Monday, December 3, 2012

2nd Brainard Literary Reading or Christmas Party


I couldn't take pictures of all those who participated in the 2nd Brainard Literary Reading A.K.A. Brainard Christmas Party held last Sunday, December 2, 2012 -- but here are some.

We had a literary reading before dinner. I started this tradition last year because I noticed that during parties at home, guests would come, eat, and leave; or come, eat, watch a game and leave. Now they have to read for their supper.

Those who read were: Michael Buckley (author of miniature men); Eve La Salle Caram (author Trio, A Corpus Christi Trilogy); Michael Genelin (author Requiem for a Gypsy); Paulino Lim, Jr. (author Requiem for a Rebel Priest); Douglas Noble (journalist, retired from Atty. General's Office of California); Pat Rice (criminal lawyer); Hilary Walling (journalist). I read from my third short story collection, Vigan and Other Stories. Kim Holmquist, (stage name Carolyn Kimball) closed the program with an a cappella performance of Oh Holy Night - thank you Kim, you put us all in the Christmas mood.

The personal essays by Hilary and Pat were particularly touching.Hilary wrote about their family's red table and all the personal history tied up with it (from the point of view of the table). Pat wrote about a memorable Christmas Eve at her family's ranch when Santa crash-landed on top of a trailer - or so the children believed. Doug Noble had us laughing as he shared his published travel article about a 34-hour bus trip in Peru. 

The relatives of the readers were there: Mike Buckley's parents Lyn and Sue and his three-year old little girl, Audrey (we limited her to just two cockails). Mike Genelin's partner Loretta; Pat Rice's husband Vern Putnam, Paulino Lim's wife Barbara who brought her famous leche flan (This vanished in record time!) My husband, Lauren Brainard, was emcee- thank you, Lauren; you were funny. My sons were even there - Alex with Juana Campos. Andrew with Swapna Pawar, Andrew's writer friend, Blake was also present - next year Blake, join us.

Guests included: Richard Bakke, Myrna Horton who drove from Arizona for the event, my college chum, Bingbing Ponce de Leon with her accomplished and beautiful daughter Angela. There were long-time friends, Linda and Mike Ross, Diane and Jarlath Oley, Elizabeth and John Allen, Richard Bakke, Linda Venis and husband Gary, Linda Marsa and husband Bill, Akemi Kikumura and husband Gary, Carol and John Devries.

The reading was followed by dinner; I made my famous Beef Bourguignon with my secret ingredient that even French people can't identify (I'm not telling).

Altogether a great combination: literature, good company, food and drink - Happy Holidays to all!

Photos from top to bottom:
1. Mike Buckley
2. Eve La Salle Caram
3. Michael Genelin
4. Paulino Lim
5. Doug Noble
6. Pat Rice
7. Hilary Walling
8. seated l-r: Eve Caram, Linda Venis, Swapna Pawar, Mike Buckley, and Doug Noble in the back row, far right;
9-10. guests with Kim Holmquist at the far right
11. Myrna Horton and Doug Noble
12. Doug Noble, Cecilia and Lauren Brainard
13. Cecilia and Bingbing Ponce de Leon
14. Bottom picture shows Richard Bakke and Kim Holmquist in Burma last April. I'm including this because I wasn't able to take a picture of Kim when she sang Oh Holy Night!

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