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  • No plans for this Sunday today. But my brains always roll and when there are no plans I make my own. I will swim, bake bread, do my workout on the bike, some posters for coming up events in our gallery and cinema club.....but then I pass my two big nearly finished collages in the studio. Actually I had been sure they were finished, but now I find some passport photographs of mine that fit in there, a plastic - monster - toy from my grandchildren, which fits nicely on a blue woven bag.... and I spend time with that. This feels good: connecting objects that normally you would not combine and they do connect and make a pleasant whole. That is pure pleasure in the heart.

    You have seen my kettle here, which I covered with ornaments and lace and buttons. I am working on another one, a teapot I never used....

    When my fingers are all covered in glue I check my e - mail and a friend writes me about her chronic illness. That inspires me to open a Face Book - Page for anyone, who wants to join our GRUPO VISIÓN, anyone with a physical or emotional handicap, who feels alone and needs support. I do that instead of workout on my stationary bike and swim.

    One thing leads to the next carving a path through the day - step by step - and my plans change or dissolve or are postponed. The day is a collage just like the ones I glue together on huge wooden boards. I like that. Every moment becomes a surprise...

    But the day is gorgeous, a blackbird sings, huge Dragon - Butterflies visit the Agapanthas and spring reminds me of Germany and my youth and so I force myself to leave the computer and sit in the garden. I discover new flowers starting to bloom. Crows bathe in the fountain. I return planning the sweet bread I want to bake. I used to bake all the time, but lately this has dwindled down.

    I am sitting there in the garden, 62 years old, and my hands are full of drying glue and I think of how the collages might still continue growing and the bread I want to bake and to whom I still need to write a message and suddenly I feel the little girl I once was: always baking, gluing, sewing, writing - writing letters to pen pals all over the world and a family newspaper, which I showed my Dad in the evenings.....not much seems to have changed except my body!

    Also already as a girl I used to fall a lot. They bathed us every Saturday (no hot running water and showers back then!) and I always cried and screamed, because each Saturday in the tub it hurt so badly when my mother tried to tear the bandages from my bloody knees.

    Decades later, when I had my own children I wondered: they did not have their knees torn all the time. Yes, at times they fell and had wounded knees, but those were exceptions. They did not fall as I had done when I had been their age.

    Well, I am clumsy, I thought, that is what my family always told me: Kiki is clumsy, Kiki destroys with her buttocks what she has built with her hands (And I did build and create a lot with my hands).

    Now, of course, I know why I fell so much. Why I ran against things like lampposts and street signs: Bad retinas.

    Since I know about my condition and watch it worsen I have fallen less, because I try to do whatever I do slower and with more concentration. I still fall, though.

    A friend of mine in Germany had Polio as a kid, he walks on crutches. He is a smart man, a lawyer, a deep - thinking man, he is my age and just told me that he falls and falling is the worst.

    Whenever I fall what I feel first and overpowering is SHAME. Kiki, you CLUMSY!

    Then I start talking to myself: No, I am not clumsy, I am nearly blind, and I am doing great considered the state of my retinas.....

    Then I get up, look around. If no one has watched me fall relaxation comes fast, if people saw me, I am shaken for a longer time.

    Falling is a bit like dying, I guess.

    You fall and lose your composure, your carefully constructed identity and self - image, your mask: it all goes there and dissolves into thin air in a split second!

    If you are badly hurt, you need others to rescue you.

    When you fall you become extremely fragile.

    When you fall the worst happens, that what you have always feared most: you lose control......


    Art by Kiki ("How I Would Love Someone To Catch Me Whenever I Fall!")
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