Sunday, July 14, 2013

La Fete Nationale

I was an utter failure at celebrating Bastille Day.

It wasn't for lack of desire to mark the occasion, only that I had too much else on my plate.

Man, I hate when that happens.

The day began with a high-wire act; walking down Broad Street on my daily constitutional, I spotted a worker walking the length of the jib of the tower crane that's sitting over on Grace Street for the new dorm construction.

I watched for three or four minutes, certain I was about to see a man plunge to his death and then walked away so I wouldn't be the only witness.

My next stop was Sugar Shack Donuts, where a sign on the door stopped me cold.

Sugar Shack is currently closed on Sundays.

I bet they are after that write-up in "Style" last week.

If things were mobbed before, I can only imagine how that piece fed the fire.

As a neighbor of Sugar Shack's, I'd far prefer to see them close on a weekday and be open on Sundays for the 'hood.

Or at least for all those people who were streaming out of Moore Street Baptist Church a block away this morning.

And me.

After lunch with a friend at an undisclosed but overly-filling location, I spent the afternoon working, not my first choice for Sunday afternoon occupations.

If only I didn't like food and shelter...

Late in the day, I took a mental break to water the window boxes in my living room and unexpectedly spotted my lunch friend below, in front of my house.

He'd come to dig up the black-eyed Susans in the back yard, which I'd offered him earlier.

Only now I needed a dinner companion (approaching deadline, you know) and there he was.

How convenient.

I cajoled him into putting his shovel and garden gloves down and accompanying me for another overly-filling meal.

The funniest part was, he told me that after our abundant lunch, he'd gone home and promptly fallen asleep.

Now here I was dragging him along for another food coma-inducing meal.

On the plus side, we overheard a spontaneous, soulful singalong, the likes of which we're not likely to hear again, even as we clogged our arteries.

By the time we returned, it was dusk and I dutifully followed him to the backyard to provide moral support while he dug up my flowers for his front yard.

After being bitten by bugs, but with Susans firmly potted, we decided to go for a walk in hopes of aiding digestion.

It turned out to be the nicest part of the day.

Strolling Jackson Ward, we walked alleys and side streets as lacy, white clouds streaked across the sky just under the rising moon.

Friend, who is a photographer, was taken by the beauty of the evening light, which lent a rich (almost European-looking) burnish to brick walls and house fronts.

Even I had to admit that it was my beloved J-Ward at its loveliest.

As we strolled along Abner Clay Park, he stopped to take pictures of the crescent moon with streaks of pink clouds around it.

It didn't have quite the cachet of fireworks and a glass of French bubbly, but c'est la vie.

Next year I intend to celebrate more fittingly.

I may not have a drop of French blood in me, but I do hate to miss the pleasures of a perfectly good holiday.

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