Friday, March 21, 2008

I met a lovely lady

I met a lovely lady today.
She ran a bead and button shop.
She had a big heart a good soul and is the kind of person who makes the earth a good place to be.
I walked in a large old building with the simple 2 simple signs. One read BEADS and the other read Buttons.
Immediately I saw lots of bolts of older fabric for sale and I noticed a sign over a smaller sign, an old sign that said “Sale Today.” It had been there a while.
A lady greeted me with light blue eyes and dark grey hair. She told me she had recently, a few years ago closed her 3 bead shops on the other island and consolidated them into this old building. She did not look 73 and the mother of 4 boys but indeed she was. I told her I had some earrings I wanted to add some beads to and she was more that willing to go through her thousands of beads, earrings and assorted other jewelry items and help me find something I liked.
After talking and getting to know her, I told her I would come back and bring my moonstone earrings in for her help.
I surprised myself by going back right away. She shuffled through many pairs of earrings and patienctly helped me try to mix and match all sorts of beads and jewels to match. She knew her beads bones and shells very well.
We talked more and I found out her husband of 50 years had died and she knew it was time because he had so many illnesses. She joked and laughed and contintued in her good spritits as she talked about her rounds with breast cancer, diabetes, arthritis and an host of other health problems. She had been ill for a long time but did not show it. Her color was good, her eyes twinkled. She told me her sons were a bit impatient and although she was attempting to close out her inventory, her sons hoped she would sell and get rid of the thousands of things surrounding me. The sooner the better in their opinion. I could not begin to imagine 4 grown men wading through all the beads and buttons.
They just want her to get rid of all of it. She laughed and said she should leave it to all of them divided by 4 so they would have to deal with it.
Customers came and went during the time we spent together and she waited patiently on everyone. I begged forgiveness for hanging around and she said it was ok because no one waited for her at home like they used to. She was in no hurry.
We discussed her neighbor sales lady who had been asked to move and was going out of business. She said she was always coming to borrow things from her like a bandaid, scotch tape, change in dollar bills and more. The neighbor would never go to the bank for change but would often send customers begging for change because she had none and could not sell them what they wanted unless she gave them dollar bills for their twenties. One day two years ago that very same neighbor walk in and announced she was not speaking to her that day and had not talked to her since in over 2 years.
I noticed her neighbor earlier and she told me she was the mother of 9. Bead lady told me none of the neighbor’s 9 kids would speak to her. The neighbor had insisited I read an article she hap clipped from the paper that day that was funny while I shopped. She told me she was going to read it to her daughter when she called her next. I noticed she was a large lady with big white tennis shoes and bead lady said “Yes and she wears a size 13 shoe.”
She laughed and said she did not know exactly why the lady was not speaking to her.
The bead lady told me about the people who take lava from the island and how there is a curse on people who do. She had attended a high ly respected Hawaiian’s funeral where they did the normal bible reading and then explained the Hawaiian’s view of life and death. When you die your soul returns to the lava and half then goes to the world beyond and the other half stays on earth in the lava and returns to a new child. If you take the lava away you mess up the souls of the Hawaiians and a curse is put on you stealing the islands lava.
I bought my earring supplies and said thanks. A few minutes I was sitting on the steps of my hotel and she wandered by and we sat on the steps chatting a while longer. She was a good and soft spoken woman and was and wasdelightful to sit on the steps and talk to. After she rested she stood slowly, balancing a second before continuing down the road with sore legs and ankles after working on hard floors all day. She balanced her walking with packages hanging from both sides of her body. We said goodbye for a third time and she walked down the street.
A few minutes later I started walking down the street and low and behold ran into her again. She was sitting on a concrete post, resting on her way home. We talked a while longer and I walked her to the lower steps of her apartment above the downtown buildings.
She seemed like she would live forever in bliss and happiness because she enjoyed life and made so much of every minute. She was a delight to talk to and remained positive with all her thoughts. She was a lovely lady and I felt grateful to have met her.

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