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Thursday, August 23, 2012

Irish Cappucino


This one I called "Irish Cappucino", being the Irish artist in wool that I am 'n all. Ahem~!

I just now packed it in the luggage as it is a gift. It draped itself rather nicely over some of the freshly painted (thank you Grandgirl!) deck furniture.

Some I have a hard time giving away.

This is one of them.

Over and out for ??? depending on connectivity in Ireland. I hope to post from the Newfoundland travelling theatre Irish road trip.

That's /30 for now.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Books and Movies



I just finished reading "The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel". A story about a bunch of older Britishers who move to India to spend their declining years in affordable gentility. I was glad to have seen the movie first. A movie I was fairly disappointed in I should add, though other elders have raved about it. I found it simplistic and, well, Hollywoodized, though it had a great cast. The cast just couldn't override the pathetic script, in spite of Maggie's crispness, Judi's jolliness and Bill Nighy's wonderful nighyness.

The book, though I did not rate it a 5 star, was so far removed from the movie as to be a completely different tale. There was more complexity to the characters, a couple of love stories that were more believably human and also character redemptions that weren't based primarily on sex. India was depicted in its new persona of industrialized silicon valley contrasted with extreme ragged poverty. The failed capitalistic model wrought in a new century of technological advancement, but alas, for all, less enlightenment.

The big flaw I found in the book was that of too many characters and their offspring. I just hate having to flip backwards through pages to take a refresher course in characters as in: who was (s)he again now? Readers shouldn't have to do physical work along with the mental.

But the discrepancy between the book and the movie is one of the worst I've ever seen, one bears no relation to the other.

Call me a grumbling geezer.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Ouch!




So far, I've been on a fairly blissful ride with my play. Rapturous (well, close!) audiences, A smooth run of over a year now in different corners of the province and a crowning success in St. John's back in late May where the standing ovations were swept into our spirits and became almost a de rigeur feeling at every performance.

You may think life is all a big bowl of cherries for me, as a playwright and director.

Not!

Last night, well, last night.

It started poorly with people gossipping loudly at the back of the theatre, it looked like (from what we could see) they were pointing out people they knew in the cast.

Our stage manager did the needful and it looked like she just fell short of ejecting them physically. Bear in mind we are performing while all this is going on.

Then there was the opened plastic wrapping of the programmes by the door which a breeze caught and the unholy sound of this was amplified throughout the theatre. Another intervention by the stage manager.

Meanwhile we struggle womanfully and manfully to perform against these irritants. There are defective stage lights which overheat us greatly. I positively hate heat of all kinds, anywhere near the tropics is wasted on me as a vacation.

And then the audience. We struggle to describe them at intermission.

We never... Arctic chills... Can you believe?... Are they just stuffed mannequins?... What's with the silence?... Are they breathing?... Should we shout fire, just for fun?...

The second act brings the same. A coldness we'd not experienced all through the play's run. Unresponsive? Someone should call the coroner!

Lines were fluffed, cues were missed. We were just not having any kind of a good time with it. You need audience interaction. One can feel warmth and positivity.

When the final curtain came down - I'm serious here - there wasn't even a ripple. The coma continued.

We forced ourselves to take a curtain call. It felt so weird. But then a slight arousal rippled across the living dead and they clapped. Gently. Politely.

We decostumed and mingled with them afterwards and the verbal feedback was excellent, as in "best ever" "Oh, I'm fair haunted with it" "I could listen to that music forever, you must put out a CD," etc. Many hugs and kisses.

But. But. We were shell-shocked. It knocked all the stuffing out of the catcalls of "See you at the airport!" when we left.

And since then, the cape of self-doubt settles down around my shoulders like thick, black smoke and steals the glory of the past year.

Oh please be kind to us, Ireland!!


Monday, August 20, 2012

Meanwhile in a Galaxy Far, Far Away




There was born the wisest and the most brilliant of all men.

His name was Todd Akin.

And he was the saviour of women everywhere.

But especially of women who were raped, or incested, or molested.

And he even changed the word "rape" to "one of those things."

I think that should become rape victims' theme song, don't you? - "Oh, it was just one of those things"

Because he had a formula, a magic potion.

And this elixir when used, but only in the way, he, Oracle Todd specified, would determine if a rape was genuine or not.

And if real and genuine, this magical liquid would not allow a female to get pregnant from said rape.

Thank you Mr. Akin. And Fox News for allowing him to speak for us.

