safe from fear and alarm

I’m in Berlin, in the snow, with close friends around me – reminded of how the strangest of moments can become the strongest of memories. Yesterday those of us spending Christmas together held one crazy-assed, list-making, party-planning, spirits-negotiating lunch meeting that ended in a Lidl free for all – Lidl being the source of cheap groceries and … well… cheap everything. Dragging the cart loaded goodies through the slush on the road was somewhat of an epic adventure – and when Michelle and DJ Bentley discovered an abandoned table on the road side, they added it to our improvised Christmas list. It’s nice to have an improvised family here. Meredith from Edinburgh, Tash and Ben (DJ Bentley) from Sydney, Miriam and Tom and Felix,  and of course Rick (Deepchild) and Michelle whose hospitality is faultless.

My thoughts invariably drift to my own family… given I’m so far away for the first time in years.

The closest I have to a Christmas song is this take from 1997… I’ve been thinking about it because it’s shrouded in church services and snow… and is the only song I’ve ever written that specifically mentions my brother and sister. When we weren’t fighting, we were snowball throwing or snowfort building or snowman making, and racing through the snow yesterday with Rick – and building a family of snow people, brought those times as a kid back to mind. Everyone in my family pretty much looks back on those years in New York as talismanic – remembering again at  Christmas time, the gorgeous falling snow, the surprise of presents from strangers, apple bobbing and candy canes…

So. Here it is…

And I’m happy remembering.

The Mercy Arms – from Waiting room (1997) by eckleberg

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