Monday, January 08, 2007


Doesn’t each of us have a memory that brings shivers? A nightmare that never leaves because it isn’t fearful of the wakeful state – it really happened.

I know I have a couple of those.

I have a painful memory of a fourth-grade prank that I pulled, almost immediately getting caught. I’ll bore you not with the details – but I assure you that they’re burned into my brain like God was taking a Deity’s Shoppe Class and my memory was “Woodwork 101.”

I also have the Hammock.

My beloved acquired a tenancy that included a lovely wooded back yard. In that yard, hung between two towering trees, was a beautiful white hammock.

Our first night after discovering the hammock, we strolled out under a beautiful, star-lit night. Goblets in hand, we were enjoying one of California’s finer Zinfandels, and a warm Autumn night. To my surprise and delight, she playfully decided that she wanted to . . . delight me. Offer me a “favour” [wink wink]. Please me. What have you.

Well, I promise you, it was extraordinary. We cuddled and enjoyed the stars; I rarely have been so happy.

Two nights later, we returned – again, a starry, starry night – to our beloved hammock. Since I have not advanced on Darwin’s scale past Herr Pavlov’s dog, I’m sure that I climbed into that hammock with her with visions of Seka and lollipops dancing in my head. But, being a gentleman, I also assumed nothing. I know that I was just happy to be there. Again, we each had our wine glasses in hand.

I sighed, and finally began to relax after a hard day. We laughed about something, enjoying each other’s company.

There was a Crack! and, in the time it takes gravity to work its magic, we crashed to the ground.

I was immediately struck in the head. By a large tree. She wasn't struck, but gravity and the ground exacted their toll. She bit down on her wine glass, shattering it. Mine broke in my hand. I was more than dazed.

Well, the tetanus shot didn’t really hurt [who ever got tetanus from a tree, I ask you?]. I was a little more troubled that I could make myself pass out just by bending my neck a bit. But, after a week, that too passed.

But I’m forever haunted by the image of her mouth and hand biting down and cracking that wine glass, knowing that but for the grace of God, there wenteth I . . .


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