Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Spring is a time of renewal...

...but this April one is turning into one of curtains ringing down, too. First Tomcat, and now my Quarterly Adventures with Dawn are coming to a close. She's moving on back to NY, and frankly I'm so sad that I'm in denial. She's promised to come out for the wedding, so I'm just going to focus on that, OK?

Dawn and I met in the City by the Bay last weekend for one last cultural rendezvous. We toured the vaunted Ferry Building farmers market (a gourmet bastion indeed), bruncheoned at a hip new nearby hotel (the name escapes me), then climbed California street (sweating in public is a bitch) to view The Universe Within, an exhibit, we learned upon arrival, of Chinese John Does who have been plasticized and flayed, to varying degrees. Was it worth $20 a pop? (Or in my currency, an ill-made purple polyester suit?) Well...The information, provided mostly by the possibly college-age temps, was scanty. Each exhibit was barely labeled. But still. Dawn was apparently not prepared for the subject, though she deemed it "macabre" in our preparatory emails. "What are we doing?" she asked as we viewed a plasticized human, slice by one-inch slice. Or did she say that as we circled the Doe who proffered his skin to the gawking crowd, neatly displayed on a wooden hanger? "Well, it does illustrate how fragile we are," she noted at the end of our visit as we marveled at the split spinal column, spinal cord educationally frayed into an orderly fettucine of individual nerves. To me, the hardest parts were not the somewhat feeble attempts at showing how our internal parts deal with each other, but rather when the lacy red leggings of a vascular system of an adult's lower extremities were displayed alongside those of a child. ("First, the plastic solution is injected into the system and left to dry for up to four months. Then, the body is placed into a solvent that eats away all but the treated systems.") Or noting that eyelashes and pubic hair could apparently be plasticized too--personal effects no longer quite so personal.

We left the exhibit, and exited the Masonic center into the cool gray ambience of San Francisco. Across the street, Grace Cathedral beckoned. Cattywampus, an Asian bride and groomed waited for the traffic light to change. They climbed the stone steps to ornate entrance as we did. We admired the interior stone ribbing of the cathedral as their wedding-dressed family and friends began to gather around us.

"It was all about temples today, wasn't it?" mused Dawn as we climbed the steps from the cathedral gift shop to the street. (The merchandise was too classy to tempt me to buy. My style is more Virgin of Guadalupe.) "First the temple of food, then the temple of the body, and finally the temple of the spirit."

We hugged in the Wonder Wagon as I dropped her off at her groovy City pad (I couldn't bear to come up for a more drawn-out, formal adieu, and finally spoke of the fact that we would no longer live within driving distance of each other. I'm still too sad to really face that fact.

Dawn, in front of her former office


Speaking of purple polyester, friend Marsee, whose blog is now listed at right, rechristened my purple hoochiemama pants as "lounge pants" and suddenly I love them!


More changes: Another Dawn, work colleague, is leaving our little group for greener, I hope, pastures. Thank goodness it's within the company, so our daily (nearly) 3 o'clock walk will remain unbroken. We'll be finding a new Dawn, and also adding another colleague to our small work team starting on Monday. When we interviewed the new gal, she reminded me so much of a friend that I met while living/working in New York, that I immediately hoped she'd get the job. Of course she won't be anything like the woman she resembles. I think I'm just looking for familiarity in upheaval.


Did you read Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides, as I did, and loved it, as I did? Perhaps you remember that one of the first main characters took a long hiatus, and just as you're asking yourself, whatever happened to her? she reappears? That's how I feel about one of the characters in my life, Master Bath. He played a huge role in my life at the end of December, when we were remodeling him. And then it was his absence that hurt me most: I couldn't stumble to the toilet in the middle of the night, barely conscious--I had to really awaken to pee; I had to start practicing my complicated wedding makeup at work since the remaining bathroom mirror wouldn't be clear of steam after my shower when I really needed it; when guests came to stay, we all shared on sink, one shower, one stack of towels.

Well today, M and I reacquainted ourselves with Master Bath. He has new toilet installed. Caulk brightens his shower seams. Paint hides the screwheads in his baseboard. I took an extra day off work (tomorrow) just to bask again in the wonder that is Master Bath. I hope he'll be more masterful after we spend more time with him tomorrow.


Post a Comment

<< Home