There are many plates spinning in the air which is sort of my usual except a little more than that. The cat died, we sold the cottage, I got dual citizenship. None of these things are bad but all of these things take extra time and attention.
My parents are coming for the party to celebrate my new Czech citizenship, and one of my oldest and dearest friends is here from California, too, which is great. Also people coming from Vienna, Prague, Berlin. And of course a lot of the people I love here in Brno. I've never thrown myself a party (I've thrown plenty of parties but never in honor of my own personal awesomeness) and it feels weird. A few days ago, I tried out the idea that this is not a party to celebrate my 22 years of living here, raising a child in a language I was just learning to speak, memorizing important facts like the birthplace of Mr. Cimrman, and generally just rocking the Czech life. I mean it IS but also this makes me feel wayyyy too self conscious. So actually this is a party to thank all the people, old and new, who have made my life here the amazing thing that it is, and that makes sense and felt better. People have been incredible to me and I am so ridiculously lucky it makes my head spin, so this is a good place to mark my gratitude. And buy the first round or so.
Sometimes I get really bogged in feeling sad because there is ugliness in the world, casual ugliness like selfishness all the way to downright brutality. Last week I was crying about it, about how hard it is to live in a world where we open ourselves every damn day to indifference, to egotism, to cruelty. Sitting in your little kitchen at night smoking down another cigarette, tears streaming down my face, because how can we go on in a world with so much horror, how can we tolerate it and push past it and keep our faces and hearts open to beauty and love, and if I, so honestly blessed and lucky, can barely do it, how can anyone who truly suffers manage? How can we keep going?
The answer I remembered then is the same as it's ever been: Friendship. Good food. And poetry. Over and over again.