Today I am celebrating two things. First, if anyone has been following this, my mother is home, considerably improved, and talking about moving closer to her family. She’s one of those elders who made the cross-over from being a respected parent to a good friend.
Several grownups that I knew as a child did that. Friends’ parents who became friends in themselves, as valued as their children, my friends. Sometimes more so. I remember once being asked to speak at the funeral of one. Delightful man, full of wisdom and goodness and humor, who lived to a lovely, ripe age. I had never delivered a eulogy before. And a bouquet: …this week, checking my website, which is getting an overhaul, I happened to stumble across this comment from a reader, aged 80, who had read my Egyptian series The Memphis Cycle:
I enjoyed reading your books. They make historical names come alive. I had been to Egypt and seen the Pyramids. I was even fortunate to see the mummy of the boy king &and all the artifacts. It made me wonder how come such a well developed and great civilization came to an unknown end. How come they disappeared from the face of earth? I was always curious to know about them.Your books made me feel that they had a very similar life to ours. Thanks for writing these books.I do hope you will continue with Memphis Cycle. with regards (name)
What a lovely thing to read! I am smiling as I write this. …And that is why I write. I hope you all have wonderful weeks!
I was taking a break from some intense (not writing-related) work, and decided “I’ve got a minute, I’ll check my email.”
So I did. There was a message with the title:
New Form Entry: Contact Form
The message starts:
You’ve just received a new submission to your Contact Form.
There is a name and an email, which I will not retain after I respond to the contact. (I promised)
And a message:
I have read the 1st two books in the Memphis cycle and enjoyed the story lines. My daughter loves studying about ancient Egypt so will pass along to her.
I looked up with the start of a smile. How lovely to receive this! It is funny how these seem to come when they’re needed. I’m going flat out to finish the crocodile story (see upper right of the screen), have little time to do much else, even posting and commenting. This is like a sip of cool water. Or perhaps a glass of red wine.
That’s why I’m here. That’s what I live for, in part, knowing that someone enjoyed what I offered.
James Taylor says it beautifully. The fortune and fame will probably never find me, but still:
Fortune and fame’s such a curious game. Perfect strangers can call you by name. Pay good money to hear fire and rain again and again and again. Some are like summer coming back every year, got your baby got your blanket got your bucket of beer. I break into a grin from ear to ear and suddenly it’s perfectly clear. That’s why I’m here.
It is Friday again, and a time to stop and take stock of the small things we celebrate, often unknowingly. Thanks to VikLit, who had the idea for this wonderful bl0g hop, we can remind ourselves of the beautiful things in life that make our days just that much more lovely. You’re welcome to join – head on over to her blog! Details are at the end of this post. I remember, years ago, the first time I bought a condolence card for someone. I write notes now, of course, but I was in 9th grade then (age 13 for non-USA folk) and I wanted to express to someone my regret at her father’s death. The card showed white roses and it said ‘God gave us memory so that we could enjoy roses in winter’.
Roses in Winter
It was a nice sentiment and a pretty picture. At that point I had all my grandparents, both my parents, and had never attended a funeral. The card was well-received. And it was true. Memory allows us to enjoy roses on a snowy day. I realized this anew over the past week. Memories of happy times, of good parents, of laughter and caring and some scolding – all came back to me. And (for those who read Proust) I didn’t have to dip a madeleine in my tea…
I was bored, recently, and found myself remembering travels, books, conversations with friends. In some cases they were better the second (or twelfth) time around.
Relax – it’s just meatloaf with an onion at the ‘wrist’
What would we do without memory? How would we know where to go? How would we equip ourselves for each day’s endeavors? savor a wonderful meal we enjoyed with others? Or avoid the wretched meatloaf served by the corner restaurant? We wouldn’t even be able to sing along with our favorite songs on the radio. For our passengers in the car, that might actually be a blessing. So I am celebrating memory.
(And I am remembering that today is a Friday! I hope you all have wonderful weekends.)