Sunday, August 26, 2012


      "Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it."
                                                           William Arthur Ward
The Pilgrim Monument from Wikipedia
                 Summer Ladies’ Road Trip!  A Co-Worker’s Sister has lived in Provincetown (PTown to those of us in New England) for many years.  She very graciously invited us to stay with her when the three of us chatted about a weekend together.  So, on yet another beautifully warm sunny Friday morning the three of us set out for the Cape.  PTown is at the very tip of Cape Cod, so a two hour drive with no traffic. 
Pilgrim Monument @ Night, from Wikipedia
             After settling into our Host’s home we ventured downtown to grab some lunch.  PTown is like a carnival all the time.  The sights and sounds are incredible.  It has been an artist community for many years.  And, in the 70’s it became a haven for the gay and lesbian community.  On Friday, from the afternoon through evening, I saw one grand gentleman in 3 totally different outfits (lady’s outfits dressed to the 9’s from toe to tip of the head decorated in fashion I could only dream about..), riding up  and down Commercial Street on his bike.

Bubala's by the Bay
from Marc C on Yelp
                After a great light Thai salad at Bubala’s by the Bay, we poked around some shops.  Then we  meandered back to our home base to meet our Hostess.   We had been invited over to mutual Friends’ for cocktails.  This generous Couple was so kind to share their piece of Shangri-La with us. Oh, the views from their piece of heaven, and the fun stories of some of their rich, famous , infamous, and notorious neighbors kicked of a wonderful evening.
Saki from Gary C on Yelp
                From their home on the beach, we headed downtown to one of their favorite galleries enjoying the artist, gallery owner, and art.  Watching in awe as they actually bought some of the art!  I have one piece of original art, their homes are full of it.  Time for dinner, we meandered to the Japanese restaurant Saki.  As we ate,  filmmaker John Waters was seated just across from us.  He was dressed very appropriately for his reputation, in one of the loudest black and white blazers I have ever seen!  We never could decipher the sex of his dinner-mate.  Perfect.
July 12 - Ryan Landry is Charles Busch's The Divine Sister.
                Saturday we spent on Commercial Street, having breakfast, spending some time on the town beach, and of course poking through the shops again.  Our same group of six had dinner at our Hostess’ home, lobsters!, before heading off to the Provincetown Theatre to see Ryan Landry in “The Divine Sister”.
 If you have not had the opportunity to see Ryan’s work, I highly recommend it.  He is always irreverent, no matter the subject, hilariously entertaining, and immensely talented.  His work with his troupe “The Gold Dust Orphans” is great, and the Huntington Theatre is producing his adaptation of “M” this season.  "With Ryan Landry, perversity and hilarity go skipping along hand in hand."-
              Sunday we enjoyed a great homestyle breakfast at Chach’s, and got on the road to try and beat the Sunday traffic  leaving the Cape.  Couldn’t pass up meandering around the Wellfleet Flea Market on our way up though!  And, unfortunately, did not really beat the traffic, three plus hours home.  It was a wonderful weekend, one of the last of the official summer season.  Thanks so very much to our generous Hostess, and Hosts, and to my Co-workers for great, much-needed giggles, and company!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Another Summer Saturday in the City

   "Success is getting what you want; happiness is wanting what you got."  Ingrid Bergman
Artful Adornments
From the MFA website
On a grey, humid Saturday, my older Daughter and I decided to spend a few hours at the Museum of Fine Arts, or MFA, as we lovingly call it in Boston.  It is a beautiful gift to the city, but can be overwhelming so I tend to focus on just two or three exhibits at a time when I visit.  And, of course, while meandering the Museum this day, we fell upon a couple of small exhibits, most notable for us, the Jewelry display!

The Paintng that started Her love for art!
From the MFA website ( “Let the dancing begin! The MFA welcomes two monumental loans from the Musée d'Orsay, Paris—Renoir's Dance in the City and Dance in the Country—as part of our Visiting Masterpieces series. These full-length canvases accompany the MFA's own iconic Renoir, Dance at Bougival. All three paintings, depicting couples in urban and rural settings, were created by the artist in the same year. Renoir’s colorful Impressionist style, full of verve and daring, captures the fashion and pastimes of his contemporaries. Don’t miss the experience of a lifetime viewing this glorious trio of paintings, together here at the MFA for the first time in a generation.” (til Sept. 3)

From the MFA website
“Shambhala is a Sanskrit word describing a mythical land whose exact location is hidden behind mist of snow-capped mountains, where peace reigns, wealth abounds, and there is no illness. The West was first introduced to the concept as “Shangri-la” in the 1930s book and film Lost Horizon, but Shambhala, in both physical and spiritual senses, has been part of Tibetan Buddhist art and culture for centuries. “Seeking Shambhala” explores this spiritual realm within the Tibetan tradition, and brings to the fore two contemporary artists’ personal journeys to Shambhala.” (til Oct 21)

Through Boston Cares, I had signed up to volunteer for Shakespeare on the Common for the evening show.  After getting a bite to eat in the South End, we walked to the Common where we said our farewells, and continued onto our respective Saturday evenings.  As can happen so frequently in New England, the weather changed for the better, and I spent a truly lovely evening volunteering, and enjoying a Shakespearean play I had no previous knowledge of!   From it’s website (
What is the city but the people?" - Act III, Scene I
For its 17th season of Shakespeare on the Common, CSC is proud to present the political drama CORIOLANUS. The play charts the rise and fall of a powerful general as he battles enemies abroad, and a tide of popularity at home in Rome. While the war hero triumphs in the field, it's his struggle with politics, responsibility and government that threatens to undo him.
"Demonstrations in the street, politicians jockeying for the loyalty of the populace, consolidation of wealth, tension between the "have's" and the have not's" - 2011, right? No, this is the world of Shakespeare's Coriolanus, perhaps Shakespeare's most political play. The play explores the quixotic and symbiotic connection between the governed and the governors - an issue echoing around the globe in the Arab Spring and in our 2012 presidential election. Coriolanus will capture the energy and passion of the community as we determine leadership of our country for the next four years. It will be a thrilling and dramatic conversation with our audience!" --Steve Maler, CSC Artistic Director 

