Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Poet Extraordinaire

I attended a very interesting lecture at the Smithsonian entitled "William Butler Yeats: Western Ireland's Poet Extraordinaire."

The lecturer was Christopher Griffin.

He focused on the influence of western Ireland on Yeats' poetry.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Such a glorious day! Cherry blossoms at their peak

On most days I am very happy to live in the nation's capital but there are some days when I am more than happy. I am ecstatic! Today was one of those days. Enjoying the cherry blossoms is an experience that ranks high on my list of incredible experiences. Here are some of my photos that, of course, do not come close to conveying the beauty of the Japanese trees and the warmth of the spring sunshine and the excited joy of the crowds from all over the country. Have you ever walked on air? It's a marvelous feeling!

I took most of the photos as I walked between the Jefferson Memorial and the FDR Memorial. I took some from the car (while Andrea was driving). 

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Two Important Birthdays

We celebrated two birthdays at Clyde's Willow Creek Farm - Andrea's and Marcello's. We had a nice time!

 Big A celebrates 80-something
 Marcello celebrates 40-something

 Christian and Christine enjoy the celebration 
(although Christian is very tired after leading his football team to its first victory)

 Colin and Michelle are wide awake and in a festive mood

The Birthday Boy is as cool as a cucumber

Friday, April 10, 2015

An Evening at the Smithsonian

Whenever I look through the publication of the Smithsonian Associates, I always find many events of great interest. I would like to choose numerous ones to attend but I do not have unlimited funds. Therefore, I must narrow down my choices to just a few.

When I saw that Azar Nasfisi was going to be speaking, I jumped at the chance. And I was not disappointed in this event. I had read Nasfisi's Reading Lolita in Tehran and had loved it. I wanted to see this talented writer and courageous woman in person.

Nasfisi is the 2015 recipient of the Benjamin Franklin Creativity Laureate Prize presented by the Smithsonian Associates and the Creativity Foundation. The prize includes a replica in silver of Jean-Baptise Nini's 1777 medallion "Benjamin Franklin in Fur Cap" and a cash award. 

Mary Kay Zuravleff interviewed Nasfisi. Zuravleff is the author of several novels including Man Alive!, The Bowl is Already Broken, and The Frequency of Souls. The exchange was stimulating! Most of the discussion centered on Nasfisi's latest book, The Republic of Imagination: America in Three Books.

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

Swiss Birthday

Andrea, who is usually the quintessential couch potato (Home is where the heart is), wanted to be out and about all day on his 87th birthday!

We first went to our favorite Springfield hang-out, the Swiss Bakery and Cafe (aka Nancy and Tom's Place). We both had our usual grilled cheese sandwiches. They were delicious, as usual.

Andrea with his grilled cheese sandwich at the Bakery

We then went to our favorite cinema in Shirlington Village and saw Helen Mirren in "Woman in Gold." We both liked it very much.

Then Andrea expressed his desire to return to the Swiss Bakery to choose pastries to enjoy at home. So back we went. He chose Apple Strudel and I chose a slice of White Chocolate  Mousse cake. We stopped at Starbuck's on our way home so that I could pick up my favorite drink, a tall non-fat chai. We came home and enjoyed our goodies.

Andrea getting ready to order the pastries and a French baguette

                  Andrea's Apple Strudel

         Christine's White Chocolate Mousse Cake

 Andrea then said he wanted to go out for dinner. I had offered to cook dinner but he was eager to go out again. (Very unusual behavior but I guess he was really feeling his oats.) We went to another favorite local restaurant. We think it is the best Afghan restaurant in the area.

               Andrea with his rice and beef dish

Christine with her Vegetarian Dish: pumpkin, spinach, and eggplant with Afghan bread

                  A close-up of the Vegetarian Dish

It was a wonderful day! But his celebrating is not over yet. Stay tuned for more celebrations on Sunday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.