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Old Business, New Business, Red Business, Blue Business

I’ve run into a quite a few Zen Center people since I’ve moved back to SF. Most of them, I haven’t seen for more than a year, even though I’ve been in and out of the city for all that time.

First there was Steve and some other guy, at Medicine; then Juliette at Rainbow. Today I ran into my best buddy from Tassajara, Emma. We were at Rainbow Grocery, and she caught me as I was passing the olives.

Seeing an old friend after a long time is so new and yet so old again — you are both suprised at how different you are from before; but just as you know yourself to be yourself, so you know them to be them. The changes all fade away; you are who you were, and they are who they were (though maybe not so obvious about it). Whatever made you the kind of friends that you are — in my and Emma’s case, we are the sort of friends who don’t talk very much — comes right back up and you’re back where you were however many years ago, when you last parted. Unfinished business begs to be finished. I just wish I knew what it was that needed doing.

That’s the way I feel about everyone at Zen Center, except for Joe (I owe him money, so I know what needs doing); and it’s how I feel about so many other people: kids from college, kids from high school (I actually met someone from high school out here), people whose email is in the first few days of my gmail account. So much old business! I’ve never finished any of it. You don’t think about it and then wham! there they are — those people from long ago.

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