My grandmother used to call the autumn weather in Connecticut--"sweater weather." And so it is again after this very hot summer in both the Midwest and the East. And of course, we had a bit of extra water in Ames, Iowa. We escaped north for several days because our water supply was not drinkable, among other problems.
But it all seems like ancient history now in the days when the sun slides across us at a comforting slant. What hasn't gone unnoticed is the checking in of former Victoria staffers and freelancers. I haven't seen her since I left the magazine a decade ago now, but Patricia Romero hasn't changed a bit. She is still lovely and lively. (You can enjoy her post-Victoria work at her web site.) She became a mom just about the time I left the magazine, and Emma is now 11! Patricia joined Daniel D'Arezzo and me for tea a few weeks ago. The main topic was Daniel's soon departure to reside in Buenos Aires for a spell. Patricia gave him wonderful advice and introduced him to a friend who has already found Daniel some pretty nice digs in the city. Old ties and networks do pay off.
Heidi Adams wrote from Texas that she is about to travel to Japan and will see Toshi Otsuki. I am so jealous! But I look forward to her report this month and hope it will help me with the planning of my trip--hopefully next year. Heidi was so young and talented she knocked my socks off with her work at Victoria. She and her husband had their own shop for awhile, but she now has other projects to apply her super eye to. She always had a terrific smile and can-do attitude which won my heart.
Suzy Taylor and I keep in pretty close contact, but I have been especially happy to hear of her recent art show in San Miquel de Allende, Mexico. I've mentioned Suzy before--but check in at her site. Her paintings are spectacular and may just be what you need for that achingly empty wall.
An event of the summer was the marriage of Ann Levine's son, Tom. He was practically born in our Victoria offices--truly one of our legacies. Tom and Rachel will live in Albany where they will continue their educations. I have to blink not to see Ann pushing that stroller down the hall...years away from the wedding day aisle. How often we realize that it is our kids who make the leaves of the calendar fall so quickly.
Victoria readers will probably not recall the name Patrick Berry, but he was very much a part of our staff on the advertising side as our production manager. Patrick has tales of how he and I had friendly discussions of where to place the ads in the magazine. After a very successful business career, Patrick took his family to the University of Illinois where he pursued a degree in English literature. (I'd like to think that Victoria has something to do with it.) He's about to get his doctorate and move into the academic world as a college teacher. Bravo!
The nice thing about hearing from these folks was how much the Victoria experience meant to them. It makes me proud of the work we did--and it reminds me that as time passes there is something in our DNA of our good experiences that provides growth and vision.
The long hot summer had it's benefits--a good rest for me as well as a reevaluation of my own work. I don't mean to be a tease, but I am not quite ready to reveal what that means at the moment. I'm in one of those periods where the tide comes in and out--and my boat is not yet sea worthy. But very soon, I'll be filling you in on this new departure.
Do look at the Hooker Furniture Blog--I had fun being a magazine editor again! And don't forget that this may just be the time you met your first best friend--check in at the website and on Facebook for the book that needs some good advocates to introduce readers to its inspirational stories.
And pull your sweater on and take a good walk in the world of autumn.