Vesta held her ring. She pondered the holidays just passed and wondered how. How did solstice transform into solemn religious observance and then into frenzied consumerism? She knew how, of course, but it still seemed impossible sometimes. The ring felt solid. Handmade, it absolved her of gluttony, greed, and all those other sins. She smiled. Her spinster sisters weren’t gluttonous and for that she was grateful. They were lovely, ranging from painfully shy to rather robust, and this new one, Scarlett, was a fun quirky addition. Vesta had heard her friend talking Scarlett into throwing off the shackles of the city and joining them in the country. Vesta’s ring reminded her of making the transition herself, and how self-directed and clear she’d been about leaving the university and the city. She thought about the one who’d given her the ring, and smiled again while putting the kettle on. She must call.