Wednesday, April 21, 2021
Deep Thoughts and Other Musings
"te lo dije," by Lola Argemí.
Lola Argemí is an artist and designer I follow on Instagram. But more than that... we are new friends, and we've even Zoomed. Zoomiar. Zoomimos. Zoomiamos? I love her art, and watching her make art. She posts captivating videos on her account. And other posts she shares make me nostalgic for México, DF. It's been a long time. Seriously, muchisimo tiempo desde que estuve en El Ciudad. 1979, when Grandma Jones came with us, and we flew the red-eye. I hardly remember the landing, but we somehow got to my tios' home, and I woke up into a dream, with Grandma by my side, in Tia Thalia's jewel blue bedroom with painted flowers on the walls, and her philodendrons climbing into the room from downstairs. Frida Khalo must have lived down the calle. Mexico City has the effect of keeping its past and present entwined, old and new comingle and dine together. We could hear the clatter of cooking in the kitchen, the sounds of the neighborhood like an old phonograph playing in the next room. Without stirring, I let everything seep into my head, and never felt so faraway, then Grandmother and I looked at each other, and silently we agreed that we were home. It's a mean trick of life that we can have these poignant and lasting memories, ideas and sensory experiences so vivid, they are ingrained in our cells, and yet they cannot be touched, not fully accessed. I want to go back. I would trace the lines of the flowers, learn the names of the streets we walked along, hold my Abuela's hand more often, for longer. I would try to hold everything more often, longer. Lola reminds me of times and moments, long ago, and I am tempted to imagine there is a way back. Tio Hugo and Tia Thalia were artists, so was my Grandmother... I am just thinking of this, now. I am so glad I ordered Lola's print, that she packed it up with two more little prints, that I love, that it came from Mexico City. I even loved anticipating the package, and imagining that it would contain fragments of the dream, of a faraway place with ancient voices, and sights, that felt strange, yet like home.
Te lo dije, I told you, a phrase I know, have heard from my Mommy, from other Mamás, and abuelas, and it's a mean trick of life that whatever wisdom and insight they were trying to impart barely took root when I heard them as a child. Now, recalling the best of moments long gone, I understand, too late, that they knew, they knew and tried to impart... that the strange places, and long trips, the stories, the lessons and moments that were hard to focus on, mattered. The memories are precious now, urgent, prized. Prized, but elusive and fragmented. Oh bittersweet. Hmm. My thoughts are interlaced with overpowering emotions, nostalgia, and I wish I could succinctly, precisely put into words how it feels to remember such distinct instances, and yet be so cut off from them, too. And grappling with the idea that I could have paid closer attention (perhaps?) and remembering that adults tried to caution me, to pay attention, to appreciate, how time will pass too quickly. It's so frustrating that these lessons are nearly impossible to internalize, to accept without time for perspective, without experience, and the understanding comes too late for the years that have already slipped by. I am struggling to say it all, and it's like trying to grasp a writhing, slippery thing, so I am making a mess of it. But maybe something of this will make sense to you, too. And maybe I should, at least, apply this to here and now, so that going forward, I can have fewer regrets, greater appreciation.
My goodness, what a lot of deep thoughts and other musings, can surface when looking on art, when reflecting on all the threads that are woven in our lives, from past and present, near and far. And now that I have opened up about just a few reactions I have had, looking at Lola's painting, I want to ask her, ?En que pensabas, pintando el cuadro, "te lo dije"? Susie was clearing space, and making donations when she saw all the sewing I've been doing, that's when she messaged me, asking if I could use more hoops? Her gift is what got me thinking, again, of how much I miss exhibiting at Maker Faires, sharing what we make, and teaching crafts, and STEM skills. I would love to bring all of these hoops to an event and share embroidery, teach someone how to make French knots, and create a stitched copy of a drawing. I miss the enthusiasm and eagerness people bring to a Maker Faire, connecting with someone that has always wanted to learn how to do that___! Susie and I met at a Maker Faire, and I miss making connections like that, building new friendships, like the ones with Nedda, and Enchanted Leaves, and Stephania, and Gever Tulley. In fact, some of those friendships, began through truly random Make connections...like a family reading our Making Blog, Benevolent Order of Makers, then, coincidentaly, moving from New York, and becoming our neighbors in California, and dear friends... Hello, Ido, Leslie, Simon, Bex and Spencer! Ah, more threads and connections. It's so nice to have these good thoughts, and ties, streaming through my head.