Wednesday, December 13, 2017


Nine years... where have they all gone? Little did I know when I started this blog that I would find the love of my life, leave the other love of my life— Istanbul— and end up in Morocco with a baby. In the wee hours of the morning while feeding the little one, I was reflecting on how much I have loved sharing my journeys with all of you, and how little of it I have been doing since moving here. It feels like time is just slipping away— and there's never enough of it. Sketching and any kind of artwork seems out of the question, and this has plunged me into a sort of loneliness. Drawing and painting is such an integral part of my identity, that without it I am left with an emptiness.

So I managed to do three small sketches in the past month. It's hardly anything, but it's a start. I've been playing around with some pigment powders that I bought in the medina of Tangier:

Just above is Hamide, a Gnaoua musician who zipped across our path on a bike, down one of Asilah's narrow alleyways, sintir on his back. It was so quick that at first I wasn't sure what I saw— a hunched figure in a striped djellabah with what looked like a guitar— but after turning a few corners, we ran right into him. Hamide was laying out a few items on striped and tie-dyed cloths when he greeted us, which involved placing hats on our heads.

Sensing that I was eager to sketch Hamide, Pedro asked if he would pose for a portrait. With a wide grin he pulled out the sintir, a low, banjo-like instrument of stretched camel skin with three goat gut strings.

Je joue pour le bébé.

A deep, trance-like melody filled the alley, lulling Baby to sleep. Seizing the moment, I drew. At some point during the song, a young man popped out of a door with a plate of couscous for Hamide, which he shared with us.

Nous sommes une grande famille. He explained.

So here we are, nine years later. I've really got to start drawing again. Make the time, get over my new nervousness when approaching people. It goes by too quickly.


Vicky said...

It's lovely to see your sketches here again! You always show such a tenderness to your subjects.

I remember those days of a new baby, the time filling with nurturing and care. Eventually, I squeezed out a few minutes to draw his toys, and later to draw while he scribbled, and eventually we drew together--until his interests changed and he became a musician:) Now when I look back over some of those drawings from long ago, I'm reminded of those days and realize that how I had no idea of the remarkable way our lives would unfold.

I hope you will find a way to carve out a bit of time to draw. It is so good to keep hold of those things that bring us joy and when you're old like me, you will treasure the memories that those drawings evoke.

All the best to you!

szaza said...

Thank you Vicky! It's a busy time for certain, and finding moments to draw or write are so precious— though there is nothing like being a mum. I wonder who Baby will grow up to be— I hope there will be some interest in drawing, but who knows?

A musician is pretty awesome :)