Raindrops

Good morning, friends,

I woke up this morning an hour later then usual, at 2:30 AM instead of 1:30 AM but always appreciate the extra sleep time, aware that for maximum health I should be getting more deep rest. Nevertheless it was a beautiful period of time between my waking up and now, at 4:30 AM, just lying abed in the dark, on my back, listening to the raindrops hitting the roof and trying not to think of the absence of a partner next to me. After years of sleeping on the first floor of a two-story house, its truly pleasant to hear the varied patter, the rhythm sometimes gentle, at other times, fast-paced – Gene Krupa-like at his finest – but always soothing, even though, at this point, we’ve had enough water this spring, too much water, really, judging from the lakes that have formed on many of the farm fields outside of town.  And the rain puts a crimp in in my early morning walking. I have been known, however, to enjoy walking in the rain as long as its not in a heavy downpour.

After heavy, sometimes dark, cloud cover yesterday morning, the afternoon sky partially cleared, the sun casting its warmth across the valley. My friend, Rob, and I caught some of it as we drove our friends, Miki and Ed, across the countryside to peek at the last of the golden daffodils and the first of the tulips just beginning to show their brilliant colors.  We topped it off with lunch at the inconspicuous Edison Cafe that had once been a small gas station located just outside the downtown area of Edison. The station still retained the raised cement platform that once supported the gas pumps, recalling a time when attendants would fill your gas tank, check the oil and even wash the car windows, sometime in uniform with a bow tie. Now, though, a pleasant little restaurant, nothing fancy, but with good, home-style cooking. The  Cafe served breakfast all day so having not eaten anything until now (by choice- I normally skip breakfast these days) I opted for eggs and bacon and splurged with hash browns (which I normally don’t eat either). My friends all had hamburgers in one form or another which they seemed to enjoy.

At one point in our conversation, I noticed across the small room what appeared to be a mother and her teenage son. Without much thought, I went over to their table to talk to them for a bit, sharing with them my appreciation for what they were doing – the mother taking the time to take her son out of school, to focus her love and attention on him alone, for an hour or so – because I still remember the impact that had on me. When I was a teenager, my mother would pick me up at school and drive us to a new franchise called something like “Chicken in a Basket”. She would order two baskets with cokes to go and we would drive out into the country, park the car along the Scioto River and eat and talk. I went on to tell the mother and son that I, in turn, did the same thing with my four children, taking them to lunch, one at a time, (usually on their birthdays but at other times too), and how much that meant to them. Now with my kids in their fifties and sixties, they still remember those times with gratitude and, as important, that memory enriches our relationship now. The mother then spoke, almost in tears, thanking me for the impromptu visit. Later, on her way out the door, she and her son both waved in happy acknowledgement of our few minutes together.

Would I have done this two years ago, gotten up and gone over to perfect strangers and started talking? Probably not. But now, I’m making many more decisions based on feelings. My intuition said “Go, do it. It could be important” And I did. The other thing is, that  at 91 years of age, I feel free to do odd, unconventional, things that my younger friends would not think to do. “It’s so good to be old!” I want to shout right here as I write and probably would  but for Kornelia. I don’t want to disturb her sleep. When I returned to my table, I explained to my friends what had transpired but got little  reaction and our conversation turned to other things. Perhaps, Rob at least, is getting used to my spontaneous behavior. I know I am and It’s bringing me a whole new level of adventure and joy,

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