December 26, 2012

Every place I encounter for the first time since Lizzy died—places we were together when she was alive—has a feeling of fresh mourning or grief to it. Today it was the Captiva library.

I try so hard to live in the moment, but how can I forget the joy of finding this place away from home that gave her a feeling of familiarity and friendship? The library world is our world, something she was raised to from the beginning of life.

Captiva Library is just off the beach, behind the cemetery, adjacent to the church, three blocks from Jensens where we stayed. The library shares a building with the community Center, not unlike the Arts Alliance in Narrowsburg, frequently given over to arts exhibits and cultural events.

Today I was happy after settling in with the ghosts of former lives—missing her keen intelligence, friendly way with strangers, and instinct for the best things to be had in a library—to find a table and chair for sitting and scribbling in my note book.

Captiva Cemetery markers

Tree in cemetery adjacent to library

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How Dina Aunty relished her memories. Mummy and Daddy were the same, talking about their yesterdays and smiling in that sad-happy way while selecting each picture, each frame from the past, examining it lovingly before it vanished again in the mist. But nobody ever forgot anything, not really, though sometimes they pretended, when it suited them. Memories were permanent. Sorrowful ones remained sad even with the passing of time, yet happy ones could never be re-created—not with the same joy. Remembering bred its own peculiar sorrow. It seemed so unfair: that time should render both sadness and happiness into a source of pain.

> From A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry