I came across this rather benign video yesterday that leveled me completely. There's really not that much to it. It's our first 4th of July at our home in the woods, Whiskey Jane. You see Kara briefly at the beginning as she lights a fountain firework labeled "Purple Rain" followed by her hasty retreat. Then a brief but somewhat impressive firework display, my dumbass doing a Prince impersonation, and the video ends with our home in a twilight background. Nothing much, but also everything.
It’s us in a nutshell. Entertaining each other in our own world. The moment this video ended Kara cackled with laughter and we cracked open another round of beers. Shortly thereafter we would light sparklers and she did an interpretive dance, fire stick in hand, while I serenaded her with a far more on-point, but nonetheless hack version of Neil Diamond’s “Coming to America.” We had a few more drinks, made love, went to bed, and aside from the fireworks probably did it all over again the next day. It could have been and was, any and every other day of our lives. Nothing much, but also everything.
Looking at old photos, videos, and notes from Kara is something I do pretty regularly. However, it still doesn’t go the way I want it to. I’m desperately waiting for these things to be pleasant reminders. Delightful memories that cause a warm and knowing smile to develop across my face as I look wistfully off into the distance with unfocused eyes.
But that’s not what happens. No sir. Instead, it’s like handwashing spoons with a firehose. I know what I’m trying to do and my intentions are good. But it’s remarkably intense and I get overwhelmed immediately. And without fail, I always end up with a wet face.