The Thrill of the Hunt

Dearest Rachel – One of the particular advantages of still being far out of sorts, with regard to time zones (not to mention suffering from the effects of the food coma kicking in early on in the fourth quarter between New York and Dallas, not that I had any concern about the outcome of thatContinue reading “The Thrill of the Hunt”

Plus Ultra

Dearest Rachel – No, honey, this letter has nothing to do with My Hero Academia, despite that anime making a catchphrase out of this Latin motto. I don’t know enough about the series to comment upon it; I may have been the first otaku in the family, but I know better than to get involvedContinue reading “Plus Ultra”

The Lengths Gone To

Dearest Rachel – I don’t recall the family ordering Thanksgiving pies from Baker’s Square before, to be honest. Or maybe it’s just that I was never tasked with picking them up before. In any event, it never crossed my mind as to what to expect when I got there. I’d planned on picking up lunchContinue reading “The Lengths Gone To”

La Ofrenda Inadvertida

Dearest Rachel – It’s the sort of thing to only think of talking about today, on what would be the Día de Muertos if we were of the sort to commemorate that. Certain concepts only come to mind at certain times of the year, prompted by seasons or holidays, and this is definitely one ofContinue reading “La Ofrenda Inadvertida”

Not Suited for the Season

Dearest Rachel – Halloween was never celebrated much at our place, was it? What with it being on a major thoroughfare, our house was only ever visited a handful of times at best on any given year. and that was before we were dealing with things like the pandemic and social distancing and the polarizationContinue reading “Not Suited for the Season”

The Pull of Responsibility

Dearest Rachel – While you spent much of your life trying to maintain a certain level of childhood (and fairly successfully, I might add – certainly in comparison to myself or nearly anyone else we knew), there are certain aspects of that station in life that leave one longing for the joys of the imaginedContinue reading “The Pull of Responsibility”

Fallout From the Fourth

He who goes forthwith a fifth on the Fourthmay not go forth on the fifth Anti-drunk-driving PSA, as quoted in Reader’s Digest Dearest Rachel – No, this is not meant to be taken literally, as I’m sure you would have guessed by now (not that I have any clue how you keep track of timeContinue reading “Fallout From the Fourth”

A Place for Patriotism

Dearest Rachel – I remember the second time we went to Israel as part of the church group. We were in Jerusalem by the Wailing Wall as the sun set on Friday. Various groups – not tourists, but local Israelis, some religious groups, others quite clearly military units, as could be told from their variousContinue reading “A Place for Patriotism”

To Think I Nearly Forgot

Dearest Rachel – Were you still here, this wouldn’t have happened, of course. I would have made preparations beforehand. I’d have checked with you as to what you would have wanted – and had it in hand to set on your nightstand when you awoke, along with a card (assuming it was something that wouldContinue reading “To Think I Nearly Forgot”

M’aidez

Dearest Rachel – I’ve been told that the distress code “mayday” comes from an anglicization of the French expression “m’aidez,” literally “help me.” Well, once again, May Day is upon us, and I could use some help. You see, while some events – like the balloon that wound up on the driveway on my birthdayContinue reading “M’aidez”

The Mockery of Billboards

Dearest Rachel – I forget if I read much of his stuff before you were a part of my life – I don’t think you introduced me to his work – but you seemed to have an affinity toward the poetry of Ogden Nash. His series on ‘Animals’ was one you favored, but the mostContinue reading “The Mockery of Billboards”

姫初 (Hime-Hatsu)

Dearest Rachel – New Year’s Day in America doesn’t have all that much associated with it, as far as I can tell. Frankly, it’s difficult for most people to engage in anything when they’re just waking up halfway through the day, nursing a hangover. The best most people can manage is to switch on theContinue reading “姫初 (Hime-Hatsu)”

St. Nicholas’ Day

Dearest Rachel – In our phone calls to each other (actually, I’m forced to admit that he’s been the one calling me every single time to check on me throughout this whole ordeal), Lars tells me that today is the day that the feast of St. Nicholas of Myra is celebrated throughout much of centralContinue reading “St. Nicholas’ Day”

Last Supper Here

Dearest Rachel – Just to set the record straight, I put the word ‘Here’ in the title because well, it is the last time I’m going to bother with room service, especially considering I’ve gone through basically anything on the menu that’s interesting (okay, I admit to debating about two entrees tonight, but we’ll getContinue reading “Last Supper Here”

Traditions No More

Dearest Rachel – I honestly thought I could do it. I thought I could just get through the details and activities of the Thanksgiving holiday without being ambushed by your loss. I kept myself so busy, between the work in the booth for the Thanksgiving Eve service the night before, and the preparations for theContinue reading “Traditions No More”

Missing a Name

Dearest Rachel – A few deliveries arrived over the weekend for the folks, as I work on the beginning of the holiday-season shopping list. The last quarter of the year includes quite a few extras for the family that not everyone has to deal with, such as Mom and Dad’s anniversary at the beginning ofContinue reading “Missing a Name”

Improbable Warmth

Dearest Rachel – I suppose I should be thanking you, yes you showed up in my dreams last night. Twice, in fact. The first time, you were just lying in bed here beside me. Just reaching out to me, asking to be held (with, perhaps, the offer of a little more than that). The oneContinue reading “Improbable Warmth”

Costumes

Dearest Rachel – There are so many things to say on this Halloween; so many memories to call up. It was a Halloween I am which I first sat with you in the cafeteria at breakfast, decked out as a denim clad mime, but unable to keep silent. Since I’d made up my face toContinue reading “Costumes”

By A Different Name

Dearest Rachel – Well, color me shocked. I had been informed months ago by the highest authority (which is to say, the local newspaper) that our village wouldn’t be holding Frontier Days over the July 4th holiday. So, when I saw the installation at Melas Park the other day, I naturally assumed that the nextContinue reading “By A Different Name”