How Do We Find the Right One?

Friday, August 31, 2012

How Do We Find the Right One?

In their aubergine gowns the bridesmaids wafted down the aisle one by one, like individual blooms released from a bouquet of violets.  I watched them pass by with a serene smile on my face. They were followed by a tow-headed flower girl who couldn’t stop grinning as she scattered white rose petals along in her wake.  She made me giggle. Then the tiny ring bearer, so solemn and serious as he bore his two golden treasures upon a silk pillow, clearly giving his assignment the grave attention he felt it deserved.  I watched him slowing march past with completely dry eyes.  But then, despite biting my tongue and digging my newly manicured nails into the palms of my hands, when the doors at the back of the church flew open and the beautiful bride stepped out on the arm of her father, I cried.  I couldn’t help myself.  I am such a sucker for weddings.

American society seems increasingly disdainful of ceremony.   From music to attire, the modern Sunday morning church service more closely resembles a pep rally than the worshipful ritual of days gone by.  Even current ecclesiastical architecture seems to regard the holy spires of old as too parochial for modern life, choosing instead to be indistinguishable from the gymnasium, arena or concert hall.   It is rare that we dress to  reflect the holy joy of an occasion and join together to witness a sacrament as old as time but I am grateful a wedding still commands that respect.   We stand as one to honour the bride as she enters the church.  We silently watch the exchange of the rings.  We hear the age old vows newly spoken once again.  We see the first official kiss.  Is there a sweeter symbol of love in a cynical world?  I think society longs for this ceremony in ways that go far beyond curious fascination.  One need only look to the royal wedding of last year to see that this cherished ceremony is one that radiates joyful hope to a great many more that the ones sitting in the chosen church.
After the wedding, I stood outside the congregation of friends and watched as the newly married couple greeted their guests and posed for photographs.  Their happiness filled the air like a fragrance.  Not for the first time, it occurred to me that true love is such a miracle.  In the sea of souls on this over crowded planet, two people managed to find each other and be blessed with the sort of love that longs for forever, that begs to be sealed with an unending circle of gold?  Well, no word but “miracle” could possibly fit.  There are those who claim there is an infinite number of potential soul mates out there for each one of us, but the romantic in me chafes at that notion.  I cannot even imagine a life with someone other than The Songwriter.  But even given the possibility of multiple happy choices, how do we go about finding them?  I realize this is a question with a multitude of answers, any perusal of any bookshop will tell me that.  And though I have now been happily married for too long to allow me to convincingly lie about my age, I have no advice to give.  I certainly followed no plan.  I fell in love.  I got married.  And it worked out, beautifully.  Why?  I have no idea.  There’s that word, miracle, once again.
I thought about all this all the way home, remembering recent conversations with some of my single friends, often hilarious tales of first dates and last dates, tales that made me realize how dreadfully out of touch I am with the fundamentals of the courting process today.  We seem to have traveled so far from the day when the rules were as simple as “never call a boy, wait for him to call you”.  As an unabashed lover of weddings and happily ever after, I wonder... how did my readers meet their true loves?  Did you find your soul mate the first time out?  Or did you perhaps have more than one?  Did you have to kiss a lot of frogs before you found your prince, or princess?
 I love love stories.  
Tell me yours.
And while you’re thinking about it, take a look at how it used to be. 
Courtesy of my childhood idol, Hayley Mills.

Update:  All your stories are wonderful!
Keep them coming!


This space 
love the brick wall (and the cat !!!) ....
 via here
this photograph ....
via here

these chairs .... 
via here

.... and Dee's beautiful baby Claya.


These beautiful shots of my favorite cafe of the moment St Jude on 
Luisa and Jodi's blogs ....
looking forward to another visit there tomorrow ......

this basket cart on etsy 
via Pia Jane's favorites .....

this very promising sign ......
these very lovely (Parisian) stairs ....
.... and this little guy
.... reminds me of my Malcom !!! 
via here

I haven't been posting Friday Favorites for a while, 
thought it was time for some ....
Hope you have a lovely weekend 


Wednesday, August 29, 2012
 Kids and art ....
(one of my favorite combinations)

 always wonderful (and highly original) .....

..... I'd hang this one on my wall in a second !!!


Tuesday, August 28, 2012
 Loving this great (and very child friendly) space in Berlin .....
click on pics for a better look

..... via the always inspiring Freunde von Freunden.


Love this photo of my lovely little friend Kenya at the
 Sydney Biennale ....
I found it on her tumblr .....
you may remember her from this post a while back.


Monday, August 27, 2012
 Our Elvis was looking very glamorous today 
(thanks to my daughters friend who has very long black hair) ....

 and then he got turned into a panda .....

