This was a very full (of emotion) day.  Avdi and I went to CRC services, and said mourner’s kaddish for Mom.  I finally got to meet Rabbi Randy in person, and other congregants I’ve only ever met online or seen streaming, or had met once before.  I was literally embraced by strangers who offered condolences.  I almost felt like a part of a Jewish community, after all these decades away.  Here’s a photo of Rabbi Daniel and the drum guy tuning up before the service.  Also erev candles from last night.

Then Avdi and I checked out Left Bank Books, nearby in Central West End.  I’ve ordered gift books from them online for others, in order to support their social justice/queer work in the community, but finally got to do it in person.  It’s an excellent bookstore.  Avdi bought me a book I’ve really been wanting, the first installment of The Expanse, for Mother’s Day.  That should keep me out of trouble for a while.  They even had the obligatory friendly bookstore black cat, who let me take its picture.

Then we explored some of the streets and features nearby.  Lots of indie art galleries, eateries, clubs, and amazing old architecture and landscaping.  It was like being transported to another time and place, but with some obvious new changes happening.  St. Louis is nothing if not full of fascinating historical contrasts and culture.  The weather was perfect, windy with a sun shower.

Then we came back to Avdi’s and I watered the garden, which wasn’t as ravaged as yesterday.  The varmints probably got it all already.  But they didn’t manage to find all the first strawberries!  It’s only early May, but I’m starting to get a hint of how hot and humid it’s going to get here.  I’ll have to warm up to it gradually!


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