As Valentine’s day approaches and the shelves in my local post office still groan with ugly cards, a reflection on loves.
A fellow blogger mused on things and people she loved – so now me too.
I love –
Bananas for breakfast. Always have. Currently in these winter months in porridge slightly cooked. Brings that bit of sweetness into the sternness of a bowl of oats. As a child I seemingly refused anything but bananas and milk. Worried parents checked with the doctor who said I’d grow out of it. Months later I did. Can’t have been easy for my parents.
I love –
My parents, getting older and frailer, my mum in particular. Lucky to still have them both so treasure the time with them. Careful to leave nothing unsaid. No regrets on how a visit goes. Be there for and with them. Letting them know how much I love them. Feels like I’ll never be old enough to be an orphan.
Travelling. Soaking in the sounds, smells, sights and feel of different places. In Australia recently I’d forgotten the very different birdsong in the mornings, the smell of eucalyptus, the taste of Vegemite on Turkish bread at a cafe table on Bronte Beach, the feel of my toes in the warm sand. Lots of memories come to mind of my almost two years living in China. An overnight sleeper train, frozen eyelashes in Harbin in temperatures of minus 25, vegetarian delights at Buddhist temples, the market at Kashgar, the amazing warriors at Xian, early morning tai chi in the park in Beiijing, old people dancing in the streets of Shanghai, having my shoes fixed in the street and being made to wear fluffy slippers while it happened, fireworks all night at Chinese New Year’s Eve. I love all these memories.
I love –
My friends who stepped forward to catch me when my marriage ended. Literally crossed the world to be there for me some of them. Megan who took me in and let me be with my loss as I was able to later do for her. My friends in Edinburgh, Achmelvich, Shanghai, London, Sydney…. Scattered around the globe. My friends. Happy and sad times shared over decades and decades now. Right at the heart of me.
I love –
My brother and two sisters. Each so very different. Not always close. Sometimes fraught as we each grapple to find our way to deal with ageing parents. Each expressing our caring in our different ways. And yet always there for each other. Photos of being younger that make us all smile. Holidays and toothy grins.
Movie nights with John on the big black sofa. An arm or leg touching as we immerse ourselves in another world. Twelve years a slave. Phillomena. Gravity. Some fabulous ones of late. The ease that comes with knowing someone so well. Loving and being loved. Lucky me. I didn’t imagine I’d let myself love again. And there he is, right there beside me.
And last but not least I love –
The energy rush and fun of Zumba and the not caring how I look in last years gym gear in a class full of beautiful young women
The irresistible deliciousness of chocolate
Making a difference for and with people – those moments when you know you have helped someone be more of who they can be
London galleries – and the fact so much is still free
Mangoes in the sunshine
My technology gadgets – the beauty of apple products – a recent convert
A great coffee… And then just one more.
The tiny moments of life, the smile of a stranger, the beauty of a sky, the sound of a friend’s voice, an unexpected kindness, a shared giggle.
I love them all.