..... he's one very patient and accommodating dog our Elvis !!!

On Holiday

Sunday, August 26, 2012

To one who has been too long in city pent,
"Tis very sweet to look into the fair
And open face of heaven, - to breathe a prayer
Full in the smile of the blue firmament.
John Keats
Sonnet XIV


Friday, August 24, 2012
I love these flowers (not sure what they are called) but they start popping up everywhere when the weather warms up ....
the fragrance is so beautiful and fills the whole house ....

.... it's nice to wake up to the smell of Spring.
Hope you have a lovely weekend

Girls in Yellow Dresses

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Girls in Yellow Dresses
Remaining in the city in which I grew up means the threads of my past continuously weave their way into the tapestry of my everyday life, adding colour and context and allowing my memory to flourish in seamless harmony with my present.   I frequently pass places scattered all over town that call up images of the little girl that was me.  I see her clearly and without much effort which makes it easy to recall her feelings, her fears, her hopes and her dreams as she shares herself daily with the adult she eventually became.  One version of her comes back to me every single time I take the short cut home.  Passing by a certain elementary school, there she is, dressed up like Easter morning in a long, empire-waisted, yellow dress.  Though I was never a student at this particular school, I did have a most uncomfortable evening there when I was about eight years old.  It was an evening I’ve never forgotten, and won’t, as long as I live.  It was the night of my one, and only, piano recital.
I don’t look particularly good in yellow.  In fact, I look rather embalmed in that colour.  So of all the colours that could have been chosen for me to wear on that fateful night, yellow was, by far, the most appropriate, for as I was destined to be more miserable than misery herself, it was only fitting that I would be dressed in a colour that made me look as dreadful as I felt.  Of all the gifts that have perhaps been bestowed upon me, musical aptitude is not amongst them.  I well remember Mrs. Sammons, my piano teacher - she of the jet black hair that belied her advanced years and the insufferable metronome that sat atop her upright piano mercilessly ticking off both my lack of timing and my misunderstanding of the work I was feebly attempting to execute under her watch.  I remember her handing me the piece I was expected to perform at her annual recital.  As I gazed down in abject horror at the spider’s web of black whole and half notes covering the page, I saw a future of desperate practice sessions, day after day, all leading up to my inevitable doom, the public performance.   I don’t remember much about that actual night, apart from the horrible yellow dress, but as I don’t recall any catcalls or heckles, I suppose I managed to negotiate my way through my pantomime of a pianist without an overload of embarrassment.  But the experience taught me a lesson about myself that I’ve never forgotten.  I am not a public person.  Oh, I can muddle through if need be.  But it is not, and never shall be, who I really am.  I quit taking piano lessons before the next recital.
Recently I came across a wonderful online lecture done earlier this year by writer, Susan Cain, entitled, The Power of Introverts.  Because I’m not a shy person, I’ve never really thought of myself as introverted.  But as I listened to Ms. Cain’s insightful words, I recognized myself as clearly as if she were holding my portrait up as a visual aid.  For like her, I was also the little girl who preferred to read rather than be rowdy, who craved solitude, who lived inside books.  Research says that one or two in three of us is introverted.  Yet here in the US, our society is set up to celebrate the extrovert to such an extent that most of us feel slightly guilty when we crave being alone or perhaps choose staying in over attending a party.  As the little girl in that yellow dress, I clearly remember feeling that I was supposed to like being on stage and performing.  Why on earth didn’t I?   Ms. Cain tells us that it’s perfectly alright to occasionally let the phone go to voice mail and to cross the street to avoid making small talk, both of which I’ve done.  And she also tells us that “staying true to your temperament is the key to finding work you love and work that matters”.  I have certainly found that to be true.
This week I’m ensconced in a beach house with a couple of good friends, one of whom I’ve known since my teenage years, one of whom is a new addition to our circle of two.  Both are artists.  Both are introverts.  We split off each morning to our separate zones to work, meeting up for meals and bike rides when we choose.  We have deep conversations over champagne in the moonlight.  Life has been kind enough to teach all three of us to be true to our temperaments and we are grateful it did.  I’m so happy to have learned that lesson very early on, seated at a piano on a little elementary school stage in the South.  I’ll never wear yellow again.


I encourage you to visit Susan Cain’s website to take her quiz on introverts.
  You may find you are one yourself.  If so, I welcome you to the tribe. 
 I myself had a perfect score. 
Take the quiz HERE. 
 You can also listen to her TED lecture HERE
 as well as pick up a copy of her excellent book,
 Quiet- The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking, HERE


Wednesday, August 22, 2012
 So loving Isabel Wilson's Brooklyn loft on 

..... Perfection !!!