Monday, April 07, 2008


This was my first Sunday back at St. Luke’s. It went very smoothly. I donned my robes here at home and Jim wheeled me into the church from the rear, which has a nice ramp. The doors all have stops which can be let down so that getting in is no hassle. Father Art showed Mick where to stow the chair during the service, and Mick got me settled with my stand, seat cushions and music.

I was just in time to see Gerry B get wheeled into the nave as well. She has had an operation on her ankle which has had her in a wheelchair for three months so far. The MDs upscrod in putting a pin in her ankle and it became infected, necessitating a long period of further doctoring and casting. Fr. Art asked us if we would have a wheelchair race after the service. I asked if we could have designated pushers!

It was a blessing to be back in the choir and in the service. I am currently singing alto again, as all the alti except one are away on spring break with kids or grandkids. I am probably stronger as an alto in terms of range, being able to sing the full range expected of alti, whereas the top of my soprano range is thin to none, depending on the day. However I probably make more of a contribution singing soprano in this particular choir because all of the soprani are of the British Bird variety. They tend to twitter. When I add my straight tone the sound unifies and strengthens.

Mick came to get me right on time and wheeled me to the car, thus completing what I can see will be a very pleasant Sunday ritual for us. I changed into my caftan and we had lunch while we watched the first of our three films, Becoming Jane. Anne Hathaway stars in this sweet, slight film about the young Jane Austin. James McAvoy was her true love with whom she almost eloped. The relationships were somewhat muddy. The screenplay was responsible for that, I think. But the cinematography caught a glimpse of Britain that was clear and lucid, pastoral and peaceful. The music was outstanding throughout.

Mick made some popcorn and we went right into our second feature, I Am Legend. Will Smith has the screen almost entirely to himself in this story of a man whose world has descended into the dark ages suddenly because of a virus that kills almost everyone on earth. He does extremely well with this, dominating the screen, staying interesting, moving through a wide range of emotions and expressions. The role reminded me a bit of Tom Hanks’ star turn in Castaway.

However Will’s palette is a far darker one, as he deals with mutant savages and wild animals escaped from the zoo while trying to find an antidote for the virus. The ending is good, and a surprise. And the landscape is entirely original. I have not seen another film with this “feel” to the environment. I thought this a brilliant film and very topical, since the virus that slaughters humanity is a man-made one, designed to cure cancer using manipulated genetic material. I especially enjoyed Bob Marley’s music throughout the film.

Our third film was one by Dana Aronofsky, The Fountain. It was a beautiful film, although so non-linear that I kept getting lost. What century? What persona? Who’s on first? Hugh Jackman and Rachel Weisz were excellent as the researcher and his wife/the conquistador and his queen/the archetypal man and spirit. The film was luscious to look at, almost bewildering in the richness of its imagery. I found it much easier to enjoy after I consciously disengaged my logical mind and let the images flow past my consciousness without attempting to interpret or understand them.

Jim’s work schedule got a blow when he received a telephone call from a customer for whom he has gardened but never mowed. She is in her eighties and her husband has just died. She asked him to mow her lawn from now on. Poor Mick! His schedule is full already, and with the need to drive to Shelbyville and cut Steve F’s grass until his house sells, it is overflowing. However he could not say no.

I feel so proud of him for his compassion, while I know full well that this is a sacrificial addition to his schedule. We talked about it and decided that we would start getting up a half hour earlier each weekday. Mick thinks that will take care of the time crunch. And I can certainly use the extra working time.

We spent the rest of the evening happily watching Star Wars III again on the tube. Mick offered the closing prayer at the Gaia Meditation.