September First: A Return to the Unexamined Life

Best sips in any cup of coffee, it seems to me, are the first two. Not that the rest is bad or anything, but that the first two are the most needed and most relished. A good cup of coffee is one in which every sip is like the first two.

* * *
We have learned, have we not, that our earliest memories are important. I was brought back to a memory of my vanished youth this morning, and what seems to linger has a lot to do with confusing the different elements that are jumbled about in the memory.

We acquire memories all our life long, but a lot of my early ones seems to involve confusion, a fruitful combination of disparate and otherwise discreet sensations, places and feelings that because of my ignorance got mixed together.

It is that ignorance that leads to confusion and subsequent minging of things one less ingorant might not mingle to the same effect that interests me now. When we are greater beings, will we from this life of ignorance glean fruitful memories the product of our present confusion?

Know what I mean?

* * *
This return is in curious stages. We are staying where we first stayed when we came down: the house of missionaries. It is an intermediate space, being neither of here nor of there. It is decidedly not of here because it has the American touch, but the American touch on paintings all of Colombian subjects, furniture made here, and the narrow, crooked spaces of Colombian design.

It is a kind of cultural air-lock. Pleasant to have the staged return.

* * *
It does seem to me, going back a few asterisks, that there is an undesirably unfruitful confusion to memory, when things are hopelessly jumbled and the elements insufficiently distinct. Like colors: if you mix too many you get neutral tones, and these can be uninteresting if you loose all the distinctions of the original hues.

Or rather, I should say, of more limited use.

* * *
Speaking of which, I got a bit of paper to paint on these next days. I have large tubes of paint left over; got, of course, my brushes and the plastic thing for paints.

What I want to get when I get back? Better brushes, more colors, varieties of paper, a good sized board, or boards, for strapping the paper to. Painting is a good way to catch up on podcasts, video, recorded stories and books–which reminds me, I’m living without good speakers still.

And you know what happens? When I look at the watercolor afterward, I remember what is was I listened to at the time, and it is oddly mingled with it. Curious thing.


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