Sunday, September 23, 2007

...the Mice will Play

Mr Dearling is away, still enjoying the wilderness and lakeshore of the Upper Peninsula, and we've actually spoken by cell phone! The Lovely Daughter says "You're still surprised? You know, the novelty probably should've worn off by now." Probably true, but we are Old and Easily Entertained. Friday, therefore, Lovely Daughter and I planned to meet mid-afternoon at our favorite barbecued rib place (it's Famous Dave's, which we love - and the "Dave" is Native American and supports a lot of tribal benefits with his income, so I'm especially partial). Now, Yom Kippur started at sundown, so we wanted to be sure to have had a good meal before that. I should state, I tend to be an "ethnic Jew"--I keep the major holidays, including separating milk and meat during Passover; I fast on Yom Kippur and stay in and don't "work" and I eat apples and honey on Rosh Hashanah.

Our plan after eating was to go to the Sow's Ear (our favorite LYS which is a yarn-and-coffee/tea/sandwich/pastry-type of place)for the Late-Night Knit, which has been monthly. Henceforth, it'll be TWICE a month, and we're delighted.....and it seems the large-ish crowd in which we found ourselves were delighted too, if a hearty round of applause is any indication.

We stopped at Target en route to get my monthly prescriptions (aaah, Advanced Age). We arrived, settled at a convenient table and ordered up luscious minty Italian sodas with an eye on the horizon. (The Lovely Daughter is pretty much the same as I, Jewish-wise.) Incidentally, one son is pretty much unobservant (except to come over, *religiously*...ok, pun intended...for gefilte fish and vast quantities of horseradish during Passover; and the other son is Lutheran with my full approval. I see it as an "in" to future Lut'ran Church Suppers, of which I am very fond. We stayed until about 10:40 pm, just twenty minutes before closing, and knitted and gabbed and laughed and, I'm embarrassed to say, failed to take pictures. But I'll have future opportunities, it would seem.

Fast-forward to Saturday - Yom Kippur. Now, I had determined to fast, but of course am required (by Jewish law, as well as common sense) to take medications, so I took my usual morning lot. That would *almost* constitute breakfast. Just kidding. Maybe. The rule for the day, as interpreted by recollections of my daddy, is that one should do no work, which includes turning on appliances, using the telephone or say...writing letters. One must also not handle money - which Lovely Daughter reminded me when, at about 9:00 pm the night before I was ogling and stroking some lovely yarn. The act of reading can qualify as "work", too. The main idea is to spend the 24-hour period in restrospection, introspection, and prayers to not commit the evils of the previous year in the forthcoming one.l It all has to do with the ultimate prayer: that I be written, by God, into the Book of Life for another year. Hopefully, Lovely Daughter says, "The hard-cover edition."

As I see it, reading-for-pleasure is allowable. Listening to music is allowable (to split hairs, I only had to use the remote to turn on the radio to NPR). Knitting? Well, knitting gifts or for pleasure is probably OK too, but not knitting items for sale.

So I read. I read Crazy Aunt Purl's book. In spite of Lilliane, who said "OK, I tasted your knitting, very nice -- but I need to nap on this book, there's a cat on the cover." She'd like to think she can read, but she has to follow along with her paw and sound things out.

I spent the day resting on the couch and reading. The WHOLE day. Now...I had left the computer on ("stand-by") so jostling it opened the screen and I could check the time. I knew that sunset was at 6:55 pm. That's important to know when you can't eat anything until sundown. Also, I did talk on the phone, but only to family members. ("Does that count, God? Just keeping in touch?") Oh...except for the time it rang and when I picked it up to hear a recording about Medidcare, Part B.

Side note: it creeps me out that "The Department of They" knows that I'm turning 65 in a couple of months. No, I'm not really that naive, I know that department knows what kind of security pads I buy, what magazines I read and that my cats occasionally get mail from other cats. Still creeps me out.

The other part of Yom Kippur is something I really do: I think. I think about stuff I may've said or done that I haven't been particularly proud of. I also think about the state of the world. This is especially true when the day is winding down and I feel really hungry. Because, ladies and gentlemen, I have never, in the whole of my (rather respectably-long) life, been truly hungry. I may've missed meals, but always with the knowledge that - after sundown, or after I go to the grocery store, or when I meet my friend at the restaurant, I'll have all the delicious fresh well-prepared food I can manage.

I remember when my children were little, and they would say "When's dinner, we're starving!" It made me angry sometimes, because we didn't always have a lot of food (the result, usually, of unwise money management on my part) but we NEVER had NO food. I'd get huffy, they'd get petulant (don't you love petulant children?)

But at 6:45 last night, I cried. I thought about Africa. I thought about the Balkans and India and China. And I thought about Louisiana and Mississippi and northern Minnesota and Wisconsin and the Dakotas and I thought about all the places I don't know about in the this country...where there are people who do NOT know that they're going to have a good meal after sundown. Or maybe tomorrow. Or maybe they don't know when they will. And I realize, again, that I'm pretty gol-durned blessed and lucky and however else you call it. And I do remember to savor my messy little house and my scruffy (and elegant) friends and my rowdy (sometimes) children and grandchildren.......and now I've gone all maudlin.

OK - enough of that. If I knew how to caption pictures (but at least I'm repositioning them, sort of!) the one of Evangeline would read "Not going to let you use this, Mom, it's Yom Kippur."


MollyBeees said...

Oh no! I was as Knit Night too! Did I meet you? I was knitting a greenish sock and had a sock in front of me on a blocker!

dale-harriet said...

*laughing* I'm sure I DID see you - but you were at the long table; I heard someone ask about the sock blocker. I was sitting over by the all with my brown daughter ("The Lovely Daughter"). Maybe next time?

MollyBeees said...

RATS! You should have said hello! Are you going to the big celebration next Friday night? Maybe I'll run into you then! Be sure and say 'Hi' if I miss you!