I will never be accused of neglecting life's small moments. I'm reading a brilliant and charming and eccentric and loving and achingly sweet, yearning book by Orhan Pamuk called The Innocence of Objects. I have to put it down from time to time just to catch my breath. Longing to fly to Istanbul just to see the museum that is the subject of this book, which I hope does indeed exist but reality can be a fleeting concept for a novelist. "Our museum has been built on the contradictory desires to tell the stories of objects and to demonstrate their timeless innocence."
As someone who has built a great deal of her life on the same desire, I'm lingering at every exhibit. Pamuk is a chronicler of heartbreak--and funny, too. Do enough people appreciate that the broken-hearted are the real humorists of kindhuman? Throughout the museum tour, Pamuk keeps up a running dialogue with the protagonist of his novel The Museum of Innocence--indeed, they have collaborated on the museum: "During one of our late night raki drinking sessions, I found out that he sometimes associated kissing with visions of a mother seagull putting food into her impatient chicks' open beaks."
And so I've had the innocence of tea on my mind. Talking with my friend Kate about how we start the day, I learned that she dives right into email and news in the morning. I used to do that but it made me crabby and sad with bad news. So I developed a tea meditation.
Focus on the assembling, the making, the drinking of the first cup in a warm fuzzy half awake mind. This makes me happy, and I settle into the day with more grace. Even the crystals of sugar look magical, and the bear filled with buckwheat honey looks pleased with this new routine. And how all these years have I missed the limp, depleted, crumpled beauty of a handmade tea bag seeping milky tears?