The other day I went back to the river…
Halloween. Late afternoon the square was closed off in town for trick or treaters and shop owners to have the best time showing off costumes and filling their bags. I walked into town to see them because I have not seen kids in costumes in years. The first I saw was our old masseuse, David, all decked out!
We caught up on news from the last two years and watched other costumes go by.
I lurked in a doorway for awhile and then felt like I should just go back home. I felt caught in a threshold of who I was and who I am. Too many memories, too much altogether. So walked back down the hill and poured myself a scotch. Next year I will do better.
I went over to a neighbors house to have wine yesterday evening and she asked how I liked the Halloween town party. I told her how it affected me and she totally understood as she still is adjusting to the loss of her husband. It was good to have someone to talk to…someone who listens and nods in the right places.
The day before I went online to a government agency to seek advice on getting help with the escalating cost of prescription drugs. The second call I made did not end so well. lack of patience on my part resulted in being told to watch my language. Even when I relayed this story to my wine-drinking-sympathizing neighbor, we both fell into a good laugh. Then being on a roll, I told her I called some old lady locally who helps out with senior citizen issues. When I told the woman on the phone what I needed help with, she called me, “honey”. “Don’t worry, Honey, we can get through this together.” And she made an appointment for next week for me to bring in all the necessary papers. When she called me “honey” the rest of the conversation was accompanied with sniffles and maybe a couple of sobs on my part. Two women who listen and get you to laugh is such a good thing.
Then today I walked on the dam and ran into another old lady who used to trek quickly past Lee and I for several years. And we had a nice chat about how I was adjusting to living here. After a brief conversation we went our separate ways and I found my stride getting quicker and longer.
I went to the poetry meeting yesterday and gave the Burke and Wills story to the poet who helped me get the rhythm of children’s poetry. This morning I woke to an email from her about how much her husband liked the story of an aging friendship between two very different beings and felt quite emotional at the end. So another old woman making me feel better. How lucky am I?
The poetry group is so supportive of my writing. Some think I should seek publication in established poetry journals, but I fail to see the point. I think they are very kind to answer all the questions I have about the world of poetry. I seem to be the only one who takes notes. Next week I go to another poetry group and read another new one that needs to be heard by those who really listen to words in lines with spaces where the reader can breathe.
I will leave you with a promise to give a follow-up on the kind woman who calls me “honey”. And here is a piece of writing I did after the poetry meeting.
No One Is Listening
So her voice lowers and slows
to the pace of a recollection
taking its time to arrive.
Something she was saying
called out to a memory, now returning
to comfort an old woman no longer heard.
Closing her book she walks through
their conversations, past her seat
and out the door to wait.
It will be fun to read this one to them and watch them nod in recognition.
One of the men came in for a quick coffee this morning to tell me he was reading his new copy of my short stories. The one titled, What Would Jesus Do?, made him feel sad. I love that he had an emotional response to it.
Oh, and one more thing…my whole floor needs replacing. I asked the builder to come have a look. He did. Told me he needed to call in the man who laid the floor. Me thinking it would take ages for that to happen was a huge mistake. They both came back in twenty minutes. Yep, it needs replacing but first the company rep needs to look at it. I asked if the rep fellow was a nice man and approval would be quick. I was told he would likely blame the installer or the builder because that is what they do. I asked if my openly sobbing would help and was told, “No, the man is an …….”
So after the holidays the furniture and artworks are moved slowly over, floor ripped up and replaced…then furniture moved back . He said we will be starting with the liquor cabinet….appropriate.
Best go and post this.