There’s No Place Like Home

Working at a fancy restaurant in California is where it took place.
That busy day in November I was scheduled for a double shift on a Saturday.
Kitchen work was hard and the crew was a tight nit bunch. Myself and two boys were in the open kitchen. Romero and Tony, whom I refer to as My Tony.
Taking a tray of crème brulee warm from the oven like any other day into the walk-in proved to be anything but ordinary.
Tray was secure in it’s home on the cold steel rolling rack.
I turn to leave.
Before I know what is happening I start to slide and my feet flip out from under me arm bumping down the rack all the way down.
Like the thump, thump, thump of the markers that line the side of the highway as you drive sleepily home from a late night and fall asleep at the wheel for the tinniest of seconds.
I come to my resting place flat on my back.
What a sight that must have been for Romero and My Tony, who came rushing to my aid when they heard my screech and thud that followed.
Eyes big as saucers and looking at me lying on that cold floor – pride and backside equally bruised.
What they saw were my feet sticking out the walk-in door like the wicked witch from the Wizard of Oz who was trapped under the house with her stripped socks all before Dorothy took her glittery red “there’s no place like home” shoes.

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White lies and other colors

Around 1982 I take my dad’s grey sweatshirt from his dresser and dye it purple.  I loved purple. Good thing my dad is forgiving ’cause my hands are stained and there was no hiding from that one.

Around 1997 I tell myself that one little white lie won’t hurt.  People can change, things will get better.

Around 1999 I pull on the white dress my mother has made me and wait as she attaches the train.  Sweat runs between my breasts as I walk down the aisle.

Around 1991 After developing and processing film all day, I get curious and look at the photos before I put them in the envelope.  The manager sees me as my face flushes. I look for a new job the next day.

Around 2007 I have a party and after everyone leaves you kiss me and rest your olive-skinned check against mine “we’re just friends, right?” I nodded.  I wish I had said no.

Around 2001 I meet Tony.  He makes me laugh; I cut his black hair on my back porch and watch as the birds carry the ebony fluff to their nests. He is 12 years my junior we are inseparable.

Around 1980 My sister and I sing “The Piña Cola da Song” at the top of our lungs while my mom shops for groceries. That song always reminds me of Christmas in Hawaii.

Around 1981 Linnea and I sneak into Raiders of The Lost Ark. During the movie the film burned up right as the faces were melting off.  We think we are so cool, until our mom’s find out.  Just like mine predicted, I need a nightlight so I can fall asleep.

Around 2009 I pick my friend up at the airport and ask her how long since I’ve seen her.  She says it was ten years ago, on your wedding day.

Dear Diary

Hear his voice, my heart’s crush
I melt
inside I, feel the rush

Look my way
I hope and I pray
hear his voice, my heart’s crush

He’s the one I want
I will not stray
in my flesh, I feel the rush

I dream
I wait
hear his voice, my heart’s crush

They say patience is a virtue…
lucky girl I am
In my flesh, I feel the rush

He is mine
Now and forever
Hear his voice, my heart’s crush

Time Love and Tenderness

Several years after the death of her sweetheart,
Eula woke up.
Woke up, not like after sleeping for eight hours,
but really woke up.

1991 and she had been asleep since 1967,
not technically asleep but not really awake until now.
Leaving her house only on special occasions – graduation, weddings, and holiday’s.

The fog had lifted
with it her spirits.

Sleep.
Sleep.
Sleep.

Surviving on toast and black coffee from her electric percolator.

Sleep.
Sleep.
Sleep.

And then – one day

AWAKE!

They wanted her to wake up for so long and wakeup she did.

Out came the fancy dresses and shoes.
Unearthed were the ‘good’ hose and girdles.
Unpacked were the hairpieces and jewelry.

The drive took over an hour.
She was always driven.
Got married at 15
no need to drive for herself.

Saxophone echoed in her ears
Eula swayed in her seat – waiting.
She was with her girls
the content looks on their faces
matched their body language.

She let out a sigh.
She was awake.
All so she could meet Michael Bolton.