2/08/2018

Dear Stuart,

I wasted too much time when I got home, starting things, stopping them, opening tabs on my computer and then closing them, waiting for a page to load then getting distracted by something else and then losing track of what I was doing to begin with. I'm having trouble quieting my mind, and staring at the computer screen numbs me out in a terrible way.

No matter what I think in my brain to write to you my fingers type out something else. It really is remarkable the difference between what my fingers type and what my hand writes. It feels like two different people. I guess that's the beauty (or mask?) of editing.

Anyways, I felt pretty positive today, despite my time with Nonno beginning on a harsh note. He's been eating breakfast early and then sloppily snoozing throughout the morning, up and down but overall "resting". This is the second day now, that by 1pm when I get there, he's so weak and hungry he can barely get himself from the chair to the kitchen table without crumpling to the floor. I sat there and watched him struggle with the idea of moving, hand over his face in shame/agony/confusion/exhaustion/frustration. When we finally got there (50 minutes later), he could just barely hold the spoon up to his mouth to eat, and after a while I helped him hold the bowl to his mouth so he could just drink it. It was an awful, painful, confusing beginning. Nonno wanted to be left alone, I wanted to be attentive.

His soup and ravioli powered him up though (relatively). He could hold his head up and carry on conversation not long after lunch (Long After Lunch... good album title...). I cooked spaghetti squash and roasted eggplant and sautéed some tomato sauce from the San Marzano tomatoes I probably paid too much for at the Italian grocery. We opened up a new bottle of wine, and cheers-ed to a Salud!, because we could use health over 100 years at this point. 

Day after day I plan to achieve certain goals. I bring with me to Nonno's a book, journal, computer, my uke. I have been doing this kind of thing for years. In New York City, I carried around an obscene amount of items in a backpack; sketch pad, journal, at least one book, podcasts, letters, a sound recorder, a newspaper, climbing shoes. When the hell was I going to use all these things? And yet I couldn't part with any one of them, because they were all dear outlets to me and I was never sure when I might find the time or inspiration to use one or all of them. It's a habit that sets me up nicely for daily disappointment; a daily reminder of my human-ness lack. It also makes me grateful for my car, which can hold all the aforementioned things much easier than a backpack.

But, I can't Let any of this Go. Because it feels like Giving Up. So I have a lot of hobbies. So what.

One day Nonno and I were listening to the Native American flute music, and Nonno commented on it's constant rises and falls in melody. "You think it's over, and then a new note comes," he says. "I'm so used to music having a beginning and an end." "It's Zen," I said.

Does my inability to finish much of the things I start make me Zen? Please?

I love youuuu,

Em