Thursday, March 25, 2010

A day in Tampa

Dear you

I had mostly a nice day hanging out with A in Tampa. We tramped around Ybor, the old Spanish section, which has some great old buildings. It feels a bit odd not to be able to talk to you about it, because I think you would love to hear about the streets, the sounds, the smells, the sights. As I walked around, it struck me a couple of times to wonder what you are doing. I miss knowing the little things about your life that matter: about what you do with your kids, where you go, getting your nails done, having a new hairdo, the small shit that we share to bond us more closely. Yeah, I know that's the problem. R, A's husband, has gone a bit weird because he doesn't understand how come this guy he doesn't even know can say he loves his wife and they can be good company yet they haven't met before. But that's the internet. It's made a world we never would have believed possible, right? So me and A have "met" many times and shared a lot of laughs and some tears; although I am in a lot of ways a stranger, I am also a good friend of hers, as close a friend as any she has here in Tampa, I think. But of course, I can put myself in his shoes. It would be fucking weird if L had had a friend to stay who she was somehow best mates with but I didn't even know.

And you know A has been a good friend to me. And friendships can take all kinds of forms. Did you ever see 84 Charing Cross Road? If you haven't, it's written by a woman who has a 20-year correspondence with a guy and comes to love him, yet never meets him. I feel a bit weird about making internet people real, because it seems like you risk ruining everything (and I'm due to meet some more people who are virtual friends, so I should get used to the idea!). You don't know whether you will destroy the image they have of you or improve on it. (A is though just exactly the person I knew her to be and I am very glad to have had the opportunity to have made her a "real person" and as it happens, her husband is also a lovely man and I feel privileged to have been able to be part of his life too.)

It feels odd not to be able to talk to you about how I feel about visiting America. More than odd. It feels like a big gap in my life, like you ripped something out of me. And I do understand why you felt you had to do that, but you were wrong. The day I start thinking that it is wrong to love someone is the day I give up on this life and become an automaton or just die. Nothing is better than love. I've tried a lot of what else there is, and I'm confident I'm right.

Maybe I just don't know how to calculate it. I seem to have been blessed with a mind that can run through mazes of thought, yet in some things is simple. What can I do about that? Anyway, it's not something I would ever want to change about myself. I am content to feel that love is worth more than anything else and that you disagree is not anything like an argument that convinces me.



At 2:27 p.m., Blogger Don said...

I regret my own peregrinations did not allow me to meet A. I wanted to come see Ybor too.

At 1:17 p.m., Anonymous Anonymous said...

"There is nothing worse in this life than for someone to stop giving you love. I could bear torture more easily."

The same goes for friendship.

At 1:20 p.m., Blogger Dr Zen said...

Actually, no it doesn't, but thanks for commenting. Pity you could only be negative.


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