From Dappled Things:
f it came in post-trip reflection.
DS: This theme of “life among the ruins” runs throughout the book—at times during your travels, you are seeking out specific historical sites, but sometimes you happen upon them after setting out with a different plan for your day. I’m wondering if you found any analogies to your time of mourning your husband—if there were specific memories and incidents you deliberately revisited in hopes of gaining new insight into them, or if it was more a matter of working through these memories as they happened upon you.
AW: Oh, it’s very random. For the most part. I think the journey through Sicily, in which experience and reflection is occasioned by both the planned and the accidental, is very much evocative of the grief process (such as it is) as well. There are big rituals and moments that you know are coming: a visit to a grave, dates of birthdays, anniversaries and the date of death. There are the small rituals in specific moments that you might create – touching a shirt that still hangs in the closet, glimpsing at a photo on a dresser before you go to sleep. But of deeper impact are those unexpected moments where you turn a corner and…oh…I forgot. We were in this neighborhood looking at a house the week before he died. Or: well, here I am at my son’s basketball game, and all of a sudden I am hit by grief and regret: why isn’t he here to see this?