The leaves had turned and within six weeks Christmas would have come and gone. Rolling my suitcase off the bus toward the slippery Seattle street in good spirits, my eyes glistening with excitement, I focused on the ocean within my view. After all it was Thanksgiving and my friend promised a wonderful meal for the holidays. What she would do for me is what I had done for her over the years, as my memories conjured up my kitchen with savory smells that my taste buds couldn’t wait for again.
Manhandling my heavy luggage, staring at the lights dancing off the buildings near the Puget Sound’s emerald waters, I could see the Bremerton Ferry awaiting for me. I arrived a couple of hours early bought my fare and rested on a construction site zone bench, where waiting for my friend to arrive was my goal.
Time went by rapidly, but it had been some time before I heard from her and all to knowing work at the hospital was the culprit. Not a surprise and it did not bother me in the least.
The ferry dock information lady stared at me as I asked her a question.
“Where is the best clam chowder?”
Undeniably she said pointing to Ivars, “right there!”
Yes. Of course.
Suitcase in tow, I decided best to get a bite. It was a good thing as my two hour wait turned to four. What was so interesting besides being physically tired, I enjoyed every minute of that beautiful scenery as dark got darker and the afternoon turned to evening.
It was late, but she arrived and off we went from the ferry to her car parked on the other side of the sound. Driving those dark roads, we reminisced of days gone by and how we both loved the tall pine and fir trees in our view as we weaved the curved asphalt road. I was mesmerized by this part of earth I call home. Yet a part of me was lonely. It was my first Thanksgiving without my sons in 25 years.
When we arrived at my girlfriend’s home, she announced,
“Would you be OK if we have our Thanksgiving meal on Friday?”
Studying her tired face and all to knowing that feeling I made sure to remind her the most important part of hanging out was that we weren’t alone. She smiled and agreed.
Long before she and I would find ourselves together this night, I could not help to think long before in the heavenly it was decided how we would be a help to each other in the present. No Thanksgiving meal on the actual holiday, but my day would not be spent alone and the ferry made sure of that.