It's fifty years since I ordered the Platonis Res Publica I wrote about yesterday. My son asked me today about a step I had forgotten to mention. When I had a rather loose contract with my artisan in England, I completed one step of the process by ordering a copy of the text from Blackwell's in Oxford and having it sent to my Dad. So any mistake in the edition etc. was mine.
I described it as the perfect gift. And now, half a century later, there were two more perfect gifts. Within two weeks of each other.
It is common knowledge in this family that Ernie is a marmalade nut. We even made a pilgrimage to the manufacturer of his favorite tawny marmalade last time we were in England. So what a delightful experience for him to open a box from his niece Megan Gottig and find two jars of home-made marmalade and one of lemon curd. Megan explained she had been gifted with a bag of meyer lemons—and what better use to put them to than to make lemon-ginger and lemon-clementine marmalade for her uncle.
Enough for one Christmas, right? But there was one more gift yet to come; this time it was for me.
Things were a little crazy around here on Christmas Day, so it wasn't until the evening that I opened a gift from Ernie, which completed the trifecta of perfect gifts.
Another book—but one written by me. All my blog posts from July 29, 2005 to a couple of weeks ago in print in a beautifully produced book. He used the service Blog2Print. Their banner is on the right of my page. I had used them to produce a book for my daughter-in-law Marcie as a memento of the first two years of the life of her daughter Veronica. It is a great idea for a present. Later I will write of some of the reactions I have had to seeing my words in print. Thanks, Ernie, for such a thoughtful gift.
So, as Christmas recedes into the past, let me tell you how wonderful it has been to have had these three gifts in my life. I trust Melchior, Caspar and Balthazar felt the same way.