#weekendcoffeeshare. Of writing, distractions, and the need to socialize

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*Image courtesy of pixabay.com.  I discovered this Coffee share idea through parttimemonsterblog.com which is why I love this blogging community!  The opportunities for networking are tremendous!  I hope to do this every Saturday.  Seriously, I really needed some socializing today.  Coffee share works like this:

If we were having coffee, I would share with you that it has been a great morning so far!  I’m so glad to sit and share with someone, for I haven’t been very sociable lately.  I signed up for NANOWRIMO and I have been writing my brains out; I am now around 17,000 words and feeling like I can’t do this!  Actually, I am pretty sure I will finish, just not so sure about finishing 50,000 words in the month of November.  If interested, see my blog post earlier today called #NANOWRIMO #characterinspiration. Sometimes, I need a break from writing and I’m looking at other people’s ideas.  My #characterinspiration came from another writer’s idea to explore your character’s zodiac sign.  Awesome, right?

I am so distracted lately, though, by politics, the election, our country’s reaction to the election, and the division still apparent in our country.  I am determined to make everyone I know feel welcome and accepted.  I have had two friends sign off or delete their Facebook accounts this week.  Yes, it is that serious.  So many times, I want to say, “Can we just stop talking politics and just be people now?”  Yet, I do not want to silence anyone.  Obviously, any who are upset are valid in feeling that way.  I want to be upset, but I am not one of the marginalized.  All I can do is stand up for them.  In time I will figure out how.  However, I will tell you, my mother and I can not talk politics in the presence of one another.  Sad, I know.  But it is more important that we love each other, and stubbornness runs in the family, so neither of us is going to sway the other.  We know better than to try.

Another distraction is having to help my son get places.  He had a car accident and will need to look for a new car when things are settled with insurance.  This afternoon I had to take him to the bank and then to pay a bill.  It was not a small trip, and after being sideswiped last week myself, I feel some anxiety when a driver gets too close or I’m going over a winding overpass. Yes, I kind of resent having to drive so far, but I tried not to be too negative.  He is learning a lot of lessons right now.  I am glad to help him pay his bills, as it is a part of growing up. I did mention he could mail it in ahead of time next month. 🙂

But as I said, it was a great morning!  I am a glass half-full sort of gal.  I gave my dog a long walk.  Yesterday, I felt bad because it was his two year anniversary with us and I celebrated with him by, um, letting him snooze on my bed as I wrote, and letting him warm my feet on the bed last night.  Not good enough, I know.  So we had a long walk this morning, and what do you know, it benefitted me as well!  This is part of my issue with NANOWRIMO.  I am not reading a book, and it feels wrong.  Exercise is a must so that I am not as stiff every morning.  And not that I ever clean much, but I had a day off yesterday and didn’t do anything to improve my house because I just wrote and researched.  It’s hard at times.  At November’s close, if I have written more than I did this time last year, I will be satisfied.  I have so many other small ideas that can pack a punch.  I seem to be cut out for serializing; the tone changes, characters have grown, etc. etc.  We shall see when I am done with this current novel.  Honestly, I can’t wait to write a short story again!

Thanks for sitting down for a brief chat.  Was it as one-sided as it seems?  I must be a little jazzed on the caffeine.  There is SO much going on!  Please do share about your goals, dreams, frustrations, concerns, or even your favorite coffee drink today!

Please visit Parttime Monster Blog and add your own coffee share link.  I’d also love to hear your comments below!

Link up at https://parttimemonsterblog.com/weekendcoffeeshare/

The link opens Saturdays at 8 a.m.

