FREINDS WITH TRAINS

In the interest of getting to know who I am, I’m sharing stories from my life. I call them Preliminary Files and I hope you enjoy them.

TrainLater at grandma and grandpa’s house they made me a bed on the couch.

As I snuggled beneath the blankets and slowly slipped into the lull, I heard the distant lowing of train whistles… a haunting sound that would echo across the decades.

(My Lesson: Sounds give us emotions, and feelings that no other sense can emulate. And; some sounds stay with you your entire life.)

REAL LIFE

In the interest of getting to know who I am, I’m sharing stories from my life. I call them Preliminary Files and I hope you enjoy them.

View-from-the-hillOne night my dad was driving us over to my grandma and grandpa’s house and he pulled the car over to the side of the road and we got out.

It was pitch black dark and we were looking off the hill at all the lights of the city down below. It smelled like boiling weeds.

He said, “There’s your grandma’s house right there.” I had no idea how to judge where he was pointing.

He picked up a rock about the size of my head, started the car from a standing position and reached in and laid the rock on the gas pedal. The engine revved. He jerked the shift knob into gear and the car went hurling off the side of the mountain, crashing loudly over rocks and crushing small trees.

Dad said, “Come on,” reaching for my hand, “We’ll walk the rest of the way.”

We walked and when I asked why we just sent the car over the hill, my dad answered with a response he would use often as I grew. “You’re too young to understand. You’ll get it some day.”

(My Lesson: We are probably never too young. And; there’s a chance that you’ll never “get” some things. That’s why the word mystery exists.)

DREAM

In the interest of getting to know who I am, I’m sharing stories from my life. I call them Preliminary Files and I hope you enjoy them.

LogDeerNightThe whistles starred in my earliest remembered dream.

Dad and I were walking thru the forest in the dim twilight of dusk. We could see just well enough to make things out. I saw some logs on the ground and a collection of them stood to their feet in the shape of three deer made from logs.

Hanging from their twig antlers on colored strings and, swinging from the standing motion were the very whistles I played with that day.

The log deer sort of freaked me out since they were dead wood, yet they were clearly alive. There is an odd sensation when something that is not supposed to be alive moves as though it is very much alive.

(My Lesson: Dreams and waking life equally influence our days and nights. And; many of our waking experiences are much like dreams.)

AUNT BONNIE

In the interest of getting to know who I am, I’m sharing stories from my life. I call them Preliminary Files and I hope you enjoy them.

Aunt-Bonnie
I made it to age four without a mother. Just a working dad and his little sister, Aunt Bonnie.

While dad was away at work we’d listen to 45’s of Chubby Checker and watch Tarzan on the little, round black & white TV.

One day Aunt Bonnie let me play with a set of translucent swizzle sticks. Each one had a different jungle animal on the end. Monkeys, giraffes, rhinos, and strangely enough, camels. I would hold each animal up to the sunlight streaming thru the window and marvel at the deep hues of translucent color. Dark mysterious blue. Intense deep red. Golden-lemon yellow. And pure jungle green.

It felt like my first introduction to beauty.

Aunt Bonnie also had whistles. Little plastic whistles shaped like boats, cars, and trains. They were pastel colors, very cute, and it was the first time I noticed that plastic toys had seams.

(My Lesson: Beauty comes in a variety of packages. And; observe, explore, beauty and ingenuity are everywhere.)

GOODBYE MOM

In the interest of getting to know who I am, I’m sharing stories from my life. I call them Preliminary Files and I hope you enjoy them.

Mom
I was born in California. In Los Angeles.

When I was one year old I remember standing next to the kitchen sink, steadying myself with the help of a cupboard door handle to my immediate left. I believe I was facing south and the linoleum was a dingy shade of yellow.

My mom came into the kitchen wearing a long black gown. Seeing the tips of her black shoes and the hem of her dress touching the floor, I opted to look up. Big mistake. I did not properly estimate the weight of my own head. It toppled me over backward and my fingers got twisted up in the cupboard door handle and crying ensued.

I never saw my mom again after that.

(My Lesson: You never know how long a loved one will stay in your life. And; always seek balance.)