Sunday, February 15, 2009

February 15- The Lupercalia

The ancient Romans celebrated a holiday on February 15th known as the Lupercalia. It was a holiday to the god Lupercus to avert the evil spirits and bring health and fertility to the city. (I have a theory about how our holiday of LOVE ended up on February 14th, but that is another story.) Lupercus, the mythical Roman god, was also the god of shepherds and agriculture. I kind of like the idea of celebrating a holiday to bring health and that also celebrates our farms.

When we moved to this community some 27 years ago now, I would drive by a scenic place on interstate that included a hike up a hill to an overlook. I always had good intentions of stopping to make the hike, and in the approximate several thousand times I have driven by it-- never took the time to hike it, until today. The hill is a killer and definitely gets the heart rate up, but the blue sky and winter grasses made it worth the trip. So sad that it took me 27 years to stop, make the hike, and admire the view.
The path is mostly paved, with a few washouts here and there. (Look at that sky!)
When you reach the top there is a cannon overlooking the surrounding farm land. (So I guess I was celebrating the Lupercal! And you know how those Romans loved a good fight. I wonder what they would have thought of modern weaponry!)

The Mr. elected not to make this trip with me. (Three days of flu this week!) But that is him, waiting patiently for me at the bottom. And now the "why" for the inspiration to finally stop after 27 years:
We haven't seen the girls for several weeks and since I mailed no Valentines, we agreed to meet for breakfast at a fairly new place. The Chef opened in August and is becoming a hot breakfast spot. I had stacked French toast with caramel, cream cheese filling. Hence, the need for the hike! Delicious!!

This place was adorable: lots of dark wood, brick, and fiestaware colors!

These windows caught my eye. There were three of them decorating the inside and bringing the "outside" in.

Great coffee served in fiestaware colored pottery: blue, yellow, and red.

It isn't a big place, but there were lots of bright, blue chairs and huge, street side windows making this a cheerful little place to enjoy a great Sunday breakfast.
Oh yeah, and we did celebrate Valentine's Day. I loved this card that the girls sent us. It seems so appropriate this time of year when all I can think of is a break from the grind. Strange to think that vacation will be here soon, and I will be longing to get back to my classroom and the routine of school.


Shannon said...

I have also driven past that scenic overlook many times and thought about stopping. I remember doing it once while I was a child when my family stopped. I guess I will have to do it again so that my kids can also climb that hill.
I hope the view was worth the steep hike.

A said...

That hike is a good one... Seth and I took it once when we first started dating. We'd been to Milford to camp with 20 of our best friends. Somehow, we ended up being the only ones in his car riding back to Manhattan on an amazingly beautiful Sunday afternoon. As we were getting close to the hill, I mentioned wanting to hike it again sometime - hadn't since I was a kid (remember finding men's underwear behind the cannon... hmmm). Spur of the moment, he jerked the car off the interstate and informed me we'd hike today! The hike was amazing... I realized my massive fear of heights as he convinced me to shimmy out towards the tip of the cannon. On the way down, I convinced him to give me a piggyback ride all the way to the bottom! (not something I think he could successfully do anymore!) It may have been that hike that made me realize that I would love him and marry him someday! Happy you posted about it and reminded me of my memory!

On another note... where's the new breakfast place at? I was trying to figure out by the way the building looks :) but wasn't successful!