Tuesday, March 04, 2008
It’s hard to believe that we only have two days left in Cyprus. It’s never easy to leave, and just when I start to feel at home, the day of departure arrives. Whenever I visit Cyprus I find myself wondering if it is part of my life’s path to return for good. But what might be my path is not necessarily Dan’s or Tashi’s. Is it merely romantic to think I could find my muse in a villa by the sea? That the missing link in my creative struggles is in the land where I was born? Or is it just an excuse? Would the landscape of my writing change in a landscape of olive trees and blossoming almond? Would the sound of the sea affect the cadence of my work? Is it possible to find inner peace in a bitterly divided country? Or is the challenge of fusion under disparate conditions the challenge that will fuel my passion?
Alas, it will all be packed away in my little blue heart as we return to Virginia and our little blue house. But I am eager to see my Love and our friendly cats.
Nicosia is always a bittersweet city to be in. I am in awe of the hearty venetian wall that stands tall and strong and contains a remarkable old city with buildings both decrepit and transformed. There are dozens of galleries full of exciting art and countless cafes bustling with people having animated conversations. Yesterday I visited the Moufflon bookstore where the books are piled in the aisles and the workers get excited when you ask them for guidance. It is a place that smells like books, where you wipe the dust off of old tomes and find fresh perspectives.
In Nicosia there have been a few wrong turns into bad restaurants or dead end roads. There is the barbed and barreled green line where you can peer into streets that have sat frozen in time since 1974.
There is the depressing presence of McDonalds, TGI Fridays, KFC, Papa John’s. There is so much noise, dust, traffic and litter. But I just have to be reminded of the nearby Troodos Range where wild flowers are beginning to blossom and herds of goats are moving about with the jangle of copper bells.
Or I just have to walk into the municipal market, rich with bright produce, jars of syrupy sweets, hand woven baskets and fresh loaves of crusty village bread.
Or I have to walk down the narrow winding streets of the old city and look up at verdant rooftop gardens to find beauty that brings a sense of inner peace. Or I just have to walk into a lofty gallery with high ceilings and art that captures a certain light, a certain sadness, a certain bit of old world that can still be found if you seek it out. Or perhaps, I just have to walk into my uncle’s house and gaze at his thick oil paintings of a quiet world.
And if there is nothing else, there is always the azure Mediterranean sky.
Last but not least, there is the one true wish.