jeudi, octobre 20, 2011

Mellow Malvern moments

This post is about doing almost nothing -- just enjoying being in the moment.

And that's something I almost never get to do right now, so I'm celebrating it.

Running two households (did we turn off the lights? feed the cats? where the heck ARE my contact lenses), writing on deadline, taking classes, driving kids to and from school -- no wonder I pace or race the sidewalks of Exton Station (when I can) like a madwoman with a caffeine jones.

But on Sunday, I had an hour to spare after church.

The boy was on a retreat, and the DQ's youth group leader had invited her out to lunch.

Yippee! Time enough for stroll the Malvern Harvest Festival.

I love Malvern. We almost lived there when when we first moved back from D.C.

Anthony's, an Italian restaurant with helpings of pasta enough for two guys with a healthy appetite, has been a family hangout for years. It's not so much the food as the atmosphere that makes you feel "at home."

In recent decades, the town has become a bit more upscale. The older homes that line some of the central avenues have gotten face-lifts. Friends have a huge new home on its outskirts.

But given some of the slightly ramshackle, cottagey homes that occupy many of its side-streets, it can't develop too much of an attitude.

Malvern is, in many ways, a family town -- though perhaps haunted, literally, some claim , by the ghosts of slain Irish immigrants who built the tracks long ago.

The air was warm, the sun shining down on the jewelry vendors and local businesses as they gave out candy and key-chains.

I stopped to chat about state government with a college student giving out pamphlets at the table of a local legislator. Spoke to a young man hawking wind power. Looked at some lovely carved bowls.

Buying nothing. Selling nothing. Watching over nobody. Just another face in the crowd. Boy, did it feel wonderful.

Weaving my way through the hordes of children, parents and singles also grateful for the lovely day, I picked up a frozen yogurt and ambled slowly back to my car.

It was time to get back to church and pick up my daughter -- but when I need to take a moments vacation from the many responsibilities weighing on me this week, I can recall that Malvern moment -- and feel the sunshine on my face. And smile.

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