I think I have a new favorite movie. It’s an oldie – made in 1998 starring Sandra Bullock and Harry Connick, Jr. (Eye candy of the highest grade). It’s ‘Hope Floats.’ As the movie opens, we have a front row seat to the unraveling of the life, family and home of a woman named Birdee (Sandra’s character). Her “best friend” tricks her into appearing on a talk show where she reveals she has been having an affair with Birdee’s husband for the past year. Birdee takes her daughter, Bernice, (played by Mae Whitman) and goes back to her hometown in Texas to stay with her eccentric mother, while the husband apparently continues his relationship with the “best friend.” (Now don’t you wonder; if Birdee’s best friend would do this to her, what will her worst enemy do?) The rest of the movie is a poignant exploration of Birdee’s rocky road to recovery from the betrayal and disintegration of her marriage, within the fishbowl existence of a tiny town, where everyone knows everyone’s business. It’s also a portrait of mother-daughter relationships as seen in the interaction between Birdee and her mother (played by Gena Rowlands) and Birdee and Bernice. We see father-daughter dynamics between Birdee and her Alzheimer’s afflicted father and Bernice and her runaway father. Meanwhile, Birdee is being courted by Harry’s character, who confesses to having been in love with her since they went to high school together.
This movie also has one of the saddest scenes I’ve ever watched and it makes me cry every single time I watch it, which has been a lot lately, it seems to be the rerun of the month on CMT. When Bernice’s father asks Birdee for a divorce, Bernice is determined to leave with him, but he rejects her with cruelty and selfishness, all the while telling her how much he loves her. He drives away, leaving Bernice screaming and in hysterical tears in the driveway while Birdee is left to pick up the pieces.
I like the closing lines; “Beginnings are usually scary; endings are usually sad. What counts is what’s in the middle. Just give hope a chance to float to the top.”
I also have found a new appreciation for the Trans Siberian Orchestra. You’ll remember them for their head-banging version of “Carol of the Bells”, which they entitled “Christmas Eve in Sarajevo.” We have a cd of their opera “Beethoven’s Last Night.” The story, about the death of Beethoven, includes a character who is the embodiment of Fate, represented by a woman. Fate has a deformed son named Twist and it only gets better from there. I can’t begin to describe it, but I do recommend it. You’ll have to listen to it more than once to really appreciate the whole thing.
I can’t believe it, but the mercury got above freezing today! So, I went out and spent some time with Lucy in the round pen. We had as good of a session as we could have, being up to our knees in the snow. She’s catching on to the idea of the difference between “walk”, “trot”, “canter”, “back” and – most importantly – “WHOA.” I remember seeing a headline on a Western Horseman magazine that said, “WHOA is not a Multiple Choice Question.” Lucy’s getting that figured out. ‘WHOA’ is her best thing so far. She’s pretty good at walking. She works pretty good at the trot, though she tries to change direction without being told. Canter needs a lot of work, as it tends to initiate little bucking. She’s going to a trainer as soon as he gets home from California in March.
This week’s memory verse:
Galatians 6:7-8 “Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.”
May I brag a bit? So far – and I know we’re only 26 days into the new year – but I’ve kept on track with my plans. Each day that goes by in which I achieve what I’ve set out to do successfully, adds to my personal encouragement.
Have a good Sunday, everyone!