We arrived this morning just before the paramedics put her in the ambulance.
She had tried to kill the pain.
I took her hand. Told her that they would take good care of her. That I loved her. That this would be the chance for a new start.
I hope she sleeps tonight.
Later I kept plans to meet two women. Business partners and friends already, we want to go beneath the surface of knowing each other.
As we ate our lunch at a farmers’ market picnic table, a girl, about six years old, approached. “I’ll give you a massage. For a dollar. I’m pretty good,” she said.
She was not afraid. She seemed to know things children should not know.
We said no, thank you. One of us handed her a five. And cried.
We bought vegetables, hot sauce, bread. The next-to-last vendor stopped us.
She grew fruit in her yard and made jellies in her kitchen.
I wanted to buy a small jar of Sunny Persimmon and a large jar of Guava Mia, but she wanted a deeper connection.
“Cookie,” she introduced herself.
Cookie shared life experience with one friend: home-schooled children. New baby granddaughter–daughter’s daughter–born in December. Thirty-something-year relationship.
When my other friend asked how she’d accomplished the long relationship, she said, “You have to be willing to be surprised by someone–good or bad. You have to accept people as they are.”
She continued, offering perfect advice straight from her intuition:
“You need to turn the page,” Cookie said. “Don’t cry over broken glass.”
Walking to the car, we saw the girl, standing with an older boy. He had zipped his sweater around both of them.
We put the vegetables in my backseat.
A man pulled up in a pickup truck, driving slow.
“Are you interested in some painkillers?”
I turned to face him, standing straight.
My heart spoke before my mind could interfere.
“Someone close to me went to the hospital this morning because of painkillers she shouldn’t have had.
I am not a fan.”
He felt what I meant.