Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Female Composers, Food Fantasies, and Felines

I spent a number of hours researching female composers of sacred music. I found three nuns (not "The Singing Nun") who were sacred music composers in their time, though most of their music was apparently only for use in their convents. I also found several organizations dedicated to publishing and promoting the work of female composers. Susan sent me the names of several contemporary female sacred Jewish music composers. I didn't find a huge number, so I'm still asking for suggestions.

I happen to be house and pet sitting for friends who are off in Strasbourg doing the final edit on a sacred book; I must say that their home lends itself to searching of the soul. In every room there are books on sacred traditions of the Judeo-Christian and other world religions. The yard is lovingly landscaped as a charming cottage garden. The location, less than two blocks from a beautifully restored white sand beach on the Gulf of Mexico in Long Beach, Mississippi, is heaven on earth for those who see The Almighty in all of creation.
The "mistress of the manor" not only creates lovely little spots in and outside for contemplation and conversation, she's also taken up nature and wildlife painting, so her home is full of artistic efforts that are quite soothing. She doesn't do much celebratory food preparation, though, so I didn't know what to expect when I took my first peek in her refrigerator.

I spied a foil-covered dish that seemed about the right size for a two-person hors d'oeuvre tray. When I picked it up and felt that it was actually a photo frame covered in foil and refrigerated, I was intrigued and impressed. I thought that my friend had begun to apply her artistic talents to arrangement of food. With great anticipation of unveiling a food fantasy of mouth-sized morsels on a painter's palette, I gingerly lifted the edge of the foil only to find PAINT! It was a painter's palette, alright, with not an edible morsel in sight. Well, at least we had brought leftovers back from our lunch before delivering my friends to the airport.

Before I came here to babysit the house and three cats, Richard asked me what I was going to do all day by myself. I looked at him and laughed, “The same thing as I do all day by myself when you’re working on the PT boat at the museum.” The difference here is that I don’t have anybody to cook for or clean after…don’t even have to get dressed if I don’t want to.

My friends gave me a list of all the things their cats like, like being fed at 4:00a.m. Right! I told them that, after raising children next door to me, they should know that children and pets have to learn my schedule, not the other way around.By tomorrow I may get so lonesome for taking care of others that I might start pampering the cats, but I doubt it.

Richard does get more respect than that. When I’m home, I make him breakfast and lunch before he goes to the boat and supper when he returns. Of course, that’s to keep him from running off with another woman, but you probably already knew that.

The weather here is beautiful and balmy.This is truly a writer's paradise and quite a sacred spot.


  1. Ahhh, the story teller comes out. Great read. Immagreeing with you,animals adapt to MY schedule. hahahaha!

    I would bet it ain't only the food that keeps Richard on the straight and narrow. He probably likes you a little; Plus your poetic mind.LOL Have a great day with the cats!!!

  2. I'm done with house-sitting! Did that once for three months and didn't like it...altho the place was exotic and the building and grounds neat. And animals must take second place on my schedule at all times. Maybe that's why I don't have pets? hahaha