Getting Old and Moldy


Or at least it feels that way, LOL:)! We just had a few days of lovely sunshine, so I can’t complain when the view out my front door looks like this:

though it is making our getting together this evening more problematic than usual. One of our progeny is coming back from a visit to in-laws on the Eastern Shore, one is working a night shift, and two are still on the job.  I barely made it home from the supermarket in time to avoid getting well and truly soaked.  The DH came out to help and handed me an umbrella – saved the day:)! My main hope, of course, is that all and sundry get home safely.  We can always get together another time.

Our youngest turned 32 this past week, so we’ll be celebrating her birthday tonight.  Ms. Penultimate, S, is AGAIN cooking dinner and has already baked a cake – which is why I have time to type this thing – as the thunder claps and the lightning flashes outside the window.

This week has been a busy one despite having one docket day free of hearings.  Despite that, the husband and I had the opportunity to see our son, Danny, in Everyman’s production of The Book of Joseph. I have said this before many times, but it has long gotten to the point where I stop seeing my son on the stage and instead see the character he is portraying.  This particular play is adapted from Richard Hollander’s book, Every Day Lasts a Year: A Jewish Family’s Correspondence from Poland – a loving homage to a great and courageous man, Joseph Hollander, Richard’s father.  The US Holocaust museum told the author that the correspondence contained in the suitcase Joseph Hollander left behind after his untimely death was the most complete of its kind in the history of that time.

As a Long Island kid who grew up in the 60s and 70s, a great number of my friends and family knew far too many people who had survived – or were related to people who had survived  – the Holocaust.  I am so grateful that my “Granny and Papa from Brooklyn” (my then stepmother’s first (late) husband’s parents – Jews from Germany who treated us goyische kids like their own grandchildren) came to the US in 1917 at the end of WWI and before Hitler’s rise to power.  Papa and other businessmen worked together to sneak young people out of Europe at a time when US anti-semitism abounded.  When one young man he had helped smuggle out of Germany in a box came to America and became a success, it was as if his own son (a doctor, by the way:)) had done it.  When he died prematurely of a heart attack, Papa grieved his loss as he had his own son, Dr. Alan Schonbrun, of liver cancer years before.

I was surprised at the depth of emotion this play stirred up in me.  Perhaps this is partly because as I was learning about the horrors of the Holocaust as a child, the reality of those horrors hadn’t really registered with me. After all, most of my friends’ parents just didn’t talk about it. Too, I suppose it is because I see so many parallels to how we as a country treat immigrants.  It’s disgusting, despicable and unAmerican.  I hope I don’t spoil the play for you if I tell you that one of the very last scenes at the end is a “family movie” played on the back wall of the set with Hollander’s deceased relatives’ six great-grandchildren reciting each of the names of his family members.#NeverForget

Tomorrow we remember the many people who gave their lives in service to our country -if not for them, who knows where we would be?  When I was in sixth grade, our teacher, Norman Herzlich (who himself was a survivor of the Battle of the Bulge) had us memorize the Preamble to the US Constitution.  In seventh grade, Ms. LaTulipe (now known  as the late Mrs. Denise Heageny), our English teacher, had us memorize In Flanders Fields.  I still remember the first stanza.

In Flanders Fields

John McCrae1872 – 1918

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row, 
That mark our place, and in the sky, 
The larks, still bravely singing, fly, 
Scarce heard amid the guns below. 

We are the dead; short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow, 
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields. 

Take up our quarrel with the foe! 
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high! 
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

If ye break faith with us who die we shall not sleep….

If we continue to support unAmerican prejudice, keep the poor desperate, destroy the middle class, take away workers rights and steal the just wage away from them in support of maintaining the wealth of a very few, we are breaking faith with those who have died to keep us free. Don’t forget, many of our soldiers, sailors, airmen and women, and marines were and are average folks, poor folks like the rest of us.  They had greatness and heroism thrust upon them and rose to the occasion.  How can I not “take a knee” at the thought of injustice, cruelty and bigotry? How can I break faith with those who fought for my rights?

The best way to remember those who died for us – ALL of us – is to continue to work so that this wonderful country is the best it can be – always.

UPDATE: FLASH FLOODS!!!

Well folks, it looks like Main Street in Old Ellicott City is flooded again.  My daughter-in-law, Robyn, who works at the Horse Spirit Gallery in Old Ellicott City, just sent us this video – thank God they are upstairs in the gallery! Meantime, we’ve called the others who are either staying home or headed back. Waters are still rising and the lights are flickering.  Will post more later.

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