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Character Inspiration #Nanowrimo #amwriting

*Image courtesy of pixabay.com. Herein lies inspiration for my character, Tabatha Hansen, a.k.a, Pinky, born on 3/28/1967, who in my book inhabits the world of 1997 to 2000, with occasional visits to the year 2047.  I’ll admit it, I am up to 17,238 words in this novel and I need inspiration.  I need to be in the shoes of my character for at least 33,000 more words.  I may or may not get it all done in November.  That’s okay; it will get done!woman-1774020_1920

This is a source idea I read about online somewhere, for my NANOWRIMO inspiration for Tabatha, a character in two of my time travel books.  Tabatha, a.k.a Pinky, is in her early thirties.  Wait, now I’m writing book two, and she no longer likes to be called Pinky.  She says it’s too childish.  Her hair: not exactly blonde, not exactly dark.  Some call it dirty blonde, while others call it “touched with honey.”  Her body stature: small. She is a picky eater.  Height: 5’6.  She is built like a dancer.  Eyes:  hazel, sometimes brownish.  Maybe amber.  I don’t know; I’m going on the word of her best friend and partner, Milt.  Let’s be glad he remembered her birthday (3/28/1967).  Skin: beautiful.  Tans easily, with dark eyebrows.  Reminds me a little of Ashley Judd.  Just lovely.  Long, skinny fingers on her hands, and toes to match.  Long, thin arms.  Loves to dance.  She actually went to dance school for a while, but also loves art.  She draws, paints, dreams.  In her early thirties, she works in an art gallery because it brings more money than trying to sell her own art.  Prone to moodiness and flights of fancy, yet, set in her ways.  Parents are deceased.  Has one brother, two years younger, who is a little, let’s just say, wayward.  Has his own issues and struggles.  Family is so important to her, and she is also a loyal friend.  Just don’t get on her bad side.   While she loved the Flashdance fashions from the eighties, her go-to wardrobe in the nineties consists of jeans, Doc Martens or Chucks, and rock-n-roll or progressive band t-shirts.  But watch out, she can also rock a little black dress and will dress up for the art gallery when it is called for.

Listens to: Nirvana, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Elvis Costello, U2, Sting, The Police, The Who, The Cowboy Junkies, Smashing Pumpkins, and a lot of music from that alternative/progressive station.

Particularly true for my character are numbers 1, 3, 6,7, 10, 12, 13, some of which almost made me consider making her a Gemini, but that didn’t set well with her. 🙂

Excerpt from http://www.yourtango.com/2015261912/13-brutal-truths-about-loving-aries-as-written-by-aries   (This is the zodiac description of my main character.)

     “The good, the bad, and the Aries.

     1. We’re fiery. We are a fire sign, so this should come as no surprise. I’ve been described as “fiery” my whole life, which after many years of introspection, I’ve come to realize is both a compliment and an insult. (I choose the former.) On the pro side, this means when we walk into a room, we bring a LOT of energy. Mostly good energy. Some bad, depending on our mood. We are the people you want to invite to your party if you want that party to be way more fun. On the con side, we have a lightning-quick temper.

     2. We have an ego. The intro of this piece should’ve alerted you to this fact but I will restate it for your convenience: Aries women need people who both stroke our egos when we need them to (which, admittedly, is a lot) but also can keep us humble. Have fun with that balancing act!

     3. We’re adventurous. We’ll try almost anything once. But if we don’t like it (or we aren’t that good at it) the first time around, we probably won’t want to do it again.

     4. We get bored easily. If you’re not engaging us or keeping up with us or having great sex with us or having a conversation that we think is interesting, NEXT. We’ll be polite about it (we do have manners, mostly), but we’re quick to move on if you can’t hold our attention.

     5. We’re big-picture people. Small details don’t interest us. We think broadly about projects, ideas, and goals and what it will take to get the job done. Minor details are less interesting to us. We’ll take care of ’em if we have to — after all, we value accountability — but we’ll probably do so begrudgingly.

     6. We’re aggressive. At getting what we want, when we want, and how we want it. Please step aside and get out of our way. Best not to compete with us because you’ll probably lose.

     7. We love hard. We fall quickly and enthusiastically and we love with a deep passion. We love love. When we’re in love with you, you will know it and feel it in the depths of your soul.

