Looking for many hidden dragons and finding the gorilla sneaking into the zoo keeper’s bed were just a couple of the adventures I shared with a three year old child yesterday. Among other things such as little pigs making big messes and needing hidden kisses from a mother racoon we also considered how to detangle the horns of the wild reindeer so that they could be harnessed to fly. Worries about everything a three year old and her parents might worry about such as going to school and deciding what costume to wear in a parade and listening to the wisdom of a very cool laid-back grandma were covered in depth.It was a very full story hour or two and intense enough for my over sixty years old self. However,it was a precious part of her three year old day along with her special gifts, family and fun around her. This little patch of the day, shoulder to shoulder finding ourselves inside the storybooks together, sharing the stories,art and wonder. The blessing for me was to hear the tiny sighs and laughter responding to my telling and pointing out and questioning either the obvious or the insightful. You had to have been there.
Category Archives: teaching
He walked over to my friend and asked her for money but also told her why he needed it. When he turned to me he was still telling his best story, leaning in a bit, rather shaky and not totally coherent. The bottom line being he needed a couple of dollars to buy a slice of pizza because he had used up all his money helping his sister.
This fellow was making the best of the steady flow of people going into an evening performance at the theatre and zeroed in on us. Well, he had a prepared story anyhow and we gave him a little money despite the awkwardness of the situation. Entering the theatre, my son waiting for us at the entrance gently commented on what we had done .He felt it encouraged such individuals to panhandle and that he encounters another fellow everyday requesting money from him using a standard tale about needing bus money at the same spot during the morning rush to work.
Later when we left the concert and the crowd spilled out onto the sidewalk there was yet another man, seated in a doorway, holding up a cardboard sign, not saying a word but scanning the crowd for possible benefactors. Troubled by this and wondering if I should give him something also, I managed to get by and out of range of the guilt factor of not handing over a coin. At this point, hours later I’m wondering what the message on his sign said. I’m wondering about his story.
At dinner earlier the stories were about me involving my struggle to get a technical computer program problem straightened out so I can write for my own enjoyment and my storytelling preparations for an evening presentation I’m giving at the local library. My friend shared her stories about getting things packed for her trip to the cottage and also the elaborate vacation some good friends of hers had just taken. In between these stories we spoke about a great many other things such as lost children, a terrible local tragedy and our sadness about the recent passing of a talented actor who we felt we knew a little somehow because we admired his work so much. Of course we didn’t know his story at all and didn’t foresee the ending.
In the theatre, the showcased performer provided an amazing concert letting her music reach us on it’s own merit, no explanation given or required. During the performance her storytelling was there all the time through her wonderful trained voice and everyone in the audience was steeped in the richness of her range and style. Many thoughts and impressions stirred in my mind based on the experience and I was aware of the awe of the other audience members as they enjoyed the concert in their individual ways. So many different memories, impressions and stories must have been inspired by her tonight.
In the lobby I encountered a woman, visibly unwell but attended by friends.
A friend I haven’t seen for awhile reached out to me at intermission when I reached out to her. We have some shared childhood experiences and our stories are very different but there is a feeling of understanding there. We will find the time and talk.
My son’s story is all about his work, his art and doing what he has to do, right now. It’s all about telling a story and creating a shelter from reality. He has his responsibilities and he also has his creative adventures. At the moment it is challenging, meaningful and ambitious.
Hours later, I’m wondering about the man, seated on the busy sidewalk who quietly held his cardboard sign. The sign I didn’t read.
There are four jewellry boxes in my possession and they are full of things I will rarely, if ever use. Old costume jewellery mostly. Some better stuff and a few modern artisitic pieces.
A wooden box contains a small blue soft bristled hairbrush that also rattles,a couple of golden baby curls, a yellow knitted baby bonnet ,my grandmother’s locket and a broken pocketwatch belonging to my father. If there ever was a fire I’d grab this box first but also scramble to carry out the other three as well. I would say the value of these items in their entirety might be worth less than a hundred dollars. More than likely, that is a high estimate.
So why are these things so precious in sentimental value to me?
The second box is a vinyl relic filled with my mother’s costume jewellery collection of multicoloured beads and dimestore brooches. They are things she wore to church or on very rare occassions when she dressed up. Determined, hardworking and feisty she made the best of things.
The third battered box is crammed full to the brim with my aunt’s clip on and screw tight earrings.She was a favourite aunt, bleached blonde, sporty and fun. She consistently wore yellow, orange or variations of these colours in plaid. When she came to visit us, my sister and I would hide her tartan suitcase so she couldn’t go home again. I hope someday my neices and nephews think of me, even if just a little, like this.
The final box is my jewellery box. It is a vintage style, pop-up jewellery box decorated in a detailed Japanese motif.My collection of sparkly pins, seasonal badges and buttons from school parties and events, thoughtful trinkets from family and friends, an extensive collection of artisitic looking bracelets and hippie style necklaces fill it to overflowing.
Most of it is just old stuff in these four boxes but it represents more than I can ever hope to express. It just does.
First time inside the door today and I was gently overwhelmed by the adorable vintage feel of the small place but within seconds I was ready to order a nice lunch at The Bag Lady Variety. Located at Pall St. (at Maitland), in London Ontario, Canada it is the sweetest little retreat , somewhat off the beaten track of regular coffee shops and diners. I honestly felt like I had been dropped into another time period. The feel of the place is very relaxed and I noticed several people writing in journals, reading and get this.. interacting with other friendly customers! Two large store front windows open up the view to an established leafy neighbourhood while the decor inside is retro comfy. Seriously, when I came home I got all of my crocheted throws out of the blanket box and draped them around just to mimic the mood of the place.
The yummy food is prepared in a tiny open kitchen which is fascinating to peek through at while watching three of four people maneuver very carefully around each other as they work behind the counter. Lots of takeout orders were rustled up while I was there blissfully relaxing at one of the old-fashioned kitchen table sets. I think the local professional crowd of workers are loving the convenience of takeout lunches but the laid back, sit and daydream types like myself delight in the atmosphere as much as the food. My lunch was homemade tasty and the coffee was good and hot. Oh, and they get points for having the right kind of soft folksy music playing too.
I know I’ll be going back when I’m in town doing my daytime artsy theatre/writing adventures Monday through Friday 7:30 am-4:00pm (as if I’d ever be up at 7:30 am nowadays..ha!), or on Saturday and Sunday 9:00 am-2:00pm. I purchased a gift certificate for a lucky friend and a really good brownie for the road. You can’t have too much of a good thing!
It was a rather special experience today as it felt like I was among friends…including the charming staff and the patrons.