Monday, October 22, 2007

Friends Visiting—for Paula

MILKMAID: Who will buy?
ROSE-SELLER: Who will buy?
OLIVER: Who will buy this wonderful morning?
Such a sky you never did see!
ROSE-SELLER: Who will buy my sweet red roses?
OLIVER: Who will tie it up with a ribbon
And put it in a box for me?
STRAWBERRY-SELLER: Ripe strawberries, ripe!
OLIVER: So I could see it at my leisure,
Whenever things go wrong,
And I would keep it as a treasure
To last my whole life long.
MILKMAID: Any milk today?
OLIVER: Who will buy this wonderful feeling?
I'm so high I swear I could fly.
KNIFE GRINDER: Knives! Knives to grind!
STRAWBERRY-SELLER: Ripe strawberries, ripe!
OLIVER: Me, oh my! I don't want to lose it
So what am I to do
To keep the sky so blue?
There must be someone who will buy...
LONG SONG SELLER: Who will buy?
KNIFE GRINDER: Who will buy?
MILKMAID: Who will buy?
ROSE-SELLER: Who will buy?
ALL: Who will buy this wonderful morning?
Such a sky you never did see!
Who will tie it up with a ribbon
And put it in a box for me?
--Who Will Buy from Oliver
This lovely duet sums up the way that I felt on Saturday. We have had rain in the Cities for the past 3 months, almost 19 inches of it, and we still have 10 days to go in this month. After a dry June and July, the heavens opened, and the water has not abated. In addition, it’s been very dreary here, with not many days of sunshine either. It seemed as though on the days it didn’t rain, it was threatening to and so was so so overcast. Until Saturday, morning, that is. Just as the song says, “Such a sky you never did see.” The clouds had all whisked themselves away to Wisconsin, or North Dakota, or somewhere else, and we had that brilliant sunshine just spilling over. The natives knew what a special day it was, too, since they were out in any public place with their dogs, children in strollers, on roller blades, riding bikes, running and just enjoying themselves. We know that soon it will not be this way, and this day was a gift. We did just want to wrap it up and a ribbon and store it, to bring it out one cold and bitter January day, and just remember it.
Boyd and Harald were at the church preparing things for their big dinner the next day, but we all assembled at their home about 1:30. Connie and Steve had been out doing parent thing with Jeffrey, buying him groceries and a new office chair. Beulah Mae was so happy to see everyone. She knew she would find someone at least who would give her a tummy scratching, and Jeffrey obliged.
We all piled into Boyd’s cool car with its satellite radio and headed out. Definitely the day to have the windows open and just let the breeze cool us all off. First stop was the Art Materials store. I took more pictures of the walls and walls of markers, pencils, art supplies, and displays. It’s definitely a place to get the creative juices flowing. Connie had lots of fun just looking at everything. She got even more excited at having the educator’s discount offered to her. Jeffrey picked up some stretched canvases, for his studies, too.
Then it was to Magers and Quinn. It’s a large independent bookseller with a wide variety of titles, and lots of used books. We just hung out for a while, each of us pursuing our own interests. Steve settled in one of the few chairs in the history section, while Connie was having so much fun in the art section. Jeffrey found several books that caught his interest, too. Connie said, very proudly, that she had managed to raise children who were all readers.
Our stop at Penzey’s was short. Boyd needed some peppercorns (they only had about 20 different kinds of them). I could have spent lots more time in there, but it’s not a great general interest browsing shop unless you are into a lot of gourmet cooking.
I think we were all getting a bit tired when we hit Trader Joes. Connie and Steve stocked up on the cheap wine they had heard so much about. Boyd and I were more into snack foods and green beans. It’s a fun place to shop. Their bread is excellent and I do like their organic slant they have to their products.
We all sort of crashed after that, back at the house and just noshed for a while. Boyd had delicious chips, fresh salsa, guacamole, and brie and crackers. We decided on a place for dinner. It took a few minutes, since we did have several choices. Stella’s Fish Shack (which was anything but a shack) won out over Mexican, but just barely. We made reservations for seven. And yes, you do need reservations for six on a Saturday night, since this place has four stories with seating on the roof.
Lots of lively conversation flowed. As Boyd said, Connie, Steve and Jeffrey are like family now. We feel so comfortable with them. They are just good friends. We were celebrating in a way, so many good things, like Jeffrey doing well in school, Connie’s clear CAT scan, life in the fall with good friends. We parted with a gift of Boyd’s award winning crab apple jelly in our arms. Life doesn’t get a whole lot better than this.

1 comment:

Connie Saunders said...

It was a great visit. It's amazing to me that you can meet people on the Internet, become friends, and then meet in person and feel like family!