     8. We’re excited about life. Honestly, we’re excited about everything: travel, literature, theatre, interesting people, the world, you. Most everything excites us and we want to jump-in full-force. That’s why we’re big-picture people (#5) – if we concern ourselves with trivialities, we won’t have time to experience life at its fullest.

     9. We’re loyal – to a fault….. We can hold grudges for YEARS, people. YEARS. And what we lack in physical strength, we make up for in words — we will slay you with our tongue. The enemies of my friends are also my enemies; be forewarned.

     10. We’re assertive. That’s just a nice way of saying that we say almost anything we want to, especially around people who know us extremely well. We might lock it up around your parents or your boss because apparently “restraint” is a societal norm (who knew?) but understand that it’s so freaking difficult for us to not say how we feel. Best to step in and save us when we’re about to explode from polite-ness.

     11. We work really… hard. Hire an Aries, give them something they’re passionate about, and they will work harder for you than anyone else in the room. Caveat: This only works if an Aries is doing work that fulfills and stimulates him/her. Otherwise, all bets are off.

     12. We have no patience. Literally none. We want everything done yesterday and if we can bother to show up to a restaurant/movie/meeting on time (probably early) why can’t you? Do not even get us started on the rage we feel sitting in traffic or in a grocery store line. It’s a physical ailment that has no treatment except cowbell and NOT MAKING US WAIT.

     13. We need our space. We’re fiercely independent, which means you must, must, MUST have your own life. If we feel like a caged animal, we will flee the moment you crack open the door even a smidge. …

Thanks to yourtango.com for these brutal truths about our Aries friends.”

Thank you all for reading!  I thought this was a good strategy that someone else could use, or, perhaps I just entertained and distracted you for a few minutes.  I am on a journey, a journey of the mind, and while I have many distractions like fender benders, my son’s transportation problem, and world/national events (not to mention working full-time), I may not be able to define this journey in numbers per day.  I can only define it by reaching the finish line.  I still have NANOWRIMO to thank for pushing me to go further in my writing life.

A Skeleton in the Closet, a Past, or a Secret Wife? Made for Me, free download, 11/10 to 11/12

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Made for Me, Book 1, sci-fi romance

So, he seemed just perfect for you, but…. there’s a secret wife he didn’t tell you about, he has a history of being in and out of jail, he has a history of mistreating woman, a third nipple, a false identity…

What are your dating non-negotiables?  You know, everything’s going fine until you find this one thing out?  Maybe there were the ones you struck from your life, chalking it up to experience, or there may have been that one you just couldn’t turn away.

Read Made for Me, a sci-fi romance set in the future, and find out how future technology could totally change the awkward first date story.  See how Sampson and Abrielle deal with a first date mishap and a relationship of two people from very different backgrounds.  You can even download Made for Me for free  from Nov. 10 to Nov. 12 at  http://www.amazon.com/dp/B01DZ5230G

Your read and your review are both greatly appreciated!

#weekendcoffeeshare Grateful, 11/05

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Welcome to my inaugural Weekend Coffee Share! I’m climbing aboard for an event posted on parttimemonsterblog.com because it really speaks to me! It goes like this: If we were having coffee, I’d tell you how grateful I am for coffee, and, well, here’s an overall list!
1. I’m so grateful for the busy craziness that is my life right now.
2. I’m super grateful my son got through an accident recently with no physical harm. The car, not so good.
3. I’m so grateful to have a chance to head down to St. Pete today and see my old high school friend.
4. I’m really glad the car that sideswiped me this morning didn’t affect me with more that a scratch. Yes, lots of traffic issues lately.
5. I’m just pumped up about NANOWRIMO and its huge writers’ community. I am participating this year, with 7367 words so far, and today’s thoughts were scratched on paper while I sit in the passenger seat, en route to St. Pete. I am entering this post on my
phone. I know, crazy right? Please pass the coffee!
6. I’m grateful for my teaching job, always a challenge and at times, a huge joy!
7. There is so much going on in November with family, my church community, and friends. I’ll be needing some detox yoga come Dec. 1, but for now, pass the coffee!

