Road Maps

Camera, Rest In Peace. I regret the day I took you out for field work and scratched your lens on my clipboard.


New Years Day 2018

A road map to the heart. The phrase came to mind a day or two ago. I think the complete thought was: Finding a road map to the heart is difficult.

The phrase stuck, at least parts of it did. Other parts fell away. 'Finding' and 'difficult' fell away. Perhaps they will be back.

I do not make New Years resolutions. By the end of 2018, I will be a different person. I shiver with the thought. Looking out on the horizon. Startling.

Be in the now, they say. Sure. I am in the now. Then, I am in the worry or fear of the next moment. Then, I am back in the now. Sometimes, the now is just too mundane, too cluttered. Man, look upon that horizon. Or, forget about it, and the horizon will swallow you up.

The horizon, that it exists alone, is enough to stun me back into the now. Make it good. Speak from the heart. Laugh. Apologize. Take good care. Take good care of it all. The body, the memories, the heart, the bonds.

If I were to have a resolution, if I were forced, my resolution is to spend this year following, drawing, and redrawing a roadmap to my heart.

My plan was to transfer my writing to a new website by today, New Years Day and the full moon. It seems auspicious.

To reawaken, Rachel, the artist, who has taken a break and yet has felt a creative nerve this autumn. Rachel, in midst of preparing her writing and photographs for the new web page, watched her laptop screen go blank. A week prior, Rachel, the artist, dropped her camera, which is now broken.

The husband of Rachel is known as Jared, the musician. He tried to fix Rachel's lap top. Alas, he could not. Rachel took her laptop to DTown Tech (recommended, by the way). Rachel left the store to browse LPS at Siren Records (also recommended) while the owner of the computer store performed an examination of the laptop.

Rachel returned to DTown a half hour later and sunk into a chair in the waiting area. The line was long, iPhones needed batteries and screens. Desktops needed CPR. "PURPLE PANTS!" the owner shouted, and Rachel, wearing purple pants, rose.

"Purple pants, that's how you've come to be called," he said. Rachel laughed and he added, "It's fried. Done. It's the motherboard."

Rachel asked questions. Refurbish? Do you sell computers here? No to both. Then the owner asked in a loud and friendly voice, "What are you doing with your computer? You look like a creative type." 

Rachel smiled, stepped back from the counter, and looked down at myself. She performed a brief routine for him and for the crowded store. "Me? Creative? What makes you say that?" Boots, purple pants, colorful poncho and scarf.

"I'm psychic, right? I'm just intuitive like that," he said, laughing.

Rachel described what she would use the laptop for. "You know B&H Photo?" he asked. "Yeah. I don't have to go there do I?" Rachel said. She had been there many, many times for film, chemistry, photo paper over a dozen years ago.

"No, they ship. This is what you want," he said showing Rachel a laptop on B&H Photo's website. "If you find anything else you might get instead, you can run it by me. Just send me an email." Gesturing to Rachel's dead laptop, he said, "Don't throw it against the wall. It still has parts worth money in it."

And so, Rachel had plans for today, and the roadmap changed. A small, subtle change. A change based on the loss of things. Nothing shiver-worthy. Nothing she won't forget when the new laptop arrives. Nothing that changed the horizon.

And, I think of the two guys dancing around to Swedish folk music downstairs while I write. I think of my friends who have become so dear to me. I think of my father's side of the family who I spent the day with yesterday - my parents, my aunts and uncles, my cousin and her newborn baby. I think of I love them all so very much.

I think of road maps.