Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Birthdays Sure Add Up!

A portrait of me in yellow straw hat, reading, by Roz Farbush,
some 20 years ago in San Miguel (right), and self-photos of me today,

playfully edited  with colors, angles and moods.      
Birthdays are special, but they sure add up.  Another March 13 rolls around and I'm another year older. I'm still going forward, just at a slower pace maybe. Not that time is standing still.  Au contraire.  Time is moving faster, much faster than ever.  I’m slowing down; time is speeding up.  Does this have something to do with E=MC squared, Einstein’s theory of  relativity, of energy, time and the speed of light?   There's certainly some law at work here, an inevitability.  "Oh, that's just glimpses of mortality," my friend reminds me, bringing me down to earth, which Pisces need from time to time..

I look at a portrait of me painted in the 1990s by artist Roz Farbush,  youthful, serious, happy, in my colorful element. It was my first time in the sunny Mexican mountain town of San Miguel de Allende, where I met Roz, and I was enthralled. She was painting on a street corner.  She'd set up a lawn chair, her paints, a canvas. She painted every day. I  walked past  that corner almost every day.  I loved watching the progress of her paintings.

“Buenos dias. Como esta? Otra hermosa dia!"

"Thank you, and good day to you!"

Ah, an American!  "I love your paintings," I said. We struck up a conversation and became friends.  She asked if she could do a portrait.  Sure! It was a delightful experience, watched by a half dozen or so friends I had made in San Miguel.  From a blank canvas to a joyful painting, like life itself.  We saluted Roz with margariitas afterwards.  I’ve lost track of Roz, who was from the Boston area, but I still have her portrait and two other paintings of San Miguel scenes, all bright, breezy, evoking Mexican culture.  I don’t know if Roz is still with us, but I know her paintings are everywhere. 

These are the moments and memories that make up a life.  They add up over the years, too.  I'm lucky.  I don't look like I did in that portrait, more lines and wrinkles, but I feel the same.  And so I play with my own self-photos now and then, which don't look too good unattended but kick up a notch or more with Picassa edit to add colors, shades of light,. shapes, and moods I feel inside.    It's not what I see but how I feel.  I am drifting along with the spirit of times past enriching the times coming.  An inexorable march of time. I look at my youthful self, and marvel at the vitality.  I look at myself now, and wonder about mortality.  We come full circle in more ways than one. Life goes on, and we go with it.


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