Today was family day through and through. Two different ones – one cultivated, one born into, perhaps both actually a combination of those two. The morning was spent with the home family. The two other Arch B residents (as we lovingly call our house) and a temporary camper we adopted for the last week and a half who today flew back ‘home’. We went for ice-cream at the yummy Amorino in Valletta and ate it on the walls of the old opera house enjoying the sun and the little pocket of togetherness we created over the last days. It’s wonderful how people can waltz into life out of nowhere and fit there in perfect harmony with the rest. Time and history fade into the background of what is and that which is created just works. It’s a great reminder of how simple things can be if we allow them to.
One airport run and sunny goodbye later came the parental kind of family time. We celebrated double birthdays and sat down for a long Sunday lunch together, something we very rarely do. In times like this I feel both grateful and a little guilty that I get to enjoy this. I only spent a few years without it but that has really helped me not take it for granted and also to be aware that for many others this dynamic just does not exist. There’s something magical about being in the kind of safe, welcoming container that families can give us (whatever the kind of families they are). I also felt a sense of approval today which I am not really used to. One that can very easily pull me in with its sweetness if I’m not aware of the dynamics. Not that there’s anything wrong with parental / family approval, just that it can quickly become an end in itself rather than some kind of fluke and (let’s face it) amusing happening that will at some point inevitably fade away.
Post-lunch we visited Esplora, the new science museum in Kalkara. It was fun to explore (ha) but quite standard in offering and somehow a little devoid of softness and magic and depth. The evening was dedicated to birthday cake and boardgames, with my brother and I becoming hilariously competitive and strict about the rules. These simple things are for me causes of wonder. I’m both grateful for the experiences that made me aware of this as well as mindful of the fact that I’m lucky to have it at all, let alone in two places at once. Today was a sunny day.