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Black Earth Rising – and snow

A perfect winter day – bright sun, fresh snow. Went for a walk to the Necropolis, to commune with Toronto’s dead and with my own – a few years ago, I scattered most of the ashes of my parents there, though took a bit of Dad to Paris and of Mum to London. Today, I took the rest of my uncle Edgar, most of whose ashes I scattered in Central Park just after his death, to the Necropolis and scattered him near my parents. I told them all how much I love and honour them and that we are fine but the world is insane right now. It was very beautiful there.

This couple Alexander and Jane lost four of their children in infancy and two before the age of thirty. So much to be grateful for, my friends, healthy children and grandchildren more than anything.

Last night, watched the first episode of the British drama Black Earth Rising on Netflix – starring my magnificent friend Dame Harriet Walter as a Louise Arbour-type international prosecutor, with a daughter she adopted after the genocide in Rwanda. A complex drama about war crimes and ethnic identity, beautifully acted of course. I wrote to Harriet to congratulate her; she’s in hot Australia filming a six-part series. The interesting life of a very talented woman.

Before that, I finally got to my friend Wendy’s book club, Bourbon and Books, to discuss Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders, a book I loved, in a chic downtown restaurant. A fascinating discussion – Wendy is a professor of philosophy so brought in Hegel and Kierkegaard, about whom I know almost nothing. We had delicious French fries to keep us going, some of us drinking martinis and some cappucinos. A wonderful time.

And before THAT, a minor trauma  – another fierce argument with my friend and project manager cum designer Jean-Marc. My worries about this reno bring out the worst in me; I think of myself as a nice person, so the person he blew up at, whom he accused of being petty and nasty, is someone I’d prefer not to acknowledge. My friend Chris helped me gain perspective, and I wrote JM later to apologize; the cost of this reno freaks me out, money pouring out, my line of credit swelling, plus the timeline, the constant decisions. So we battle.

But we have made up; our friendship matters more than anything, more than the money or our disagreements about how to get through this experience. We’ll get there. And let’s hope Mean and Nasty Beth never has to appear again. Onward.



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About Beth

I began keeping a journal at the age of nine. Nearly fifty years later, I started this online journal, sharing reflections, reviews, updates, and the occasional secret.

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