Monday, August 13, 2012


I've learned that you shouldn't go through life with a catchers mitt on both hands. You need to be able to throw something back. ~Maya Angelou

Boston Cares
Courtesy of Boston Cares website
                              Not sure if I’ve mentioned this, but a very positive way for me that I am “filling” my free time is by doing volunteer work.  I do much of it through Boston Cares( which I call a clearing house of sorts for finding volunteer opportunities. From its website: “Boston Cares mobilizes more than 25,000 volunteers annually in support of Greater Boston schools and non-profit agencies. We offer a wide array of programs and opportunities that make it easy for you to volunteer no matter how busy your schedule is.”
            I have worked in a number of food programs this way, including the Pine Street Inn, The Living Center, The Woman’s Lunch Place and Dinner for Homeless Vets.  If working at any of these places doesn’t put things in perspective pretty quickly, nothing will.
First Night Boston
Botton from 2011, couretsy of First Night Website
                Also, when I see something that interests me, I simply find it on-line and contact them.  Last New Year’s Eve I thoroughly enjoyed myself by volunteering at First Night in Boston.  I was placed on door duty and got to watch young dancers all night:  "OrigiNation/O'Shea-Chaplin: First Night Beat . OrigiNation is dedicated to promoting the importance of self-respect, health, nutrition, education and self-esteem, while emphasizing the impact that African influences have had on dance. Under the direction of Shaumba Yandje Dibinga, they specialize in hip-hop, jazz, tap, step and Caribbean dance. The O’Shea Chaplin Academy of Irish Dance presents their combination of traditional and contemporary Irish dance and costumes. Their performances have won accolades and awards internationally. These two companies dance together, in one of First Night’s signature pairings, for some explosive cross-cultural hip-step-hop.” ,
Volunteers picking up trash along the Boston Esplanade on Earth Day
Photo courtesy of Boston Discovery Guide website
   As I’ve mentioned, more than once, I’m quite a fan of the Esplanade so I spent a beautiful Saturday in the spring helping with their Earth Day cleanup.  Since I have done programs there in the past (yoga, etc) I was sent an email requesting help.  Gladly did it.

From the Emerald Necklace website
On a gorgeous Sunday in June, I spent the afternoon @ Franklin Park.  I haven't spent any time there since I was a child.  It is beautiful.  I happily helped out @ the inaugural event of Circle the City (and met some wonderfully interesting Ladies!).  From its website: "Boston’s Circle The City, an Open Streets initiative connecting people to parks, will launch this summer on three Sundays: June 24, July 15 and August 5. Featuring free activities for all ages that promote healthy, active living, Circle The City will draw people out of their homes and cars and onto safe, car-free streets to walk, bike, roll, play and celebrate some of our greatest urban resources—our parks." (

   As a Boston Globe subscriber, I read for a few months about the inaugural Summer Arts Weekend planned in Copley Square in late July.  Knowing I wouldn’t be in Maine that weekend I contacted someone on the website who then put me in charge of volunteers.  I spent a nice Saturday late afternoon into evening (until the relentless rains unfortunately made the music quiet so I went home early) and all day Sunday settled in Copley Square instead of looking onto it as I do every work day.
              Saturday I was in the information booth, where I found myself not just handing out programs for the festival but fielding questions about all things Boston.  Have you ever really taken stock of how many tourists from all over the world come to our beautiful city, especially in the summer?
My view from the Staff Tent
            Sunday when I arrived there was no one to give me a chore.  I took it upon myself to re-set up the staff tent and just stay there all day.  As there were munchies and drinks readily available for any and all staff at the festival, I also had to ward off travelers, tourists, roamers, and homeless who thought the food was a free for all!  I got to chat with many different staffers and volunteers, again from all over, during the day.  When it was quiet, I read a bit, all the while being serenaded by live classical music being played by various groups from all over the city.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Ode to Sunsets!

                                       “One day,' you said, 'I watched the sunset forty-three times!'
                                                           And a little later you added:
                                   'You know, when one is that sad, one can get to love the sunset.'
                                   'Were you that sad, then, on the day of the forty-three sunsets?'
                                                        But the prince made no answer.” 
                                             Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince

Sunset: Memorial Day Weekend 2012
            One form of literature I've never fully appreciated is poetry.  I think it's mainly because I don't "get it".  Of course there are the poems we all learned growing up, for me Robert Frost stands out.  Oh sure, I remember in high school being oh so deep and writing it.  But that was the 70's everyone was deep and writing poetry then, weren't we?  Or maybe in adolescence we are so intelligent and profound we all think we're poets?!

           Anyway, that all being said, I find myself wanting to dabble.  If you know me at all, you know that one of my favorite things in the world is sunsets, especially "my" sunsets at Webber Pond in Maine.  One of my dear Friends and neighbors in Maine thinks this is actually a very distinct idiosyncrasy on my part.  Whatever, I love them!  So here is my very amateur attempt in poetry.  My Ode to Sunsets!

Again @ Webber Pond

Sunsets are like wine for my soul.

Uplifting my spirits,

Nourishing me,

Soothing my mood,

Enveloping me with their beauty,

Treating me to their calmness and peace.
Yet another Webber Pond Sunset