In my week of leisure activity I have been all over the place. Today I went to Rolla to visit in-laws and old friends. Despite the dreary weather we had a great day. One of the best parts of my day was spending time with my mentor and friend, Liz. Liz is a former English professor of mine who helped form some of my literary tastes and views. She is not only a lovely and elegant person, but she knows the value of a good laugh. Spending time with her is always treasured.
25 years ago she introduced me to women's literature. Among others she introduced me to Charlotte Perkins Gilman (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charlotte_Perkins_Gilman) who wrote a short story called, "The Yellow Wallpaper." If you have not read her story, it is not long and worth a read. The yellow wallpaper is an important element in the unraveling of the main character's life. I was chilled by the thought of institutionalized discrimination of women and the helplessness of having no rights to protect yourself potrayed in the narrative.
At that time Liz and her husband even bought a painting by a local artist, Margaret Keller, called "The Yellow Wallpaper." I found the painting as moving as the story. Liz knew that the awakening feminist in me had connected with both of these works and today she gave me her painting by Keller. Gave it to me! I cannot thank her enough. This unexpected generosity made my cup run over with love. I cannot lie, I cried.