On Friday, Jenny and I packed up and left Elizabeth City. Jenny does not travel lightly, as I do, for she has Lyla and a dog, too. The both of them require all sorts of things for just a few days away. It was mid afternoon, before we left the Riverside Village, on the “laughing river”. Everyone is coming home this week end, for my parents’ Sixtieth Anniversary gathering.
I have been in Elizabeth City since Monday. The weather has been especially hot and thunderstorms pop up quite regularly. People walk their dogs mighty early under such conditions. Miss Thelma, Jennys’ ninety-something year old neighbor, feeds the birds at the crack of dawn. I get up early, by nature . . . to brew coffee.
A little robin, has evidently fallen from his nest, in the back yard, at Jennys’ house. His parents still have some in the nest, and are frantically trying to keep all of them satisfied. Every morning, the parents are dashing about trying to collect breakfast for their young, but no amount of rushing seems to be adequate, for the nest makes quite a commotion and the fallen robin hops along squawking throughout the ordeal, wanting every morsel, they find. I took to throwing strawberries and whatever else we had left, out, to aid the plight.
Lyla and I made coconut macaroons on Tuesday. Miss Claudia had an easy, no fail recipe . . .and so I doubled it with the idea to share. I think we made at least a hundred of them. No matter, how many I packaged up, or ate, we still had coconut macaroons. It did not help, that Will did not like them.
Finally, on Wednesday, Lyla and I enjoyed a walk around the village. Of course, we delivered macaroons, as we went. The “laughing river” was a steel, gentle shade of blue. We had the river and the rock, all to ourselves. I read once, that humans crave expansive views. There is something that is very beneficial about gazing at the ocean or vistas from a mountain top, it seems. I think the same can be said of fields – and laughing rivers. It is hard to view such wonders and not feel the “Blessed Assurance” that southern choirs sing about. . .nor feel a Holy Presence, mightier than any earthly shackles.
On the way back, I chose to walk the way of “Raleigh Street” where the best smelling rose grows. Every year, I look forward to it and consider it well worth walking a bit out of the way, to do so. The rose is not far from the sidewalk, nor the front door of the cottage, that tends it. Lyla was delighted that we passed under a canopy of crepe myrtle trees. She loves when a breeze loosens some of the tiny pink petals, for they fall like snow and – some land on us, as we go. On the walk back, we looked for lilies, which is her newest botanical accomplishment.
While Lyla napped, I started on supper. Miss Claudia was coming and that turned a week night supper, in to an occasion, for me. Wills’ mom is one of my favorite people to cook for. She is full of flattery, for one thing. Besides that, we can brag on Lyla, without pretense and in total agreement. . .besides that I have come to love her.
Lyla still has no interest in cooking things like potatoes nor peas, so the kitchen was not nearly as lively, as it was when we made the macaroons.
On Friday, a door shut squarely in my face. I had been entertaining a certain notion and it had seemed like progress was being made in that direction, when all of a sudden, the “door closed ” – and rather abruptly. Now in my younger years, I did not take such things lightly and was apt to pout and fuss. I think I may even have felt cheated. On this day, I actually laughed, for the turn of events were remarkably odd, but so precise. It seems, I am finally convinced that things work out as they ought to, for I have witnessed this. Instead of feeling slighted, I feel loved . . and protected. Dare I say, “I went down a rabbit hole”, that I did not belong in?
Today is a “red letter day” for our family. Today, is the day, my parents are celebrating their sixtieth wedding anniversary. They married so young. A lot of things happen in sixty years. . .heartbreak and triumph, joy and sorrow . . .hope and despair.
Certainly, they would neither one, consider themselves any thing but ordinary . . . but, I say different. I think they are champions . . and ought to be crowned. They are living examples of a long-standing fortitude. A union of sixty years can not be taken lightly, for the privilege, to claim it, surely requires a stalwart devotion, a generous amount of grace and a love that can “move mountains” as needed.