Farewell to Ballybeg

The thing about a play, about rocking a baby, about the toast at her wedding 30 years later, about the Northern lights over Mt. Ripinsky following the cast party--  truly about this one wonderful life we have--- is that once it's done it's gone. Yet thanks to our dependence on one and other-- thanks to the relationships we make-- something of ourselves or the thing we created together continues on. That's one lesson dramatic art teaches better than just about anything else, isn't it?  

 "Father Jack" Mundy is back at the Post Office today, making sure we all get our packages, bills, and maybe even a letter or two. "Gerry" is stacking boards at the lumberyard, "Rose" is making lattes at Mountain Market, "Agnes" is at her desk in the Chamber of Commerce office on Main Street, "Maggie" will answer the phone at Freddie's auto repair shop and can help you if your truck won't start, "Christina" will be taking care of her real life baby and getting open gym at the school tonight started a little earlier-- 7pm.  Dear young "Michael" may just sell you a bottle of wine tonight at the liquor store. Only our director, Tod Sebens, is still in the theater, dismantling the set that was our home for two months.

I'm in Juneau with 5 month-old baby James, helping my daughter and her husband stretch the time until he goes to daycare, a little longer. (The other grandmother had the first few weeks that Eliza headed back to work, and I will be here until the school's Spring Break.) And this is what I want to say (all I can say, as James is having his morning nap and I have some breakfast dishes to do and dinner to organize before he wakes), is that stories like "Dancing at Lughnasa" -- stories about families-- no matter what time and place and circumstance- remind us how fleeting, unpredictable, fast-- and precious this journey from cradle to grave is- and how we humans really are one family.

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