You are the hero of us womenz everywhere.

We pronounce you blessed.




Friday, August 17, 2012

Ireland Performance - Update



For any of you who will be at or near Tipperary, Ireland in late August and have even a faint interest in seeing my play please email me:

wisewebwoman at gmail dot com

and I will send you particulars. Tickets would have to be booked right away as it is a small theatre and tickets for the general public will be released directly after the first dibbers, such as you and my Irish friends and family.

We have one more performance here before leaving for Ireland next week.

And I can't tell you how excited the cast, crew and myself are.

In all cases it is a dream come true.

I continue to pinch myself.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Away with the Fairies




I was returning a borrowed book to her.

I found her on her couch, the large screen teevee bellowing mightily into the oblivious air from its forbidding presence beside by the fireplace.

She shot up guiltily as soon as she saw me.

"How are you?" I asked, a little concerned. This woman is a mighty presence in the area, a recipient of the coveted Queen's recent Jubilee Medal. A spearhead of the Fisherman's Museum, a poet, a painter, a quilter, a historian, a published author. Prone on a couch in the middle of the afternoon? I would have said never.

"Can't go anywhere," she said plaintively, "My son is supposed to be fixing my car and took it to his place until he gets back from offshore, it's been weeks now."

"And nobody ever visits anymore."

I found that surprising. Another son and daughter-in-law and various nephews and nieces are scattered all around her.

She went to her fridge and hauled out a plate of fishcakes.

"Would you like one?" she proffered the plate. I demurred. Cold fishcake? Seriously? What's going on?

"I don't cook much, the family keep taking me over to their places and feeding me and then giving me all sorts of stuff, look!" The fridge was packed.

She had just said nobody visited. Alright.

I mentioned a mutual friend had her first grandchild. A girl. I told her the pictures were on Facebook.

"I've forgotten how to use my computer," she laughed.

"Was the grandchild a boy or a girl?" she asked me. I said girl.

We inspected some of her crochet which she hauled from her linen closet.

"What did they call the boy?" she asked me.

"What boy?"

"The grandchild."

"It was a girl"

"You said it was a boy."

"My mistake, a girl."

She took me over to the piano and all the pictures of her grandchildren.

"And this new grandchild you were talking about? Was it a boy or a girl?"

And I thought my heart would break.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

"Looking Forward to Boredom"


I think it was Daughter who said this on the phone during the week and I laughed and laughed. Me too, honey, I said, imagine a day of doss, bon-bons, jammies and a good solid book to munch through.

I for one am run ragged, you wouldn't believe the half of it but it now sounds like everything is falling into place for Irish performance. Meanwhile I had to put some writing together for a Writers' Festival in October and that took a whole day. I sure hope I am accepted. Fingers crossed. Not counting chickens there at all. I want it so bad I could *insert whatever*.

I visited a dear friend in the hospital today. He is a very private man, likes a lot of quiet, solitary aloneness. Much like myself. He had booked a private room but none were available so he was ensconced in a four person ward.

I have never seen anything like the activity around him. Ever. I think two of the wardmates were dying, which was awfully sad. But exceptions were made to the Rulez for them. So there were screaming toddler grandchildren running around one bed. On another the old fellah was requesting Irish songs from his daughter who had brought her guitar. And the third? He was being tested by a therapist for dementia who had to scream a series of comprehension testing questions at him (spell 'wall', take 7 from 100, and on). And his wife had a whinney of a voice which would first pierce your eardrums and then echo back to give you a migraine.

I have been to circuses that were quieter than this ward B was thrown in.

I found it extremely hard to keep a straight face as his horror-filled eyes would fall on mine every few minutes and he would just about sob: "What fresh hell is this, OSS?"

I suggested Ipod earbuds or earplugs but he has an inner ear problem and dizziness gets exacerbated if he puts anything in his ears.

I shared the above blog title with him and he whittled out a tiny smile.

Sometimes boredom is a good thing, yeah?

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Tonight on the Beach.



Hello, I say to the tiny woman wandering the beach in front of my house, a large bag slung over her shoulder. An older man and a younger man stand off from her, as if biding time. Her son, home from Moncton and his companion, she later tells me.

Well, hello my darling, she responds, she reminds me of a little robin redbreast, the kind that bounces over the lawn looking for worms. Her face is tan, her eyes bright as blueberries.

We exchange bits of information.

She's out collecting “mermaid's tears” - known as beach glass to the rest of us. Hence the bag. She makes birdhouses covered in beach glass.

