[An unspecified December . . . Undated]
I’m in a stream-of-consciousness state of mind.
It’s all good. I gripe about this and that, about the superficiality of the holiday season and all its facilities, but it’s coming from a good place — most of it; most of me and my aspersions. I gripe for fun. For kicks. It’s all good now, all fine and cold and wintery here in the middle of the Warm Basin, as wintery as this place gets (ten degrees Celsius in the day, two degrees at night, and it still feels like a freezer because cold snaps in the Basin bite like a piranha marinating its teeth in ice cubes) and yet everyone is happy, feeling the joy and carelessness, acting festive, large, spending, treating each other to luxuries and gifts, and themselves to a little vice and overindulgence, oxymorons abound. Parties all around, which I tend to avoid, idiot that I am. Parties are the only way to meet people, and I ordinarily love meeting new people, fresh faces to sprinkle the picture with, turn the old faces savory and the routines pleasant and functional. Without refreshing the scene everything turns to mold, including our most precious traditions. The old haunts feel tired and worn out, dated, overused. The familiar places turn pale and overbearing, like hospices for the old and disabled, everyone locked in with no place to go. The free become clamped and abandoned. Everything we used to rejoice in, all those special places we went to and the amazing times we had, all the precious memories, they turn stale and unhealthy, dying a slow, ossified death, taking us with them. It happens all around us, drags us down when we’re all repetition and no innovation, all facsimile xeroxing of yesterday’s events, losing our resolution; tried and tested and cracked, broken in — not like a shoe but like a bone, cracked, on which our bodies lean, looking for support and finding none, nothing but inflammation and hurt and sudden collapse. Crippled, we wonder why this is happening . . .
Watch this space for Part 2