Monday, May 18, 2015

And All As At First

Moments of symmetry do come now and again. Not only when the Britez family's dogs were curled up in this delightful symmetrical arrangement, but also in more assorted ways.

For example, when we came by David and Brian's to repair the binding on their scriptures. Trying to keep the tape arrangement symmetrical.

Hermana Beecher mending Brian's scriptures

We also sensed symmetry (or something like it) yesterday during the Córdoba temple dedication. We were in the stake center watching a live transmission of it as it happened right there in Córdoba. We sang the Spirit of God, which was sung during the Kirtland temple dedication. Perhaps we felt something mildly symmetrical in our relationship with that moment; the space between that first burst of modern temple work and us, now, in our moment. The missionaries, we all looked at each other with this beautiful ache in us. With no temple in the mission limits, we all sort of turn sappy when people bring up the temple in general. How then could we not be overjoyed yesterday, enclosed in the chapel as it was a temporary extension of the Córdoba temple?

A final moment of symmetry that I will share with you, dear humans, is last night sitting around for a moment in the pension. The Pirané sisters were with us again (we rightfully joke that our area has become half theirs, as, due to convenience for travel, they work with us so often that the people here miss them when they don't come by). And we were all sitting there, me in my little nook against the wall, Hermana Rodriguez sitting on the raised step part of the floor that separates the "study area" from the "kitchen", and Hermanas Alduenda and Beecher on the foldout chairs. Hermana Beecher and Rodriguez found a lemon tree while they were out, and brought back many lemon leaves to boil. And we were just sitting back, breathing, drinking piping hot lemon tea, disagreeing about the lyrics to Cielito Lindo. And you know....there is nothing particularly symmetrical about that moment except that it just feels good to call it symmetrical, in the vague, conceptual way that I've been using it so far, and it bears mentioning that very little perfect symmetry can be found in nature anyway, but you can find a lot of things that are roughly symmetrical, so it's better to avoid measuring the poetic symmetry of your life with lots of decimal points.

A few people that want to say hi to you all in this email since I was able to snap photos of them: Anto Cano says hi. Remember the story with the sandwiches? That's her.

Anto Cano

And Mabel says hi, and sends her warmest and most rambunctious greetings. She leaves tomorrow for the south....their oldest daughter lives there and is on the brink of having a child. A daughter, Hugo and Mabel's first grandchild. 

(Note huge rain puddle in front of house)

Also Brian (crazy one in front with books) David (left), and their musical friend Leo all say hi. Brian's birthday is coming up this week. 

Brian, David & Leo

And so, dear citizens, before I leave you, I invite you to walk with this beautiful photo I took walking behind Hermana Beecher Saturday night. 

Ignore the fact that it initially looks like a fluke that you delete off your camera before taking a better picture. And walk with me, and imagine you are the one that hastily pressed the shutter as you and Hermana Beecher briskly sped home in the rain. See her Mary Poppins-like coat and umbrella...see the movement of the lights as they burn and flicker and roast themselves. 

Until next time,
Hermana Tolman

P.S. Look, this is the asado. The circular stonehenge-style one, anyway. There are many ways to do it. Very big cultural thing here. Everyone loves doing their asado. Typical for birthdays and holidays. Generally a wide assortment of meats, but steak more than anything else.

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