All kinds all colours, her garden is fair full of them, she tells me.

My husband died fifteen years ago, she says, and he's been doin' all the sleeping for the rest of us. None of us have time for sleep. Life is too rich, too wonderful, too much to see and do. I've no time for that television business, no time at all.

Me too! I exclaim, it's been over twenty years now without television for me!

Life is out on these beaches, isn't it, she picks up a rock, I wouldn't trade my life for anyone else's if it took me away from any one of those stones you see here. I just love this place. She says it with such fervour, I laugh outright.

She has five children, she says, but really six as she raised a grandson when her daughter got “caught” when she was sixteen.

And my dear, isn't he the best of them all. He's a doctor with a practice up in Cornerbrook, and you'd never know it but he's saved my life three times now. She clutches her chest, bit of a bad ticker and he's a heart specialist. A wonderful boy.

I'm seventy-five and my friends are telling me to move into a home! Imagine that! I might as well hang up me boots and lie down and play dead if that happens and she points to the stout rubber boots on her tiny feet. Her beach boots.

I show her my house across from us.

Oh my darling, that's a house I love, every time we drive by I want to just sit up on that porch and look at the water and the loveliness of it all. Oh my dear, I've always loved that house!

We watch the sunset in silence together.

Well Marge, I say as Ansa and I move off, next time you pass, you'll just have to come for a play date. Please visit!

Yes, my dear, you can count on that!

Friday, August 10, 2012

Mr. Geoffrey – a Love Story. Part 6 of 6

See Part 1 Here
See Part 2 Here
See Part 3 Here
See Part 4 Here
See Part 5 Here




I read him Irish poems in the Irish language. He told me Jewish ones in Yiddish from memory. We would slowly translate the words to each other. And sometimes back again, verbally fondling those that had a commonality between the Gaeilge (Irish language) and the Yiddish.

On our very last afternoon together I read him Lady Gregory's marvellous translation of Donal Og.





Donal Og
It is late last night the dog was speaking of you;
the snipe was speaking of you in her deep marsh.
It is you are the lonely bird through the woods;
and that you may be without a mate until you find me.

You promised me, and you said a lie to me,
that you would be before me where the sheep are flocked;
I gave a whistle and three hundred cries to you,
and I found nothing there but a bleating lamb.

You promised me a thing that was hard for you,
a ship of gold under a silver mast;
twelve towns with a market in all of them,
and a fine white court by the side of the sea.

You promised me a thing that is not possible,
that you would give me gloves of the skin of a fish;
that you would give me shoes of the skin of a bird;
and a suit of the dearest silk in Ireland.

When I go by myself to the Well of Loneliness,
I sit down and I go through my trouble;
when I see the world and do not see my boy,
he that has an amber shade in his hair.

It was on that Sunday I gave my love to you;
the Sunday that is last before Easter Sunday
and myself on my knees reading the Passion;
and my two eyes giving love to you for ever.

My mother has said to me not to be talking with you today,
or tomorrow, or on the Sunday;
it was a bad time she took for telling me that;
it was shutting the door after the house was robbed.

My heart is as black as the blackness of the sloe,
or as the black coal that is on the smith's forge;
or as the sole of a shoe left in white halls;
it was you put that darkness over my life.

You have taken the east from me, you have taken the west from me;
you have taken what is before me and what is behind me;
you have taken the moon, you have taken the sun from me;
and my fear is great that you have taken God from me!

In my memory, that poem filled up our entire session and spread out over all the afternoons we had shared. I took my time in reading it. My voice felt strange and thick and lonely to my ears. As if there should have been foghorns in the background. Every line felt heavy in my mouth. I had to wrench it out of myself.

His eyes never left my face. Now and again he took his thick glasses off and swept a finger beneath his eyes without closing them. More times than I could count. Catching the tears before they fell, I like to think.

I hesitated when I stood up to leave him. I felt awkward, ungainly in my last week of pregnancy, awkward in the emotions that threatened to overflow into tears or into awkward, inadequate words that would diminish all we had given each other.

Silence can say far more. Silence can bathe everything in golden amber, preserved forever. Taken out of the mind's secret drawer every now and again and admired afresh from every angle.

I turned and I left, closing the door without looking at him.

I never saw him again.

