Wednesday, December 31, 2014

new year's evening

I remember when I was nine years old, the year after my father died, when my brother Doug and his first wife, Pam, lived with us. They had a baby and named her Pieper. Watching Pam get ready for anything was a lesson in femininity, a thing I was in awe of, that was just around a sharp and dangerous corner in my own tom-boy life. On New Year's, she was an extravaganza. In 1963, she had designed and made a golden mini-dress: a long fitted bodice made of some sort of stretchy gold fabric (lamae?), drop-waisted with a brief satin ruffle of skirt and a gold ribbon and bow between. Putting on the dress was just raise your arms over your head and slide into it and it was perfect. The lingerie was white and shiny and smaller than mine even then. Makeup took another hour, Twiggy lashes painted like spiders on her porcelain face. We kept the baby with us and woke up at midnight to rattle pots and pans and wonder what my brother and his beautiful wife were doing.

I never had a dress like that. Once I had a long skirt made of a re-purposed quilted black satin bedspread, covered with roses, that I wore with a red flannel shirt and work boots. It was fun to dance in. Once I had a beaded shirt from the forties. I still have it hanging in my closet, the beads danced off it long ago.

Tonight, we walked over to Clay's Smokehouse on Division and had smoked prime rib with slaw, home fries and garlic sauce, collard greens and garlic bread. Yum. Its a half-block walk from home. It didn't feel like a night for the half-block walk the other direction to the food carts. We have our standards.

Our Christmas was quiet and calm with gifts exchanged and appreciated. It is cold in Portland this week, it will warm in a few days and the rains will come back to stay.

Happy New Year.

1 comment:

nina said...

To you as well. I wish we lived half a block from a place where we can eat that well. I don't wish we had your rains.