Friday, June 06, 2008

Summer Reading II

Last week I got the word from the Vet that Mamasan was back. Really wished that they'd have just mailed the package to me like Angell did with Bashi, but, well, what can you do.

Headed out to Davis, picked up the ashes, then started off for work. I was amazed at the boutique bag they gave me - looked more like a Starbucks purchase than ashes from a crematory. Decided to take a peek and see what kind of parting gifts I got:

-one little wooden box with a brass lock and key (complete with a 'made in China' tag...have no idea what to do with this box, as someone already gave me an urn to coordinate with what I keep Bashi's ashes in. Everybody I offer the box to says "thanks, but no." Guess it kind of creeps them out.)

-one sympathy card from the owner of the company

-one certificate stating that Mamasan was in the oven all by himself

-a little notecard with a story about something called the rainbow bridge.

Now, I'm not one of those people who gets all into cat crap because I have cats. For the most part, I'm not terribly crazy about cats save for a select few (feel the same way about children). Sympathy cards for people bother me because of their general tackiness. Sympathy cards for animals even more so. Use of the term "fur baby" in reference to pets on sympathy cards really sets my teeth on edge. This all was just too absurd for me. However, two lines into that damn poem, I'm all but bawling my eyes out in the square. Wiped my nose on my sleeve, dried my eyes as best as I could, then headed off to work.

At work, I called Pablo and tried to read the poem. He started sniffling, too. Declared that it was absolute corn syrup. The Frenchie called me, so I translated and we both were crying. He declared that it was "cra-cra mais efficace."* Went on to say that I needed something slightly morbid but funny "pour changer les idees un peu"** and so suggested Graham Greene's Travels With My Aunt. Lorem Ipsum around the corner had a copy (they have everything. Love them.) so I went to pick it up.

Well, suffice it to say that it's a delightful book and it's helping me a lot to cope with all sorts of things. Have never read any Greene before, but it's making me think that I could devour all sorts of his stuff up this Summer.

What do I find so appealing? Probably a combination of things. There is a cinematographic quality about it - would have made a wonderful Ealing Studio production. It's also rather bittersweet - Greene of anyone would know how to articulate saudade, and one feels quite strongly that sense of longing, happy/sad, slight rootlessness.

Anyway, I've got maybe 40 pages to go, but I'm pretty certain on how it's going to end. It'll be lovely getting there, though.


* tacky but effective
** to give me a new perspective, ultimately to cheer me up a bit

No comments: