by Fionn Zarubica
I had a conversation with an artist friend of mine the other evening, and he was bemoaning the fact that Belgrade just wasn’t as dynamic as he felt it used to be.
I have heard variations on this theme from many people; such as, we have lost the innocence of times past, things used to be more noble, gracious or interesting, people used to be more clever, deep or engaged and that opportunities were more plentiful.
Well, I am sorry to be the one to break the news, but people haven’t changed in millennia. We struggle with the same issues we always struggled with, we are as angelic and diabolical, as clever and unfortunately as obtuse as we ever were. The only differences being the nature of the backdrop, the technology and the astrological weather report.
As far as I am concerned, there never has been a better time.
I for one, am glad I am not ducking behind a bush to avoid a velociraptor or fleeing the Mongol Hordes; and one can only imagine what the Spanish Inquisition would have done with a lady who blogs about what I blog about. There wouldn’t be a rack long enough.
When I was growing up, a process I have not fully completed, I used to go to Santa Monica Beach and body surf with my father Mladin Zarubica. We would swim out and wait for the waves. When a wave came we would look at one another and smile with the understanding that we would see one another at shore. And so we did.
This went on for hours. Between waves we treaded water and passed the time talking or just being. It was the most beautiful and precious of times.
The waves sometimes came quickly, sometimes they did not come at all, but what we made of the space in between is what stayed with me. They were moments of love, communication and companionable contemplation, punctuated with the occasional ride home – to shore.
Manifest activity is never constant, there is always a waiting period as the next wave builds. Waves come from deep within the earth, it is not a casual or callow process.
When we are in a time that feels too still, empty or lifeless, we can wait it out and enjoy what is, knowing that the next wave is building at a deep level, or we can move on. There is always another beach around the bend.
As the sun set and Mladin and I knew it was time to go home, we did so with a bit of regret that the day was over; but we knew another day was to come.
And sure enough, it did; there we would be, swimming out into the Pacific Ocean waiting for the next wave.
It always came and we always got that ride to shore; but thankfully we always had that time in between.
The most important time of all.
Love has a chance to grow and heal us in the in between spaces.
Love is all that matters.
Mladin Zarubica (January 4, 1917 – July 25, 1995)
PT Boat Squadron Commander
World War II