Thursday, August 19, 2010

We still have the small, round table-for-four that stood in our dining room for so many years. It’s in the basement now, but I don’t think I could ever give it away.
    We hitched our kids’ baby seat to that table, its surface bearing countless little nicks made by little hands wielding little spoons and forks. There’s a rough patch where someone peeled away a long-stuck sticker, taking with it slivers of wood veneer. If you look even closer, you can see indentations of handwriting from homework papers past. That table holds history.
    Through grade school, and as much as possible through high school, the four of us ate dinner together. Now, with our son living in Philadelphia and our daughter home from college for just this month, dinner for four is no longer a given, it’s a gift.
    We gave ourselves that gift last night, meeting at a wonderful Mexican restaurant in Northern Liberties.
    We sat at a different small, round table, right next to the wide open windows overlooking the sidewalk. The breeze was nice. The food and service were great.
    The company? Truly treasured.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

 After decades of relying on my feet and my car, I’ve recently added a bike to my list of transport options.
    To ease my way back into bicycle mode, my veteran two-wheeler husband suggested we tool around the neighborhood together, where traffic is light.
    We headed out on a hot, muggy Sunday, and I discovered that riding a bicycle is like, well, riding a bicycle – once you start pedaling, it all comes back to you.   
    One of my mantras is “I have no need for speed.” (I’ve been lapped by my kids on those mini go-kart tracks.) So when we reached the top of a long hill a few blocks from home, I anticipated braking all the way down.
    Instead, I gave in, just a little, to the demons of speed.
    There’s nothing like a bike when it comes to creating your own breeze.