Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Midweek, almost. It is thunderstorm season - trees and grass very green, dinner on the deck , which only wants sanding and staining, most nights now, unless of course, storm comes at dinnertime. Tonight during dinner a pair of neighbors Chris recently made friends with walked by with their pet duck (yes you read that right) in a bright green wheel barrow. Of course that caused a good interruption replete with conversation laughter and much quacking on the part of duck - not as much quacking from Liam as I would have expected. On the "small world" side of things, the woman in this couple was the administrator who helped Ruth through logistics a few years back when she started teaching at the community college. She, though closer to my age, grew up on this street and, like Ruth, moved back from the suburbs to her childhood home. Her parents died before she came back, however.

It is a Jewish holiday, Succoth, on which we celebrate having received the Ten Commandments and, oddly, have a tradition of eating rich dairy dessert. Chris served cheesecake, yum. We talked about the Ten Commandments after supper on the deck, named them and discussed which seem the most difficult to follow. We settled on idolatry (not in the literal sense but in the sense of worshiping (overvaluing) things of the world rather than the divine and not bearing false witness in the sense of avoiding giving an intentionally false or partial impression . I like it that our Jewish spiritual practices seem to be casually woven into our lives together these days - not nearly as thick a thread as in an Orthodox home, but present and treasured and just part of life. This feels good to me now and makes me happy that Liam has never known it otherwise.


Diane T said...

What a neat story about the neighbors who have a pet duck. I can just hear the duck quacking, followed by Liam's quacking! Hope you don't get too many strong thunderstorms!

Peggy said...

How beautiful this sounds Victoria. I love thinking of dinners on the deck and your neighbor walking the duck -- I hope Ruth will get a photo of this! I have long admired the way you bring your Jewish traditions into your lives in a casual way. What an interesting discussion on the 10 Commandments. Reminds me of when Bryan was about 5 and would go around talking about "The 10 Commands." Who knows where he got that--probably from some other child in the nieghborhood.

Mary said...

I know I wrote a comment on this before, but I will try to recapture its essence.

When I was a child, we had a neighbor who had a pet duck too. This duck used to follow Billy around, as it thought Bill was its mother. It was really cute.

What fun to think of Liam and this duck quacking at each other.

I do think it is nice that Liam is growing up with your spiritual practics, thinking them just the way that things are....as natural as breathing. Every child should have this, I think. Good for your family for imparting this to Liam from young on. He is indeed blessed.

Victoria said...

Thanks for the loving comments, Diane T, Peggy and MAry. Peggy, the computer didn't let me post your comment for the longest time - thought I had lost it all together, and Mary, I had lost yours before reading it. I would have remembered if I had read about a pet duck in your neighborhood growing up. For whatever reason, I feel vulnerable right now, though happy, and your tender comments, all of you, are strengthening.It especially tyouches me to receive comments on the value of natural spiritual practice in Liam's life as a good thing. I didn't hrow up with that or do it very well for the girls. It feels precious now, and having others recognise that preciousness feels good.