On Journeys...

Goodbye el Borne. Goodbye Barcelona.

The Catalan cats have been left to their own devices for a night and will be reunited with their owners’ tomorrow morning, meanwhile their former caretaker sits in the BCN airport, tap tap tapping away, waiting for her flight home to London.

Home to London. Whoever would have thought I’d be saying such a thing? Not me. Not really. And whoever would have thought a month ago that I would now be saying farewell to Barcelona after spending two weeks exploring its nooks and crannies? Given that the city ranked pretty low on my fairly prioritized travel agenda, not me. But that’s exactly what I absolutely-love/can’t-get-enough-of about life – that you never really know what will happen in the next breath; I may have some image of what my life will look like next month, but it may not look like that at all. Yay.

During my stay here, I rediscovered a Mary Oliver poem,
Last Night the Rain Spoke to Me, while looking for an email address amongst old mails. I have a number of Ms. Oliver’s poems committed to heart, but I’d totally forgotten this one, and it circulated in the air and my thoughts after sundown during my many inky blue evenings on Barcelona’s beach. It goes like this:

Last Night the Rain Spoke to Me

Last night
the rain
spoke to me
slowly, saying,
what joy
to come falling
out of the brisk cloud,
to be happy again
in a new way
on the earth!
That’s what it said
as it dropped,
smelling of iron,
and vanished
like a dream of the ocean
into the branches
and the grass below.
Then it was over.
The sky cleared.
I was standing
under a tree.
The tree was a tree
with happy leaves,
and I was myself,
and there were stars in the sky
that were also themselves
at the moment
at which moment
my right hand
was holding my left hand
which was holding the tree
which was filled with stars
and the soft rain –
imagine! imagine!
the long and wondrous journeys
still to be ours.

- Mary Oliver

And what of this particular journey? Certainly, there are books and chapters I could probably write on what has unfolded here – or maybe just a sentence, which would go like this:

It is not what I thought it would be beforehand, and exactly as I thought it would be during, yet all the while, there’s been the sea, together with the constant shore - distant enough to need seeking.

Buenos noches Barcelona.

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