There are some good things.

My cooking is evolving.

I can feel myself drawing on my grandmothers’ instincts, hearing their words. They had so much less – and so many times, they had nothing. The isolation of a mountainside; the solitude of raising six children, or nine children, with no help. World War II and the Greek civil war. Arbitrary murders, starvation on a horrifying scale, life-long traumas. I am in my home, connected to the world, still healthy. This is nothing.

My sister is very far way.

Even if I got up very, very early in the morning, and tried really, really hard to get there, there is no way I could ever make it. She is on the other side of the world, but our isolation brings us closer together. It is no solitude, this mediatised world. Or perhaps, it is a deeper solitude. This is something.

My focus remains strong.

I feel useful. I am trying my best. My phone rings at all hours. And the email, and messaging. I am speaking to so many people, writing and briefing, responding, trying to find the time to see the big picture, to plan the long term. I use different language for artists, different language for colleagues, different language for politicians, advisers, the media. I wonder if it will be enough. I seek advice, I listen intently, I rethink. Somehow I am finding more and more ways of articulating value. Urgency. The questions that have long defined my work are no longer abstract. The question of what kind of world we want to live in is very real. Democracy is under threat at the time when confidence in democracy is at a nadir and engagement with politics even lower. An understanding of what art means to the future of our cultural life remains very, very poor among the people we elect to make decisions on our behalf. I am trying to stay fit. And yet my focus remains strong, and I am trying my best. That is everything.

 

 

IMAGE: From INDEX-SYSTEM.