I don’t like to be reminded
It didn’t matter because I had no plans. This is why I am sitting in my friend’s kitchen watching a cat. I want to move to the living room. Maybe I should rather move back to my house where I just started a painting? There is a small chance I will manage until the year is over.
I am following plan number 1 and am already in the living room. I don’t see the cat anymore, I am looking at the three charcoal drawings on the wall in front of me. They were made around twenty years ago when her brother was practicing drawing to apply for the architecture studies. He is an architect now so he doesn’t bother to draw young girls anymore. They have been hanging on this wall since I came here for the first time. The girl pictured is my friend at the age of five or six - the age she was when we met.
In the first picture, she is sitting on the staircase of their house. I can see the same real staircase when I look a bit further behind. She is wearing a set of clothes that can’t belong to her. It’s a men’s sweatshirt, a woman’s high heels boots, and a summer hat. Her eyes are almost covered but the smile makes it difficult to mistake her for someone else.
The second drawing is a portrait. She is looking straight into my eyes, wearing a pretty dress. But her hairstyle is a bit messy. I can notice shadows of two people standing behind her. I always thought that it is a scene from a wedding but I remember that she had never been to any when she was that age.
In the third drawing, she is probably dancing or maybe arguing with someone.
Again, she is wearing a dress but now you can see her whole body. She is barefoot, holding a piece of cloth. It’s too blurry to say whether it’s a coat, a blanket, or maybe another dress that she is fighting to wear instead.
When I started my painting my dad entered the room. “What are you painting?” - “A room” - I replied. “You already did paint a room”
I think I am leaving today to finally start this painting. I borrowed an easel last Wednesday and I moved everything in my studio to have a better view of the arranged still life. I was looking at it, slowly getting sick and now I am in my room for the eighth day already.
My room is rectangular and medium sized. There is enough space to fit a double bed, a desk, a big closet, and two dressers. All my furniture is wooden so I had to buy small plates for cups and glasses, otherwise there would be imprints left on them. My window isn’t big and I barely open the curtain. I prefer the dim light from my small desk lamp.
This lighting arrangement reminds me of my grandma’s apartment. Therefore I’ve been thinking about her lately. Or maybe I was rather thinking about a kid that I used to be in her living room. She owned a floor lamp that was thrown away by her children a few years ago. We mourned the loss of lamp. Grandma told me that she went to check if it was still in the trash.
Every wall in my room is decorated with small blue roses. Therefore I had to be very careful what I hang on them. Above the bed, there is a small postcard with an angel standing among the flowers. I bought it in the gift shop at the local cemetery. Above the desk, there is a black-and-white portrait of a Dalmatian. I also have a riso print of a hand, made by my new friend, and a cut-out from a travel magazine depicting a group of naked boys washing each other.
I brought my plants, books, pillows, clothes, and figurines but I remain invisible. I could get tired in my previous rooms because my presence was overwhelming. Here I feel anonymous. After a week of lying in bed, I cleaned, did groceries, and bought dessert. I didn’t invite anybody but I prepared two dinner plates, two small plates, two pairs of chopsticks, and two glasses.
Letter to my new friend
On Monday afternoon when I told you that I am already going home, I went to the bookstore. The night before your birthday while we were talking about books, I made a decision to buy you one as a present. Although I wished to find something translated from Polish, I decided to fail. I found two books by Polish authors that I started reading a long time ago but never liked them. After spending half an hour checking out all the names from the section “fiction”, I was still hoping that I missed something. The book that I’ve picked is translated from Japanese. I didn’t like the piece I read, but somehow I couldn’t let it off. Maybe because those lines were about death so it seemed like a perfect birthday present. At least this is what I always feel about the days when we celebrate the end of some kind of year. I spent another ten minutes holding the book and thinking. People were coming in and out and maybe I just didn’t want to leave because everybody was talking in a language I understood. One cashier said to another “This is just an awful position” and I started to fear that they were talking about the one I was keeping in my hands. It’s a risk to buy an unknown book because what stays after, can be just another “awful position” on a bookshelf. Anyway, I took this risk. When I left the store, it was already dark. After I reached home, I found a postcard swiped under my door. I thought that it was a birthday card, but it turned out to be an unrelated gift with a statement of the possibility that I can start missing something.
I used to hate Sundays but practicing weekly trips for three months made me look forward to Sunday every week. This year I finally realized that it can be a good way to celebrate my birthday as well. It’s tomorrow and, surprisingly, I can’t wait.
I will wake up in the morning and head in the direction of the open sea. On google maps,
I found a spot where I can see the horizon without any interruptions. It’s going to take me around three hours and I need to change three times. After all, I won’t be able to put my feet into the water, because there are only rocks all around.
I am sitting in my studio. The sun is so bright that I have to keep my eyes half closed, but I am not going to close the curtains anyway. I enjoyed it too much to disturb myself with this small inconvenience. I have many things around me but it doesn’t bother me so much because what I can see from the window is water. It’s always moving.