Monday 10 September 2012

Going away

There are feelings that are so complex they don't have a name - unless we make one. They can be described, but not easily. Now "Going away" is one of those feelings.

Have you ever been to a place, on a holiday, and enjoying the places you visit and yet you cannot stop thinking about the fact that this is probably the last time you see this place? That is why you start taking pictures, videos, you want to register everything since you know your memory won't. It is likely that you would not go back to those pictures but having them is like you "own" those memories.

* * *

Beaumaris (map) is a tiny town in the remotest corner of the north west of Wales - in the Anglesey island. Once visiting Wales (we love Wales), on our hunt for nice places to eat, we found ourselves in there. Passing sailing boats on a green road with the Irish Sea on the right and stony walls on the left, we approached a town boasting a rich history - later found out about its Castle. We had no idea what we will find there.

Memory of that night was not captured on any picture. It did not need to. It felt like a surreal experience of two invisible tourists/observers entering an almost dream-like banquet. It was almost fictional. It reminds me of the opening (and closing) scene of the Russian Ark.

We parked in the corner of the square overlooking the Irish Sea and found our way through a small entrance to the main street. Ye Olde Bull's Head Inn was easy to find: a very old traditional pub with a classy hotel on the top. We ordered drinks and sat down in very old wooden chair and benches. While walking we were careful of our head: like all old pubs ceiling is low and wooden bars are visible.

And there was a banquet: a reunion of army forces of some sort - many of them American. Now out of  all places, why Beaumaris? Had they travelled all the way from the ocean to meet at such a remote place? I had no answer. I did chat to a few officers walking around there but my inquiry did not produce much more information. I have not been able to find any reference to this reunion on internet.

After 40 minutes, we were ushered to the brasserie where food was served. Suddenly atmosphere changed. It was a modern extension to the old building and an ethereal ambient light had made the chic contemporary design even more magical. Starter, food and dessert were excellent. Probably among best foods we ever had.

On leaving, I felt like "going away". But it did not matter. I had absorbed all those beautiful yet surreal moments.
* * *

I am visiting my family in Iran now. I do go back almost every year although now most my friends and my brother and sister are abroad.

My mother-in-law is ill. Medically speaking she is terminal. But everything is possible. Isn't it?

This is a chance to spend time with her and my parents. Things are not easy. Seeing suffering and not being able to cure is not easy - although there are things we can do. My wife is doing most of them so really there is not much for me to do. I occasionally help them out and I am just there, in case. My mother-in-law is a brave woman. She has been fighting and keeps fighting. This is so important for someone battling with a fierce illness. My wife is also very brave. She is fighting her emotions trying to help medically as much as she can - she is a doctor, a real one not like me who chickened out to do what he likes to do.

My holiday is running out - and the feeling of "going away" is coming back.

* * *

We visited Beaumaris again only after two years. This time there were no banquets but the place had no less magic: it was exactly as we had seen in that evening two years ago. Ye Olde pub with its crisp beers and the food excellent like before. 

I felt really special. It felt like an honour to visit the place again. I was fortunate enough to visit a "gone away" place.

And with my mother-in-law, I think it is possible - and perhaps definite. In this world. Or in the next.

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