Tuesday, 1 February 2011

8 Days. Day 2.

The four places you most want to go to, and four things you need in a home.

1. Sub-Saharan Africa. Ever since I was young, I'd always had flashes of myself working there with young children, working at the edge. There's always been a magnetic pull; something to do with vocation. The greatest draw is probably South Africa, the fascination beginning with my elementary school songbook which had 'We're all marching to Pretoria' in it. But the idea of crossing the equator totally freaked me out.

2. From Lahore to Jalandar. The reverse of the trip my parents made during Partition. Just as that border of violence, blood and pain was crossed when their lives of fear, pain and anger began, it needs to be crossed the other way for healing to begin. I want to see where they grew up, where I might have gone as a child had the subcontinent remained undivided. And yes, I want to see India.

3. To an alternate universe where WWI never happened. What we lost in that war was incalculable and arguably, the set up for the 20th century bloodbath that followed. I want to see what happened in the world where the boys who came up to university in 1913 had the same idyllic 3 years that their 1910 predecessors did. What happened to the map? The Bolshevik revolution? What did we create? Who led us?

Did we find our way better than we're finding it now?

4. Space. I've been in love with the stars as long as I can remember. One of the possibilities for my tombstone will be an epitaph on that of two amateur astronomers: '[I] have loved the stars too fondly to be afraid of the night.'

I want to be on the Enterprise - under Picard, not Kirk, please!


4 things I need in a home

1. Sanctuary. That means unconditional love and acceptance, with the honesty that goes with that. I grew up in a house with way too much subtext, a place I hated to live. I have worked hard to create a home that is an emotional sanctuary, where I'm free to be me. That's not something I'm ever, ever giving up.

2. Open space. I don't have that so much now, but when I CAN, I do want an open plan downstairs as much as possible, high ceilings. I think the need for physical space is a reflection of the need for psychic and emotional space, having been hemmed in by others for so long.

3. Cosiness. They seem diametrically opposed, don't they? I don't think they are - by this I mean stuffed chairs, fluffy throws, things that are comforting and comfortable. Things one revels in running one's fingers through and touching. Luxurious fabrics, plush throws one can wriggle one's toes in, sofas one can sink into, furniture one can cuddle on. I don't do minimalist furniture; I do warm - colours, furnishings, all of it.

This, I think is about the need for intimacy, and 2/3 are a balance for me.

4. LIGHT. Sounds funny from a girl who loves her long evenings and soft indoor lighting, but during the day, I want to capture as much light as possible in the house. Yes, summer evenings ARE too long, but I prefer to move and work by daylight, not artificial light, for as long as possible.

And all this with as many windows as possible overlooking the sea.

Right, off to design it then...right after I win the lottery...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Your visiting pre WWII reminds me that I'd have loved to have visited pre WWII Europe, and in particular experienced more of Jewish life as it was lived and enjoyed before any of the Nazi horrors started or were even imagined.

Most needed in a home: a certain amount of untidiness mixed with comfort; plenty of books everywhere; a large kitchen with plenty of foods and herbs (etc) and gemutlich living space; and a good few cats (friendly, of course!)