November pairings


As I walked up the steps of Parliament station this morning, I felt strangely well. Normally I’m just a zombie-like character that time of the morning, in that spot in the city. The second escalator from Platform 4 of Parliament station is one of the longest and steepest in Melbourne and almost always, at the halfway mark, I’d stop climbing and just let the machine carry me up. The next 3-4 flights of steps after that normally wake me up abruptly at the end of it and often everything is a blur till I get into the gym, which is maybe 200-300 meters away.

Maybe it is the early light – it’s now 3 weeks to summer and it’s starting to light up around 6am and won’t get dark till past 8pm. Or maybe it’s the thought that it’s a home run stretch to the year – just over 6 weeks before Christmas and a bit of a break and just under 6 weeks before Kiddo finishes up in Singapore and head back to Melbourne.

As I walked towards the gym, I vaguely recalled this was little Ezra’s anniversary. He was barely one month old when he passed on, one year ago to the day. One day before his grandparents’ wedding anniversary. It was also my dad’s final 3 weeks in this world, 8 years ago now. I wondered how he felt at that time.

Good times need neither precede nor follow bad times. Often they are there at the same time. I don’t know how or why we can feel well in spite of the bad things happening. Nor why we feel lousy despite the good ones. Good and bad often occur side by side. We often respond only to either. I wonder if that is a matter of choice. Or maybe we respond to the one with greater intensity or magnitude. Or the good may be more fundamental and the bad either of remote impact or is of less significance.

November was a bad month at the end of our first year here in Melbourne. Yet in many ways that month precipitated some good outcomes. 12 months later, I left a job due to a troubled fit and my father died not long after. So it too was a bad month. I’m yet to see the good that might have travelled in parallel. But every November since I have wondered what was around the corner. So when I felt well this morning, I wondered about the pairing of good and bad. And wondered. Maybe it is the Woody Allen trait sometimes rearing its head. Maybe like I said many times to many, good people do bad things. Bad people do good things. Bad things happen to good people and good things happen to bad people. When one feels strangely well, maybe it bodes well to simply seize the moment and revel in it. QSS.

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