He leaves us sitting in the near dark in his bedroom. Eric
touches the photograph on the top as if it is as delicate as milkweed. "That,"
he says quietly. "That's what I want with you."
There is a thick fog tonight, but Greta and I have trained
enough in this patch of land to know our way by heart. I sit down on a mossy log
while Greta sniffs around the periphery. Above me, something dangles from a
branch, full and round and yellow.
There are some dreams that get stuck between your teeth when you
sleep, so that when you open your mouth to yawn awake they fly right out of you.
But this feels too real. This feels like it has actually happened.
I've lived in New Hampshire my whole life. No citrus tree could
bear a climate like ours, where we have not only White Christmases but also
White Halloweens. I pull down the yellow ball: a crumbling sphere made of
birdseed and suet.
I am still thinking about this the next morning after taking
Sophie to school, and spend an extra ten minutes walking around, from the
painting easel to the blocks to the bubble station, to make up for my shoddy
behavior yesterday. I've planned on doing a training run with Greta that
morning, but I'm sidetracked by the sight of my father's wallet on the floor of
my Expedition. He'd taken it out a few nights ago to fill the tank with gas; the
least I can do is swing by the senior center to give it back. .
Suddenly I feel a prickle on my wrist; something has crawled
onto my arm. My heart kicks itself into overdrive and my throat pinches tight,
as it always does at the thought of a spider or a tick or any other
creepy-crawly thing. I manage to strip away my jacket, sweat cooling on my body
as I wonder how close the spider has landed near my boots.
It's a groundless phobia. I have climbed out on mountain ledges
in pursuit of missing people; I have faced down criminals with guns; but put me
in the room with the tiniest arachnid and I just may pass out.
The whole way into the senior center, I take deep breaths. I
find my father standing on the sidelines, watching Yoga Tuesday happen in the
function room. "Hey," he whispers, so as not to disturb the seniors doing sun
salutations. "What are you doing here?"
I fish his wallet out of my pocket. "Thought you might be
"So that's where it went," he says. "There are so many perks to
having a daughter who does search and rescue."
Oldest romance writer in the world dies aged 105. Books #124 and #125 to be published next year(Dec 10 2013) Ida Pollock, author of more than 120 books, and believed to be the world's oldest romantic novelist, has died at the age of 105.