Thursday, August 09, 2012

Mr. Geoffrey – a Love Story. Part 5 of 6

See Part 1 Here
See Part 2 Here
See Part 3 Here
See Part 4 Here


Jokes were made in the general office about arranging for my OB/GYN to come to the office as this project of data conversion was so massive – one of the first in Toronto - that they couldn't afford for me to take time off.

My sanctuary was the afternoon time with Mr. Geoffrey and our conversation and by now minimal reading. He talked more of his own childhood in Berlin. About his non-Jewish mother, his orthodox father, his beautiful older sister who had a gift for the piano. His uncles and aunts, his cousins, his grandmother. I understood, without words, they were all dead.

He read to me, or pretended to – I believe most of them were memorized - from some old letters of his mother's sent to her cousin in Toronto, fortunately kept by her and left to him when she died. She wrote of days of happiness in Berlin, days of sunshine and laziness in a farm in France in the summers. Days of privilege. Days of pride in him and his sister, her delight in their doings, her love for her husband, the history professor and writer, her joy in her own watercolours.

“You know,” he said, “I can talk to you like no one else. Your people were persecuted. You Irish know all about persecution. You know of lost tribes and hiding and fear, simply for being in the way of others' ambitions and greed.”

In the way of. I never forgot that. For all countries, all peoples are in the way of a more powerful predator – most recently we have Iraq being in the way of countries acquiring cheap oil.

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Mr. Geoffrey – a Love Story. Part 4 of 6

See Part One Here
See Part Two Here
See Part Three Here




Another afternoon, he said:

“Jenny, my wife, is re-reading Jane Austen to me every night. You must read or re-read Jane.”

I told him Pride and Prejudice was my favourite followed by Persuasion. We discussed the characters. I remember him saying that Jane Austen did not understand men at all and had them utter very few words in her books, it was all about the women, the clever women.

“I wanted daughters very much,” he said then, “And we lost our only child, a daughter. She was stillborn.”

He left the silence stretching out tautly around us. I felt my unborn child kicking in that long moment. I didn't hesitate for a second. I took his hand and placed it on my abdomen. He didn't say anything but left his hand there like a blessing until I got up and left.

We made each other laugh. He told me stories of his school days, fishing with his father, horse-riding with his sister. I told him old stories out of my grandparents, ghost stories, tales of my folk-singing days, of sailing days in endless sunshine in West Cork, of stage performances in operettas and when he teased me, sang the lyrics quietly to him.

Another day he asked could he touch my hair. He had never seen hair like it, he said and pardon him if he had to put his eyes up close to it, to see it properly, the different colours locked inside it, brown and gold and amber and red and some black, he would swear to the black when I protested there couldn't be. Yes, he insisted, there were a few threads of it in there. Rainbow hair, he said, the girl with the rainbow hair.

People went bald in the camps, he said, from malnutrition. If they didn't shave it off you first and sell it for wigs and mattresses. Women couldn't even get pregnant, he added, their monthlies stopped. Mercifully.

By that time I was getting closer to my delivery date. I don't know what he'd said to his partners and the staff but I continued to work there, converting files to the data management programmes that were then just beginning to loom on the business horizon.

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Mr. Geoffrey – a Love Story. Part 3 of 6

See Part One Here
See Part Two Here

I can't pinpoint the exact moment it progressed. Progressed to what, you might ask and I can't still answer that. All I know is love is in there somewhere. And intimacy. And compassion. And passion. I remember little snapshots of our conversations. The reading time became shorter and our conversation lengthened into our time together.

“Can I tell you what happened?” he said out of the blue one day, taking off the thick lenses that shrouded his eyes.

I nodded. I sensed in my bones we were going outside of this room to somewhere dark.

He stood and took off his jacket and rolled up his sleeve. And I knew what it was even though I'd never seen one before. The tattoo stood out stark on his arm. I wanted to touch it and then didn't.

“You've heard of the death camps of Auschwitz?”

“No, yes,” I hesitated, “I haven't heard the names of the camps”. I told him we had quite a few Jewish children in my school in Cork, their parents had escaped death camps. We envied the children as they did not have to attend morning or evening prayers, religion classes or mass or retreats or novenas. Some of us had even asked about conversions to Judaism to the derision of the nuns. He laughed at this. A rich laugh of such delight that I joined in.

“Well,” he said slowly, “I was liberated as a young man from that camp.” he rolled down his sleeve and put his jacket back on. “You will understand I can't speak of what I had to do to survive and the loss of ....” and he couldn't finish. He bowed his head.