And, I thank you for sharing this virtual cup of coffee with me!

Much love ,
Pamela

Out and About, “Echoes of My Neighborhood,” Almost-November entry!

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10-29-16 Bixby’s tail is down; he doesn’t like all the remaining debris from Hurricane Matthew either.  It’s eerie walking by and hearing something rustle inside the stack of branches, and the debris has been all over the place for three weeks.  It seems they are slowly getting it cleared away. Our walk was otherwise very pleasant, though. He even met a dachsund mix that was very friendly!

Since I missed pilates, I took to foot with Bixby for the 2 mile round trip to the post office.  I am determined to stay resilient and healthy, so I had to do something.  What happens right away? Bixby makes a mess on a neighbor’s lawn. Luckily I had a “poop bag,” since rules say I must use one. However, I won’t carry that thing all the way to the post office! A return home to dispose of it and wash my hands puts me off time, so I instead go the other way for a shorter walk, and now I must drive to the post office later. I could’ve just left it, but would I be fined? What are the consequences? I hate that rule. However, if I was the neighbor, I’d likely be unhappy with someone leaving their dogs mess on my lawn too.  At any rate, walking the other way provides some interesting sight-seeing and is a far different view from the walk to the post office.  I’ll share that one at a later date!

Walking gets my brain going.  I’ll start thinking,   This is what it would be like if we run out of fuel and no longer have the use of cars.  Could I handle it?  I’d like to think so.   The geography of “my side of town” would change drastically, though.  It would certainly decrease.  It’s neat though, as you walk along, you notice things you normally just breeze by when traveling by car.  I can walk fast, but not so fast I can’t notice my surroundings!

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Above is a family-owned meat shop that has been a mainstay in my side of town for years.  It’s really neat to go inside; there is a small country store feel to it!

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The view on this route is lovely, although nature is fenced in.  It is well-manicured and evidently belongs to the owners of this particular neighborhood.  A fenced in forest, quite interesting.

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This is one of the retirement communities in our area.  There are probably three on this road.  Bixby stopped to sniff this lovely foliage, but would not pose once I got the camera out.  I won’t complain since he is usually quite cooperative!

I only took a few pictures, since my main objective was to get a good, brisk walk. Much as a girl can do that while stopping every few minutes when her canine companion needs to sniff something or mark his spot.  He is a wonderful companion, though, and he gets me outdoors a lot.  These longer treks get boring with no one to talk to, so Bixby solves that dilemma.  Well, he doesn’t talk, but he does communicate.  He gives me those looks, he stops, he notices things that I don’t and takes me to another level of living.  God bless him.

“Echoes of My Neighborhood” is a weekly blog topic started by Jacqueline Oby-Ikocha at http://acookingpotandtwistedtales.com.  You can find some of her “Echoes of My Neighborhood” posts at http://acookingpotandtwistedtales.com/category/travel-2/dubai/echos-of-my-neighbourhood/  Jacqueline lives in Dubai and has quite an interesting neighborhood!  You should go and check out her blog.

 

 

“The Gypsy’s Wrap,” an eerie tale of the search for youth. #shortstories

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Originally published, 2006, by Pamela Schloesser Canepa.  All rights reserved.

The Gypsy’s Wrap

Jeff Hayden noticed the alert eyes of a young blond girl watching him from the park bench. They were especially intent for the eyes of a girl of about 5 to 6 years old. Perhaps she knew him? He couldn’t recall, but stopped to say hi.

He was a thirty-five year old journalist, with short dark hair and dark intense eyes. This was the year he finally decided to start running again, since the occasional partaking of beer was starting to show on his waist line. Being a single guy without a serious girlfriend, he definitely had the time. So here he was on this warm October day in Jacksonville, enjoying the slight breeze that motivated his run. He needed to stop and gather his breath.

“Hi,” he said to the little girl on the bench wearing a red jumper and white tights. She had a blonde bob, and deep green eyes. She looked so familiar.

