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Maytime

“I love the Maytime days of spring,
The rippling raindrops’ ting-a-ling,
The drowsy hum of gold-flecked bees
Above the silvered cherry trees.”
“Harbingers of Spring”
by Elizabeth Weaver Winstead

There is nothing prettier than a weeping cherry tree. Tulips have sprouted everywhere. We have some lovely yellow ones in our yard. Early Easter morning, Hubby and I drove to Weymouth where pansies were just 99 cents per flat. I picked out some to put on our porch. When we arrived home, I noticed that a pot, filled with green pansy leaves, was sitting under our upright yew bushes. They had survived our mild winter. We now have four purple pansies in that pot. One year, a long while ago, the pansies on our front porch also survived the winter and had beautiful pansies in the spring. By the way, at the garden shop that we visited on Easter, there were probably two dozen baby chicks under a heat lamp in a tray inside the main building. They were a light tan color and looked so cute huddled together. I fought the temptation to buy one of the chicks, which would soon be a grown-up chicken and then what would I do with it?

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On Friday evening, March 30, Hubby and I were delighted to be invited to the second annual Global Voices Gala, which benefits the inspiring young voices of the Boston City Singers. The gala was held at Venezia on the Waterfront. We were greeted by Melissa Graham, who had invited us to join the large crowd of patrons. The singers are children from 6 to 18 years old. Hubby and I were early so we saw the hub-bub with the children getting ready for their singing. We understand that one of the choirs had just returned from South Africa.

I was so glad to see Charlie and Susan Tevnan, whose daughter is in one of the choirs. Gerard and Ruth Adomunes were also at the dinner and concert. I was so pleased to see my friend Mary (Joyce) Morris and her husband Jim. Our friend and almost neighbor, Pat O’Neill, was also there.

Before we entered the dining room, we saw the children line up on the stairs to the second floor. I think that there were probably four boys in this particular choir. Jane Money, their director, has trained them well because they sounded terrific. They sang several songs, complete with moving their bodies to the music. Then we were invited inside to the dining area. As always, the Venezia’s buffet was great. Following the buffet, a Boston City Singers’ video was shown. Following that, the live auction began, the silent auction was closed, and the winners were announced. Throughout the evening, we were entertained by Ron Reid and the Sunsteel Trio. What a lovely evening this was, with proceeds going to a wonderful group of youngsters, the Boston City Singers.

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It is not very often that Hubby and I go out on a Saturday evening but we had a terrific reason to go out on March 31. Our daughter-in-law Alex was to be featured at Cabaret Fest 2012, presented by the Boston Association of Cabaret Artists. The Cabaret Fest was held at Springstep-Medium Studios, on George Hassett Drive in Medford. Alex gave us good directions so we found the place easily. Hubby, daughter Sue, and I had to wait for the elevator because the hall was on the third floor, with lots of stairs. Son Paul was already seated so we went over to his table. We bought sodas and sat back to enjoy the evening. Paul wouldn’t tell us what songs Alex was going to sing, but we didn’t have to wait very long. Alex led off the cabaret with her show, called “In Love, Longing, and Lehrer.” Her program included: “It’s a Grand Night for Singing,” “Can’t Help Loving That Man,” “He’s My Man,” “I’m Beginning to See the Light,” “Come Rain or Come Shine,” and (one of my favorites) “Moon River.” She ended her segment with “I’ve Got Rhythm.” Alex sang beautifully, as usual. She looked lovely in a black dress with “sparkly” jewelry. Her photo in the program book looked beautiful, also.

There were other terrific singers in Alex’s portion of this cabaret evening, all of whom sang very professionally. During the break we had a chance to see Alex’s Mom Sara, who was so proud of her daughter’s performance. Paul took some great photos during the break. There is even a super one of Sara and me, which I will treasure. It was a wonderful way to spend a Saturday evening. I told that to Alex – that we should do more nice things like that. The studio in Medford was not too far away so we were home in a short time.

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Hubby and I were delighted to attend the March 29 luncheon of the Dorchester Board of Trade, which happened to be the19th time that Mayor Tom Menino was the guest speaker. The luncheon was held for the first time at the Cesaria Restaurant, a great place located at 266 Bowdoin Street. We were delighted to see the mayor arrive but we quickly realized that he was having a difficult time walking because he was using crutches. Board of Trade Executive Secretary Nancy Lafoe, former board president Donna Finnegan, and current president Andrew Wilbur welcomed His Honor to the luncheon.

