Delights: February 11 to February 17

February 11: First I heard the birds, offering high-pitched trills. In my imagination, I watched as they swooped down to the cattails, which waved cheerfully in bright alto notes. Next, I felt the brook, wrapped in velvet with sparkling sequins. The brook carried me to a deep shaded pool, where an old catfish had eluded fishers for years. I could just see him, rumbling in bass exhales. And then the birds returned and swept us all up to the clouds. . . .

A glorious organ recital last night inaugurated the new Saint George’s church organ. As the Scarlatti Sonata in D Major, K. 33 ended, the audience joined me in an audible smile. Perhaps they too had dallied on the banks of an imaginary creek with organ voices all around them.

The program from Friday night’s recital, with the star of the show.

February 12: Said one character to another in a book I was reading, “A window over a kitchen sink is one of life’s great luxuries.” I emphatically agree. Today, as I washed dishes, I saw two mothers and two girls walking down the street. The girls wore green sashes and carried large boxes. Ahhh. Girl Scout cookies have arrived. 

And then a few minutes later, Kevin glanced out the window to watch a gas grill being pushed up the street by one man as another walked along side. We decided that one family was borrowing another’s grill for a Super Bowl barbecue the following day. We won’t have to guess, however, what they’ll have for dessert. 

February 13: Super Bowl Sunday. The game, the food, and oh yes, the commercials. I confess I was distracted for much of the evening and glanced at the TV only now and then. Then my eyes locked onto the screen. I watched a car cross a bridge. I knew that bridge. I knew that spit of land off to the right, poking into the Atlantic Ocean. And I definitely knew that restaurant along the water: Bahr’s Landing, where decades ago my father had taken our family a dozen times for seafood after a day at the beach. Chevy was selling the electric Silverado truck. I bought the memories.

The map shows Highlands Beach where we would cross the bridge from Sea Bright to the Highlands. The green spit of land is Sandy Hook and the slender white patch at the top of the map across from Queens and Brooklyn is Manhattan. I grew up in Shrewsbury.

February 14: I have discovered the Olympic sport of curling, and I’m completely obsessed. Happily, it’s prime-time viewing and I watch transfixed as the shooter glides across the ice in a yoga pose to release the “rock” and then the sweepers frantically curl its path to the “house” or elsewhere. From the commentators, I learned about “hammers,” “ends” and “the button” — but had to look up the scoring rules because even after watching two games I couldn’t figure it out. 

Kevin can’t figure out my obsession. “It’s like watching ice melt in a facilitated way,” he quipped. He’s not wrong. And yet I’m counting the minutes until tonight’s match between the U.S. and Switzerland. When I slip into Pigeon Pose in yoga tomorrow, I’ll close my eyes and fly.

February 15: Although I was quite aware of the situation 38 miles ago, I drove my car so rarely over the past week that I had forgotten. Besides, I was nervous: would my little Prius achieve her 100,000 miles in the blur of a highway where I might not even notice? Happily, today, I saw that I was just six miles away from my Prius’ milestone, and I had nothing but local driving ahead. 

Would 100,000 roll into view as I rolled down my town’s main road? Somehow, that seemed fitting. My Prius took us all to Toronto in 2011, to Charleston, South Carolina in 2012, and to dozens of beaches, basketball games and outings over the years. She even took Nate and a friend from Virginia to New Orleans to San Diego to Seattle to Boulder to Chicago and home again the year he graduated from college.

My Prius has a few bumper stickers, more than a few dings, and lots of stories to tell.

February 16: Yesterday was not The Day. Today, my Prius blinked 99,998 when I started her up. But the library was my destination, and I knew we’d reach 100,000 en route. How to prepare?

They probably don’t make 100,000-mile balloons to tie to the antenna. So I did what I love best in my little red car: open the sunroof, roll down the windows, and crank up Led Zeppelin.

A block away from the library, the odometer busted out the 1-0-0-0-0-0, just as Robert Plant wailed, “Got a whole lotta love.” Perfect.

February 17: Last week, the Washington Post carried an article about the new organ at Saint George’s. Somehow I’d missed it. Because I never manage to find articles online, I accepted the pinch of disappointment and moved on. 

Today, as I walked along our creek, a piece of trash caught my eye. A good gust of wind would plunk it in the water. So I bent to retrieve the trash. It was — truly, these things happen to me — the article about Saint George’s organ, turned to the exact page, folded at the crease. 