“Hi, there,” she replied, with a smile.

“I had to catch my breath.” He didn’t know how to broach his question without seeming creepy. “Do I know your parents?” He asked.

“Don’t know. But I know you. You’re a journalist, and your name is Jeff Hayden. I’m Renee.”

His jaw dropped. She knows my name, he thought. Whose child is she?

“How do you know me?”

“Aren’t those butterflies so pretty?” She asked. “And my shoes are brand new! My mommy bought them for me yesterday. Excuse me if I get distracted easily.”

These were big words for a girl her age. Why was she out here alone? Where was her mommy now?

“Oh, but your question. Umm,” she hesitated, swinging her legs on the park bench, since they didn’t quite reach the ground. “I have to tell you a story about a teacher I knew. It might explain this.”

“Okay,” he said, perplexed.

“It’s Ms. Finney.”

Jeff recalled Ms. Finney, a teacher he had actually been seeing for a while before he went after a “dream job” in New York, only to return jaded to the arms of a 21 year old college student, a consolation prize. Never did he call Renee upon his return. His memories of her, however, were fond. A good gal, fun sense of humor. She was a romantic conquest that never bloomed into a full-fledged relationship. They had simply fallen out of touch when he moved, and never re-connected when he got back. Something he at times regretted, but only when the fun with 21 year old Cindy faded away. A long-distance relationship was not something he wanted with Renee, and Cindy was a welcome distraction, full of energy, a clubbing gal with non -stop sex appeal pursuing a marketing degree, very bold and confident. He suddenly thought this little girl might be related to Renee. There was an uncanny resemblance.

“Yes, I know her. So, tell me your story.” He stepped over from the water fountain, then returned to the bench, ready for a short break from running. He found himself in awe of the vocabulary this girl possessed, as she looked up and began her story.

     “Ms. Finney was a little bored with her life. You see, she had been divorced 8 years, she was 38, and she didn’t know if she ever wanted to be married again. She knew she didn’t want to be alone. She somehow still wished to meet her “true” love. She enjoyed fun times with her son, and she also had her dancing lessons she took on her own time. She just knew she wanted more. She was pretty open-minded, though not crazy, but very accepting of people different from her. She enjoyed her job of teaching, but always strove to have a life of her own outside of the job also. It was a long weekend in late September when she decided to take a short trip.

     Her son was with her ex-husband for a five day weekend. So Ms. Finney got in her car to drive up to the hills in New York. Her dad lived up there. She thought she might surprise him. On the way there, she stopped in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina to stay for the night. She called her father about her visit. Upon finding out he was yet again traveling with work, she hung up the phone, disappointed.

     There was a little carnival going on there. She walked through, enjoying the sights and smells of carnival food. She found a gypsy’s tent. The sign said, ‘Proven to be able to reverse the aging process.’ Ms. Finney was a fairly curious sort, and she didn’t like the thought of approaching 40. She stepped into the tent.

    ‘Forty dollars,’ said the gypsy, in heavily accented English.

     Thinking that must scare a lot of the customers away, Ms. Finney said ‘What the heck,’ and placed two twenties in the gypsy’s palm.

    ‘You vant the age reversal,’ the gypsy stated, not asking, but declaring.

    ‘Um, yeah sure,’ answered Ms. Finney. Is my age that obvious?

    “Here, for you,’ the gypsy said as she dipped a long scarf into several different bowls of dye. The result was a very colorful scarf.

     “Is perfect for wrap, a shawl, scarf, head wrap. See mine?’ She pointed.

     There is no way she could be a living advertisement for the age reversal, thought Ms. Finney, stifling a giggle.

     ‘The dye is special,’ the gypsy continued. ‘Gives you youth, reverse your aging. Anytime you wear, it takes several years off your age.’

     Ms. Finney smiled and accepted the wrap, noting how it strangely was all dry, no wet dye. She shuddered.

