[I am suddenly taken by the sound of the word "middle", which, when repeated, seems to rock from side to side, always returning to...the middle. Also it sounds like it's Yiddish: a small "mid"...]
I come down each morning and search the wooden floor first thing, for where a cat has misbehaved in the night. Still, Bracha, though skinny, miserable and not digesting, shows no sign of wanting to leave this world. So I pick up the paper towels and the brush and the spray before anything else, and do the rounds of the wooden floor, cleaning up. Then I serve cat-breakfast.
Today I made order in other parts of the house, cooked soup for friends, visited, then strolled the Farmer's Market. I still like it; but I liked it better when dogs were allowed: I really enjoyed the doggie parade. Their stated reason is that dogs sometimes fight, and some folks are afraid of dogs. My solution would have been to warn of---and enforce---a heavy fine for the owner of any dog who acts out, and banishment of that dog from the Market ever after. Then they would self-select.
Alas, the old hippie-Boulder is gone, and yuppy-Boulder has taken its place.
I still find myself crying at unexpected places and times, when missing-Zalman overtakes me.
I had thought that part was over; it is not.
Once in a while, as I worry obsessively about the fate of our country and our planet, I hear his voice assuring me: "Hartzeleh, s'vet sein gut; s'iz doh a Gott in der velt..."
(My dear, it will be all right; there is still a G-d in the world.)
Bits of his wisdom do float up sometimes, when I need them.
Of all the things I wish I had learned from my beloved, I find it is not the Torah or the Chassidus as much as the kindness, the Chessed that was such an intrinsic part of him, that I wish I had absorbed. Of course, there is a flip side to that: his difficulty in saying no, in holding a line firmly when necessary, getting me to do the nay-saying; what I privately thought of as his "gevurah disorder". (That only applied to outward expressions; he could be privately quite stubborn, if it did not involve direct confrontation.)
Yesterday we started the counting of the sephirot from the bottom of the tree, from rooted and grounded on the earth, climbing up towards Rosh HaShanah. What a fine way to entrain our awareness.
May we dream the dream of the Earth.