Monday, May 16, 2005

It has been overcast and relatively cool all weekend. It was wonderful! Yesterday was one of those days where you just wanted to curl up and read or watch old movies and I did just that. Read in the a.m. and watched old movies and worked on needlework in the p.m. Steve has been teasing me that we will need two Christmas trees for all of the ornaments that I have been making. We watched Saturday Night Live's Christmas Special yesterday - YUCK!! I don't like the nasty take on Christmas that they do at all. I love the sentimental "schmaltzy" type of Christmas specials.

Saturday night we went to see the Lily Cai Chinese dance group at the Reinholt Center on the University of the Virgin Islands campus. The theater is open air and we had a bit of rain but we were under the small covered area so it was just a refreshing cool breeze for us. The dancers were incredible. I loved the modern dance more than the three traditional dance numbers they did from the various dynasties. There were times the audience was completely silent and that is saying something for a mostly local West Indian audience - they are real talkers and there were lots of children in the audience. Lily Cai trained in the Shanghai Opera House but lives in California now so there was a mix of cultures in the dances she created. It was incredible. If you ever get to see this dance group don't pass it up.

I read When I Was a Soldier, a memoir by Valerie Zenatti this weekend. I shame-facedly admit I know little about the Israeli requirement for all young men and women to enlist in the army right after their bacs. Valerie goes from a typical teenage life of long phone calls with girlfriends, clubbing, hanging out with friends to becoming Soldier 3810159. Her intellect and training prepared her for the intelligence division so I am sure we actually find out very little of what happened to her after basic training, but you feel like she is sharing her inner most thoughts and fears with you. This is one articulate and well read young woman who moved from France to Israel when she was a teenager so she had mixed feelings about the army.

I have a favorite line from this book. She has a gay best friend Gali who lives in Tel Avi who she visits during her weekend leaves. He take her to meet his elderly friend Tzvi Kaminiski who own a bookstore. The bookstore is in no sense of order but he likes it that way - he would make a terrible librarian! Valerie says of Gali - "I like having a friend who, like me, thinks you can't run the risk of dying without having read certain books." What a great line! :-)

Now to weed through days and days of email that I didn't get to while dealing with deadlines.