During my blogging years, I’ve introduced you to Carolyn. I hope you’ll enjoy getting to know her just a bit better. It’s a longer story than usual but she’s worth every word. Some people just can’t be edited.
A few years ago, she had come to Hilton Head from The Villages to spend the night with us. The timing was perfect. We were headed to North Carolina the next day, were planning to leave the house early, and she wanted to be on her way at an early hour as well.
That evening we took Carolyn out to dinner with some friends who lived down the street.
The next morning, the Mister rose early to make coffee. Shortly after that, I got a knock on my bedroom door. Carolyn came in, sat down on the bed, and said that a terrible, terrible thing had happened. Carolyn was nearly 6 feet tall, had a thick head of curly hair and a Tennessee accent (twang) that could knock your socks off. You tended to listen up when she had something to say.
Through the years, I’d done “terrible” with Carolyn and it ran a broad gamut from absolutely nothing to something of concern so I wasn’t alarmed. Yet.
Never one to get directly to the point, she thanked me profusely for a wonderful evening, the food had been just delicious, she had loved catching up with us and had so enjoyed the friends who had joined us and she hoped she’d see them again sometime soon. What were their names again? She thought she’d write and tell them how nice they were to her.
I was waiting for the terrible.
She went on to say that she’d decided to take a shower before she went to bed and oh, by the way, the guest bathroom was just lovely, so colorful, the way the stripes and flowers went together, had I had help with a decorator or done it myself?
I was still waiting for the terrible. Getting a little nervous.
Then, she said, she thought as long a she was taking a shower, she might as well wash her hair because there was some delicious smelling shampoo right there next to the shower and she’d been in the car all day and it seemed like a good idea and the hot water and the shower head were just perfect. Did I know where I’d gotten that wonderful shower head? She surely would like to have one just like it.
Still waiting for the terrible. Maybe she’d forgotten. That would not be entirely out of character.
Then she told me that while she was washing her hair with that wonderful smelling shampoo she had gotten some in her eyes and she rubbed them to get the shampoo out because they really, really stung and hurt like crazy and then her contact lenses fell out and went down the drain.
Oops. Maybe the eagle just landed.
Did I know, she then asked, that she was almost legally blind?
No, I said. I was not aware of that particular, and at this moment, very ominous “legally-blind” thing. This after knowing her for 40 years.
I know what you’re thinking….of course she has an extra pair of lenses, a pair of prescription glasses, sun or otherwise. Oh, that would have been far too easy.
Now, it’s seven am on a Sunday morning; we have to leave the house in two hours and, obviously, so does she. I asked if she could even see my face. She said she couldn’t but it didn’t matter since she already knew what I looked like.
She also said all this talk was making her hungry; she had seen some delicious looking blueberry muffins on the kitchen counter last evening (when she still had contact lenses) and the coffee smelled wonderful.
But what about seeing, I asked? And getting home? You can’t drive this way. We can’t take you home. This is a disaster, a complete and total unmitigated disaster. And just exactly how in the world can you even think about food at a time like this? Aren’t you too worried to eat?
She said she saw no relationship whatsoever between her sight and the blueberry muffins which happened to be her very, very favorite kind and besides she wasn’t the least bit worried.
Just exactly how can you not be worried, Carolyn, I asked?
She replied: “Because I have faith, Sallie…in you and our Good Lord. The two of you will work it all out.”
And off she went to the kitchen.
Well, if I were to be assigned a partner in that mess, He was a good one to have. Of course, we found someone to get her some new lenses and off she went, just as planned.
As I’ve said earlier, Carolyn is no longer with us. Her memory lingers on, so strongly. For so many. I’d put money on most of her friends thinking about her almost every day. What a legacy she left us all.