Rosh Hashanah, basements, and birds

Over the course of the two-day Rosh Hashanah holiday, I followed along online with the services at Temple Emanu-El in Manhattan (they were lovely), but also spent a little time to do some necessary work in the basement.

It’s always interesting when you are forced to go into a chaotic basement to reorganize because of a flood (yeah, that happened a few years ago, don’t ask), or because there are repairs needed. In this case, we’re getting a new furnace, and we need to move a bunch of stuff, including an overloaded bookcase, to make room for the old furnace to be removed and the new one put in — and we also need to move everything that’s in front of the bookcase. And to do that, we need to find space to put all that stuff.

The evil Empire meets WBAI

So far, in the act or reorganizing, I’ve found some old speakers that I meant to recycle years ago (and which are going into the trunk of my car for the next time I pass a Best Buy), two foldable mike stands, one foldable music stand, and an Empire officer’s cap that I scored at a performance of The Empire Strikes Back. This is the unexpected stuff; I’m not even going to start with the extra juice and wine glasses, the ancient wire recorder, or the Russell Wright dinnerware that I rescued a few years ago from my mother’s house.

Anyway, I couldn’t resist trying on the officer’s cap — which still fits — so Jim took a photo, with the proviso that I also show off the WBAI tee shirt I happened to be wearing (the design is by our friend Sidney Smith).

On Tuesday, Jim and I decided it would not be counter to the holidays to spend a little time walking in a park, and so we went to the relatively recent Shirley Chisholm State Park along the Belt Parkway in Brooklyn.

Shirley Chisholm State Park

I’d been really curious about that park; it was built over landfill not far from where I spent my adolescence in East New York; it took several years for the park to take shape and whenever I drove past, I noted how the formerly brown piles of new ground was slowly turning green. We had a lovely walk (although I had to run back to the car when I realized I left my phone there), including a conversation with a woman about non-electric scooters, and views of seagulls and cormorants. We also killed a spotted lanternfly (inspired by a couple of signs we saw along the way) and tried to get a decent photo of a Yellow-rumped warbler that led us a chase for at least a quarter mile (we never got the photo, but it was a beautiful bird).

And I ended the holiday with a conversation about The History of Soul 2065 that will be edited into a podcast by the Strong Women Strange Worlds literary group, probably sometime in February.

Take care, y’all.


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