Ordinariness

Tonight, reading through Twitterings, I saw an intriguing little something that led me to a memoir writing site that ended with this:

In Italy they have these walled cemeteries with compartments for the remains of the dead. Every Sunday all these little old ladies go to visit the graves of their departed husbands. One day I was passing one of these cemeteries on a bus and suddenly it all seemed so simple. What was the big deal, all the agonizing and panic? All you have to do is eat, drink, be merry, get old, die and go into one of those little walled graveyards.

And it zinged around so much in my chest that I had to share it with you.  In Spain, we walked through village after village with the graveyards right there in the middle of everything, part of everything, not shunted off to the side.  If you lose your grandmother or your husband, their grave is just right around the corner and it only makes sense to take them a piece of pie, right, or take a branch of the newly blooming roses.  It makes it all seem so less tragic and dramatic, so normal.  Like breathing.  And dying.  And living.

Today, live a little–and sprinkle some wine on the ground for the dead.  Take some pie to your grandmother.

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2 thoughts on “Ordinariness

  1. Ruthie

    Simple words to live by. Complications, in general, are self inflicted. Yet, we dwell in it. I know I do. Thanks, Barbara. I’ve entered this in my journal as a reminder.

  2. Reminds me of a book I just finished about tenement culture in Scotland in the early/mid 20th century. They viewed death as such a normal part of life, laying the body out in the home until they were buried wasn’t considered creepy, though sometimes awkward when you had to do the tasks you normally do on the table elsewhere. The fear of dead bodies seems to have been created by funeral homes coming into existence.

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