Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Embassies, dreams & living twice

A few blogs to the right and straight on till morning, in the world of Kaya, who originated in Vilnius in Lithuania, there has been an ongoing story about her journey from there to here -- here being America. Part of this adventure was going to the American Embassy in Warsaw, Poland, to obtain a visa for entry into the U.S. So, for the fun of it and by request, here is a photograph of the American legation building in Warsaw for Kaya, taken last March or April (I am too lazy to check the precise date) by your friendly, neighborhood misanthrope (meaning me). The fence surrounding the building had a sign which forbid photographs, but, as any American citizen knows, public streets are public streets, even in Poland, and until fascism has replaced the republic, cameras are permitted in public places.

You only live .... how many times ??

Anyone who occasionally stops by here (and actually takes the time to read what has been written here) probably knows that I keep one or two televisions on by my computers from sunrise (more-or-less) until sunset (give-or-take eight or nine hours).

A few days ago, a series of James Bond films was being shown on the Science Fiction channel around here. (Do not ask me why the Science Fiction channel chose to do this; the early Bond movies were completely within the realm of plausibility and bore absolutely no resemblance to the genre.) Anyway, one motion picture in the series was, "You Only Live Twice."

The music captured me. The melody is nice, but it was the words which really caught my attention. Here are some of them:

You only live twice or so it seems
One life for yourself and one for your dreams

You drift through the years and life seems tame
Till one dream appears and love is its name

And love is a stranger who'll beckon you on
Don't think of the danger or the stranger is gone

This dream is for you, so pay the price
Make one dream come true, you only live twice

John Barry and Leslie Bricusse, two well-known songwriters in the world of motion pictures, wrote the piece. The film-version singer was Nancy Sinatra. She is the daughter of Frank. Her career was not as long or so great as was his, but, I think I like the words of this song better than those of any Frank ever sang.

And, for your edification (if you even care), here is an attempt at composing a haiku by "James Bond" (meaning, of course, by Ian Fleming, the novelist who wrote the Bond books). It is entitled, "You Only Live Twice," and it is from this poem which the title of the book, the subsequent film and the movie's theme song all originate. In an epigraph to the novel, Fleming wrote that Bond's haiku was done in the style of Seventeenth Century Japanese poet Matsuo Basho.

"You Only Live Twice"
by James Bond

You only live twice:
Once when you're born
And once when you look death in the face.


Kaya said...

Fram, thank you so much for posting the photographs of American Embassy in Warsaw. I remember this fence for the rest of my life and the huge line of people waiting to get inside this building.

I was waiting for this post and i didn't know what to expect. You again surprised me.

How many times I live and lived? Once I read that every day is a new life. I assume that I have many lives. I am joking but after I read this interesting question i came with a number 3 not 2. "You only live twice , one life for yourself and one for your dreams", that is so good. I never ever thought that we live two lives; one real and another in our dreams. Actually, it's me, I don't know about others but I assume it's true for them also. And of course, I would be glad to make even one dream to come true but I am not so patient. I want everything now...

And of course I learned again something new and interesting from you. About John Barry and Leslie Bricusse and Nancy Sinatra. I never heard of them. It's different and unknown world for me.

I like the song You Only Live Twice. Very much. Should I open another blog and steal from you photographs, poems, music and thoughts? It's a joke.

And I have to check do I have a Science Fiction Channel. Or is it a local channel?

Great post, Fram!!!!!

Fram Actual said...

I rode past this building, the American Embassy in Warsaw, a few times, Kaya, but only walked past it once and took about a dozen photographs. It was a busy time of the day, and traffic was on most of the photos.

It was a very warm day for that time of the year, and I had my jacket off and was wearing a Marine Corps t-shirt. I was sort of hoping a Marine guard would run across the street and ask why I was taking photos of the building. It would have been comical, in my eyes. I also have a bad habit of looking for trouble .... some guys, even serious ones, never grow up.

You should say, if you do not mind, when you were standing along the fence waiting for a visa. I am curious. Perhaps, your shadow was still there when I walked by the fence. I can visualize you there, and can appreciate what an important day it was in your life -- standing there, nervous, hoping, waiting.

The Science Fiction channel is a national one, but, it might depend upon which cable company you subscribe to whether or not you receive it.

Frank Sinatra, father of Nancy, is one of the most famous American singers and actors from the 1940s probably until around 1980, and still is popular among millions. He is an icon of sorts. If you learn a few things from what I write in my posts, it makes me very happy.

As for lives, I like to say that so far, I have had two primary careers; a few jobs before, between and after; been married twice; been in the Marine Corps; and each of these elements has been a life -- an incarnation -- and I might have a third career and a third wife (new incarnations) before the sun has set. And, this does not include dreams. Life is for living.

Maddalena said...

Oh, I recognize the building. I like this place very much, I did not have to stand in a line, and atmosphere there was so friendly. But I applied fot turist visa only, so I cannot predict how it would be or will be when I apply for another type of visa. Anyway, as far as I know, right now only we - Poles, and Romanians need a visa to enter the USA...

Fram Actual said...

Yes, Mag, it is no surprise that you recognize this building as you seem to know the city of Warsaw as well as you know your own backyard. I guess Warsaw is your backyard, in a manner of speaking.

It is strange, I think, that the Polish people are required to have a visa to enter the U.S. as tourists since there is so much traffic back and forth between here and there and you can find Americans of Polish descent in every corner of America. My "personal banker's" mother was born in Poland; my mother's next door neighbor's parents came here from Poland; my Warsaw dentist lived for three years in Florida.

I was talking to the owner of this townhouse I am renting just yesterday, and he said he knew of some Polish students attending the university just a mile away from here.

I am certain you will have no problems coming and going between Poland and America as you please.

Maddalena said...

Between Poland, Italy and US. Yes, I hope so. Thank you, Frammy :-)

Fram Actual said...

Yes, I think so.
Thank you, Mag.

Kaya said...

Life is for living. You are right, Fram.

But what about dreams? May our dreams be our motivations? I think so.

Even when I have extremely difficult situations I still dream. Of course, I don't mean daydreaming. I mean dreams which you pursue and believe that you can and will.... By the way, Toltec,an ancient wisdom of man and women of Southern Mexico, believes that we are not living, we are dreaming all the time.

Fram Actual said...

My dilemma (or, at least part of it) is no longer having any particular dreams (in this instance, meaning goals or objectives) I wish to pursue. I am adrift, which, I think, is fairly obvious. I guess I cannot explain this briefly, Kaya, so I will not try to do it at all at the moment.

In terms of night dreams, there have been posts in which I have asked for some of my dreams to be interpreted by others. I do not recall anyone volunteering. I also can control some of my dreams in a sense when I am in the mood for it, in terms of repetition and in lasting a defined length of time during those repetitions.

I enjoy (if that is the right word) experimenting with my own sleep and dream patterns in semi-controlled situations. Beyond that, I once had a friend who worked in a "sleep lab," and occasionally would sit up with her all night as she monitored patients with sleep disorders. It was fascinating.

There is a book, "Not Forever on Earth," about the pre-history of southern Mexico in which I recall the "life is but a dream" concept being mentioned. Unfortunately, I cannot refresh my memory because the book, along with ninety-nine percent of my other books, is in a storage unit.

Other religions, such as the Hindu, offer branches which discuss the possibility, if not actually profess, the same notion. It is not unusual to run across this idea in literature and in religious concepts.

I enjoy your thought patterns ....

Something special ....