     “No, is good,’ swore the gypsy. ‘I’m 50 year, you wouldn’t know it.’

     Ignoring that claim, Ms. Finney took the scarf and wore it, admiring the colors. It matched, of course, since it contained almost every color imaginable, and it gave her a bit of a bohemian look. She did a little spin. ‘And it’s pretty, too.’ She smiled, thanked the woman, and left.

     Back at home, Ms. Finney didn’t think much about the scarf, until she wore it on a date with her friend Scott. Jan and Myra were also there, at the karaoke bar.

    ‘Sorry, I have check your id,’ the waitress said, when Ms Finney ordered a glass of wine. Smiling broadly, she took out her id with a flourish, thanking the waitress. She also realized no one else had been carded, although two of her friends were slightly younger than she.

     When she got home, she took off the scarf, and thought about being carded. Age is all a state of mind, she thought. When I wear the scarf, I’m going to feel younger. She always took great care to not look her age, to dress slightly more ‘hip’ than a woman of 38 years. At this point, she felt the scarf was well worth the forty dollars she had spent.

     She wore the scarf to school one day. A new student asked her, ‘Where’s the teacher?’ Ms. Finney beamed, and pointed to herself, taking a bow.

     ‘Man, I thought you were a student!’ the new girl said, red-faced.

     Ms Finney, and everyone else, started really noticing a change when she lost her curves. Yes, she had been getting the comments that she was looking radiant and young, but when her jeans starting really bagging in the rear, and she couldn’t fill out her shirts anymore, she remembered the gypsy’s words: ‘Everytime you wear this scarf, you take several years off your age.’ In fact, she felt like she was about twelve. She had been getting positive comments about her weight, and had claimed it was due to kick-boxing classes (purely a fabrication). She had put on the scarf that morning, and quickly tore it off, thinking of the meaning behind the gypsy’s words.”

     The little girl paused, and crossed her arms on her now raised knees. She continued with a far away look in her eyes.

     “By now, she was fully a believer in the gypsy’s magic. ‘Every time you wear, it takes several years off of your age.’ How many times had she worn it? Did it take off five years each time? If she wore it six times, would that add up to thirty years taken away? And her mind was affected. She had a hard time paying the bills, helping her son with homework, remembering things she needed to do for work. She just couldn’t concentrate. She couldn’t enjoy the Anne Rice novels she used to love reading. The whole point seemed to be way above her head.

     She felt she was shrinking by the minute. How could she stop this? Her son started to request staying with his grandmother more often. He was obviously freaked out by the changes in his mother. At this point, she looked no older than him, and he needed, a mother, not another child.

     One morning she threw on the scarf without thinking, then quickly tore it off. Would that take her back another five years? So many details she didn’t ask the gypsy in her doubt. Sitting in the car, she discovered she could no longer reach the gas pedal or the brakes with her legs. She whipped out the cell phone and called in sick to work. Co-workers were already worried about her. She’d overheard someone talking about anorexia. But that didn’t explain her shrinking height. She got out and walked to her mother’s house. Her mom was getting her son ready for school.

     ‘Hi, mom,’ Pete said. He looked at her with sadness. He thought she was sick, too.

     ‘Hi, honey.’ She hugged him, and realized she was now shorter than he was.

     ‘Mom,’ she implored. ‘When you drop him off, I need you to take me to South Carolina.’

     ‘Why, is there some special doctor there?’ Her mom said, looking her up and down. She had been nagging her to see a doctor for days.

     ‘There’s someone in South Carolina who knows what’s happening to me, and why. Maybe she can stop it. After that, I’ll go to a doctor, if you want. But you have to wait outside. I go in, alone.’ Her mom looked wary, but agreed.

     So they dropped her son off at school and headed for South Carolina. But the carnival wasn’t there, neither was the gypsy. They couldn’t get any information from locals. They got home that night, and Ms Finney was even shorter. It seemed like the whole thing was happening freakishly fast. The doctor was not available for a few weeks. ER? They would do nothing. She did not appear sick at all.”

