Tuesday, December 7, 2010

5, 4, 3, 2, 1......

I've been thinking about how I remember things from childhood or even how a child retells a story. Unless someone tells me the full story, I remember strange fragments and clips. It's interesting what you recall years later.

I'm a sucker for live performances. I love the emotion in the moment. As for Burgundy Shoes by Patty Griffin, I prefer the studio version. I'm not certain of the intent or the origin for her of this song, but I always think of her either telling this story as a child or recalling a memory from childhood. I love how she references what she was wearing, how the seat felt on the bus, and the main line is "sun." As you ride a bus, what do you do? Look out the window. :) The middle section of this song brings tears to my eyes and she's just saying "sun." To be completely honest, I passed over this song at first because I thought the intro piano part sounded a bit like a Richard Marx throwback. : / Lucky for me as with most new music, I listen through the album completely once. I usually get stuck on one or two. After I wear those tracks out, I typically revisit the remainder and find a few more that I love. This was one of those remnants for me. I've added the lyrics to the end of this post.

It makes me think of how I remember things from childhood. I experienced my first Christmas not waking up Christmas morning with all of my cousins at my grandparent's home this year. It was strange and didn't feel at all like Christmas. For 26 years, I have waited at the top of the stairs with all of my cousins in age order on Christmas morning intently listening for the "ok" for us to trample down the stairs into the basement and open presents. Yes in my family until you have children, you are still considered one of the kids. :) I remember how huge the basement seemed when I was little. I had these roller skates that attached to your tennis shoes. I would skate around for what seemed like hours down there (probably more like ten minutes), and it felt just like a skating rink. I laugh when I think of how much smaller it actually is. My grandparents have owned that house since my Dad was seven. I love family history and family traditions and family trees. I was exhausted driving home over thanksgiving so I went through as much of my family tree as I could remember in my head and successfully stayed awake. I know.....weirdy.

I went to a Christmas Eve service this year by myself, and it felt like a scene out of a movie where the character feels lonely so every place they look are happy families, a Dad picking up his daughter, a Mom hugging her son, a husband with his arm around his wife. It was all I could do to focus on the biblical story of the birth of Jesus during the service with my head swimming of family. I thought of Mary and Joseph. I know historically December 25th isn't the actual birthday of Christ, but it is when we celebrate it. Taking that into account, Mary and Joseph were away from both of their families too and probably for the first time. I can't help but wonder what they must have thought about all the changes...how selfless they had to be. I can learn alot from that. That strange change in tradition was overwhelmingly blended with my sister having a baby on December 17th!! Talk about two different ends of the spectrum!! It has been quite the buffer to the first half of this paragraph. I can't believe how much I instantly love him. It's difficult to imagine how my sister must feel about him. He's literally mesmerizing. I just stare at him.....haha hopefully I'm not completely and creepily alone in that.... So this Christmas was different than any other in sad AND joyful ways.

It's almost 2011 which yada yada makes us all review the previous year. So much has happened and changed in 2010 for me. I never feel like I've done enough, but it is startling to think of how my life looked January 1st 2010 in comparison to a few days from now. I have rewritten this sentence three times: It is quite possible that I will be moving in February. :c) Stay tuned....I will let you know details when I'm good and ready ;) Happy New Year!! I have high hopes for 2011. You too?

Lyrics to Burgundy Shoes by Patty Griffin

We wait for the bus that's going to Bangor
In my plaid dress and burgundy shoes
In your red lipstick and lilac kerchief
You're the most pretty lady in the world

The bus driver smiles, a dime and a nickel
We climb on our seats, the vinyl is cold
"Michelle ma belle", the song that you loved then
You hold my hand and sing to yourself
Sun sun

The leaves are green and new like a baby
Tulips are red, now I don't miss the snow
It's the first day I don't wear my big boots
You hold my hand, I've got burgundy shoes
Burgundy shoes, burgundy shoes