Another picture:

“You're expecting a child?” he said, again out of nowhere one day. I had kept it hidden. In those days you could be fired if you got pregnant. In those days you had to tell at a job interview if you even intended to have a child. In those days there was no maternity leave or daycare or maternity benefits of any kind.

“Don't worry, “ he added, “even though I'm your boss, I won't tell anyone. Work as long as you want.”

Another afternoon:

“My wife is an invalid in a wheelchair. I grieve for her, she loved the opera and the ballet and midnight jazz and art gallery openings and now that is all gone. Between my nearly blind status and her crippling disease we don't go out anymore. We enjoy the radio together. You must listen to CBC.”

Every time he used “must” to me I would later make a note in my small notebook. He introduced me to CBC and its delights - “Morningside”, “As it Happens” and classical music programmes and radio theatre of all kinds along with the jazz and folk music shows.

Monday, August 06, 2012

Mr. Geoffrey – a Love Story. Part 2 of 6

See Part One Here



He appeared an old man to me then - for he was at least fifty years of age. He was always unfailingly polite and grateful and I soon got used to his heavy accent and grew to actually enjoy the richness of it. He learned the English language early in life he told me, for the house he was brought up in was multi-lingual.

After a couple of weeks of afternoon reading, we shifted into discussing the archeological articles I had read. He would ask my opinion and listen very carefully to my sometimes stumbling thoughts, his hands linked across his waistcoat, his head leaning against the back of his chair. I was amazed at the number of suits he had. Husband had only two along with a couple of pairs of casual trousers and one sports coat. In those days, I made all my own clothes. And even Husband's casual wear.

Mr. Geoffrey must have had twenty suits, all immaculately tailored, all with matching waistcoats and pale shirts and beautiful ties. Even his shoes were hand made. And his socks looked to be of the finest silks, the little glimpses I caught of them as he crossed his legs.

I would bring deliveries in to his office of different items for his wardrobes if they coincided with our reading time and noted the labels on the boxes and cloth suit and coat covers. The best tailors in Toronto. I would stroke the hatboxes and covet them. I had no hats and neither did Husband. But I always desired the oddest things and still do. Hatpins, Grandgirl's bookmarks. Stuff I have already too much of or have no use for. Mr. Geoffrey always wore a hat coming and going from the office. A hat that matched his suit and overcoat.

Someone mentioned there was a chauffeur that would drop him off and pick him up every day in a pearl grey Cadillac but I never saw it.

As I ponder on the luxury of his clothes today the phrase “sartorial splendour” comes to mind.

That he had in true abundance.

Sunday, August 05, 2012

Mr. Geoffrey – a Love Story. Part 1 of 6


I've never written of this or spoken of it before to anyone. Mr. Geoffrey came to my mind early one morning last week as I lay in bed free-thinking. In that way when one's mind can dance and spin around itself, trailing black and white pictures with the explosion of odd sunbursts to make it more interesting.

I can still see him clearly, his leonine head pooled in the light from the strong lamp on his desk, his manicured hands, his eyes magnified far too much behind the thick lenses of his spectacles.

I had the thought of a one-woman play on this story. Next I had the thought that perhaps it was much
too fragile for that? So I'm greatly interested in feedback. I will never forget this man and the unspoken intimacy that lay in the air between us. We never talked of it as if that would have somehow demeaned or cheapened it. All these years later, I still feel warm and safe and, well, loved, when thinking of him. And extraordinarily weepy.

Part 1.

Some things seem quite odd in today's world. Setting: 1969 - downtown Toronto: afternoon in a wooden-desked office. I had the only calculator. A large cumbersome machine which had carbon paper interspersed with the double tape on it so a copy of my 'tots' could be clipped to a general ledger page. Ah, general ledgers, huge tomes with numbered pages. They held the entire financial transactions of a company. Erasures were not allowed. One had to stroke through an error and re-enter it. In pen. Errors were frowned upon. I would need a key, kept in the office safe, to separate the covers and add a new page to avoid fraud and falsifying.

In the summer a light breeze would slide through the windows on the fourth floor and cool us. Open windows in an office building! I would take the sales ledger from the sales clerk around two o'clock in the afternoon and begin to transcribe the totals into the general ledger. Ditto with the purchase journal. All huge books. Important books with columns of blue and red. Where brackets were not allowed but dr(debit) or cr(credit) inserted after each entry. I was 25 years old and considered myself terribly important as I was the first female accountant hired by the firm.

