Monday, September 5, 2016

At The Art Center: One Isn’t Enough!

I met James at the Art Center in Pacific Grove where I volunteered; he was the Volunteer Coordinator. James was engaging, warm, and inclusive. He never forgot a name or a face. 

During the little breaks that volunteers enjoyed, James would come and start a deep and genuine conversation about feelings, dreams, experiences or interests. 

I enjoyed our conversations; James usually started the conversation by saying, “What’s going on?” “Everything,” I replied. Then, we would laugh together.

The Entrance of The Art Center

We talked about everything; my day, his day, his dogs, my cat, his motorcycle, my car, his family in Seattle, my son and his friends. 
I found myself volunteering more at the Art Center. 

If I came late 10 minutes or so, James would greet me saying, “Where were you? You had the heart to keep me waiting! How could you?” I would laugh and start helping him right away. 

At first, I didn’t take James comments to mean anything other than nice compliments coming from a nice man. But then James took it a step further by saying, “I can’t start working unless you are here with me. Don’t be late.” When I read a book  during my breaks, James commented, “ I am here now, put it aside.”  

His protective attitude escalated, if I “dared” to talk to any man, James would lash out at me. He didn’t care if someone was listening or watching.

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Bill Took All The Colors With Him!

Today, I went to Carmel Coffee House, this coffee shop reminds of Italy a lot; the cozy outdoor seating area, the hanging flowers, and the small narrow bath that leads to the courtyard.
I ordered my soy latte and sat down near the jasmine tree. The fragrance of jasmine flowers made me think of Bill, although I think about him all the time.

Carmel Coffee House and Its Jasmine Tree 
Bill used to put a little jasmine flower in my curly hair each time we passed by a jasmine tree. The funny thing was I couldn’t see him taking one, to begin with, let alone attaching it to my hair. He used to put his arms around me whispering, “A little flower for my beloved flower.”
The Courtyard 

We met when I was translating for the U.S army in Iraq. I was a linguist and Bill was a Sargent with the Marines.

He used to show up, out of nowhere, each time I need help. My printer cartage was running low; he would come and make it work. He was the only one who could start my little green Jeep. It took him less than two weeks to tell me how he felt about me. It was during a Happy Hour, I passed by him as I was going to the ladies room; Bill stood in my way and hugged me in front of everyone. When he finally let go, he said “Don’t be late now,” I assured him, “No. I won’t.”