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My 70th Birthday - Rebecca

It’s been a while. My family, watching my grandchildren, writing, celebrating my 70th birthday, more writing and more celebrating have kept me super busy. Happily.

With her wishes, “Happy Birthday YOUNG lady” my stepdaughter, Rebecca, gave me 2 tickets to the TCM Classic Film Tour, which Jonathan and I took Saturday, the only New Yorkers on the bus.

Columbus Circle: a film history and 4 clips beginning with On the Town (1949), the first movie musical shot on location. Up Central Park West: Tavern on the Green, the Dakota (clips from The Eddie Duchin Story, Ghost Busters, Three Men and a Baby, Rosemary’s Baby) the Ansonia, Zabars (The Sunshine Boys, Manhattan, You’ve Got Mail) and down to Lincoln Center (Westside Story, Moonstruck, Annie Hall). I’ve seen Annie Hall a zillion times, owned it before I owned a VCR—thanks to my friend, Michael, his 40th birthday present. I didn’t know the last scene was shot at O’Neals Saloon, now P.J Clarkes.

Through Central Park, at the Met, down Fifth, at the Plaza: Butterfield 8, Barefoot in the Park, more Woody Allen, Neil Simon, and of course The Way We Were.

Memories…..Barbra, Woody…like the way we were. And are.

A sweet present from my film buff stepdaughter. Her presence-even sweeter. She joined Jonathan and me last month in CA while we watched our grandchildren, told me a secret immediately, and another one the next morning at the Kids Space Museum in Pasadena during a moment alone.

We’ve evolved to this. The night she sang show tunes while I played them on the piano helped. So does her assistance and lack of judgment with my technical challenges. And my understanding of her. She calls me about a ridiculous, reoccurring matter at her job. I get her family and personal stuff. “We’re all second children,” I said at dinner as we noticed similarities her father, my little granddaughter, she and I have.

"They’re so cute and sweet and smart,” she constantly said for 5 days about the kids, in their playroom, at the playgrounds, on neighborhood walks, at the pool and at bedtime.

Rebecca does voices when she reads. Miss Nelson is Missing and everything Frog and Toad have been favorites. Repeats. My grandson and I laugh. “Who is Viola Swamp?” he asked. He knew it was Miss Nelson. He knew it was Miss Nelson when Rebecca read it at our Chanukkah gathering. Asking and pretending he doesn’t know is part of our family lore.

Rebecca got sad her last night in CA after we put the kids to bed. “It’s nice having people care who don’t have to."



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