Good Company

Happy Mother’s Day! It’s the day to celebrate mothers, maternal teachers, female caregivers, and any other nurturing guardian types. While flowers and spa treatments are popular gifts, quality time is an oft-overlooked free gift. Loved ones like spending time together; so if your bank account is scanter than you’d like, make a pot of coffee and just sit and talk while their favorite music plays in the background. Listen to stories of fond memories and the misadventures of youth. You might learn something about your mom (or whomever) that you didn’t know.

A fountain statue at Hampton Court Palace

I don’t watch a lot of television, and my devotion to movies has waned over the years, but I found a new series I love. Binged it in two days (It’s not long, so that’s not as unreasonable as it sounds). Our Flag Means Death is a comedy loosely based on the real-life figure Stede Bonnet, also known as the Gentleman Pirate, an aristocrat who gave up his cushy life to become a pirate. He encounters the legendary (but real) Edward Teach/Thatch, aka Blackbeard, and a number of other interesting figures. The comedy is hysterical, and the drama is well done. The juxtaposition of silliness and violence serves to highlight both. And having the actors use their real accents as opposed to putting on stereotypical pirate ones does something really interesting to the performances. It seems silly, but somehow it works. The relationships are compelling, the characters flawed. I really hope the show is renewed for a second season.

Wheat Field with Cypresses by van Gogh

Here are this week’s suggestions for fun and enriching activities:

  • Relaxing Music: “Shepherd Moons” by Enya. You can listen to it on YouTube or find the album on Amazon or streaming.
  • Soothing Sounds: “Submerged: Ocean Ambient Music” by The Guild of Ambience.
  • Puzzle: Sudoku. You can find the game here along with everything you need to know about how to play.
  • Movie: Stardust (2007). You can find it on Amazon or on a streaming service.
  • Creative Prompt (write, draw, paint, sculpt, photograph, or collage something based on this subject): stars
  • Mythology Lesson: Demeter. Read about her here, and do a little further research if the mood takes you!
  • Short Reading: “The Silent Princess.” You can read it here, or you can listen to it on YouTube.

Try one activity per day, and you’ll be well on your way to enjoying a more vibrant daily round.

The Starry Night by van Gogh

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