Maybe these were the last bars of Scarlatti’s sonata.

Four Mile Run

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29 thoughts on “Delights: February 11 to February 17

  1. Yay, Prius! Quite a milestone. Glad it was marked accordingly. As for finding that article… holy cats!

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    1. Another Prius lover, I see! Thanks for celebrating with me. And yes: finding that article was beyond crazy. Holy cats, indeed! (Sometimes I wonder about all the crazy things I miss; the best antidote to that speculation is just to keep my eyes open!)

      Liked by 1 person

  2. How lovely to enjoy the new organ in such a lovely looking church. I totally agree that a window over the kitchen sink is wonderful. Our current house has that very feature, but our flat in Copenhagen had an ‘internal’ kitchen with no window….dreadful!

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    1. You are quite right. I too once had a kitchen sink with no window. I think one reason I was so enthusiastic about our “new” house (purchased 24 years ago) was because of the kitchen sink and all the neighborhood bustle I can observe. (I do confess, however, that I’d put up with a lot to live for a while in Copenhagen — !)

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Ahhh, they do, don’t you? Such things do happen to you because you’re clearly open to them. 🙂 What a lovely story of the creek and the organ and the newspaper. It deserves a scene in a movie or at least a short story. And your Whole Lotta Love car will clearly bring you more moments of love. Most excellent. 🙂

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    1. Thank you for appreciating the creek-organ-newspaper story! I was amazed. And I’m intrigued by your idea of making a short story of that. Thank you for the encouragement!

      Thank you also for saying that these things happen because I’m open to them. I think you are right. You, too, fling your arms wide to experience these moments. It does make living fun. (And my Prius says hi!)

      Liked by 1 person

  4. So much beauty and wonder in this miraculous week! Love seeing the world through your eyes and words.❤️

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  5. Howdy. Have you ever had a more amazing coincidence than the one involving the newspaper article? Neil S.

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    1. Hi, Neil. Thank you so much for visiting Fashioned for Joy and dropping me a line. That newspaper incident was indeed incredible. A made-for-TV-movie wouldn’t even try something like that! I guess that’s why they say that fiction always needs to be more real than Real Life, because Real Life is just too crazy!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Are you fascinated by other sports played on ice as well, Carol Ann? I myself am mesmerised by skating of all sorts – figure, ice hockey, speed. Curling is a new to me though.

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    1. You ask a very fair question. Like you I enjoy watching speed skating and figure skating very much. (I can’t really follow hockey effectively yet; it’s so fast..) But I missed a lot of skating because of my new curling obsession!

      Curling is such a slow game. Very much like baseball. Hmmm. Maybe that’s why I like it — and also because it brings back memories of playing shuffleboard on family vacations!

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      1. A season for everything under the sun … and in this case, in the snow!

        Liked by 1 person

  7. “Girl Scout cookies” are so American! The whole thing is completely foreign to us here, in all sorts of ways…we have Girl Guides (for older girls) and Brownies (for the younger ones) rather than Scouts (our Boy Scouts are the male equivalent of Girl Guides), we call our cookies “biscuits”, and the idea of these young ladies going door-to-door to sell their wares would set alarm bells ringing in social services / child protection agencies up and down the land! Interesting, isn’t it, that our national cultures are similar in so many ways, and yet we can find areas where experiences and expectations are so very different.

    Incidentally, I love the photo of Four Mile Run…looks so peaceful.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I love this! Yes, it did take me years to understand what “biscuits” meant in those cozy English mysteries I read. (Although I adore a good Southern biscuit, so it seemed delicious anyway.) Your point about our countries’ charming differences is right on! And thank you for appreciating Four Mile Run. It’s an urban stream that soothes my soul.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I must confess that I’m partial to the occasional dish of Southern “biscuits and gravy”. The combination initially sounds appalling to English ears, but it becomes easier to contemplate once we understand that neither American “biscuits” nor “gravy” bear any resemblance to staple foods of the same name that have been enjoyed here for hundreds of years!

        The other American combination that strikes fear into English hearts is the jelly and peanut butter sandwich (although we would say “jam” rather than “jelly”, which signifies something a bit different here). Now I’m a brave, adaptable man, someone who likes his food and enjoys trying out new flavour combinations, but even I have my “no-go areas”… and jelly and peanut butter sandwiches are right at the top of that list! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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