Thursday, November 23, 2017

Happy Hodu

Unfortunately, I wasn't able to get to Wisconsin this time for the first time in several years. My heart will always be there on Thanksgiving, with Auntie D & the Rileys & many wonderful memories. What will I do instead? I've put a couple of Happy Hodus up on Facebook, but that's really more of a reflex. When I was young, my father would go to a hotel somewhere around Russell Square that did Thanksgiving dinner for lonely Americans (my British mother did not feel it appropriate to celebrate an occasion that marked running away from the nasty British people). I checked out that hotel the other day. They had no idea of such a dinner, but did try to get me interested in their Halloween party. So nu, no dinner for me. That's fine - I'm a perpetual turkey-pardoner. 

I was ready to pretend that Thanksgiving didn't exist this year, and then a dear friend posted that she was listening to Arlo Guthrie's Alice's Restaurant whilst preparing her feast. And so, with thanks to Leslie, I'm now listening to 18 minutes of Thanksgiving joy! I used to be able to recite the entire piece. Luckily for you all, in my dotage I remember only random sentences. If you would like to listen to the original, here is a link.

Meanwhile, from my visit to Stockbridge MA in 2008, please enjoy Piglet & the red VW microbus letterbox outside the church, as well as Piglet on the steps of Alice's church.

Happy Thanksgiving (hooray hooray hooray)!

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Great Away Games to Remember

One of the greatest things about being a football fan is the last 30 minutes before kick-off. In that moment, anything is possible. Optimism is high. You have hope. There is no greater feeling than hope! My QPR team kicks off away to Derby County in just under 30 minutes. This photo reminds me of another night when the odds seemed against us, but we were delightfully surprised. COYRS!

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Weekly Football Fix

I wasn't able to get to Loftus Road yesterday, but at least nobody will call me a Jonah for the sad loss to Aston Villa. Sad to miss the chance to take more photos, so here's one from last week. Jordan Nobbs - Arsenal captain and England stalwart - and star for AWFC last weekend in the 3-0 victory against Sunderland. Here, however, goalie Rachel Laws thwarts the midfielder with a great save from a point-blank shot.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Dorrit F Friedlander z"l

Today marks four years since my beloved Auntie Dorrit died.

It is a night I shall never forget - sitting with some of her dearest friends around her bed, telling stories about her adventures. She left the world to the sound of love & laughter, on a cushion of joyous memories.

Of course I miss her dreadfully, but she is still able to let me know her opinion on a variety of subjects!

Someone recently asked me what it meant when we say that someone's memory should be for a blessing. I replied that knowing what our loved one valued in life may inspire us to express and share those same values. Thus our memory of that person is a source for the good deeds that we continue to do.

My aunt was one of the kindest people I have known. All three siblings - Dorrit, Charles and Albert - had kindness in their DNA. This is the blessing I want to share as I remember Professor Dorrit F Friedlander, aleha hashalom.

[NB this was posted on 14th of November London time, not quite the same day yet out west]

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Remembrance Sunday/Veteran's Day 2017

Ideally I am a pacifist. And I acknowledge that I am able to hold such a view because of people who fought and died for my right to have freedom of thought.

There are not many veterans in my family, as they were mostly too old or too young for World War I (I'm still trying to figure out from a couple of letters we have exactly what happened to my grandfather Alex - he may have been a POW in Russia just before the Revolution), & during World War II if they had not been imprisoned or murdered then they were fleeing and living a refugee life. Albert's eyes were too bad for him to be allowed to serve as a chaplain in Korea, although he did try to enlist. However, his twin, my Uncle Charles, went to Berlin with the US Army in 1945, and remained as a reservist for the rest of his working life.

Charles was a physiotherapist, working with children in a Houston hospital. Every Xmas, he would don a Santa suit and bring gifts to the kids (we have some interesting photos with Albert and with me in that Santa suit!). One year, his army buddies helped him arrive in style via helicopter.

Today remembering all veterans and those who fell. Let us not waste the chance we still have to make tikkun olam in this world. Shavuatov.

Sunday, November 05, 2017

AWFC 1-2 Fake Hoops

This is Jordan Nobbs, the captain of the Arsenal Women's football team. Here she is taking a corner during the first half of the Continental Cup match against Reading (known as the Fake Hoops to all QPR supporters). Ultimately, Arsenal lost 1-2, but they will probably still make it to the quarter-finals alongside today's opponents. I love this picture. I think it must be the mother and child in the background that makes it stand out vs other shots I've taken of Nobbs' corner-kicks. 

Friday, November 03, 2017

Singing 1984

Never realised I was such a Top 40 girl, but then 1984 was the year that I tried so hard (and failed) to fit in with my university classmates. It did lessen the bullying somewhat. These days all I really remember are songs that when I hear them I must sing. These thoughts have been triggered by an episode of Top of the Pops from 1984 I just watched. The Weather Girls performed "It's Raining Men" and from the first chord I sang along and realised that I knew all the words. Am having a bit of trouble falling asleep, so here are 10 other songs from 1984 that insist I must sing along:

*  All Cried Out (Alison Moyet)
*  Dancing in the Dark (Bruce Springsteen)
*  Here Comes the Rain Again (Eurythmics)
*  Jump (The Pointer Sisters)
*  Robert DeNiro's Waiting (Bananarama)
*  Shout to the Top (The Style Council)
*  Time after Time (Cyndi Lauper)
*  Your Love is King (Sade)
*  What's Love Got to Do With It? (Tina Turner)
*  99 Luftballons (Nena)

(Songs that didn't quite make it included:  Against All Odds (Phil Collins), Careless Whisper (GM), Hold Me Now (Thompson Twins), Karma Chameleon (Culture Club), Owner of a Lonely Heart (Yes), The Power of Love (Frankie Goes to Hollywood), Girls Just Wanna Have Fun (Cyndi), When Doves Cry (Prince))