The Fine Art of Being* AMENDED VERSION

Loz does all his own stunts

It’s taken me a couple weeks to realize that vacation is about the fine art of the hang. Our biggest mission today is to find fish & chips at someplace Loz knows by the sea [GUEST EDITOR NOTE: “The ‘place-or-other’ we ate fish chips was called Aldeburgh – that’s pronounced ‘old-bra’.” Old bra indeed!]. Then we’ll visit a castle in Orford.

I’m having a hard time thinking about going home. My last few days at work were hellaciously stressful and it’s only now, more than two weeks later, the knot is leaving my stomach. I will fill it with more black tea and flat warm beer and hope that it will settle.

This trip has also been about clarity. Not just about my family and friends, but about what things are supposed to feel like. For example, I was very conscious when I was with Ilya, Gali and their kids — amid raucous laughter, fiercely defending our versions of history, and unconditional love — that this is what family is supposed to feel like. Gali’s friend Ayelet explained that there’s a Hebrew word for what happens when you turn 40 — tvuna. It basically means you put into play all the wisdom and experience you’ve collected over your lifetime.

The difficult side of tvuna, however, is that I now have the understanding that sometimes you have to go back to zero in order to move forward.

Vanessa McGradyThe Fine Art of Being* AMENDED VERSION

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