Early Bird Lap Swim began this morning, with me as the first (and for a while) the only person in the pool. But here are the fun babies swimming, no doubt friends forever after this liquid bonding.
Yesterday I participated in the Friends Forever Fun Run/Walk (I walked). I love this organization, its slogan ("World Peace...Grown Locally"), and its local program. (Read more here, scroll down to Illinois for Bloomington-Normal press coverage.) In the Life Raft: Israel program, 5 Jewish Israeli youth and 5 Arab Palestinian Israeli youth get to come together and do fun stuff and form friendships by visiting towns in the USA, as it's difficult to do such a thing (in an organizational way, publicly) in Israel. Privately, people get along together well all the time!
Before we left, we sang a song, "Salaam," by Mosh Ben-Ari, arranged by Rick Recht, in English, Hebrew, and Arabic and got sent off by the Song of the Shofar.We walked from Moses Montefiore Temple to the Islamic Center, 3 miles, and it was very hot! We were greeted by friendly faces, air conditioning, water, brownies, pastries, fruit, and a lovely imam, who told us about the activities in the center and answered our questions.
It was a lovely, hot, red-faced, sweaty time, partly on sidewalks, partly on the Constitution Trail, partly on the grass by the side of the road on Gill Street, and I wanted to jump into the pond with the sprinkler in it, but I consoled myself with the thought of Early Bird Lap Swim. And Poet beer. (Not really. I just made that up when I found this picture of my bottle bush, formerly a burning bush, but it died. I hope not from hanging bottles on it! It's growing back, finally, in various places near where it used to be, and also far from where it used to be. How does that happen?) And great conversations with Unitarians along the way....
"You must change your life," said Rilke. So that's what I keep doing. I've been an encyclopedia editor, a poetry editor, an actor and director, a library clerk, and an assistant professor of English. Now I'm a freelancer, work part time in a library, blog "eight days a week," study the random, tend perennials, and listen to birdsong.