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November 29, 2010

Birthday Girl

Louisa May Alcott
Favorite author, Louisa May Alcott's 
birthday. Born 178 years ago in Germantown, 
PA. Not far from center city Philadelphia.

My well worn copy of Little Women
I still read Little Women, sometimes from start
to finish, other times certain chapters.
Always totally identified with Jo March, 
although I am the oldest in my family and Jo 
is the next oldest. Awkward, passionate, dramatic,
creative and brave. Always getting into scrapes as she
forges ahead. Far from perfect, but so sincere in her efforts.
Thought everyone who read the book identified with Jo.
My English friend, Rosalind and I were discussing the 
book over a cuppa and slice of one of her excellent cakes in 
her suburban London home, one day.
Meg and John Brooke, illustration by Louis Jambor, 

Little Women, Grosset and Dunlap 
It surprised me to learn that Ros identified with Meg, 
the eldest. Soon realized that she really WAS very Meg. 
A nurse, a woman who practices her strong faith every 
day in her dealings with everyone she meets. Mother 
of two, now grandmother of three, married to Rob, 
one of the nicest guys ever, very John Brooke!

My friend Rosalind
(Some day I'll tell the story of meeting Rob for the first time.)
Ros is my reward for having stopped smoking over 
30 years ago. Returning from a London trip with a couple of 
friends sitting back in smoking section, me alone up front.
Just before the plane door closed, a tall handsome woman 
strode in and sat next to me (in non-smoking) in the aisle 
bulk head seat. 
Exchanged "hellos" and haven't stopped chatting since. 
That was 32 or so years ago. 
A medical nurse, Ros introduced me, at first highly skeptical, 
to Homeopathy as well. Soothing aches and pains and 
"airplane flu" with remedies from her Homeopathic cabinet 
when hot tea alone didn't work. Lovely expeditions to Liberty's,
Canterbury, Seven Oaks and Bath. Would never have known
about Katharine Swynford and John of Gaunt without Ros.
A big sister I never had. Meg to my Jo for all these years.

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