Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The Same Moon That's Shinnin' Down On Me...

I don't know why it was so funny to us, but for years it was a private joke between my mother and me. It's from the charming little movie Tammy and the Bachelor starring Debbie Reynolds. While gazing up at the moon it becomes apparent that Tammy has fallen in love with Pete (engaged to someone else) when she sighs with all her heart and says, "Just think, Miss Renie, that same moon that's shinnin' down on me this very moment, is shinnin' down on Pete's tomatoes!" It was so tragic and ridiculous, you couldn't help but laugh. I don't know how it became a quotable quote for us, but it did. Sometimes as a reminder not to take life so seriously, sometimes just out of the blue for no good reason... it never failed to make us laugh. I've tried to explain it to other people over the years, but nobody ever finds it as funny as we did. It was just our thing. Well, truthfully in the beginning it was just my Mother's thing, and over time it became OUR thing. (I've added the song Tammy to my playlist at the bottom of my Blog, I wish I could have found the original Debbie Reynolds version from the movie.)

When Ethan was 2 we lived in a neighborhood where the houses were very close together. You really had to search the sky to find a spot where you could see the moon in between the rooftops, but Ethan's upstairs bedroom had windows that faced 2 ways and usually we could see the moon from there. Before going to bed every night we had to look out the window and find the moon, he would not settle down for the night until he had said goodnight to the moon.

When I moved to Texas away from my parents and friends, I missed them so much. Less than a month after our move when the September 11th attacks grounded all planes, the distance between me and my family came to feel insurmountable. The sky is so big in Texas, you can see forever and I never have any trouble finding the moon in the big, wide sky. One night gazing up at the moon, I remembered that silly saying from the Tammy movie. It changed from campy, funny, to a thought of comfort. I could look up at the Moon in Texas and my family just might at that same moment be looking up at that same moon. After that for several years after we moved I went outside every night to "greet" the moon. Somehow it helped me feel at home until I felt at home in my new home.

So it has been a number of years since I developed my affinity for the Moon, since it became a kind of touchstone for family and for peace. So now I've tried to explain, and understand for myself, just why.

This picture of the moon was taken September 14 on the second night after Hurricane Ike.

Click photo for larger view
CLICK HERE for Take Flight Owl Card with Moon


Post a Comment