Today is Holy Saturday. I can't help but notice that Holy Saturday has four more letters in it than my favorite expletive, which is "holy s&@t", usually followed by the word "Batman". This is something I never, er, usually don't say in church and also not typically on Holy Saturday. Today, however, was remarkable for a couple of reasons having nothing whatever to do with the Great Vigil of Easter and rather more to do with the recurring theme of combining households with the love of my life and preparing to spend the rest of our time and space together.
We had the fifth of five and, hopefully, the last of our consolidation sales. Our first was held in the dark days of early January at my old house in my living room due to the nasty cold and rainy weather. We did two more in the same manner on consecutive weekends after that because it was really gratifying on any number of levels. We both enjoyed meeting a great many international students and others associated with UC Davis, who felt free to hang out and visit while browsing through books and other collectibles of five decades' gathering. Coming into the house also added an air of collegiality when we explained that we were combining two households and that the object of the game was to fit us and our stuff into one place. It was as if the folks answering the "Moving Sale" ad on Craigslist became team mates with us to work toward a common goal of dispersing stuff.
We had some fun with it, even brainstorming a fantasy story that we were selling everything we owned so we could run away to Brazil and grow soybeans! Perhaps the idea of two middle-aged people doing something as silly as getting married and intending to live happily e'fter (my new contraction for ever
after) was too unbelievable or too mundane or a bit of both. But with every passing sale as we got rid more and more of the big, obtrusive things I felt as if we were closing in on our real fantasy, that of putting our past selves, replete with past stuff, into the real past as we opened ever more willingly and fearlessly into the future possibilities of unimagined future stuff.
Some of the most successful couples I have ever met are those who live in the reality of the present, surrounded by the stuff that sits on their present coffee tables and bookshelves, happy with what was on those shelves yesterday but not burdened by them. As for the future, they seem to be able to welcome whatever stuff comes to delight them and let it occupy those same tabletops and shelves for a while, then move on.
As I watched a woman walk away with an elegant raku vase given by a former boyfriend, it felt so liberating. I felt new breath entering and new shapes shaping and blood pumping more warmly than previously. Now trying yet another new recipe (chicken, shallots, asparagus-what could go wrong? )
I think of all of our future shapings, and stuff, and bookshelfdwellers. It's a great time for Easter, and a great time for resurrection to begin.
With all of Christendom, watch. Watch and see.