Francessa, is celebrating her birthday in Vienna today. She is a teacher, researcher, and admitted "hard blogging scientist." Truly, she has one of the most inquisitive minds I've ever known and she delights in life's intricacies as well as its simplicities.
As lifetimes go our friendship is new. As friendships go our connection is real.
When Francessa and I exchanged our birth dates I told her that mine is the same day as Joan Baez, and she said hers is shared with Mick Jagger. When I went to my calendar to write my friend's birthday on the July 26 square, Karl Jung's name was already there. (Jung has been on my calendars since 1985, the year I got sober and read him in earnest; sorry, Francessa, I like Mick Jagger but he doesn't rate high enough to make my wall calendar birthday notes!)
I have a New Years Day tradition of transferring all my birthday notes from the old wall calendar to the one for the new year. I've been doing it since I was in high school. As the years have passed some names dropped (ex-husband, co-workers, etc.) and new ones were added. What has remained consistent are names of living and deceased family members and other people I admire for various reasons. When I see these names it gives me a sweet pause to consider a life that means or meant a lot to me, or to the masses.
There is a Bob Dylan song, at its best covered by Joan Baez, one of those heart songs of mine that, coincidentally, just happens to be one great song to commemorate a birthday...
Happy Birthday, Francessa, and may you stay Forever Young!
An understanding heart is everything in a teacher, and cannot be esteemed highly enough. One looks back with appreciation to the brilliant teachers, but with gratitude to those who touched our human feeling. The curriculum is so much necessary raw material, but warmth is the vital element for the growing plant and for the soul of the child.