Tuesday, November 25, 2014

backing into eternity

Yesterday was supposed to be a day of jazz for me.  The second day of the Barra de Navidad Jazz and Blues Festival.  With two separate venues.

Unfortunately, my body decided it did not want to play any more.  More specifically, my back made the decision.

On Sunday, my friends Ed and Roxanne came over to complete installing fifteen of his paintings around my house.  He had the same first impression of the house that I did.  It would make a great gallery space for contemporary art.  Especially, the upper terrace.

When I lived on the beach, my lower terrace was plagued with barn swallows building nests.  The nests would not have been so bad if it had not been for the guano confettied across the patio.

I noticed a similar problem upstairs in the new house.  Swallows had been investigating my sconces for condominium space.  As a result, the walls were beginning to take on the look of a park statue.

So, I grabbed a pail filled with soapy water and trudged up the stairs with my brush and ladder.  I was about three-quarters of the way through my job, when I heard Ed and Roxanne pull up.  I bent over to pick up the pail -- and it happened.  A muscle in my lower left back decided I was done for the day.

At first, I could not bend forward or stand up.  I was stuck as if I had just asked the senior fraternity guys: "One more, please, sir."  And when I pulled myself together to get to the door, I looked like a Victor Hugo character on his way to rescue Esmeralda.

I will tell you about the art later, but I was feeling a bit recovered when I went to bed.  Whatever was cramped was still painful in the morning.  All I can say is that I thank the good folks at Bayer for Aleve. 

But I still was not feeling well enough to go jazzing.  Instead, I snagged a box of high quality Basamati rice and whipped up my famous chicken hoisin.  In exchange for jazz rifs, I sat down with the latest editions of The Economist, National Review, and the second season of Modern Family.  Who says Mexpatriate is not eclectic?
This is not the first time I have noticed new pains in aging body parts.  And that is what is.  There is no sense in trying to fool myself.  The chassis is beginning to show its wear and tear.

There is that numb spot under my right rib cage that has lingered for decades and now feels as if it much larger.  One of those signs I should mention to my doctor, but always forget when I am there.

Or my right ankle that just doesn't work the same way it did before my zipline accident four years ago.

Or my inability to remember the names of friends even though I used the name a few minutes before.

It isn't as if I can hear the reaper's whetstone on his scythe.  There are plenty of things that need a little Cotton touch in life.  But it is evident that the warranty on this vehicle has long ago expired.

That is why each jazz concert or religious procession or charity drive or dinner with friends is so special.  Or even a quiet dinner at home alone.  At some point, I will have experienced the last of each.

Maybe that is what makes each of these days so special.

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