A Luminous Halo

"Life is not a series of gig lamps symmetrically arranged; life is a luminous halo, a semi-transparent envelope surrounding us from the beginning of consciousness to the end." --Virginia Woolf

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Location: Springfield, Massachusetts, United States

Smith ’69, Purdue ’75. Anarchist; agnostic. Writer. Steward of the Pascal Emory house, an 1871 Second-Empire Victorian; of Sylvie, a 1974 Mercedes-Benz 450SL; and of Taz, a purebred Cockador who sets the standard for her breed. Happy enough for the present in Massachusetts, but always looking East.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Gemini, Cancer, Leo

One of the most basic, immutable things about myself that I never have liked is my birth date, January 3. It's right after the holiday blowout, when everyone is Christmassed out and broke, not in the mood for any more parties. More than once I got things under the tree which, I was told, were "for both Christmas and your birthday," while my sister got the same amount of loot, and then another load in June.

January 3 always seems to be the first day back to school after Christmas vacation, or the day or so just before, when you have that sinking feeling that the fun is over and you can't even enjoy your last day or two of freedom. It's the day you get serious again: clean the house, take down the tree, put away the decorations.

My mother used to tell me that I was born during a bad snowstorm. That always seemed like a bad omen. January 3, 1948 was a Saturday. How come I have to work hard for a living? Why couldn't I be fair of face or full of grace?

Today is what I consider the beginning of the summer birthday season. The season of beautiful days for outdoor parties, when everything in this part of the world has come alive, including the people. The season, not for half-hearted indoor January parties, but for excursions to Look Park to have a cookout and ride the little train. (June birthday girl, you know who you are!)

Brian's birthday is today. Leslie's is a week from today. In July we'll celebrate for Joanne and Fereshteh, Lorna and Cordelia. (Cordelia got the limo, the pony, and the two-day pool extravaganzas. Her brothers got back-to-school clothes and a cake shaped like a turkey.) In August, we'll celebrate again for Geri, Sandy, and Sam.

The bathing suits and barbecue grills have come out...the flowers are planted on the patios...the beach houses have been opened up. Everything's ready for the lucky ones. Happy birthday, summer birthday people!


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