Manon Lescaut Seduced by the finer things – in Stockholm

She is pathetic, Manon is. Love me, she says and then she loves fine things more than she loves herself. Or is she a woman of her time? No capital of her own, beautiful, caught between all the men who can offer her one luxury or the other? For something she has – sensuality. She has spirit too. What a voice!

The choices are impossible. To choose love or comfort? To be surrounded by beautiful things or to live in a small apartment with a student? Ack! that we cannot have both. She sings & seduces Des Grieux, again:

“Doesn’t this seem a feast
of gold and colour? It’s all for you!”

I recognize myself in Manon. What, with my love for jewellery and discreet leather products. Discreet to hide the price, of course. My wanderlust that costs a fortune and my fetish for soft whispering fabrics. To explain just how bad the fetish is: the other day, I was on the commuter train, and this gentleman stood right in front of me. He had an autumn coat that looked so exclusive, fabric-wise, I stretched my sweaty, twitching right hand and touched the coat. Lightly. To feel the fabric. He turned around and looked at me with a smile; I smiled back like a gold digger who is suddenly thrown into a gold bank. He must have thought I was reaching out to him. I wasn’t. He wasn’t there. The coat was. I am the same way with colleagues and friends. My first thought when I see their beautiful clothes is “I want to touch that! I want to touch that… I want to touch that…”

This can become an issue if I don’t see someone shrink like person.

fetal positionIf my love said I should leave everything and come away with him, for love, I would probably be found in a fetal position hiding my lovelies under my skirts. Love or no love.

Back to Manon Lescaut. I cried & laughed through ACT 2 & ACT 3/4. All of it. How great is that? That has never happened to me before. Usually it is a small tear here and a small laugh there. Sometimes I close my eyes & listen to the fantastic music. This did not happen at the #StockholmRoyalOperaHouse. My eyes were open & my emotions were in the open through it all.

I am very glad for the years that have passes since Abbé Prévost wrote this wonderful, desperate, tragic story. Grateful that I belong to the generation which can earn a living, buy my own jewellery & live with a man without having to marry him. Or, what the heck! No one is plotting to take me to the cloister just because they can’t be bothered to marry me off! Ah, well, sending me to a Catholic Girl’s High School doesn’t count…or does it?

Did you know that Abbé Prévost worked on different editions of the book for over 20 years? A work of love, like the Mona Lisa. 1st edition published in 1731, final edition; toned down and all, published in 1753. Puccini‘ s adaption of #Manon Lescaut came over 100 years later, in 1893. It is passion in music for a story of a passionate death.

 

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Tuscany 2017: The Pain of Finding The Beautiful Pincio Gardens

While in Rome, The city view from the Pincio gardens is worth lots of pain. Bear with me.

It is interesting how instinct works. Like love. Or hate. Or fear. You get these feels that you really don’t know where they are coming from and can absolutely not control. You consider ignoring the feels but the “inner compass” just won’t let you. If you try to ignore the feels, you start to get nervous, anxious, fidgety, itchy, neurotic, edgy and irritable. Best way to deal with this is to act on the feels and move on with it.

So, on the day we are to find the Pincio gardens, I wake up with lots of feels. Instinct tells me that a pimple is coming on. So I start the morning with touching my face. I touch the exact place where a huge zit is going to show up because instinct tells me there will be a zit on precisely this spot.

My partner in zit & acne control says that I get all these zits because I touch & scratch my face. It is a chicken-egg situation. I feel the zit coming, instinctively, I touch scratch, squeeze, peel violently, point my nail directly at it & push, use the pincette, apply aloe vera, apply sun cream, ooh too much sun screen, wipe with toner, apply more sun cream, the zit, it comes.

It can’t be any other way.

Does my touching my face cause the zit, or, does the zit cause an itch that I have to deal with before the zit pops up?

Anyways, whatever I do, by breakfast (09:00 am), a spot on my face hurts.

Life goes on!

The hatI place my wonderful hat on my head and it lies right on the zit. It, the pimple itches and hurts all at once.

La vita va avanti!

I have to walk through Rome because my find the best city views partner has a garden he wants to show me. Pincio. We have with us the book Top 10 Rome, & in it is a map. I turn the map upside down, decide which way we have to go and start walking.

If you look at the Google maps navigator below, it should take 40 minutes, tops.

Walk to Pincio!We walked the whole afternoon. From 12:15 to 16:30.

The whole freaking hot afternoon (28 Celsius).

To be on the fair side, it is a wonderful walk in the sun through the best parts of the city. Brushing by the Colosseum, St. Peters Cathedral, Spanish Steps, the shopping district etc. When we find ourselves near the Trevi Fountain, we decide to come back to the Fountain later. I have been saving my 3 cents all week for the Trevi visit.

Because we will always be back to Rome.

We took a break on the way, took a coffee at a small café near the Flaminio tram stop. Just one stop from Flaminio Tram stop. After the coffee, my legs, feet, back & pimple hurt so bad I wanted to take the tram back.

My we are better than that partner said it couldn’t be that far to walk. I did not believe him so we had a short irritated conversation while we walked.

Me “I want to take the tram!

Him “No”

Me “I am tired”

Him “.”

Me: “You don’t hear me!?”

Him “. a look.”

Me “Are you listening???!”

Him “.”

Me: “Oh, there is the Flaminio stop.”  Just look at the map, a little north west of the destination.”

Him “. Smiles at me. touches my hand.