Because almost everyone had to return to work, the meal was served promptly. Hubby and I had the beef tips, which were excellent. At the luncheon there were three representatives from the Meetinghouse Bank: Bruce Crosscup, Frank Penzo, and Susan Khan. There were quite a few representatives from Mt. Washington Bank: Dianne McBride, Oscar Moreno, Daniel May, and Jonathan Towslee. It was great to see my pal Alan Saks from Dorchester Tire. My new friend Carlos Vargas, who was recently honored at UMass-Boston’s Community Breakfast, came with Jeff Camara and Arthur Hutchinson, from Vargas & Vargas Insurance. Pals Gail Hobin, Alikia Powell, and Werner Kunz from UMass-Boston, John O’Toole, from Olde Towne Real Estate, and Pat O’Neill from the Ashmont Adams Neighborhood Association were there, too. Chris Shannon and Victor Carrara, from the Carpenters’ Local, joined us. So did Sonia Alleyne, from Sovereign Bank, Jim Cawley from Work, Inc., Denise Parsons, from Phillips Candy House, Tony Lopes, from Harrison Supply, and Albert Senesie, from Victory Human Resources.

Longtime friend Barry Mullen, from the Fields Corner CDC, was in attendance. Evelyn Friedman, from the City’s Department of Neighborhood Development, and Joy DePina, from the office of City Councilor Felix Arroyo, came by, as did John Jenkins, from West Insurance Co. My pal Maria Andrade, from Mujeres Unidas, Paulo Amandi De Barros, from St. Peter’s Teen Center, and Michael Bergon, from Eascare Ambulance were also on the scene as were James Wool, from the Sheet Metal Workers, Jeff Thielman from the Cristo Rey High School, Andrea Kaiser, from the Bird St. Community Center, Mark Culliton, from College Bound, and Maxwell Mac Carthy, from Uphams Corner Main Street. So was pal Dan Larner from St. Mark’s Area Main Street. Carney was well represented by the former president Bill Walczak, Susan Kelliher, and Barbara Couzens. Bob Scannell and Maureen Peterson, from the Boys and Girls Club, joined us. So did Erin Anderson, from Go Local. I was so glad to see that my friend Derek Mourad was okay after I heard that a gunfight, involving the State Police, had just taken place outside his business, the Neponset Circle Car Wash. Dan Durant, from the MAFCU, was there, also. I was happy that Father Jack Ahern, from St. Peter’s/Holy Family/Blessed Mother Teresa Tri-Parish, won one of the prizes at the end of the luncheon. There were other members of the DBOT who didn’t get a chance to sign in. The mayor must have been pleased to see so many members of the Board of Trade at this delicious luncheon. The Cesaria Restaurant did a great job.

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I was saddened to hear of the sudden death of 34-year-old Charles “Chuck” Doherty, of Windham, NH, on April 16. I know Chuck’s parents John and Lois Doherty, of Burlington MA, with whom we have traveled. In addition to his parents, Chuck leaves his wife Kori, his children Ryan and Amber, and his brother John Jr. He also leaves relatives in Boston: his aunt, Sarah Ashe and her husband Gregory, and his cousin Karen (Ashe) Doherty. I send my sympathy to his wife, his children, his parents, his brother, and to all of his Boston relatives. It is so difficult for the family to cope with the unexpected death of this young man.

I was also sorry to hear of the death of Mary (Cullinane) Curran on April 24. I knew Mary through her daughter, Margaret Lydon. Margaret has worked in Gerard’s Store for 28 years. (Everyone knows Margaret!) Mom Mary was a resident of the Keystone Apartments and was well liked by her fellow residents. She was even at the Bostonian Nursing Home at the same time I was there after one of my knee surgeries. I send my sympathy to her daughter Margaret, husband Peter, and to her grandsons Peter II, Coleman, and Timothy Lydon. Mary had a very happy event to celebrate last August 11. She became a great grandmother when Georgia Catherine Lydon was born to her grandson Coleman and Amy Flaherty. Georgia is also fortunate to have two additional great grandparents, Steve and Marie Graham. The proud grandparents are Tony Flaherty and Peter and Margaret Lydon. Georgia is also the granddaughter of the late Catherine “Cathy” Flaherty. I am sure if you ask Margaret, when she is working at Gerard’s, she will produce photos of Georgia, who is such a pleasant baby. She smiles all the time.

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I love this saying by Phyllis Diller, which made me think of Baby Georgia: “A smile is a curve that sets everything straight.”