I had a hard time sleeping last night, worrying about my son who was due to fly to Korea on business this coming weekend. I’d been sending him information on iodine tables, the prospects of radiation exposure in Seoul, the latest dire news out of Japan. Needless to say, I was relieved to learn this morning that the trip was postponed (for other reasons entirely).
It reminded me, vividly, of the day of the Chernoble melt-down. There were fears of a radioactive cloud coming over Ottawa, near our home. I was in Toronto, on business; my children were back home, in the path of this cloud. I panicked, but there was nothing I could do!
(Ironically, I noticed what I thought was a travel movie on Brazil playing at a theatre near where I was staying. I’d spent my early years in Brazil, so I thought it might be soothing. Well! As anyone who has seen the movie Brazil knows: it was anything but calming, especially under the circumstances.)
I have a special relationship with Japan, and I feel what it is going though deeply. I travelled there twice in my teens. The country enchanted me; I wanted to stay there forever. I read their novels, their poets, learned tea ceremony, the art of flower arrangement. My brother and his wife import Japanese antique furniture: they travel there often and know that country well. Our houses are graced with beautiful Japanese antique tonsus and prints.
And so what does this have to do with The Writing Life? It has to do with how Life goes on. I sent off my “last bit” to The Task Master this morning. (Yay!) I’m going to pay a little attention to all that other stuff that needs attention: income taxes (ugh), a mountain of correspondence (sigh), before dealing with the revision of Parts I, II, III. Deadline: April 1!