Unexpected Treasure

20130707-221405.jpgAs I was searching my basement this weekend for suitcases, I found myself in a nostalgia detour. My inner procrastinator happily combed through boxes and Ziploc baggies brimming with the past, and as each vessel surfaced with archives of long-lost treasures (treasures maybe a strong word for old pictures, “Welcome Home Baby” cards, baby teeth and hair, positive pregnancy tests from my first and second born–yes, I kept them–and umbilical cord stumps, but one person’s treasure is another’s trash) another hour was almost surely lost. But then I came across something else quite unexpected.

My Dad taught me from an early age that books, words, music and art were very important. When my friends would be playing Monopoly or Trivial Pursuit with their parents, Scrabble was our family game night…and this is when I was six. He always had WQXR, the classical radio station, playing and would “air conduct” ferociously, passionately and made sure to tell me the composer and the name of what we were listening to. WQXR also aired musical theater scores, and we would hear Rogers and Hammerstein, Stephen Sondheim, Frank Loesser, George and Ira Gershwin, Kander and Ebb and Leonard Bernstein. My favorite was the night they played Rogers and Hammerstein’s Carousel and my Dad spun me around the living room to the Soliloquy

My little girl
Pink and white
As peaches and cream is she…
Dozens of boys pursue her
Many a likely lad does what he can to woo her
From her faithful dad

and when I looked up, he had sweet tears on his face. That’s the way my Dad loved me.

My Dad always gave me books, which was so great, but what was even better was that he inscribed EVERY book he ever gave me. EVERY SINGLE ONE.

So this weekend, when I was walking down memory lane, I though I was looking through a box of baby memorabilia. And then I came across a little book of quotes called “Believing in Ourselves: The Wisdom of Women.” Looking at it, I assumed it was a gift from a friend from my shower when I had my son or daughter, but then I decided to open it up… and I saw this inside.
His writing is terrible–always was–so what is says is:

“What we are
compared to what we can be
is like comparing
the waves on the ocean top to the seas mighty depths.”

Wm. James
(I thought this needed one male quote)
Congratulations and Believe!

When I give a book, I usually write an inscription, not always, fearing the recipient may want to exchange it or not like it. After this, I may rethink that position… You never know what someone may find and treasure.

Related Links:
Summer Birthdays: Remembering My Nanny
A Dance With My Father
Regrets: The Gift I Almost Didn’t Give
Dream Makers


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