A SLICE OF LIFE
A SLICE OF LIFE
I had a conversation with a friend shortly after her grandmother's death. She culled through the dear lady's belongings and was surprised no journal or diary was left behind.
For my friend, a secret hoarder of memories and moments, this was high tragedy. That is, until she happened upon her grandmother's dog-eared kitchen calendar.
Here at last, crusty with food stains and yellowed with age, stashed under recipes and box top labels, was the stuff of life! It was the mother lode - years of calendars, many with notes in her Granny's curvy cursive scrawled in the margins.
She read the oldest first.
March 5, 1953 - We bought our icebox today. Excited!
Nov. 21, 1963 - Candice was born today - our darling granddaughter - healthy, screaming, beautiful.
May 19-25 - Florida with B and Bill. Sun. warmth.
Dentist appointments scheduled - Highway Robbery!
Feb. 1982 - First daffodil popped up today - order seeds.
The little squares marched forward, stamping each day with the solid handshake of
time and life and goodness. - Car battery gave up the ghost. Got a boost in the Winn-Dixie parking lot from a man with good teeth and all of his hair - write thank you note.
A late 1980s entry - Order new girdle.
Her Granny always had a high tolerance for pain, my friend told me. "She once fell and broke her hip but got up when she heard the doorbell -fell again and broke her ankle."
At the ER, Granny refused to let the nurse's aide cut her girdle off to prep her for surgery. When they pulled it down over her cracked hip, she merely grimaced with satisfaction at the money she'd saved.
Spaghetti stains and grocery lists - Don't forget to buy thyme.
Finally the top page. The last month.
It was May. The sun smiled its benevolent warmth and flowers bloomed in Granny's garden. But the calendar's squares remained untouched. The white spaces stretched out blank and awaited the squiggly penmanship from a familiar hand that now lay stilled in the rich clay at Creek Bottom's churchyard... as my friend carefully gathered up and hugged close all of these memories and moments...that make up a day in the life.
I’m just a California girl with a Southern accent who’s not often at a loss for words.
“Melissa’s words touch the soul and magically transform one’s feelings into tangible objects that you can inspect, caress and love. Her insight into the human condition and all that it entails is nothing short of remarkable. She captures the essence of the simplest aspects of life, that can be overlooked by so many, and highlights the wonder of them all. Melissa is a force to be reckoned with in the literary world. We are all very lucky that she shares her gifts with us.”