Easter flowers


I’ve not been able to post until now… no internet connection, but this I wrote a few days ago. I want to share it because it was a moment of peace in a hectic schedule.

The universe definitely does seem to be with me since Carlos arrived. All that I have to get done, is getting done. When loose ends are tied up I will share that side of the story, but for now I want to celebrate the time we spent with my precious family, in Shropshire…

It is Easter Sunday in Shrewsbury. My mum and my sister and my niece are at the table in our little sitting room, and Carlos is teaching them how to make paper flowers. My sister is speaking Portuguese, Carlos is speaking Spanish, my mum is speaking English and I am chipping in occasionally with a few words of translation.  My mum wants to make a sculpture for the garden, and she wants to know if Carlos can make the flowers larger and with foil to cope with the rain. 

This morning we all sat together and ate a huge full English breakfast: crispy bacon, sausages from the market, mushrooms, fried eggs, tomato ketchup, toast, coffee… and an Easter egg at every place setting. We toasted Carlos. My sister thanked him for everything he had done for me. He said, ‘Thank you for wanting me to be part of your beautiful family.’ 

It snowed in Shropshire yesterday. We spent the day at Ironbridge, birthplace of the Industrial Revolution (I think) and site of the world’s first iron bridge. We wandered through the living museum where Victorian life is re-enacted daily. Carlos saw how the English used to live, and shivered through most of it. But as we left, an organ grinder played music in the street and Carlos and me danced tango in the falling snow. Carlos has only seen snow once in his life: in Buenos Aires last year in July. He might have been frozen, but he was excited as a child.  And I felt truly blessed. We came home to a traditional English Sunday roast dinner, well a sort of late Christmas dinner really: turkey, roast potatoes, veggies, stuffing, bread sauce and lashings of gravy. Carlos was hesitant with the gravy, making sure it wasn’t spicy before gingerly dotting  it over his food. Afterwards I made dad get the slide projector out and we relived 1968 to 1978… laughing at the fancy dress costumes of summer carnivals, and chilly days on the beach. I slept better last night, than I have for months: safe and secure in the heart of my family.

Before my sister arrived I walked through Shrewsbury with Carlos and showed him the historical town: Grope Lane, the black and white houses, the traditional market stalls, the river Severn with its English, Welsh and toll bridges. He just wanted me to take photos of him in front of everything. I did.

It is going to be very difficult to drag ourselves away from here tomorrow. This evening my other sister arrives with her family. There will be 11 of us in this little house tonight: 11 mouths speaking different languages;  11 hearts joined by blood and love; 11 members of my precious family assembled together at last to greet its newest member: Carlos.

I wonder if there will be room for all of us and for all of the flowers that have been made as I have been typing: they are getting bigger and increasingly flamboyant.  I am laughing to see how my creative family (all artists) have managed to inspire Carlos to transform his simple flower once made from waste Buenos Aires milonga flyers, into ‘roses’, giant silver blooms, petals with serrated edges, multi-coloured bouquets. I think the next one will be larger than Carlos. But I am also laughing because he is happy, relaxed and has given my family an Easter gift, far more special than any paper flower,  that they will treasure long after we have gone: my family will have seen me happy and loved, and that is all they ever wanted.

Of course as I sit here I am well aware that joyful times such as this are all too transient. On Tuesday I’ll be handing over my documents at the Argentine Embassy and hoping that they grant me the visa I want. In two weeks I’ll be back in Argentina, starting the next phase of my new life and my family will be far behind me. Who knows what the future holds? Someone left a comment on this blog recently warning me of near certain doom and gloom. Frankly that is of no new concern to me nor puts any surprises in my thinking. All life includes suffering. We all die in the end don’t we? What I can be sure of is that I will have enjoyed some peaceful and perfect moments on my particular journey. They will balance out the tough days, and shine bright light into the dark tunnels ahead. 

For starters, I am well aware that it is not going to be easy to say my goodbyes this time round. But on the other hand at least ‘my love’ will understand when I miss my family because he will miss them too.  And I have friends in Argentina who write and say that they miss me now. I will be returning to a life I have begun to build, and not to the empty void where I started a year ago. I am lucky beyond imagining. I have lives in two lands and somehow I am going to work out how they can comfortably coexist. I do not fear the future. I look forward to it, whatever it brings.

See pictures of my Argentine in Shropshire


5 Responses

  1. I’ve been following your blog for a while.

    It is great to see that you are so happy. Reading your last couple of entries is like having a perfect tanda, only better, because this happiness last much longer. Thank you for sharing your story and your joy with us, the readers.

  2. Un tanguero

    Thank you for reading my blog and for your comment.
    Yes it is a time of happiness for me, and it is wonderful to be collecting precious memories to take back to Argentina.
    Less than a week left in England now!
    How can the weeks pass so fast?
    I wish you happy times too.

  3. Plain and simple: I love everything you write. It is so charming to hear about Carlos and how much he is appreciated and loved by your family. Perhaps some day when you are both home and settled, Carlos can pen a guest post and tell us about his impressions of England.

    Would love to see those flowers someday. They sound lovely and a very good use of foil.

  4. Hi Tangobaby
    One day Carlos will make a flower just for you.
    It’s a promise!

  5. sally, you are truly an inspiration.

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