|April 23, 2000
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April 21, 2000
April 20, 2000
April 19, 2000
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April 17, 2000
April 14, 2000
||It's a rainy Easter. Easter doesn't mean much to me any more. It's been years and years since we went hunting for Easter Baskets. Kris and I would get up first thing in the morning and tear through the house, searching for our baskets and all the goodies that were hidden inside them. Some years (almost all of them after we moved up into our "permanent" house on Pleasant Street) the Easter Bunny would also hide little chocolate eggs all over the house, and we'd try to get all of those we could while we searched for the mother lode.
My sister, Kristan, was the champ. She found hers pretty fast, every year. And she inevitably found mine too, while looking for hers. Mine was always easier to find -- that's because I was terrible at the search. As I recall, some years I gave up, convinced the Easter Bunny had given me a bye. But, my sister and mother would prod me to keep looking, until finally I came across it.
They were real wicker baskets, and mine hand a broken strand on the handle. It's how I remember that basket so well, really. Kris's basket was solid and also had a purplish band around it. Both were filled with fake green plastic grass, and loaded with candies of all descriptions. Reeses Peanut Butter Eggs were big, as well as a bit of fruit always (we always snickered about that), and a huge number of jelly beans (Mom ate the black ones for us), malted milk eggs, a stuffed animal, a book, perhaps some Hershey's miniatures, a pack of Peeps and -- absolutely necessary -- a chocolate bunny. Solid one or two times, but hollow the rest of the time, with candy eyes. We would eat until we felt ill, watching Easter cartoons and claymation "Easter Bunny" specials and the like.
Easter was a perfectly selfish holiday for us. There were no injunctions to be good. You didn't have to share. You didn't have "the real meaning of Easter" shoved at you, even from the Religious community. It was a pure celebration. And it was candy candy candy.
I remember lying on my hardwood floor in my first room, down on Alfred Street. Stretched out, I would run my hands through the fake grass in the basket, feeling a jellybean at the center of the grass and digging to it. Squishing the jellybean in my hand and watching it split, the purple candy turning white where the stresses hit it. I held it and smelled it and ate it and let it melt in my mouth.
Oh, I loved Easter. And we usually had vacation days afterward, and those were nice too. It was springtime, and it was bright and shiny, even though the snow was often still on the ground in our Northern Clime.
One time, when my Sister was in college and she was home for Easter, she wanted to go to Easter Services at Christ Congregational across the street from us. My father's friend and colleague, Doc Morrey, was the Minister. So we dressed up and went over, and heard the story told again. And a few sideways comments about people who only went to church on Easter. As I recall we never went again.
But unlike Christmas, Easter fades with the passing years. I've had no candy at all today, and I've had no green fake grass, and I've had no chance to hunt for anything at all, much less a basket.
But I did go home and spend an afternoon with my parents and with Buddy. We went out to dinner and had a wonderful time, and I was given a large (as in, five gallon or more) pewter stein by them, originally from my Aunt, who's recently moved and is trying to get rid of some bric a braq by giving it to people who enjoy such things, and I certainly enjoy this stein. It's large enough to be an urn if I'm cremated, and it's heavy enough to be used as an illegal foreign object in a wrestling match.
No break tomorrow. In fact, it'll be a busy day. But regardless, it is Easter, and I hope you had a happy one.