Now the years are rolling by me,
They are rocking evenly
Now I'm older than I once was
and younger than I'll be.
(Simon and Garfunkel)
I'm in a Melancholy Mood this afternoon. It's a fleeting sort of mood, one I'm afforded for a few moments as Alethea sleeps peacefully and Peregrine looks at books quietly for his rest time. I just put a cheesecake in the oven for my sweet Mama's birthday tomorrow, and have been listening to Simon and Garfunkel as I work. Somehow I feel a bit introspective and nostalgic hearing them play and sing songs that seem to take me back to various times and places in my life. Some of the memories are tinged with sadness, but mostly they're just memories- I saw the face and remembered the name of a Romanian girl I knew when I was 17- Claudia, with dark hair and smiling face, singing "Feeling Groovy" one evening in San Diego. I'm sure I haven't thought of her in years but there she was. I recall visits to my friend Shelley's house, during high school, and seeing the old Simon and Garfunkel records they'd grown up listening to. And for some reason, and I'm not sure why, I'm taken back to cool evenings meandering the streets of Kathmandu. It's likely because the shops would blast their bootleg "Amrikan" music in hopes of luring us in. Small children would approach, putting hand to their mouths and asking in their most pathetic voices "One Dal Bhat?", cows roamed freely, rickshaw drivers vied for our business, and we mostly ignored the constant clamor of men trying to sell us anything and everything: "Tiger Balm? Buddha? Silk? Massage? Change Money? Hashish?"
I'm tired. Allergies have worn me down, and I feel like I could sleep a week. The worst should be over within two weeks, but that's a lot of restless nights and tired days. (Parsley, Sage, Rosemary, and Thyme....) The smell of baking cheesecake is nice; sweet and mellow and homey. (In Indian newspapers there are pages and pages of marriage ads, and I always laughed when they would describe the women as "homely" instead of "homey". And the guys who worked in our guest house, if we weren't keeping busy enough, would say in a very concerned way "I think you are very boring today!" instead of "bored"!) I miss those days- there are hard things about living there, but I love the simplicity of it. Of course, being there with kids would be a completely different experience, but I'd still do it if we could. Maybe someday.
But for now, my nice Amrikan sink is full of dirty dishes and my little boy, I'm sure, has been quiet nearly as long as is possible for one with such energy as his. So, my melancholy moment is over, and I will choose to move on and live, not in the past and not in the future, but now, where I am.