 At this point, the girl, Renee, paused, and looked up at Jeff. He was amazed with how much she reminded him of Renee Finney. They were obviously related; maybe this was a joke of Renee’s. He had heard that his friend Bruce ran into Renee one day and she had asked about Jeff. She always seemed interested in him, but he never really let her in.

 ‘Jeff, do you remember when you and Ms Finney danced at that place by the beach? How you held her face in your hands….told her about your dream of living in Alaska and writing that great novel. Do you remember? Because I remember. I’m sorry we lost touch. I got busy too, but I knew we’d see each other again. I just didn’t know I’d no longer be your equal. This time I’m not too old for you, am I?”

 Jeff felt a lump in his throat. He always hated good byes and had avoided that with Renee. He also avoided serious relationships for that reason. He had never seen this coming.

“I really got myself into deep doo-doo, this time,” Renee declared.  “I have no choice but to let this run its course.

 She took her shoe off and studied it. She stared at a dog being led on a leash, and laughed when it started dragging its owner.   “I get really distracted.”  She giggled.

“Who brought you here?” He asked, avoiding putting the pieces together a little longer.

“My mom brought me because I can no longer drive,” Renee answered in slow, clipped cadences between clenched teeth. “I have lost my life because of vanity.” She declared as a tear slipped down her cheek.

“You’re…..Renee…Finney?” Jeff asked. He was incredulous, yet it all fit in with the story. It would explain those familiar eyes, that chin, the uncanny resemblance, and how she know of his dream of Alaska. He didn’t share that too often. Cindy wouldn’t have listened.

“You’re the last man I kissed, Jeff. The last one I danced with, hoped for. I’ll never love a man again. I’m a child now, but have no future to look forward to. Tomorrow I may be an embryo.” She chuckled. How many five year olds knew that word? He envisioned her becoming a microscopic egg, and then, a mere gleam in her father’s eye, and before that, what?

He was amused at seeing how she looked as a child, and ashamed to think this was once a woman, once his lover. The whole concept was incomprehensible.

“I know it’s strange; would you just let me kiss you one more time?” She asked, falteringly. “Tonight I have one last dinner with my son. I will try to cook.” She stared away at the man and dog again, perhaps distracted?

“I , uh….” He sat on the bench next to her, feeling wrong, awkward, unsure. He put a gentle hand on her shoulder, wanting to reason with her. This simply could not be real.

“Where’s Renee Finney?” Jeff asked.

“It’s me, Jeff.” She stood on the bench, leaned in, closed her eyes and pressed her lips softly to his cheek. Then she leaned back, teardrops rolling down to her chin. He was relieved it was over, yet saddened. A car pulled up and someone sat watching them. Jeff noticed it was not Renee Finney, but a woman in her sixties, who waved at the little girl as if there was nothing wrong with her talking to this grown man in the park.

“I’m glad for what we had,” she expressed.

“Yeah, me too,” he replied, still incredulous but unable to explain it all. Renee stood up, shook Jeff’s hand, and sauntered off, sadly at first, then she started running like mad, perhaps wanting to make the most of her time left. It had started to get dark. He presumed the woman in the car to be Renee Finney’s mother, and there was a child in the backseat. Evidently Renee came here, knowing the places he frequented. It must have been her intention to say goodbye, to her last link womanhood, now gone.

No, Jeff, this can’t be real, he thought. There is some other explanation. He shook his head as if to shake off the whole afternoon as he walked away. But it would haunt his dreams for months. If it were true, then he had just conversed with a dying woman. It didn’t matter that she had found the fountain of youth. She was a woman who was dying in reverse, but still dying just the same.

 

How Much Do We Need Community?

What do a recent rap song, Johnny Cash, the movie Fight Club, and the Bible have in common?  A post on society and the ones we love. “No man is an island, entire of itself…”  R…

A re-blog of a subject that revisits me constantly. Source: How Much Do We Need Community?