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Thursday, September 11, 2014

Some Snippets of Our Balkan Journey Last Summer: Immensities and Little Things

I've mentioned that Mr FS and I met up with Miss Em (and, briefly. Frugal Son) in the Balkans last summer. I feel like a Henry James heroine when I say that the experience was immense. But it was. Some of the immense emotional response comes from the region's history. As with 9/11 in the United States, everyone who was alive during the recent genocidal conflicts remembers what happened.

Part of the immense response for also comes from my encounter with a bit of my family's journey from another genocidal conflict to safety in the United States. A stay in Belgrade was a step on that journey and I was at last able to meet the surviving member of my family (a cousin's widow) and to stay in the very house that provided shelter for seven members of my family, including two who are still alive, my mother Renee and her cousin Herbert.

Some day I will write of more of this journey, including a surprisingly moving (though why it was surprising I don't know) visit to the grave of my great-grandmother, which she shares with her daughter, my grandmother's sister.

If our whole visit was as emotionally thrilling/draining as the above summary suggests, I would have been prostrate on a couch for the whole time. However, as Mr FS always says (I think this is from his beloved Proust), the trivialities are as meaningful as the big things. I haven't posted on the little things either.

But guess what? Miss Em--home for 2 months before a return trip to Serbia--has, in addition to helping me declutter, resumed her charming drawings. The last four or so are from the time of our visit.

True to the Balkan experience, half the drawings (so far) are of food. Check out her Snippets if you  have a chance.


Atlantic said...

I adore the Snippets drawings. Technical question: what does Ms Em use for drawing/painting them?

Gam Kau said...

Ms Em is SO talented, love her drawings very much!

Your journey sounds rich and engaging, hope we get to hear more about it.

Frugal Scholar said...

@Atlantic--pen and water color. I relayed your compliment--thanks.
@GK--It has been hard for me to write about it--I will keep trying.

Anonymous said...

Love Em's artwork! I like that your trip was so experiential that you can't write it up as a travelogue.

Frugal Scholar said...

@exacting--I COULD, but the personal element is difficult for me to process. I will keep working on it. I passed your compliment on--many thanks.