My son in Golden Gate Park

Saturday, my son and I went to the De Young Museum in Golden Gate Park. They had two special exhibits – Andy Warhol and Yves Saint Laurent. The Andy Warhol exhibit was mainly album covers he’d done, some photos of him, and films that he had done. I hadn’t realized Warhol even did album covers and films so that was interesting. But it was the Yves Saint Laurent fashion display that really amazed me. I’m no fashionista but the dresses were like works of art, which I guess is really what the fashion show clothes are about, more artlike than wearable. It’d be so fun to be able to just try something like that on, with all those feathers, sequins, and color. 

Sunday did not go exactly to plan, but sometimes you get something even better that way. My sister and I were walking towards downtown Berkeley, planning to enjoy the sunny, warm weather and see what interesting shops we could find when we walked past a doorway where a wave of lively gospel music washed out the door and over us.

We stopped to listen and my sister said “Let’s go in!” I was a little worried that we wouldn’t be welcome just walking into a church in our jeans and tennis shoes. But a couple church women saw us and invited us into The Way Christian Center

We immediately joined in the clapping, swaying, and singing. Every time I thought the song was going to end, the organist would start it all up again. People were so friendly, hugging and greeting me as “sister Mary”. We left the service energized and ready for our walk.

We stopped for coffee, of course, which we enjoyed outside because it was a such a sunny, warm day. Felt so good to feel the sunshine on my skin. Haven’t had much of that at home.

My darlin sistah

My sister and I actually haven’t been to San Francisco yet. We’ve been spending all our time walking around Berkeley and yesterday we walked to Albany, a rather upper crust neighborhood, where we couldn’t afford to shop but it was fun to look.

We picked up Lain in the evening and fed him. (Sis and I had already ate leftover Chinese food in our room.)

Veggie burrito in spinach tortilla

It’s been raining all day today so no walking for us. We’ll be leaving soon to haul the cheese and crackers, cake, and beverages to my son’s art exhibit. Hopefully, I’ll get some good photos to share.
I’m flying to Oakland, CA tomorrow to see my son. He’s in his last semester at the California College of the Arts. His senior art exhibit is next week and I want to see him and what he’s been working on.

It’s funny how I tend to think of my son like this.

When he actually looks more like this (at least last time I saw him).

I thought going to see my son during his art exhibit would be a good idea but it sounds like he’s going to be busy getting his artwork set up and going to classes while I’m there, so I’m not sure how much time we’ll actually spend together. But one of my sister’s is joining me in Oakland and we’ll do some sightseeing and catch up each other’s lives to pass the time.

Anyway, I have to get packing. I’m bringing my camera and hope to get some decent photos and blog about the trip. But it depends how busy my sister keeps me.

My birthday was on Tuesday the 24th. I suppose birthdays are supposed to be a happy time but I felt kind of down. 

One of the things I’ve looked forward to on my birthdays since I found my birth family has been waiting to see what kind of card my Dad would come up with. Not to belittle the other cards I receive from people, because they are wonderful too, but my Dad wrote a kind of cowboy poetry that I always looked forward to receiving.

One of the cards he sent me said,

Happiest Birthday!
Dance like there’s nobody watching,
Love like you’ve never been hurt,
Work like your reputation in in judgment,
Live like you know there’s a hell.
Ride like there’ nobody watching,
And like you’re really expecting to win.
Don’t hold a grudge or try to get even,
I’ve done it and tried it too often,
And now I’ve learned to move on, I’m believing.
Care for the ones who don’t care
You’re better than that, and we all need a break.
Keep your word, don’t break a promise,
Your reputation, for sure, is at stake.
Rise in the morning, like the sun shining brightly.
The world won’t stop nor slow down just for you
There’s life to be lived.
Love, your other Dad

Granted, not all the lines may be original but the way he put them together and added his own words made these cards very special to me and to my brothers and sisters who received their own special birthday cards.

My Dad died last Thanksgiving from cancer. (You can read more about that in Horse Love and Genetics.) So there will be no more special birthday cards from him. Maybe just a new ritual of pulling out the old cards and rereading them. And remembering what a special place he holds in my heart.

I miss you Dad. 

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