It’s New Year’s Eve and no one has been talking about the “Party”. There is one almost every year and this year no one has mentioned what to bring, who will be coming or what time to arrive. This is most unusual as there has been a party worth remembering once a year for my entire life.
Well, never mind, I will just show up as usual and I am sure that no one will mind. My invitationless situation is absolutely an oversight and there are sure to be several people there that I will know.
My black velvet top and black and white plaid taffeta skirt will be perfect for tonight as it is just a short walk across the yard to the party- no need to worry about a coat or boots. That is always the way, just run out the front door and there you are.
Oh look, Jimmy’s there! He must be home from the Navy for the holiday. Mom is already there helping out with the preparations. Dad will come as soon as he is off work, or he will simply drive the patrol car over a little before midnight. Uncle Bill and Aunt Emily are here as well which is unusual. Jack just drove up with some extra champagne though he hasn’t been drinking now for years. Annie and John are here too; but truth be told, I am anxiously waiting for their three handsome sons. I have a terrible crush on the middle one; probably will for my entire life.
Terry and Pat are here from the city and Margie and Al as well. I wonder what they have done with their little ones. Anne and Howell will be coming in a minute but Diane has decided to remain in the city with her friends. How jealous am I!!
There’s a fire in the fireplace and the music is a little lower than usual; but the conversation is lively and everyone seems to be enjoying themselves. Funny though, almost everyone seems to have reached back in their closets to come up with some retro clothing.
I have always wondered why Auntie Maude and Uncle Walter only came over to our house and not to the rest of the neighbors; but here they are. Maude has died her hair purple again but by spring it will be pink. Uncle Walter is dressed like a cowboy with a string tie and his old Mayor’s badge pinned to his chest.
How warm I feel, safe in a familiar home with loved ones all around. Suddenly drowsy, I sit in the big arm chair with a throw over my shoulders.
Dad has arrived and it must be close to midnight. Oh look, he is doing his usual New Year’s jig which is a combination of Irish dancing and a Russian squat thrust kicking his legs straight out as he jumps up and down. Jack reaches down to pluck me from my reverie to ask for a dance.
“Hey, wake up! Come on! It is almost time………….”. Debbie and Roy are here and my husband, Ron. The children have all gone their merry way to other towns and other States. The four of us are alone in Debbie’s cozy home and not at the yearly party at Barb and Jack’s. Oh, that’s right………….. They have all passed on now, only Barb remains here with those of us that still live on. But just for a minute or so, Oh what a lovely time I had!
I looked down in my lap, and there folded before my eyes were my Mother's hands. No not really; but my hands have somehow begun to look like my Mother's. It is important at this point in my written conversation to point out that I have always had shorter fingers, rather chubby and sweaty hands in my youth. My daughter and my sisters all have long thin fingers, like Mom's.
But somehow, during this magical season, my hands have morphed into a reasonable likeness of Mom's hands. I don't have her long strong nails, probably because I never take the time to maintain them. My skin is much dryer than hers because again I don't take the time to maintain it. However, almost like a spiritual possession, I look at my hands and see my Mother's hands in front of me.
I have lost a little weight and I am getting older so this metamorphasis is possible. However, I choose to believe that it is her way of letting me know that she is with me still and channeling her strength to me through her hands and mine.
It could also be that my hands have not changed at all and I am just seeing what I want to see, but don't we all? We see what we want to see and hear what we want to hear; and if no one is hurt by that, let us take comfort where we find it.
Just some random thoughts here.....About 6 years ago I bought a used Toyota 4-Runner from our daughter's neighbors in North Carolina. Great folks and a great car. I had been experimenting with listening to country music for a while since that was all my son-in-law listened to and that is all that seemed to play on the radio when we traveled to see our daughter in NC. Once I was in the 4-Runner it seemed that was all that I listened to. I even went so far as to purchase country CDs, and I hardly ever buy music. 5 years ago we bought a house in NC and I began to listen to Country Music on the radio there and at home in NY as well. Now that I have given my Toyota 4-Runner to my nephew I hardly listen to country music at all in my other car. Never do I tune in country music at the house; and in fact, I have begun to dislike it all over again. Just sayin, "I must have been possessed!"