NYMysteries  Dec. 26,  2020

George Lloyd Courtesy Ben Crum Law

 A tribute to George Lloyd.

“I can’t breathe.” were the only words I heard George Lloyd say before he died, murdered by members of the Minneapolis police. On May 25, 2020, Mr. Lloyd brought home to me how difficult and dangerous it is to be black in  the USA. His suffering forced me to examine my own prejudice. A black family lives in my apartment building. The father always gets into the elevator first, smiling and wishing all a Good Morning. He shields his big black son from the white passengers’ hostile, frightened expressions. Minute by minute, day by day Blacks have to watch their step wherever they are: in their own homes  (Breonna Taylor), driving a car, existing. “Being black in America should not be a death sentence,” Minneapolis Mayor Frey said. But it is. Thank you, George Lloyd, for waking me up.


Ramallah Friends School was founded over 150 years ago. Its goal was to educate girls. Well done, Friends. As usual you’re ahead of the rest of us.

 Adrian Moody, Head of School, sent this email. I travelled to Palestine two years ago.It was thrilling and heartbreaking. 

  A challenging year has come to an end with the uncertainty of what is to come. All over the world at this time there are many people suffering because of Covid-19. Here in Palestine families are struggling through financial stress, the pandemic and military occupation.   At Ramallah Friends School (RFS) we have had the most unusual beginning of the new school year after our students spent 6 months at home due to the declaration of a state of emergency in Palestine. Our community of 1500 students, 200 staff and hundreds of families have had to adjust to the immediate transformation of school from face-to-face learning to full distance (online) learning to blended learning- back and forth on a weekly basis since March. We have had to adjust and improve all of our educational and community programs to follow Covid-19 safety regulations. Wearing masks at all time oncampus, our students and staff have marvellously succeeded together through the first semester without skipping any RFS traditions.    All school events were cancelled and so our art and music teachers insisted that we transform the traditional Christmas Performances virtual as well. This year, instead of parents coming to watch their children singing Christmas Carols, they will watch them online from the safety of their own homes. As a part of our wonderful community, you are welcomed to subscribe to our You Tube channel to share the joy with our families and their children.   At 151 years of age, Ramallah Friends School has faced numerous challenges as the history of the school is closely tied with the history of Palestine. Over the last century, the School has experienced Turkish, British, Jordanian and Israeli occupation, world wars, closures and has served not only as a school but as a center for refugees and hospital.   Today, our goal is for RFS to remain a safe home for our students and their families. Since the outbreak of the pandemic many of our families have lost their jobs, and we tried to include all of them in our Student Financial Aid Program for 2020-2021, but unfortunately the school has lost funds as well and we are struggling to help our community. You can make a difference. Help us keep our community safe and in school.   At RFS, Community has always been a core value and Quaker testimony cherished by all. And it is these values that are bringing together all members of our community together as teachers, administrators, students, alumni and parents. And all of us are working very hard to get through these difficult times and we know that RFS will get through yet another challenge, as always.
Says it all
Look who’s on the WALL
Palestine viewed from a ski lift

NYMysteries Dec. 5, 2020 Do you love cookbooks? I’m addicted to them. In addition to recipes, they’re filled with attitudes and memories. I have a tiered and tiny bookcase near the kitchen. I combed through it looking for the Judson 1981 Cookbook. No luck. However, pawing Il Talismano della Felicita that I carted back from Italy in the seventies ignited memories of fancy dinner parties complete with triumps and disasters. Chinese cookbooks were bought when I met my Chinese companion. After going to Sicily, I cooked with. Simeti’s Pomp and Sustenance. The photos in 1960’s Women’s Day Encyclopedia of Cookery are gorgeous. Remember that wonderful magazine, Gourmet? I have a stack of them on the third tier. This is from the Judson Memorial 1981 cookbook. It’s an Apple Pie recipe from a 4 year old. I have not included the child’s name because I didn’t have time to ask permission.  

First put applesauce in a cake, then squish it and squash it, then put strawberries and hot peppers in it. Mix it all up, then put 2 vitamins in it. Make a crust with crackers.Plop in the filling. Cook

Women’s Day Encyclopedia of Cookery. Christmas Cookies Vol. 3
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