A traditional blessing, along with a page from my Ireland sketchbook. Happy St. Patrick’s Day, everyone.
May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
the rains fall soft upon your fields,
and, until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.
Coincidentally, this is also the day that Julia Archibold Holmes became the first woman to reach the top of Pikes Peak, in 1858. But Pike Street in Seattle is named for ditch-digger Harvey Pike, not explorer Zebulon. For a sketch and a story, please see Mountain Woman.
When my daughter was eighteen months old, our family made a visit to the American cemetery at Epinal in eastern France, where my Uncle Doug, a WWII pilot, is buried. For reasons mysterious to us (she didn’t really talk much until age three), she left our side to make her own private pilgrimage among the tombstones, kissing each one before moving on to the next.
If you have not yet visited Tudor Place in Washington, DC, and the mothers in your life (perhaps including yourself) are fans of garden walks/historic houses/afternoon tea, you may want to add it to your Expeditions list. Built in 1816 by Martha Washington’s granddaughter, Tudor Place sits on, unbelievably, five (5!) acres in the middle of Georgetown, and is a green, flowery and bird-filled retreat from the busy surrounding streets.
I post this sketch today because Tudor Place was one of our three-generation (grandmother-mother-daughter) destinations when my mother was still with us, and every visit is a lovely, though poignant, reminder. Happy Mothers Day, Mom, and all you mothers out there. May your day hold flowers and bird-song.