On the morning of September 12, 1999, I sat poolside at my employers’ summer home. Across the street was the Mediterranean, an hour away was Cannes, and asleep in bed was the 3-year-old boy I cared for. I spent many mornings next to that pool. It was one of the few places I could be alone.
When – for no particular reason – I cracked my old diary last night, I found this entry from that morning:
But there’s me again, thinking ahead of the now. But what is there in this now? The sun’s come up over the tall pine in the neighboring yard, it’s glinting in my eyes off the chair on the terrace. I can hear voices mingling with traffic. Probably the Milanese. No one else is awake still. Plastic Simba and his dolphin friend are floating aimlessly around the pool.
Between obsessing about thorns lodged in my paws and dreaming of intoxicating future adventures, there are little mundane records like this contained in my diaries. Observations I thought I’d never care about again. Thoughts turned into photographs of sound, smell, the prickle of time on my skin, and the filter of that-person-I-was.
I’d forgotten the tall pine. I’d forgotten it all, but for a moment I was actually there, sitting next to myself in the rising sun.
For some reason, I really needed to go back there last night. To remember where I’d come from? To remind myself even painful things will be memories I’ll cling to one day? To forgive myself for being 18 once and know I’ll eventually forgive myself for being 34?
When I built this website I asked a friend about blogging. What’s the point? I asked. Everybody has a blog but nobody reads them. Ever wise in all the ways I want to be he just shrugged and replied, No, I know. But if you’ve written it down, it’ll be there when you need it to be.
That’s making a little more sense to me this morning.