Monday, August 3, 2015

Being There and Schrodinger's Cat


On these hot summer days I try to get done what must be done in the morning and spend the afternoon indoors where fans provide a relative coolness. I work up the tomatoes, onions, peppers, and basil and put them on to simmer into a delicious sauce, then retire to a corner of the sofa. The house is quiet and dim in contrast to the brightness beyond the windows, and the hum of multiple fans mixed with the chirr of summer insects outside make closing my eyes for a few moments seem not only a nice idea but inevitable.


Leaning back and simply breathing, I am aware of the perfection of the moment, the utter peace. Something in the ambient temperature and the quality of the air, as well as the sound of fans and insects, takes me me back to my childhood. As long as I keep my eyes shut, I could be on the sofa at my grandparents' house in Tampa in the early Fifties, hiding out from a hot summer day. The attic fan there was an omnipresent hum, the insect sounds the same. 

I can visualize the dull green upholstery beneath my fingertips and know what I would see if I opened my eyes -- the bookshelves, the big wooden cabinet of the floor model radio, and beyond the windows behind me, the front yard with its young oaks and a lone palmetto palm. The brick-paved street, the lamppost,  the mailbox. 

Perhaps the knife sharpening man is parked there, his foot-powered grindstone whirling and adding to the sounds I hear. Perhaps Agnes Bean, my grandmother's friend from Michigan who lives in St. Pete now, is pulling up in her big chauffeur-driven car and she and her unpleasant little Pekinese will waddle their way up the steps and I will have to be polite. . .


As long as I keep my eyes shut, I'm here and now as well as there and then. I'm seventy-two years old; I'm ten years old.

It's like the paradox of Schrodinger's Cat  --  but no felines are in danger of harm when at last, reluctantly, I open my eyes.



10 comments:

Barbara Rogers said...

These are definitely days that bridge the times of our lives. Thanks for the beautiful one you just depicted. Have a great August, Vicki!

Ms. A said...

I can hear that attic fan and feel the warm air being sucked in the windows, along with the smell of cape jasmine.

Merisi said...

Images and dream-like text in harmonious synchronicity. I felt I was there.

Frances said...

What a beautiful summer post you have shared with us, Vicki.

On my days off, I also try to do what must be done in morning hours. Then it be very pleasant to return home for a bit of lunch, and some quiet afternoon hours, as my own little fan spins. Sometimes I do heed the call of the afternoon nap.

I found your transition to Schrodinger's cat quite on point. xo

Thérèse said...

"Perfection of the moment!"

Anvilcloud said...

Nice analogy. Yes, we can get right back there -- some better than others though according to your descriptive writing.

Jim Egerton said...

Here becomes there and now becomes then, but I can't remember where or when
"If you don't know where you are,going any road will do." L Carroll

jennyfreckles said...

Funny how sounds and smells are so evocative. We 'record' so much more than what we see.

NCmountainwoman said...

Oh the joys of daydreams and memories. Lovely post.

Gayle Pearson said...

I could see and feel it through your words. Thank you Vicki. :-)