I have always been insanely jealous of my sisters hair. Well maybe not insanely because I can go for several days at a time without even thinking about it. Okay, insanely is probably pretty accurate.
Today is her birthday. She was born on Thursday the 12th. When I was old enough to realize the significance of my own Friday the 13th birthday I decided to never forgive her for arriving a day early. Although it may have been a relief for our mother. I don’t know, I never asked her.
Anyway, back to the hair. Hers was blonde. It was curly. It framed her cherubic little face in perfectly natural ringlets and waves. My own poker straight dark hair showed every chop of the scissors, flat and boyish and boring in comparison.
Not much has changed in sixty years. Except that I inherited our dads family trait of going grey early. I like to think it’s silvery and I wish for it to some day be as white as my aunts and uncles. Whatever, grey is grey. With no hair coloring help whatsoever, Mom kept the color in her hair for a lot longer. And my sister (with a little help) is doing that too. Now she has lots of blonde streaks and highlights in her waves and curls.
W asked me one time why I didn’t let my hair grow longer like my sisters. I fought off the urge to grab him by the neck and choke him while yelling that he should grow back his bald spot and then we’d talk. Because, you know, that would have been childish. Instead I patiently explained that our hair is completely different and that mine would not look the same. At all. So shut up about the hair.
Yes, insanely is looking more accurate by the minute.
On our holiday my sister let her hair dry naturally and then gave it a quick brush and it looked perfect. For the rest of the day. I blew mine dry because if I don’t all the cowlicks show. I put gel in it because if I don’t it’s about as thick as the wispy hair on a two-year old. Normally I would use my brush curling iron to add some body but I was afraid I’d blow up or burn out our adapter and not be able to charge our more important things like camera batteries and I-Pads. So I spritzed it all over with hair spray and called it done. It looked good for approximately ten minutes every day, and then reverted back to exactly how it looked upon emerging from the shower.
I love my sister to death. I want her hair. I will die with this one fervent wish never granted. I hope she has a happy birthday. I hope she appreciates her beautiful hair. It’s way past time for me to get over this and let it go. I don’t think I ever will.
How insane is that.
Sometimes things to talk about come in the mail or mysteriously surface during a clean-up and neither will leave your head until you forcibly remove them. At least that’s been my experience. For today. Tomorrow could be another whole ball of wax. (Where did that strange expression come from? I tried looking it up, but it seems no one can agree on its exact origin and after reading the third or fourth educated guess I lost interest.)
Anyway, after waiting all week for it, an invoice/receipt arrived at last in the mail today. I am sharing part of it here because I think it’s pretty exciting.
If all goes well, I will be celebrating my May 13th birthday in Athens this year. Santorini is one of the places my brother visited and loved and thought he would like to return to see again some day but he never got the chance. So this trip is a family holiday to remember him. Good Gawd, look at all those island ferry transfers across the deep dark sea. I hope they make good wine in Greece.
The other thing I’m sharing surfaced from a filing cabinet, in a file folder labeled ‘recipes’. Who in the world prints off random recipes from the internet and files them away and ignores them for a decade? Never mind, we already know the answer to that. Inside this folder I also found a copy of a Christmas letter written by our cats in 1997, a three-fold religious pamphlet and a letter from a fitness spa, but there was something else in there even MORE interesting. I can picture you rolling your eyes and sighing but sorry, that’s not going to stop me. Here are the amazing printed words I found with no title and no explanation.
In another younger day I could dream the time away
In the universe inside my room
And the world was really mine from June until September
And if it wasn’t really so I was lucky not to know
And I was lucky not to wonder why
Because the summer time is all that I remember
A summer fly was buzzin’ every night when I was young
In the gentle world my child-like senses knew
And the world was just my cousin
And the wind was just the tongue
In the voice my lonely moments listened to
And I look at me today all the dreams have gone away
And I’m where I never thought I would be
Seeing things I never thought I would see happening to me
And I lay awake at night til the darkness turns to light
Hearing voices calling out my name
Droning over and again the same message to me
Crying who’s your partner, who’s your darlin’, who’s your baby now?
Who wakes up at night to pull you in
But it don’t matter, you’ll just make her lonely anyhow
I don’t know why you even try to win
At first I thought it was a poem but then I remembered it’s the lyrics to a song and went searching for it on YouTube. It’s amazing what’s on that site and the stuff that comes up and how much time can go flying by while you’re sitting on the living room couch with your I-Pad and a gigantic cup of coffee.
If you don’t know this song but like the words and the kind of sad and dreamy way they sound in your head, I think you’re going to love the music. There was some method to my madness, writing it down and putting it away in safekeeping to be discovered again on some very distant future Friday off.
My brother is twelve, I am nine, and my little sister is six. We are playing a noisy board game at the kitchen table, waiting for our parents to come home with the new baby. My brother is appalled that it’s just another girl when he so fervently wished for a brother. I’m happy I’ll no longer be the only middle child, and excited to help look after her. We don’t know how Ann feels about the situation because she hasn’t said much, but we are about to find out.
