amazement–I hardly understood him–wondering if his thoughts changed when using that accent. Were his passion and anger more intense when writing with that accent? It fascinated me. Am I permitted?

Sensitive Friend,

I do the same, and therefore you have my permission.

Wise Friend,

Later he answered questions from the interviewer and from the audience.

I enjoyed his answers: “Writing is a dream. You have to dream every day, and you keep on writing from 30 minutes to…10 hours. You have to know how to put yourself in that state of dreaming. Like meditating.”

Sensitive Friend,

I like that. He is correct the dream state allows you to flow.

Wise Friend,

He quoted a poet who said: “If a poem comes I catch it”. What a lovely expression!

He talked about the importance of dialogue in books, “All the writers write and scrutinise the world. The trick is to do this and to entertain the reader.”

Sensitive Friend,

Scrutinising is valuable to oneself and others only if one is wise.

Wise Friend,

The readers must be wise, too.

Somebody asked him, “How do you keep an edge?”

“Tell the truth once a day and your life will go in the direction you want.”

Hmmm!  Idealistic or am I getting too cynical, after 20 years doing business?

Sensitive Friend,

He is one writer whose truth many will allow and cherish.

What is more important than truth, the social skills to tell it well, choose your moments, and to decide when to throw all prudence to the winds and say it, anyway?

Wise Friend,

I went to a community dinner. I didn’t like the surroundings. I joined, hoping to interact with people from that city.

In the beginning, I chose a table and sat next to Myra, a lawyer formerly from Mexico City, a lovely lady with a great sense of humour.

Later, Pat and her two daughters joined our table. There was something so humble about her. She mentioned somebody had invited there and she didn’t know people around the room.

I told myself she must have been a single mother and probably that someone invited her for being relatively poor.

Sweet Friend,

I wonder why?

Wise Friend,

I asked Pat if she was working. “I wish I would. However, I’m on a sabbatical after fifteen years working on community committees. I wonder if this isn’t a waste of my degree.”

I replied that it was a fantastic idea, muttering something about being able to afford the break concerning putting bread on the table.

Pat said her husband had been very generous since the children were born.
“Hmmm!!!,” I thought. So Pat wasn’t poor!

Sweet Friend,

Funny, isn’t it?

Wise Friend,

Myra, the lawyer, moved her seat closer and asked Pat from where she knew her. Pat mentioned her full name and Myra seemed satisfied with the answer. I was clueless.

Three of us chatted about children, dyslexia and schools.

Pat left. I told Myra that initially, I had thought Pat was a poor single mother. Myra laughed and said that Pat was the wealthiest woman in the city (I’m not sure if in that community only or, in the city at large). Pat’s husband did not support her financially, as she was wealthy herself coming from an extremely wealthy family.

Myra knew Pat from the media, as Pat frequently had appeared in newspapers and on TV organising this or that event, donating vast amounts of money to this or that charity.

Sweet Friend,

Wow!!! How far from your initial assumptions!

Wise Friend,

Wow, indeed! My dearest son has been begging forever not to make any assumptions. Each time I think back to that evening I smile and my son comes to mind.

I reflect on my experience with these communities. As I travel, I found a way to join events of local communities. I met many comfortable, wealthy women in Sydney, Beverly Hills, Houston, NYC, and elsewhere. Many times, I heard wealthy women dress ostentatiously, wearing glittering fabrics and jewels. I never witnessed that.

I visited beautiful homes and met elegant women, but nothing glittery as such. Clothing-wise, I noticed modesty and elegance. Sometimes, though rarely, some dress in bad looking and or cheap clothing. Maybe some great jewellery though not excessive. ,

Even at evening events women rarely expose their backs, wear extremely short hems or low-cut dresses/blouses.

Now, I’m wondering about these comments about wealthy women, both from the outside and inside the communities as such.

Sweet Friend,

You are very observant about life. Reading your emails is like watching a movie.