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Gift from Hil Part 2 - 2014-12-30
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9:07 a.m. - 2011-01-12
Snow emergencies and surprises!


No, I didn't just post a repeat, it's another snow day. Right now the neighborhood is quiet. Even the plows haven't come by yet. Eventually all the men up and down the block will arise and the roar of snow-throwers will nigh on overwhelm, but for the next little while I'll enjoy the peace and that special muffled quality to the silence that only a new blanket of snow brings. The view from my kitchen window looks like a Christmas card or perhaps a suburban version of an Ansel Adams photo. Flo's white house on the far side of the yard barely shows and all that's visible is the stark architecture of winter-bare trees, every branch distinct. Charcoal strokes of grey against all that white.

Mick's district has an automated phone alert system. The guys went to bed last night convinced they'd be off today, but earlier Mick got up to pee and checked his phone just to be sure. When he got back in bed we had a giggle because this trifling amount of snow wouldn't slow anybody down in Minnesota or North Dakota yet here it's enough to count as a 'snow emergency'. Mick and I don't buy into the hype but are glad enough to have the snow days. Trifling or not, it'd be one messy and nasty commute. If we wanted to live somewhere that considered anything less than 18 feet of snow 'a light dusting' we'd move there. Me? I'm happy to live in wimpy downstate NY where 5" of snow is enough to bring things to a halt. I tossed up a wish to the universe that those who don't have the luxury of staying home from work (nurses were uppermost in my mind) should travel safely and to accept my gratitude for their good work and dedication.

The night world has been rough recently. Yesterday was a blurry smear of vague yet powerful uneasiness punctuated with brief flashbacks of the gruesome imagery from my messed up mind cinema. The grey overcast of the coming storm didn't help things.

What did help was receiving a big box from my beloved Ms Stephanie! The box was light for its size yet I knew that within would be wonderful goodies. I used all my restraint not to open it immediately, my birthday isn't for another 9 days. But after a quick check with her via FB she gave me leave to open it early. Treasures! Treats! Truffles!

My goodness! Luxe lotion and soap that smell heavenly. A funny folk art papier-mâché mask of a witch. A smiling green-faced witch complete with pointy hat and bristly chin hairs that I hung on the kitchen wall straight away. Truffles, as I said. But most spectacular was a handmade 'sharf'. Knitted from silk/cotton variegated yarn in shades of soft green that reminds me of mermaids this beautiful piece of work immediately became my new favorite accessory. Triangular and about 30" wide I spent a happy little while tying and draping it in many ways. Around my head hijab-style. Gathered in the front like an ascot. Slung over one shoulder. The possibilities are many. My only regrets were that I couldn't hug Steph and thank her in person and that I couldn't wear it last night when Mick swooped me off to the diner for dinner. My hair was a mess that I tucked beneath my bright red Blossom hat and the gorgeous greens and beiges of my beautiful sharf just didn't mix well. Next trip out into the world you can be certain I'll be working the sharf and feeling like a queen.

Though while I'm speaking of my goofy Blossom hat, I'm stunned at how hostile other women are about it. I kid you not. All the more surprising because my other accessories get raves and compliments by the dozens. "Oooo! I love your pashmina!" "Wow! Fabulous earrings!" "Wicked cool purse! Where'd you get it?" Boots, belts, scarves, hell, even my hair and women are forever saying nice things about them all. My hat? Nothing but dirty looks and sneers. I don't care, really, but it's just weird. What the heck is it about my dopey roll brim fleece hat that pisses other women off?

Honestly when I wear that hat I feel like a crazy cat lady. Again something I don't mind in the least. My bombshell days are over, so why not enjoy being daffy and eccentric? I like my hat. It's warm and covers a multitude of bad hair permutations admirably. But boy howdy the hostility it generates is astounding. Even Mick's noticed it. He, sweet lover man that he is, insists it's just jealousy. He says I'm ridiculously cute in it and that makes other women angry. How dare I be menopausal and cute? Mutually exclusive states of being.

I'll try to get a pic up later and post it. Maybe you guys can tell me what's so offensive about a middle-aged chick with jowls and crow's feet wearing a funny hat.

In the meantime I'll be here savoring truffles, smelling like heavenly almonds and feeling loved. ~LA

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