Monday, August 04, 2008
My Blood Went Cold
Four years ago today, I was on a plane returning home after my dad died in a plane crash. Seated next to me was a woman named Sanyo, a word that means health. "I renamed myself at three," she said. "I wouldn't answer to anything else." She looked really normal, not like a Sanyo which I suppose kind of made her point. "Can I buy you a drink?" she asked. She'd overheard me explaining what had happened on my cell phone before the flight. She most certainly could buy me a drink and when the stewardess heard what happened, she gave us half the bottle of vodka for free.
Much has happened in those four years, much has stayed the same. Memory is a funny thing. I remember going to yoga that morning and eating donut holes in the parking lot of Tim Horton's with my friend Cal after class (who says you can't have it both ways?), and I remember a homeless woman coming up to our window. I gave her five dollars; I don't know why. She said, "I'm so so sorry," in this creepy voice, and I felt a chill. She had the look of someone who had used crack for a long time, a zombie. And she felt sorry for me. Not a great sign. I remember how I felt when I got the news, how all my blood went cold -- there really is no other way to describe this peculiar physical sensation. That and the knowledge of deep shock, despair, and how things would get a lot worse before they got any better. All of this proved to be true. Sanyo gave me her card; she worked for a computer company. I've often wondered how she is doing, a good Samaritan bought me a drink. Health sat near me that day, and we toasted to better times which is always a good wish, no matter how distant.
Michelle's Spell of the Day
"At last we are in it up to our necks, and everything is changed, even your outlook on life." Ernie Pyle
Drinking memoir suggestion: Drunkard Neil Steinberg
Benedictions and Maledictions