It started out beautiful: sun, blue sky, and two sets of unexpected visitors who dropped in to sit in the sukkah. Then a lot of cooking (two soups, spanakopita, putting out cheese, GF crackers, fruit, slivovitz, etc.) for an annual visit of women-friends-in-the-sukkah---resumed after a hiatus of several years. All during the preparations and the event here at home, I was aware of the parallel funeral and this day of shiva my friend was observing for her mother. Impermanence...
(In the back of my mind, where the movie scores and the sound effects live, I hear Joni mitchell singing "Everything comes and goes...")
Now, at the end of the day, with everything cleaned up, the herbs hastily bought in just in case, the irrigation system turned off in case the prediction of snow tonight comes true, I sit and take stock: everything does indeed come and go. Cherished friends and family members are near then far then sometimes gone; and we know, each of us, that we ourselves move and change and will be gone--- I think of how wise our tradition is that even now, just as the harvest is coming in, and we are praying for the right rains, we are also reading Ecclesiastes---everything comes and goes indeed.
Mazal the cat has been coming and going back and forth meowing. I believe she may have imagined that Bracha was visiting elsewhere, and would return; and is consternated that she does not, that she seems to be truly gone. There are days when, in the back of my mind where unregulated thoughts live, I too imagine that Zalman has just been visiting other realms, is not a permanent resident; and I expect to see him coming upstairs from working in his office. I can usually rearrange my thoughts to conform to reality.
Tonight it is harder.