Friday, July 24, 2009
Damien Hirst has painted the bike Lance will ride in the final stage of the Tour de France on Sunday. As you can see, this bike has a hugely powerful symbolic connection to our Pablo journey: it's covered in butterflies. This is the bike Lance will be riding when we watch the race do its laps around the Champs Elysees on Sunday. We'll be watching from the best place in Paris: the Livestrong balcony at the Place de la Concorde. Hirst's art bike is part of Lance Armstrong's Stages campaign, where his favorite artists paint the bikes he rides in various races and stages of races. Our friends Shepard Fairey, Mark Ryden and Kenny Scharf all painted bikes used earlier in the season. Kind of crazy how small the world is. Kind of crazy the places we find butterflies and other reminders of Pablo. We see these things because we are looking.
¶ We're almost ready to leave town. Last minute laundry and packing and, of course, the final run to Dangerbird HQ to drop stuff and grab some papers. Grady just returned home from school. Today was his final day of summer school. We're all happy that's over. At 1 p.m., we will drive to Forest Lawn to visit Pablo's grave one final time before embarking on our three week trip.
I can tell you we are ready to leave town. There's no way we are ready. There's no way this isn't going to hurt. I can assure you of one thing, and one thing only: we will remain conscious of our mission, as individuals and as a family. Our mission is just that: to remain in conscious contact with ourselves, with one another, with Pablo. We will look for Pablo out there in the world. And we will see him. Because we're looking. We will find joy. Because we're looking. We will find wonder. Because we're looking. We will encounter pain + sadness. Not because we are looking, but because we are floating down a river filled with those two emotions. They aren't bad. They just exist.
We will encounter the emptiness—le vide while in Paris, il vuoto while in Italy—of course we will. We're used to having Pablo—our physical little boy—right there with us. In the plane. On the train. Needing us. Wanting us. And wanting toys and games and food. And we are used to feeling the love and fun and excitement that emanated from our little Pablo. We still feel all of those things. But without le petit dude physically holding our hands, the excitement has turned to a longing ache—a wanting, a desire, a memory so vivid + active it hurts.
So, of course we'll feel the emptiness, within and without. Experiencing it consciously will be part of our journey.
We'll blow up the Pablove Twitter frequently during our trip. We'll post plenty of pics and updates here on the Pablog. Please hang with us. We'll take you along on this part of the journey.
at 10:35:00 AM