Lafayette, we are here!
Yes, the long journey (or at least its longest leg) is over, and we have arrived safely on the left side of the Atlantic. The dogs survived their ordeal, although they are doubtless plotting all sorts of colorful revenge, and they have even proved remarkably adaptable. They've settled in on a quite friendly basis, for example, with my sister's elderly coton de tulear, a solemn old gentleman who rejoices in the wholly inappropriate name of Fluffernutter (he was a late-in-life arrival at my sister's house, too late to be called something more fitting like Lord Beaulieu Vere de Vere).
So amicable was the household, in fact, that yesterday morning Mr. Muscato and I took a chance and left them all together, and went to the Museum of Fine Arts. I'd not been in years and years, and after the Sandlands, any museum is a chance to jump at. It was lovely. We saw the Egyptian collection, allowing Mr. Muscato to make his usual half-proprietary/half-disapproving noises about the presence of so much of what he regards as family property so far from home (although, even he admits, likely a little better off here than in the sad precincts of the Egyptian museum). We greatly enjoyed the period rooms (always food for thought, and never more so than when one is in between homes). Most of all, perhaps, we enjoyed simply being in a place where we could look at beautiful things, wear shorts, and have a glass of wine in the festive courtyard café (the bacon crumbled on top of the excellent wedge salad was, as it were, but icing on the cake. And actually the cake was pretty terrific, too). Terribly civilized.
One beautiful thing we saw appears above: a particularly fine portrait of that most endearing of the Hindu gods, Ganesha, whom I've always thought of as the patron saint of change, given his stewardship of of doors, of beginning and endings, and of the removing of obstacles. At the moment, that seems very apropos for the four of us, making our way into this next stage of our lives. We see him here with two of his wives, identified as Knowledge and Prosperity; we'll see how much of either we hold onto, but for the moment, all is well.