Thursday, February 01, 2007
On Being Alive & Falling in Love
Tonight I went to happy hour with four coworkers & Mom after work. A few weeks ago my office of twelve decided that we would meet together regularly on Thursdays. It's not required, just a time to get to know one another informally. Anyone can join us, so Mom eagerly looks forward to Thursdays so that she can have an hour or two with me to herself. We seem to migrate toward Fatz in North Charleston where Pat, the bartender, can be heavy handed with his pours He is also friendly, easy to talk to, and is ready to assist any whim of trivia. Mom said if she were just forty years younger she would be all over him.....good gracious!
Anyway, tonight I was talking to a colleague who is one of two cancer survivors in the office. He was telling me about how he constantly hears people moaning and groaning about trivial matters. He is good with pep talks and turning negative moods around. His approach is that life is hard, and he feels that what irks many people is irrelevant when you look at the full spectrum of possibility. If you wake up alive, it is a good day.
Yeah, I know there are bad things out in the world. If it bothers you enough to complain, then act! If you do not like the politics of the day, then vote, get involved, run for office, but don't complain and do nothing. OK, I have already gotten WAYYY off my intent in writing this post. The intent is I am alive. It is a good day. In general I am a positive thinking person. Talking to another with a positive attitude made me consider everything I have for which I am very thankful.
In a nutshell I am a positive person because I have the most wonderful family in the whole world. On a daily basis I vividly recall the summer I fell in love with Papa Bear. I worked with him for a year at the Mills House before we dated. He ran the Best Friend Lounge and I handled the Front Desk and weekend Night Audit. We both worked late and were serenaded most nights by Carroll Brown.
I remember our first date was the summer of 1992. We met at AC's after work, and then went to Frankie's diner. It was the first time I had ever had a beer with French toast. I remember receiving a kiss as a test to see if I was OK to drive. The second date was over a bottle of champagne that we shared while watching the sunrise at Diago Park on Folly Beach. Diago Park is near the old Coast Guard Station...where recent complaints of erosion have been made by new residents who are in denial about what beaches do....prior to their building a house past the dunes, there was a sign in the parking lot leading to their house that once read "Diagonal Parking". For years this sign was faded and torn in half leaving only the words "Diago Park".
Oour third date that continues to make me smile. We met at Marianne's and spent hours staring into each others eyes while talking silly love struck talk where pasts, present and futures merged together in a queasy blur. We moved over to the Best Friend Lounge to listen to Carroll and ignored all of the raised eyebrows of wonder regarding the hows and whys of our being there together. Then we walked and walked all over downtown. We admired and critiqued the window displays of every antique and art dealer we passed. When we turned onto King Street, I dragged him giggling (err, I was giggling) over to the old Woolworth's building to show him my brick. Back in the mid-80's, Mom bought me a brick for Christmas. It has my name on it and was on a far end lined up with the second "W" in Woolworth....when Woolworth's was still there. Because it was on an end where tires often run over it, the top surface was becoming smooth. You could still just make out my name. Papa Bear got down on his knees and kissed that brick. OMG! How can you not love someone who kisses your brick?
The only time he ever topped this was about five months before we were married. He stopped and bought me flowers from one of the lady's near the market. He asked her if a love spell could be put on those flowers. The flower lady laid hands and words on those flowers, then looked at him real serious like and told him to be careful - for whoever he gives those flowers to would have no choice but to love him forever. I tell you that I love Papa Bear because he is the most wonderful, handsome and considerate man I have ever met - now you can believe it is a magical love spell if you want. I would stake that it is partially the magic of falling in love in Charleston and partially a sense of finding exactly that person you never imagined you'd find.