Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Summer Storms in Colorado

Storms come up fast in the Rocky Mountains and summer evenings are prone to electrifying displays of nature. I spent a couple summers there in a former life and would often get caught in such shows while out on a run. But just as fast as a storm would glissade around a mountain peak and throw her fury at me with rain, hail and lighting, she would move on, leaving behind her a dissipating sky of oranges, yellows, purples and blues. And soon the outside mountain-side bars serving pitchers (pitchers!) of Fat Tire would fill once more.

G is a passionate lady. And sometimes her passions lie in rather ridiculous places. For example, she needs her pink polka dotted blanket to make a perfect rectangle lying over her. None of the edges can be turned up and both of her feet must at all times be completely covered. A misplaced polka dot could mean the difference between mellow time and meltdown time.

A few months after G was born, I applied for a new job. I emailed them my resume, some writing clips, and my family's 2009 reunion flyer. I was reunion chair that year and instead of sending the prospective employer my references, I sent them a list of what each family member needed to bring to the reunion. (Appetizer: Deanne, Lori and Chris; Decorations: Caleb, Abby and Susie.) When the employer emailed me about my mistake, I wrote back, "Well, I thought you might want to meet my family too!"

I never heard back from them.

G has a new scooter. She rocks on it. The grl is two years old and she rides that thing down the street like she was made for it. Yesterday, she got so excited to get out there on the road that as she was going to get her scooter, she ran over to it and stepped on it off balance and ended up in the splits on the ground crying. I picked her up and let her cry a bit and wondered if she would like to take a scooter break. Nope. Her tears dried and moments later we were back on the streets trying to master steering.

Last week I went to an audition. I wore a pink skirt and some makeup, shook the music director's hands, chatted about my background a bit and then the director turned to me and asked. "So, what did you bring to sing for us today?"

Right. Music. I knew I was forgetting something.

"Nothing!" I said, attempting to remain calm but wondering if it just wouldn't be better to turn and run out of the church without even saying goodbye, leaving them in a blur of pastels.

"Nothing? You brought nothing?" the organist gasped.

I ended up singing something I didn't know badly, shook hands again, smiled, thanked everyone and walked out on the verge of tears.

I seem to carry around my failures in a little space in my head and can without warning be suddenly and unexpectedly haunted by mishaps that happened decades ago. My grl has no such space. She falls. She cries. She gets up. She forgets. It's that easy. The weather may be stormy, but it will pass quickly and the sun will come out again soon.

Every now and then for a brief second, something about the city air smells like Colorado after a storm. I chase the smell down the street, but it always seem to evade me.

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