Thursday, 12 November 2009

Katerina Scott (March 26, 1973 – November 6, 2009)

the sweetest friends
I met Katerina in high school, in Kingston Ontario when we were 17. Katerina revealed to me that thinking deeply about things should not prevent one from doing, or even making, things. At 17 I could not fry an egg by myself. With Katerina I baked 10 kinds of different cookies in an afternoon. After that afternoon I knew that everything was possible, if you had the right kind of inspiration. For everything there is a recipe/ a book explaining how to/ something or someone capable of tickling and directing your inspiration. Needless to say, very often in all these years, the inspiration came for me from Katerina.

She initiated so many of my thoughts, passions, and behaviours. I will protect, cherish and let grow the seeds she gave me in the last 20 years. I am sure you will all do the same and you will miss her creativity and her unique lovely presence as much as I do.

Katerina has always surprised me with her points of view, ideas, and knowledge. We have written tons of letters in these 20 years, we have grown up together discussing anything to the bone. Katerina knew and gave me so many crazy, new, surprising things. Katerina knew how to make chutney, to bind books and to ask questions to tarots cards. Katerina sent me once for my birthday a hand-bag made of mushrooms – for another birthday an enormous, heavy book with blank pages.

During our summer in Prague she would pick flowers with nice smells to put in my ring with a secret opening; later I gave her that ring – I hope Anika will wear it sometime. She would tell me fairy tales she had just invented; we would discuss our encounters with Josefa's family and friends. She initiated me to walks in the woods and swims in countryside lakes in the moonshine.

Katerina has taught me so much: from the Holographic Universe to the Art of Travelling Lightly – she travelled around Europe with Alex for months with one small backpack each. In the week they stayed with me in Genova they changed into a new dress every day. She explained that you just had to pick light clothes and squeeze them well in your bag.

Katerina was a role model. Before meeting her children, I had always been afraid of children. I thought they were small, screaming, irrational beings. Three years ago my husband Jeroen and I spent a couple of days with Katerina's family in Paris: Anika was 5 and Darrien 10. I could not believe it: it was just like a group of adults, but more inspiring. Katerina and Alex would speak to the children in a normal adult way, showing them interesting things and then they would carry out a normal conversation with us. Anika had a little booklet in her bag, on which she would draw when adults were talking; Darrien discussed with me the multicultural atmosphere in Vancouver and asked me about my friendship with Katerina. When the plan included a playground, Darrien and Katerina explained to me how important playgrounds were.
After those days Jeroen and I decided to have a baby – if a child can be like Alex's and Katerina's, we thought, then we wanted one. I have always remembered the importance of playgrounds. My daughter Isabella must be very grateful to Katerina.

A couple of weeks ago, in October I went to Vancouver where we spent together one of the most amazing weeks ever. Breakfast parties with her, Alex and the children in her bedroom; afternoons smelling marjoram, sage and essential oils; talking about how to relax without losing oneself; making lists of what gives one pleasure – Katerina loved the sound of rain on the road, the sound of water on pebbles, the smell of lavender, of bee wax, the sight of sunbeams through the trees, the sight Alpine meadows, the taste of baguette and smoked salmon, the touch of a friend's hand on her skin.

Katerina is one of those very unique persons - if you are lucky you meet one of them in your life. If you are lucky beyond words, Katerina was your Mum, your spouse, one of your closest friend - and you were allowed to have her at your side during some of your walks.

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