Virtual Champagne


Image of the “Cloud Gate” sculpture by Kapoor in Chicago which is commonly referred to as “The Bean”  [slightly altered by Photolera Claudinha]
Today is my husband’s birthday. Congratulations, Honey! Actually, I’d rather bite my tongue than call him Honey or something similar. I could try Pumpkin – I quite like Pulp Fiction, after all. Celebrating his birthday this year, with or without terms of endearment, isn’t endearingly warm and fuzzy. To the contrary, it’s rather sad since we currently live in separate countries.

One of my grandmother’s brothers left Europe to seek his fortune in South America, eventually settling in rural Argentina. For several years, while pursuing hair-raising adventures, he had no opportunity to stay in touch with his family. Later, he established some snail-mail postal connection, consisting of a few letters a year – mostly written by our Tante Gertrud, his patient wife. We on the other hand, Pumpkin and I, have something called Skype. Thanks to video calling, we can ‘see’ each other frequently and today we could even enjoy an impromptu birthday party.


I placed Bevo as a stand-in for Barry and put the champagne in easy reach. This bottle of 1980 Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin, a special edition for the 1986 Texas Sesquicentennial Independence Celebration, is just a prop, we won’t ever open it. Bevo’s birthday crown and the other paper flowers were first created by my sister Diana for another birthday several years ago. The handsome Green Bay Packers candle was a recent purchase at, of all places, a Texas flea market. We always have a birthday candle, it’s long been a family tradition. There were two little presents also. A manly beer bottle cozy in fake ostrich hide by It’s a Diva! and the ‘Frontier Gambling’ historical account of gambling in the Old West by our very own Kerrville author G. R. Williamson, who signed this volume for Barry.

The stage was set, except for one missing item. My lonesome self. But never fear, Skype is here!

Thanks to this marvelous technology, we could virtually celebrate together. And trust me, that’s a whole lot better than not sharing a birthday at all!

Many happy returns, Pumpkin

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