Embarrassed silence. We turn left or is it right?. Up the stairs, definitely up the stairs,  and there lies the famous garden in all its glory. A wonderful view of the city and statues of the historic famous in one place.

Flaminio to Pincio

 

 

Shopping Blues Caused by the Met Gala

The ways we torture ourselves are numerous.

Like when you buy that chocolate bar and place it on the dining table.staring at you. Mocking you. Calling your name while you sleep. Whispering how good it tastes.

“I will not eat the whole of that in one go!” You tell yourself before you go bananas bonkers on the chocolate bar in the middle of the night when no one is watching..

Or when you watch the angels, feel guilty because you are a feminist jaa, I am totally projecting! and swear to stop objectifying women. Until next year because you are totally hooked.

So, I watched the Met gala and had all these awful wonderful exhilarating depressing feels.

Should I get a new pair of sandals? You know, like Rihanna’s?

Should I get a new gala dress? For that gala I am invited to in 2031 when I am rich & famous? As if that would ever happen to me who cannot save if life depended on it.

Should I or should I?

So I went shopping today. For whatever.

While I shopped, I wrote this in my phone: Shouldn’t shopping effing make me temporarily happy?

You were sad, deeply miserable, before I had a chance to hurt a fly,

You were angry, constantly pissed, before I had the ability to create anger,

You were rolling down the stairs, down the hill, bumping your poor head before my hands could push a barrow,

You were weeping, heartbreaking sobs, disturbing wails, before I broke any heart,

You were fragile, almost broken, before I put my hands out for a hug,

You were disconnected, totally broken, before my looking straight at you was a demand for attention, for action, for approval, for love,

You were sleepless, nagging insomnia, before I started nagging,

You were without friends, unloved, before I started looking for elsewhere love,

You were stressed off your wits, depressed, before I was more than fetus,

You were depressed, untreated & suicidal before I saw the first boy I liked,

How is it then possible, that I felt like I caused it all?

The blues.

The violence.

The anger.

The cold.

The heat.

The storms.

The loveless-mess.

The laughter.

The separations.

The abandonment.

The pain.

The love.

The laughter.

The tears.

The sleeping.

How is it then possible, that I felt like I caused it all?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Do Feminists Need LOVE from Men?

I had been thinking.

Pulling my hair.

Gnashing my teeth.

Scratching my back.

Picking at the pimples on my face.

Scratching my scalp bloody.

Biting my nails.

Re-counting my years.

Checking the wrinkles that may or may not be showing up.

Checking my awaited grey hairs.

Learning new things.

Getting promoted.

Investing the savings.

Thinking. Choosing. Re-choosing.

What a luxury! To have choice. All these wonderful choices.

Some mornings, I woke up sad. Some nights, I slept close to tears.

 

I can afford the rent.

I can feed myself.

I can pay my ticket and hotel room in Paris.

I can buy my own shoes.

The thought hit me.

To choose; when you have everything else and the only thing left to choose is love; you have to choose the love you cannot live without.

The silent question: “how to choose?”

Pooh answered: “You cannot go through your feminist life looking back at the things you rejected and miss & regret when you are 50, 60, 70 years old.

If you cannot say the below to the rejected, the left behind, the discarded, the not-chosen, or to yourself, and really mean it; then you cannot reject. Anything. Anyone. Ever.

  1. I do not love you. I wish you well.
  2. I love someone else. I hope someone else will love you.
  3. I am not available for you. I am prioritizing someone else.
  4. You have to celebrate one more birthday without me. And many more in the future.
  5. Someone else’s feelings and happiness mean more to me than your feelings and happiness. I hope you will be happy anyway.
  6. I will not miss you.
  7. I will not miss your voice.
  8. I will not miss your wonderful face.
  9. I will not miss your smile.
  10. I will not miss your jokes.
  11. I will not miss your body.
  12. I will not miss your body odor. In fact, I will forget it.
  13. I will not your input when I need input.
  14. I will not miss your feedback when I need feedback.
  15. I will not miss taking a walk with you in the city.
  16. I will not miss your/our friends.
  17. I will not miss your family.
  18. I will not miss watching TV with you.
  19. I will not miss spooning with you in the mornings.
  20. When I think of love, when I dream of love, when I speak of love; I will not think of you.”

If you forget me – Pablo Neruda

I am a sucker for love poems. In the beginning, it was a total surprise for me that I could get so carried away. I do get carried away, and can read & re-read my favorites. This is one of my favorites on love, and one of my favorite poets too.

Pablo Neruda’s, If you forget me has been a way for me to define love for as long as I can remember. Below, I share it with you:

I want you to know one thing.

You know how this is:
if I look at the crystal moon, at the red branch of the slow autumn at my window,
if I touch near the fire the impalpable ash or the wrinkled body of the log,
everything carries me to you, as if everything that exists, aromas, light, metals,
were little boats that sail toward those isles of yours that wait for me.

Well, now,
if little by little you stop loving me
I shall stop loving you little by little.

If suddenly
you forget me
do not look for me,
for I shall already have forgotten you.

If you think it long and mad, the wind of banners that passes through my life,
and you decide to leave me at the shore of the heart where I have roots, remember that on that day, at that hour,
I shall lift my arms and my roots will set off to seek another land.

But if each day, each hour, you feel that you are destined for me
with implacable sweetness, if each day a flower climbs up to your lips to seek me,

ah my love, ah my own,

in me all that fire is repeated, in me nothing is extinguished or forgotten, my love feeds on your love, beloved, and as long as you live it will be in your arms without leaving mine.