Tuesday, September 18, 2012


My cousin’s son’s wife’s parents. It’s a complicated mouthful, so I shortened it. To CSWP. As in: I had a lunch date today with my CSWP. Patt and Bill Herzing, whose daughter Kim is married to my cousin Diana’s son, Jim, are staying in Washington D.C. in their Airstream trailer for a few days in order to attend the interment of a dear neighbor at Arlington Cemetery.

The Herzings make their permanent home in Florida now but spent their formative years in Milwaukee, where my cousin, Diana, raised her family and still resides. I met Diana’s children and their spouses when they all came to Washington D.C. in 2010 for the interment of their father, Diana’s husband, Tom, also at Arlington Cemetery. I hosted a luncheon for all the attendees (about 50 people) at my home after the burial, and most of the family members stayed in the guest rooms of my farmhouse for the weekend. Needless to say, I got to know that branch of my family quite well.

I saw them all again when I flew to Milwaukee last October for Diana’s 70th birthday bash. Even though I had not yet met Kim’s parents, I had seen their photos and already felt like we were family, so it seemed natural to the Herzings and to me when Diana urged us to get together while they were in my area this week for their neighbor’s burial.

Of course, I wanted to commemorate the occasion by wearing festive vintage fashion, and I also wanted to wear boots, since violent thunderstorms were forecast for the D.C. area this afternoon. So for today’s luncheon I chose vintage brown leggings by Jacques Morét which were in a box of favorite clothing in my basement which I've sentimentally held onto since the 1970s. I paired the comfortable tights with a cotton top by Forbidden featuring green and brown sequins on a predominantly blue and cream background with blocks of orange (doesn’t sound like it would work but it does) and multicolored bead "fringe" on the sheer, three-quarter length sleeves.  The colorful top, also vintage, was in a box of second-hand clothing sent to me by my best friend's mother, Joyce, at the beginning of summer this year.  It was an extraordinary top in unusual colors so, of course, I was intrigued, wanting just the right opportunity to wear it.

Me with Bill and Patt Herzing in the Library Of Congress Cafeteria
To bring out more of the orange in the shirt, I donned a necklace of branch coral and blister pearls that I found at Baltimore’s Artscape Festival in July, added some orange crystal earrings that I’ve owned for more than a decade and a wide bracelet of orange beads and seashells that I bought during a trip to Nassau last fall. I pulled on a pair of cuffed brown boots by Wendi that I purchased at Designer Shoe Warehouse (DSW) a few months ago, stuck a new orange Dea Dread by Thea Osato of Baltimore (http://DeaDreads.etsy.com) into my hair and was ready to go.
The Great Hall of the Jefferson Building at the Library of Congress
Since I was doing research at the Library of Congress today, that’s where I met Patt and Bill Herzing for lunch. We enjoyed a spectacular view of our nation’s capitol from the picture windows of the sixth floor Library cafeteria. As menacing storm clouds gathered outside, we chatted about family and friends and grandchildren, and then I gave them a quick tour of the Jefferson Building, the original Congressional Library structure, erected in 1897. We were in awe of the breathtaking Great Hall, with its stained glass sky-lights, elaborate Italian Renaissance decor and stunning murals, sculptures and other decorative elements. 
Patt and Bill Herzing posing with the Minerva mosaic

I took a photo of Patt and Bill standing in front of Minerva, the Roman goddess of learning and wisdom. In this mosaic by Elihu Vedder, she is portrayed as the Minerva of Peace and appears as a guardian of civilization with her armor partly laid aside.  Her attention is directed to an unfolded scroll that she holds in her left hand on which is written a list of various fields of learning, such as Architecture, Law, Sociology, Botony, Mechanics, Philosophy and Zoology.  I also took Patt and Bill to the Adams Building, constructed in 1928 in an art deco style, and introduced them to my favorite librarian, Peggy Clifton, in the Business and Science reading room where I do my research.

It was terrific to enjoy a lovely visit with such delightful people, and I am happy to say that we all made it safely back to our respective shelters before the worst of the storms struck downtown D.C. this afternoon.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for bringing them by; such great people, I'm glad you all had a good time! Peg