Thursday, February 8, 2007

A Simple Pleasure....

During our lunch hour today I stole a moment to write a letter to my eighth grade English and American History teacher, with whom the kids and I had lunch a few weeks ago. (He would be so pleased to see I used "whom" correctly and didn't end my sentence with a preposition.) He taught me grammar in such a way that I came to love the subject, and he also infused in me a passion for history that still affects me today. (That's "affect," not "effect;" one must keep those two words straight.)

Available from E's Junior Cotillion course last fall was specially ordered embossed stationery; I ordered some for E and some for myself. (Mr. Stan again would be impressed that I remembered that the stuff we write on ends in "-ery" and that stuff that stands still ends in "-ary"; what would I have done without his excellent tutelage?) As I removed the lid of the cloth-covered box this afternoon to use a card for the first time, the beauty of the experience overtook me. Moving aside the thin white tissue paper, I unearthed the stack of thick, rich, cream-hued cards, embossed in navy with my full first name, my middle initial, and my last name, in elegant script lettering. I wrote my note in blue ink to match the navy embossing, and when I had finished, I sealed it in its thick cream envelope, with my name and address again embossed in lovely raised navy script on the back flap.

What a rich experience -- an everyday ocurrence a hundred or even fifty years ago for a woman of means. But for a harried homeschool mom with an afternoon of mathematics and grammar ahead, it was a moment out of time upon which to savour and reflect. (Please pardon the British spelling, dear Mr. Stan, but at least I rewrote the last sentence so as to NOT end with "upon." And please excuse the following sentence fragment which is an example of artistic license -- I promise.)

The simple, elegant pleasures of a few moments -- nearly as restful as a hot bubble bath or European chocolate to the senses and spirit.

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