Tuesday, March 2, 2010
A Birthday to Remember....
Today is my birthday, one I share with my younger brother, a friend from my former online discussion group, the former director of our arts council, one of my favorite teachers John H. Armstrong, plus Dr. Seuss, Chris Martin of Coldplay, the current James Bond Daniel Craig, Jon Bon Jovi, John Irving, Gorbachev, Desi Arnaz, and Sam Houston.
So after spending a few days with family in Anaheim at Disneyland and California Adventure, we got home last night. This morning my dear friends pictured above, Judith (middle) and Kitty, picked me up and we drove through Cuyamaca Rancho State Park to Julian, an old Gold Rush town famous for its apple pies and autumn color, and then to tiny Wynola, three miles outside of Julian, to Jeremy's On the Hill, one of the most incredible places I have ever eaten. Incredible! Kitty enjoyed a "Gloopy Burger," Judith pancetta-wrapped scallops, and myself a chicken and avocado panini on rosemary bread, and we shared chocolate-espresso mousse topped with hand-rolled truffles after I was serenaded with "Happy Birthday." Run by a 22-year-old culinary prodigy, the food, ambience, and service were impeccable, and the company couldn't have been more special to me.
Without Judith and Kitty, I doubt seriously that I would be writing at all, much less writing poetry again. With their understanding and encouragement, I journey deeper and deeper, unearthing myself and discovering the writer God wants me to be. These two women are incredible women of God who continuously hone and build on the gifts He has given them. Judith at 75 is putting on a major arts and writing workshop in May, continues working on varied writing projects (currently a play and a novel besides a constant stream of poetry), and is plotting logistics and funding in sending a team to help rebuild in Haiti. Kitty, seven years my senior, is an older sister to me who just graduated with her Master of Fine Arts in Writing (Poetry) and is seeking publication of her thesis, a collection of poems, as well as a teaching position. They work together as part of a close-knit group of poets who have met monthly for many, many years. (How I wish I could break into the group! But they are so long established that an addition would completely change the tenor of the group.)
Tonight Keith made me my favorite dinner tonight: spinach and mushroom stuffed chicken with sauteed sweet potatoes and corn. My favorite dessert of Boston Cream Pie is on the menu for Wednesday night as we ate late enough tonight (after 9 PM). He's almost promised me a personal pedicure and footrub which I am looking forward to greatly.
So it has been a lovely birthday, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.