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Today represented a positive step in returning to my “normal” life.

Catherine deCuir, the talented singer with whom I regularly perform, came over (as she typically does on Tuesdays) to discuss upcoming gigs and rehearse a few songs. We also talked about the progress of the novel we worked on for two years. The Rabbi Finds Her Way continues to wend its way through agents and publishers.

Then we went to lunch at Los Cantaros and split a salmon and grilled vegetable burrito. (At my request, we also shared a Dr Pepper.) Best burrito anywhere!

At 4:30pm I picked up my wife at the Oakland Airport. Sharon had been in CT, NJ, and MD, first to attend her granddaughter’s college graduation and then to visit friends—she hadn’t known I’d be home this early. (Neither did I.) It was great to see her after a 50 day separation.

I continue to hear from friends, old and new, offering words of support. I’ve also received letters from several of the 10 people with whom I carry on a correspondence using fountain pens. I’ve been doing this for over 15 years (see the photo of my Pelikan M600 Souverain, a gift from Sharon), and can only say that having a “pen pal” is not what you may think it is. I found most of my correspondents through the FountainPenNetwork, an organization of thousands of FP enthusiasts. While there is a lot of talk of pens, inks, & paper on the website, my purpose was to communicate with interesting people around the world, and that’s what I do. I’ve also had the great fortune to meet several of them while traveling. I also keep a journal and am not alone in doing so.

From what I’ve read, journaling can be quite therapeutic. This probably explains why I am so well-adjusted and as mellow as I am. (I once told my old friend Ron that in my next life I want to come back as a mellow person. He said I should come back as a Golden Retriever.)

Tomorrow night the Urquhart Memorial Concert Band performs a program at a nearby retirement facility. I am nowhere near prepared and hope the flute section will cut me some slack. No reason why they shouldn’t—they always have before.

@ Oakland, California


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