at a cafe, middle eastern flair. burgundy-swathed drapes separate dark wood geometric space. there are images of hookas on the menus, distorted artwork and L-shaped seating areas with many purple and beige pillows. i have my eye on a balcony seat when i outgrow this corner spot. for now, i’m content with sunset out the window. blinding reflections from the BMG building across the street, reminding me i’m unemployed. i wish i didn’t live near that building… it’s a constant reminder of where i used to work in nyc.
tsafi, too, is unemployed. the company wanted someone full-time and he needed four days off per month for his classes.
we’ve been aligning in new progressive ways, coming a long way daily from control issues and tone-of-voice escalations. re-working ground rules and changing how we speak to each other. it’s mutual, and therefore beautiful. with every complete day of consistant positivity, i am deeper in love. life is so much sweeter when things flow like this. i’ll do anything for this purity, this solid feeling.
last night he came home late from his cousin’s apartment. i awoke to him pushing the window tapestry aside and the nearly-full moon came spilling in. i was in mid-dream and drifting between the moon and other places. he was next to me staring lovingly but my eyes were involuntarily closing. i was about to enter dreamtime when i heard him whisper, “i feel so lucky to have you…. i love you…’ as if i wasn’t supposed to hear it. my smile propelled me awake. my skin was liquid with the hot august nighttime and he said he liked how it looked in moonlight. clear, unobstructed view, great wonder and need. primal love smiling, summer night. today is our 8th month wedding anniversary.
we made events today of playing wife and husband. i’ve been biologically nesting for months now. so much so that cleaning to the point of injury overtakes me and cannot be stopped. tsafi rounded up a recipe for eggplant parmesian, gathering ingredients and making culinary magick. he bought a fancy cheese grater even. i helped and after much mess was revered we enjoyed lunch together in our sparkling clean apartment. fact remaining that the eggplant was not ripe yet, despite our wishing it was. it had a bitter taste. an overload of garlic powder didn’t help either. he slept and i cleaned more. many neighbors played in the pool. a girl on a floating mattress, being handed a beer from her boyfriend from the edge of the pool. a middle-aged man with his mentally-challenged teenage son; uncomprehensible speech, but happy in his world.
i took a walk around town. my primary intention of changing $2 into quarters for laundry turned into an arts & crafts experience. i walked into a local art store with wild fishes in the window and into a craft wonderland. my wedding album project resurfaced. “do you have wedding albums?” i asked. and as if it was a happy secret, one of the two women guided me to cluttered corner. “do WE have wedding albums…” and i saw a brown and pewter one that she convinced me was potential genius. she showed me a baby book that she was working on for someone. it was brilliant and exactly what i wanted to do. i nearly forgot about my laundry quarters. i got absorbed in an embossing class being taught in the back. women making messes. love it! the two women probed me about my wedding. when i told them that i got married in israel, the older one greeted me in hebrew ‘ma neeshma?’ she said and the sisters, as i came to know them as, exchanged sentimental looks. there were all sorts of adornments to make a faerie proud, purple pressed flowers, every petal delicately flattened. i made a mental note, duties of future forest excursions, and thanked them for their inspiration. AND i remembered to get my quarters. i would arrive home and my sister called. she was picking up a pizza. she put me on hold to ask the guy for $2 change in quarters and i fell off the chair laughing in psychic wonderment.
in recent months i’ve become quite the wife. i’ve been reading lots on gender differences from all vantage points. i realize we are who we are… our genders, our cultures…these are not obstacles, not problems. they are simply who we are. i, woman, american, new yorker, my father’s daughter, all for the adventure, strongly every place, belonging to no place, as free-spiritness dictates. my chemical make up has a destiny. fighting it brings disconnect and my life phase is all about the connection, to myself, to this man, to my future. he, man, israeli, surfer, practical, as gender dictates, belonging to his strong happy foundation, concrete, love unfurled but waving low to his foundation. my existance melts in with who he is, long before the walk to the chuppah, long before i embraced him as he embraced me. he knew…. he came to fit me to his form so we may move as one spirit, a strange juxtaposition without expression of spirit. me, rebellious, tooth and nail, curious, doting, sentimental, retreating, snap to the grid of independence which i was born with and cultivated, succumbing to happiness, testing, proclaiming, preserving. he has none of this waivering. he loves me, period. this is my life lesson. when love rears up, be bold enough to BE love.
in love, there are many opportunities for dishonor. the emotions of women, the arrogance of men…all biology, all as is. it is not my place to dictate purpose. i must love him as he is and what he is is an amazing beauty of a man and he is growing to his own beat, securing his footing in his foreign america. i must enjoy this time, our constant awakening. “look where we are now?” my soul reminds me, peeling back a thin, not-too-distant layer of the struggle of years in israel, of the judgement, the harsh reality there, the confusion on all levels. peels back further, my boxed-in world in NYC, when i almost let him get away. when denying myself what was best, was habit. my soul leaked in all directions then, but in the process was fulfilled in a strange way. i lived textbook impulsive, mistaking the rush for happiness. it was simply delving into cores of places and people with such intense curiousity that, i, feline, counted 8 of 9 of my emotional lives. too much curiousity without borders and pollution. amazing, all of this… i’m in los angeles.
today tsafi said ‘san diego’ and i rolled it around on my tongue. ‘san diego.’ i said back, ‘sure!’ whereever he is, home is and i have no attachment to los angeles yet, as i still feel new here. we entertain ourselves with real estate website sometimes and our eyes widen at photos of properties for sale. “must have grass, a backyard.” my reoccurring dream of cooing with a newborn under a tree will become a reality. motherhood consumes 60% of my waking thoughts. all is in preparation for it. i have a prescription for pre-natal vitamins on the kitchen counter that i haven’t taken yet. i instigate sexual unsafety, ignoring reason. tsafi must first get passed his CPA test, as we talked about. he must get his licensure as a CPA in California first. the road is clear for it. he has not a care in the world but this test. i encourage him to stay home for these few months and study. the business english is killing him. the concepts are easy, he says. it’s the terminology that frustrates. he is not receptive to my idea of hiring a tutor. so i sneakily inquire to his school how to help him. they email me a glossary of english/hebrew accounting terms. he prints it out in book form, stapling it like it’s bound and takes it with us to our unemployment weekday beach excursion. each day we find ourselves at new shores. last week it was manhattan beach, where there were volleyball championships. hundreds of people seemed congregated there, blanketing the sidelines and the shore. each team had some gimmick. most memorable were the girls’ team with the electric blue sequin skirts. i still love electric blue…. two days ago we’d gone further south to huntington beach. we were very proud of our new beach umbrella, commenting all the time about it. we were safe under it, protected. i fell asleep on my stomach and awoke to sunburned calves.