NYC, My Heart: East River Ferry Edition

This is Rosa and Vera. Both are Jews who fled Nazi Germany, emigrated to Argentina, and eventually made their way to New York City, where they have rent-controlled apartments, speak four languages, and take long walks every day. I met these longtime friends while waiting for the East River Ferry at 34th street. All three of us were fretting because the ferry were delayed, and bonded when they found out I was a card-carrying feminist who hated Trump as much as they did. “How do people not see this is what happened to us in Germany?” Vera wailed. I felt ashamed that they should survive so much only to witness later generations forgetting everything. “Past is present,” said Rosa, clasping my wrist. Then she complimented my Audrey Hepburn glasses. “With this style, you’ll find a new job soon.” “What are you doing in Brooklyn today?” I asked, admiring her pretty necklace in turn. “Well, we thought we’d sit by the Promenade and then stroll down to Sahadi’s,” she said. “Just because the world treats 80-year-old women like they’re invisible doesn’t mean we don’t like to do things.” Meeting these two birds is why I’ll never leave New York.

Summer Solstice Shine

Everyone has a favorite time of year. Mine is Summer Solstice, or Litha, as it’s called in Celtic circles. (That it sounds like  my name lisped is pure coincidence.) I gratefully accept the lessons that shadows teach us, but most embrace our Mother Sun’s beautiful light. Today she shines longest and brightest upon our lives—revealing who we truly are, not merely how we seem. This is a day of abundance, of lush greens and fresh blooms, of native caresses and first communions. It is a day of planting and harvesting, of seed and flower—of closing the gap between hope and manifestation, fundamentally. The best part? All we need do is breathe in this magic. If you want to get super fancy about it, light a yellow or orange candle, burn some sage, or just murmur your wishes into this eternal light. Divine mama does the rest.

Womansplained

Since returning from the desert, my already limited ability to tolerate mansplainers has evaporated entirely. Exhibit A: I was just cowering at Oslo coffee shop, waiting for the thunderstorm to subside while working on an overdue essay. In sails a former suitor, and by this I mean a man with whom I’ve entertained a mild flirtation for years though I’ve always rebuffed his direct overtures. I call this man The Crossword Bandit because he often fills out the New York Times crossword incorrectly in ink, a transgression some may consider a dealbreaker in and of itself.

 Today he started to hold forth on his favorite topic: the toxicity of any diet containing carbohydrates, “even whole grains.”  He delivered this lecture while staring pointedly at my body, which was looking especially matronly in the tent dress in which I like to write. Suffice it to say I cut him off at the knees. Continue Reading →

"All, everything I understand, I understand only because I love."
― Leo Tolstoy