We think it’s odd when there’s a loud knocking on the farmhouse door. If it’s our parents surely they would walk right in, and we aren’t expecting any other visitors. Ann jumps up and runs to investigate. We hear the door open and immediately slam shut. Who was it? Who was there? we ask her. She plunks herself back down, frowns and folds her arms. NOBODY, she says.
But the door is opened up again and mom and dad are suddenly there in the hallway in their winter coats, stomping the snow off their boots. They’ve apparently had second thoughts about the planned surprise grand entrance in which all of us were supposed to let them in with a warm welcome and open arms. They come into the kitchen and Mom carefully unwraps her big pink bundle so that my brother and I can have our first peek at the new arrival. Ann is looking quite cross and kicking the table leg.
Why did you say it was nobody? Don’t you want to see the baby? Oh, look, she’s all red and wrinkly and she has lots of black hair! Come see her, she’s so cute!
Ann still refuses to budge. THAT BABY IS NOT SITTING AT MY PLACE AT THE TABLE she announces. I roll my eyes. Her place at the table is beside our dad. She refuses to sit anywhere else. I tell her it will be months before the baby is big enough to sit anywhere and wonder why she’s being a brat.
But Dad gives her a big bear hug and tells her she has nothing at all to worry about. No one but our little Annie gets to sit in that very special place. Her arms unfold and the hint of a smile crosses her face as she relents, and leans in to look at her tiny rival for the very first time. She tells the baby she’s sorry about the door.
But she will never give in about her place at the table. Never. We can all see the firm resolution written all over her stern little face.
“With mirth and laughter let old wrinkles come.”
Today is W’s 65th birthday. Imagine being married to someone so damned OLD! And both of us still crazy after all these years.
This morning I “Liked” a page on Facebook called Groovy Reflections. “Peace, Love Grooviness. Groovy Reflections™ is dedicated to the celebration of life and song. Our greatest wish is that everyone can find peace in their lives and in their hearts.”
Well, how in the world could I NOT like that?
Next thing I know there’s a link on my news feed for this video by Dodie Stevens who celebrates her 67th birthday today. Happy Birthday Dodie! If you don’t know who Dodie Stevens is, you are about to find out. I don’t remember ever hearing her name before (although I’m sure I must have) but I KNOW ALL THE WORDS TO THIS SONG! Isn’t the memory a strange and wonderful thing.
Now I’ve got a guy and his name is Dooley He’s my guy and I love him truly He’s not good lookin’, heaven knows But I’m wild about his crazy clothes
He wears tan shoes with pink shoelaces A polka dot vest and man, oh, man Tan shoes with pink shoelaces And a big Panama with a purple hat band
He takes me deep-sea fishing in a submarine We go to drive-in movies in a limousine He’s got a whirly-birdy and a 12-foot yacht Ah, but that’s not all he’s got
He’s got tan shoes with pink shoelaces A polka dot vest and man, oh, man Tan shoes with pink shoelaces And a big Panama with a purple hat band
Now Dooley had a feelin’ we were goin’ to war So he went out and enlisted in a fightin’ corps But he landed in the brig for raisin’ such a storm When they tried to put him in a uniform
He wanted tan shoes with pink shoelaces A polka dot vest and man, oh, man He wanted tan shoes with pink shoelaces And a big Panama with a purple hat band
Now one day Dooley started feelin’ sick And he decided that he better make his will out quick He said “Just before the angels come to carry me I want it down in writin’ how to bury me.”
Wearin’ tan shoes with pink shoelaces A polka dot vest and man, oh, man Give me tan shoes with pink shoelaces And a big Panama with a purple hat band
My musical tastes are so stuck in the 60′s and 70′s it’s kind of scary. But how amazingly delightful is this, to see Dodie Stevens some 40 years later, still looking and sounding great.
Obviously I’m enjoying a wonderful, peaceful, lazy, do-nothing kind of Sunday afternoon. Hope you are too.
Taking the (weekend) Trifecta Challenge for the first time – exactly 33 words of dialogue.
“You know what? Turning sixty-four is not so bad.”
“Yeah, when you consider today is my Aunt Edith’s hundredth birthday.”
“Wow, you have aunts who are still alive?”
This was the most special of occasions, because it was the only time we ever celebrated our daughters July birthday at the farm. Our son has his birthday in February and we were never off to Ontario at that time of year. But you don’t have to be the guest of honor to have a good time.
Time marches on, the kids keep growing up, the bricks days are numbered and will be coming down. Yes, sadly, no longer will we pose in front of the faux brick background. The wallpaper gets replaced, along with the orange curtains and the orange back splash. On to a lighter and brighter tomorrow.
The great meals and the card games continued, but our family showed up less and less often – that’s what happens when you live far away. The rest of the family was nice enough to send us photos. And nice enough NOT to say look at all the fun we’re having without you.
Mom and Dad loved to play cards, and UNO was a game that even the littlest guy could play. (In that last picture, does he not look like he’s never had quite so much fun ever before in his entire life?) When there were so many people around the table and so many skips and reverses, you could stare off into space or take a quick nap before the play ever came around to you again. These get togethers and card games went on until finally there were those among us who grew wise enough to win against grandpa. Well, sometimes, anyway.
There was a new house, a new location, a new kitchen, but the games went on. There are some things you never want to outgrow.