Sunday, August 19, 2012

Goodbye Jane 5

The mid-day transitioned to afternoon. And the heat infected every inch of the property. The rocks on the beach were hot. The grass was hot. The shade was hot. The tent was hot. And everyone at the event was hot. We tried not to sweat while we enjoyed each others' company. Every one of us there for Jane.

I switched from water and juice to beer. Beer is nice in the afternoon when the heat is good but not overwhelming. And as the old people and casual people left the service, the day transitioned to recreational time. I spoke with family and relaxed, telling stories.

Then we headed for the water. The wonderful water. The stereo blasted and the sun baked; we were on a tropical island and it was good. I made a party of people and we headed out to make a party island.

The Mitchells drifted by and came to hang out.

I splashed in the water and we headed in. I found Olivia and Marsha painting their toenails on the porch. Marsha had an array of colors. All for the purpose of wasting time. But it was perfect. I recalled several years earlier when the girls had decoupaged seashells and rocks. The living room had been turned into a mess. The floor was littered with clippings from magazines, decorative markers and surfaces for decoupage. Their projects went late into the night monopolizing the living room. It broke the routine then, nothing happened in that space except dancing.

Just like then, the nail painting was happening in the wrong spot. Normally the far edge of the porch is seldom used, but for the day, it became the central point for us. Ciera and I sat with Marsha and Olivia. Then Natalie joined. Then Ricky. Then David. Then Crystal and Micah. And all of us were there for a moment. Young at a memorial, unsure of the future or where we would go.

The day turned to evening somehow. The days never have a clear transition. During the heat the sun is white hot, then yellow, then orange, then red, then it glows past its sunset, the sky turns purple, blue, and then finally black.

Somewhere in the dark orange and near red, we ate dinner. But dinner was just lunch. We ate but didn't eat. Our taste buds were numb and food was sustenance. Sustenance. What keeps us alive. I relaxed on every surface I could sit, every surface I could lay my weary self.