Nov 18, 2012

Day 27 Hannah

30 Day Letter Challenge

Day 27 — The friendliest person you knew for only one day

These are getting so hard! Maybe it's because I slammed my head into a slab of concrete when I was a teenager, or maybe I've always been this way, but I don't have the best memory. I can remember every dream I've had since I was 8 with one trigger word, but people, places, events? Holy mother of Cheezits, how am I supposed to remember everybody I've met for one day?

I did go to see a Tegan and Sara concert a few years ago, and a friend let me stay with him and his grandmother. Her name was Hannah, she had been born in Scotland and was in her 80s. I brought her a pot of tulips as a hostess gift, pretty, yellow and capable of being planted outside just as easily as thrown out - rather than cut flowers, which die and have to be thrown away in a few days time.

She loved me. I barely saw her that night before the concert, but was up early the next morning and we talked for hours. She talked about what it was like to live in Scotland before they grew wheat, so she was forced to eat porridge as a girl and abhorred the stuff now. She cherished soft bread and refined flour.

She talked about what it was like to move with her husband to San Francisco in the 60s, watching the city bloom as her husband checked phone lines and she raised the children and learned to paint. She slipped in and out of time, weaving her tale with her Scottish brogue never diminished. She talked about how she'd love to paint the tulips, regal and strong and unbending, and how I seemed to understand her more than her own daughter, who brought flower arrangements spilling over with bushy leaves and baby's breath. She connected with me. And even if I never see her again, it was a few hours where she felt like she could tell her story to someone who cared, who would understand, and I loved being a part of that.

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