November 10, 2017 (Friday)

by Yule Heibel on November 9, 2018

So, we’re all at home now. Is that a true statement? W. and I are here, in B., in our house. But is that “all” of us? And is this “home”? Can you go home (again)?

During meditation, I asked myself, “Where should your body be?” I woke up this morning not feeling quite right about being here in body. I felt an enormous weakness. Then, in answer to my meditation question, it eventually occurred to me that my body should be with my mind.

“Well, that’s interesting,” thinks I. “Where should your mind be?”

Body, mind, …spirit. What if your mind is your future self calling your body to be in the right place? Why is it so hard to listen?

I want a body in which each cell is there for a reason, and any cell that’s superfluous (beyond the redundancy any system requires) disappears. (But superfluous to what? Aye, there’s the rub…) My thinking comes from feeling like I have too many cells right now. Mrs. C., the mother of my friend Fiona back when we were both thirteen years old, once said to us, as we again agonized over our breast sizes while sitting in Fiona’s kitchen, “More than a handful is a waste.” Spoken like a true Scots woman, I suppose.

I feel like there’s far more than a handful, like I’m putting on a winter layer of fat all across my torso. Imagine “burning off” all these unnecessary cells and shining forth in some kind of essentialism? These are the dreams of anorexia, I guess.

But it’s also my mind telling me that my body is getting away from me. It is receding into some kind of past while my mind, the future, wants it to move toward an ideal, not away from one. I suppose it’s one reason one can feel dis-located.

Incidentally, how did I know, as a newbie in Victoria, that the C.s were poor? It’s not like I was rich (not at all!). Was my future mind already informing me? As it did during my tearful breakdown in uber-bourgeois Klagenfurt four years later? Was it an intimation of the sacrifices I would be required to make (no crazy bohemian life in New York City for me – rather, a pale imitation in bourgeois, pretty Munich instead) to achieve …what? This, here? And what about that detour in Victoria?

Yesterday we drove back. Took our time. Started by helping W.’s boss reload all the computer equipment into his car. Then we left, driving out via FDR Drive and then eventually following Rt.15 for the longest time. Google Maps had us avoid the Interstate until just before Hartford. It was a curious way to send us in some respects, but also, with a somewhat slower speed limit, a very pleasant “parkway” drive.

Traffic was a breeze until we got off I-90 and onto I-95 (Rt.128). Gong show from there. Is it because this area has so few public transportation options? Or there’s still so much employment and housing along the I-95 ring? Either way, I can’t help but think that a rapid bus line would make sense. Run it along the ring’s median (currently grass), with connecting buses to all the major points. Put pedestrian bridges (overpasses) across the car lanes to secondary bus stops on the sides. Something. Traffic volume is just bonkers now, and it’s 90% single-occupancy vehicles.

We came home to an extremely cold house: 50ºF tops in all the rooms. Everything felt stone cold. Hours later, after I’d turned the heat back on and the air was warming up, the bed still felt icy when when we climbed in. The cold had radiated into everything: the wood in the banister, the stuffing in the sofa cushions, into the mattress and the duvets on the bed. Now, this morning, with heat back on, it’s a kind of reverse. Shows how exposed we are to power failures. It’s not even below freezing, it was just cold. And the house was intolerable.

We went for dinner even though it wasn’t yet five o’clock. Went to S., where we only got a table because we promised to be out by seven. The place was slammed. There were already groups of women when we arrived, and during the next hour more came …and if they didn’t come into S. to eat, we could still watch them pass by on the sidewalk. Armies of women, mostly traveling in packs. By the time we left, our half of the restaurant had about thirty-six people in it, three of whom were men, a true reflection of what was going on outside, too. There were live shows at both theaters; at least one of them must have been drawing huge gangs of female fans.

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