January 23, 2011
Forgotten pictures and being out of place in time
I took some pictures on my digital camera in the last couple weeks, of the latest New York Snowpocalypse (can it really be the “snowpocalypse” if it happens every year?) in Central Park, and of certain mysterious phenomena of my apartment. When I went to upload them to my computer, there were a dozen pictures in the batch that I’d forgotten were on the camera, from a short, whirlwind trip to Beaver Creek, Colorado back in August for my cousin’s wedding. I remembered I’d disregarded them because most of them were taken quickly, some from a moving ski lift, and my camera’s battery was having trouble deciding whether or not it was imminently dying, so I’d assumed they couldn’t have turned out very well and written them off. But a few of them were okay.
What strikes me is the huge sense of peace that emanates from them, even though very little about the weekend, and nothing about my life at the time was peaceful in the slightest. A lot was going on personally. I had gotten a 6 AM flight to Denver and was delirious from going nearly 24 hours without sleep at one point, and cranky and strung out from altitude sickness. I was working on two shows at the time–one going perfectly swimmingly but the other descending rapidly into hell–and was in close contact all weekend with my partner stage manager concerning the latter one, and playing frantic phone tag with two other people about the schedules of possible upcoming gigs. There was apparently some family drama that I didn’t even hear about until much later.
Only far in retrospect is that bright, sparklingly vivid tranquility that was there the whole time apparent to me, as I take a last few peaceful hours to myself this morning, before I begin tomorrow my next long, hard slog through a production that I can already tell is going to take everything out of me for the next couple months. It’s like the assurance of peace only now caught up to me in time, or I caught up to it. The sense is resonant of a verse of one of my current favorite songs:
I am assured, yes, I am assured, yes, I am assured that peace will come to me.
A peace that can, yes, surpass the speed, yes, of my understanding and my need.
–Josh Ritter, “Lark”
A thought that I’m going to try to hang on to…as it’s becoming apparent that my next few weeks are going to feel more like this: