Monday, August 2, 2010
ROBBLOG # 116
Or do we??
Henrietta called out to Roger who was sitting in the warm sand spread along the edge of the lake, letting the cool waves roll gently back and forth against his ankles and thighs.
“Roger!” – she cried, “ It’s quarter to three, another fifteen minutes and we had better skeedaddle.”
“Okay, Maw!” he called to her without turning around, “Can we go to Harry’s Shack for French Fries and strawberry ice cream?”
French Fries and strawberry Ice Cream, Henrietta shivered at the thought. As usual, maybe poutine on the steaming fries too?
“Yes, if you like but wouldn’t you’d rather have an egg salad sandwich instead- something a little healthier?”
“Naw.”- Roger yelled shaking his blonde head, “I’ll put poutine on my fries. It’ll be fine Maw.”
“Poutine?”- cried is mother. “Always poutine. You’ll turn into poutine one of these days. Mark my words.”
Roger laughed. Imagine waking up one morning finding he had turned into a huge pile of cheesy, hot poutine under his cool, cotton sheets!
Roger gazed out into the middle of the lake watching a trio of sailboats glide past, as Henrietta sat down on her lounge chair opening her Chatelaine magazine to the page she had marked that morning by folding down the top right corner. The tab looked not unlike a tiny, perfect, triangular napkin that one would place next to a tiny perfect plate, placing tiny perfect silverware neatly side-by-side on top.
Henrietta had been reading an article about age called “Through the Ages”. It was about various indicators of age such as- age spots, memory depletion, bone density loss and how to cope as adults simply became older. Just yesterday her friend Maria had said to her- over morning coffee, that at best, they probably had 25, maybe 30 years left.
“Left for what?”- she had asked Maria.
“Left to live and breathe on God’s green earth before we pop off.”
She had told Maria that was nonsense. Nobody knew how long their individual lifelines would be. Not even Maria.
“I believe we need to live one day at a time and live everyday as if it were our last.”- said Henrietta sounding like a modern day prophet.
Why she read these things she didn’t know but maybe somewhere buried deep between the words was the key to unlocking the fountain of youth or at the very least- well-being. Henrietta finished the “age story” glanced at her watch and saw Roger walking towards her from the beach.
He held something tightly inside the clasped fingers of his left hand.
Roger rolled open his fist to reveal five, beautiful little shells he had found buried in the sand at the lake’s edge.
“Wow, those sure are pretty. Look at the colours in this one!”- his mother said, rolling one particularly colourful shell over in Roger’s palm. This one is lovely!”
“Maybe we can put it on the fireplace mantel next to that piece of coral.”- Rogers added.
“Perfect!”- says Henrietta as she cupped Roger’s fingers closed. “Put the shells in that plastic container sitting there on top of the cooler. That way they won’t get damaged.”
Roger did as Henrietta suggested.
Henrietta folded her magazine into the tote bag that sat next to her chair.
“Rog, will you fold up the chair and carry it to the station wagon? I’ll grab the cooler.”
“Sure Maw. He grabbed the chair, folded it in half and made off for the parking lot up the hill where the station wagon was parked.
Henrietta placing the handles of her tote bag over her left arm and grabbing the cooler with her right hand, started climbing the path that led up the tiny incline to the wagon. She had parked it under a willow tree to keep the sun’s rays off the windshield, keeping the interior cool. Roger had already placed the chair in the back seat as his mother came over the rise.
“Need help Maw?- he called.
“No Dear. I’m fine. Goodness it’s a beautiful day!” She turned to glance back at the lake-“Just look at the sunshine glistening on the water. Isn’t that pretty?”
“Like a picture Maw.”
“Make sure you dry off before you get in.” she reminded Roger.
“Your shorts are folded on the floor behind the back seat”
Henrietta loaded the tote bag and cooler into the back hatch of the station wagon as Roger towelled himself off, pulled on a pair of dry shorts and climbed into the passenger seat, snapping his seat belt into place. His Mother opened the driver’s side door and was pleased to find the vehicle’s interior much cooler than the outside.
“It was a good idea to park here under this tree Roger. Thanks for your suggestion. ”- she said as she placed the key into the ignition and cranked the engine.
“Not as cool as being down there by the water Maw but better than steaming ourselves like a couple of clams.” He laughed.
“You’re right there!”
The turquoise blue station wagon pulled out of parking lot four and headed down Beach Road toward Harry’s Shack. Roger was the first to speak.
“Gee, I am getting hungrier and hungrier. I can practically taste the fries now.”
“And the poutine?”- his Mother laughed. “Just like your Grandfather. He loved poutine too. Two of a kind you are.”
“Yes, but did Granddad like his poutine with ice cream?
“No, not usually but he did like to eat healthy egg salad sandwiches?
Roger paused for a second and started to laugh. “Ah Maw, you’re just saying that to get me to eat a sandwich.”
“Did it work?” She turned to him and smiled.
“Nope. But I’ll eat one if you eat one.”
“Deal!” said Henrietta as she turned into the parking lot along side Harry’s Shack. A staple of the Beach since 1943. The early evening sun was gently setting behind the trees in the western sky.
“You know what Maw?”
“This was a great day. A perfect day as a matter of fact. I think I’ll write about it in my Journal as soon as we get home.”
Henrietta smiled and turned off the station wagon’s engine.
“You do that Roger. You do that.”
However, Roger didn’t write about his day at the beach later that evening.
For just as he and his Mother were walking arm and arm towards the entrance to Harry’s, a huge werewolf jumped from the bushes, tearing their bodies apart, devouring them both.
Posted by Rob Reid at 9:59 PM