I am in the middle of a flight to St. Louis to give a reading. I was reading a New Yorker story that made me think of my mother and all alone in the seat I whispered to her “I know, Mother, I know.” (Found a pen!) And I thought of you — someday flying somewhere all alone and me dead perhaps and you wishing to speak to me.
And I want to speak back. (Linda, maybe it won’t be flying, maybe it will be at your own kitchen table drinking tea some afternoon when you are 40. Anytime.) — I want to say back.
1st, I love you.
2. You never let me down.
3. I know. I was there once. I too, was 40 and with a dead mother who I needed still.
This is my message to the 40-year-old Linda. No matter what happens you were always my bobolink, my special Linda Gray. Life is not easy. It is awfully lonely. I know that. Now you too know it — wherever you are, Linda, talking to me. But I’ve had a good life — I wrote unhappy — but I lived to the hilt. You too, Linda — Live to the HILT! To the top. I love you, 40-year old Linda, and I love what you do, what you find, what you are! — Be your own woman. Belong to those you love. Talk to my poems, and talk to your heart — I’m in both: if you need me. I lied, Linda. I did love my mother and she loved me. She never held me but I miss her, so that I have to deny I ever loved her — or she me! Silly Anne! So there!
Baby Otter vs. Stuffed Walrus
Pumpkin Rice Pudding
2 cups water
1 cup arborio rice
3 cups reduced-fat (2%) milk
1 cup solid-pack pure pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
3/4 cup honey
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon, plus more for garnish
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup heavy whipping cream, whipped
Preheat the oven to 375F.
Bring the water to a boil in an ovenproof 4-quart saucepan. Stir in the rice and cover. Reduce the heat to low and simmer until the rice is nearly cooked, about 20 minutes.
In a large bowl, whisk together the milk, pumpkin, honey, vanilla, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and salt.
While the rice is still hot, add the pumpkin mixture to the saucepan and stir well to combine. Cover and transfer to the oven. Bake until the liquid has reduced by about a third and the mixture is foamy and bubbling, 45 to 50 minutes. Remove from the oven and stir well to combine all the ingredients. Transfer to a large bowl, then cover and chill in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours or overnight. The pudding will keep for up to 4 days in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Serve with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkling of cinnamon.
Ruth Andre - Cradled by the Day
The Rio Caño Cristales - most colorful river (caused by algae and moss seen through the water), Colombia.
View of Rome and St. Peter’s dome from the top of the Spanish Steps.
(Seriously, go to the steps EARLY. Like, before the sun comes up. There will be no one there.)
Piazza di Spagna, Rome