Monday, June 13, 2022

Monday Mimisms ~ Moves Like Jagger

Mist forming on a lonely highway. The smell of fresh rain. On my way to pick up grandson #2 (aka Beans) I stopped for a quick drive-thru iced tea at one of my favorite places. The ice is crushed. The tea is perfect. I had plenty of time and I knew my boy would want french fries and ketchup on the side. Back on the highway, I leisurely drove into clouds and rain, sipping my tea. Along about the third curve towards town, torrents of heavy rain began to pitter patter beat on the windshield. Concentrate, Mimi, concentrate...It's just a little rain. Put down the tea....the tea. And then it happened. It was the ice, you see. Crushed. Perfect. Just like she wanted. My hands cupped the glass and I saw her hands...

When we would go shopping on Saturdays, she loved to stop and get crushed ice with sweet tea.
 It made her happy.   
 "I miss my mama," cried my heart and then out loud in a storm-soaked vehicle, driving into rain, through rain, becoming rain Oh God, I miss my mama.  I was a complete unexpected mess. The  floodgates opened and would.not.stop, keeping time with the windshield wipers and mixing in the clouds. We were as different as pumpkins and peonies, but today I just wanted to have tea with her and talk about dress shops and flower beds. The sobs came out of nowhere, unlike the stoic resolve I manage to maintain on a usual day....and I could not make them stop. I haven't written much about her since she passed in 2019. Her death was sudden. The aftermath vile and wholly undignified. She didn't deserve the end she was dealt and it was more grief than I could process. 

Beans climbed in the car, eager to spend a week with me, with a what-is-wrong-with-you-Mimi look and why is your mascara running question. No answer. I was spent. Then something amazing and brilliant and fascinating happened.
Because he's been permanently banned from cellphones (long sad story for another day oh.the.drama) he did the only thing a phone deprived pre-teen could do.
He reached for the radio. 
"How does this work?" he asked.

Do you know how quickly tears can turn to laughter? I nearly spun into a ditch trying to teach him how to use the dials. And this boy, who always somehow knows just what I need when I need it, turned the volume up to sonic boom, rolled the windows down just for kicks and set the controls on automatic scan. Who taught him to increase the bass? THUMP THUMP through neighborhoods we cruised. I'm sure it could be heard at the International Space Station.    Every ten seconds or so, the music would change from rap to classical to gospel to inappropriate wordy rap (giggles) to talk radio to strings and usually back to very loud rap music. We put on very large rockstar sunglasses and changed our mood and facial expressions to match whatever played. It was us...and every neighborhood we passed through as well, including the squirrels and cows and birds trying to catch a glimpse into the runaway rogue mess of a gyrating car we were in. 

Maroon 5 began to sing "Moves Like Jagger"... Stop! Stop it right there! Beans began to bounce. The car bounced. I bounced. My shoulders twitched from side-to-side. My toes tapped on the floorboard and his feet moved on the dashboard. I conducted with one hand (who conducts Mick Jagger?) and drove with the other.  We sang at the top of our lungs as he masterfully executed the washing machine dance in the passenger seat while I crazily snapped my fingers to the beat and banged my head around like a teenager on the sidelines at a Beatles concert. (Yes, I was still driving, my Bloggy People)
 The clouds were dancing. Mama was dancing. Tea was spilling.
 Love was flowing.

I forgot all about mascara on my face and why I was crying in the first place. We car danced all the way up the driveway until we stopped for one more look out the rolled-down windows to see how many woodsy creatures we could scare with the Rolling Stones.  I never had a dance partner so brilliant.

The sun came out and we were home. 
 "You just ruined my ears for eternity!" I told him. More laughter. More volume.
Then a loud crushing pain in my heart.

"Nothing is for eternity, my girl," Mama whispered.
 "Everything changes."

And so it does.

Images: Mimi Lenox and Wikimedia Creative Commons

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