At around three o'clock I'd be awaiting the accounts receivable ledger (where the receipts of the day would be entered against the amounts owing) when I would go to the kitchen and get two cups of coffee and then into the office of Mr. Geoffrey. Mr. Geoffrey was one of the partners of the firm, a man whose main distinguishing feature were his bottle-bottom glasses. A man impeccably dressed with a heavy Germanic accent. There were embroidered logos of his initials on his french cuffs and on his handkerchiefs. I had never seen the delicacy of this before – on pearl grey silk or finest linen shirts there was discreet matching silk embroidery - GBF all intertwined. So delicate I could barely detect it. My mother was a fine embroiderer and knew her fabrics. I remember writing to her about Mr. Geoffrey's shirts and handkerchiefs as I knew she would probably have never seen such work either.

Even in the middle of the day with the sun pouring through the windows, a bright brass desk lamp would illuminate his desk. Beside it was the largest magnifying glass I'd ever seen.

By the afternoon, his eyes would be tired and he had made an arrangement with his partners that I would read to him: the early edition evening newspaper, any archeological articles from the National Geographic or essays from the Atlantic. He told me he'd chosen me as he didn't like the Canadian accent (whatever that was!) and he thought I spoke so well. I would sit beside him and he would have the reading material all ready in his preferred reading order.

And I would begin.

Thursday, August 02, 2012

Old Non-Stories and the Lady Writer



(Old village school that my subject attended}

I'm in one of those moods. You know, the kind where there's very little you, I or the fairy godmother can do for me. Not that I need anything done. Just leave me be.

Grandgirl has gone back to Toronto, but that's not it. I'm a gregarious loner by nature. Others are visiting in the next wee while. Long term friends at different times. I'll have to fire up for them. I don't feel like firing up. Daughter understands this, we had a chat today. She's built of the same flying-solo-is-best gene pool. We understand each other. Don't do dumbos on each other like: "Ah, snap out of it," "Look at all you've got to be grateful for" and other depressing phrases of that ilk. Just leave us alone with our books.

Currently mine is: Broken Harbour, Tana French's latest. I'm nearly at the end of it. A massive 536 pages. But gripping. Tana can do it. Writing of the devastated building boom with its detritus of a half-finished and abandoned housing estate in Ireland and making it the bleak setting for the gripping drama.

Then, in the afternoon, I toddled over to a pre-arranged interview with one of the last of a dying breed of old timer inhabitants of my outport. One, I was assured, who would fill me in with the history of the place.

He was from the "life was wonderful in the old days" school of thought. We bonded over the Clancy Brothers and nights of song and dance in the houses of our childhood. But not much else. My inquiries about his school life and original work career were met with fairly monosyllabic responses. Ditto for arrival of radio and electricity and roads to his neck of the woods. And his lifelong bachelor status (he and a bachelor brother, the mayor here for over twenty years, lived together in happy siblingdom) caused no ripple of a sweet dead love to emerge. He was an extraordinarily good looking man, well into his eighties. I had the thought he would have been beating off the ladies with a stick in his time. I dug gently and persistently but no story to be found.

He wanted to talk about my hometown of Cork and asked when I was coming back. He may be of the mind to entertain himself with the lady writer for as many sessions as he can squeeze out of me as he gets far too few visitors.

And who's to blame him?

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Hidden Clues and Mysteries



Did I mention how our family are voracious readers? I hear from brothers and friends and blog-friends who delve into my blog sidebar of books read throughout the year and go by my ratings and acquire them - and usually enjoy them.

Daughter and Grandgirl are also of the "there's never enough books in the world for me" ilk.

But isn't it interesting what a young person can throw at you out of the blue. Something one has never thought about before.

The other night:

Grandgirl: Do you realize that the books one likes to read tells so much about one's character?

Me: Really? How come?

Grandgirl: Well the books you really like are usually about missing people and unsolved mysteries.

Me: So what does that tell you about me?

Grandgirl: Well, I'd say you'd be trying to make sense out of your life, like there would be missing pieces.

Me: Well, I'll be! And I even write about that kind of thing too.

Grandgirl: So what would be missing?

Me (thoughtful, astounded): Well, the mysteries in the paternal side of the family. My father wouldn't talk about it, and I've tried to string it together from the evidence of others.

Grandgirl: Well, there you go, right?

(PS-LOL- And my father would sing "Ah! Sweet Mystery of Life" just about every day.)