2023 Life Logs, Day 16: Observing MLK on a Snowy Day
Date: Monday, January 16, 2023
Weather: More Snow; High 33, Low 30 degrees F
Sunrise and Sunset: 7:06 am & 4:39 pm
Location: At Home in the Cottage, East Falmouth, MA
I hope you agree with me that grandmothers have the right to be proud. Ollie’s fifth grade class was invited to read excerpts from Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech at Falmouth’s National Holiday Breakfast this morning. He knew the family was going to be in Maine snowboarding, but he asked his parents if there was anyway he could come home a day early to participate. He was willing to give up a day on slopes to do this, so Heather drove separately so she could bring Ollie home last night. Unfortunately, it was a tough drive as it was snowing and the slush on I 495 in Massachusetts had not been plowed. But they made it home safely around 11 pm. The MLK Breakfast was at the Sea Crest on Buzzards Bay and was very well attended. I could not have been prouder of Ollie. Only ten children from the fifth grade showed up, but they did a great job. He wore a white dress shirt with a red sweater and his new dress shoes. He was stylin’. After the students recited parts of MLK’s famous speech from memory, Rabbi Elias Lieberman from the Falmouth Jewish Congregation played his guitar and led them in singing, “This Little Light of Mine.” After the student presentation, Ollie joined Heather and I at our table to listen to the main speaker. Most of the other students left, but Ollie had insisted that he wanted to stay for the whole program. Again, proud grandmother. The Diversity and Inclusion Director for the Falmouth Schools was the speaker, and the main theme of his talk was chaos or community . . . which do we choose? And if the choice is true community, are we willing to do the hard work to get there? At the end of the breakfast, we all stood and held hands to sing “We Shall Overcome” together. As we sang, tears were streaming from my eyes. The word ‘someday’ in that song did not make me cry in the 1960’s and 70’s. I was hopeful. Now, holding my grandson’s hand and knowing that 50 years have passed, and I feel like we are no closer to ‘overcoming’, it makes me so very sad. But sadness does nothing. We all need to find what we can do to reach a state of true community with our fellow Americans and people from around the globe. When we started singing the song, I did not readily see anyone on my left to hold hands with. Then Heather moved beside me and reached out to hold the hand of a Black man and his son, a classmate of Ollie’s, who were next to me but at the next table. I never thought to reach across. I think some of my tears were tears of joy watching my daughter reach out. Mothers have a right to be proud as well.
After the breakfast, I went home to play outside in the snow with Shadow. Yes, it was still snowing this morning. The temperature hovered right around the freezing point overnight and today, but it was not enough to keep the falling snow from melting. It was a very wet snow that did accumulate in some places, but it was splotchy. I invited Heather and Ollie to lunch at Shipwrecked, so after playing in the snow with Shadow, I drove back to town to take them to lunch. Ollie loves that he can order clam chowder and sushi in the same restaurant, Shipwrecked on Falmouth Heights Beach, so we (Ollie and I) did just that. Heather had a beautiful and delicious Poke bowl, and we ate watching the snow fall on the beach. Lovely.