We run into acquaintances at the farmers' market and I excuse myself to buy greens and a rutabaga although I haven't the foggiest what to do with the mud-encrusted vegetable. I come back out and Dave is still talking and his buddy reminds me of an encounter between he and I several months ago. According to him I had parked my car just south of town and got into another car with four women and we were off to go shopping in another city. I smile and nod, I'm only half-listening, a terrible habit of mine and I sense Big Dave shooting me a curious look. Outside I ask what did he say? And then I realize why the husband was so inquisitive. Me, go shopping, out of town, with a bunch of women? We laugh and laugh. I would be more apt to sign on for an Alaskan dog team adventure and he knows that. Methinks the fellow was mistaken.
A quick email from my oldest child. Jason is traveling through the Mideast, has been for a year. He has seen and done things that none of my neighbors have seen or done, and that goes for most of this old Iowa town. He sits on the roof of his guest house and watches the descending sun change the colors on the marble walls of the Taj Mahal. It was designed with this concept in mind, a grieving emperor's last gift to his beloved young wife, now deceased and she was his favorite in the harem. Most of India is trash and feces but this temple is meticulously and intensely well kept.
Back on my couch in Iowa I look out on a snowless landscape, a rare winter indeed this no snow situation. In my adult circles I have had heard no complaints that we are not scraping ice off our windshields and slip sliding through snow filled streets. Yes, the children will whine about the unused sleds, but they have those relentless video games, so be still for pity's sake.
I call Susan in San Diego and I am woefully lax in keeping a phone connection going with the girl and she continues to forgive me. A friend of hers, a retired John Deere worker from Columbis Ohio visited Susan in November. They had dinner with friends in Mexico and met a man who was looking for someone to water plants at his property, an incredibly beautiful and mysterious castle while he traveled the globe. Elizabeth touched her napkin to her lips and volunteered herself and she is now moving away from her Columbus Ohio existence and living in this sunny Mexican castle with the ocean shining past the veranda of her front porch. Do things like this really happen? Yes, they do but then you know Elizabeth, Susan will tell you, she is bohemian afterall.