I glimpsed her in my peripheral vision as I sat quietly in my vehicle, waiting in the ferry line. I had been savouring the warm, fresh memory of forty hours. Forty hours of beautifully easy moments, forty hours of small, but powerful adventures on the little Island called Thetis, with the man of many monikers and few (extraneous) words.
She, whom I had glimpsed, wore the layered, long and flowy patchwork skirt that I have come to associate with the mature, nature-loving wild-spirited women of the Gulf Islands. The skirt was topped by a ¾ length puffer coat, and a bright white Smurf-toque, and she wore them with an ease and comfort only one well at home in one’s own skin, can wear.
Her little dog was clad in a red sweater that reminded me of the Arbutus berries I had attempted to capture with my camera just yesterday, and matched her wild-woman hair, in a shade of vermillion not available in any beauty counter bottle.
She felt my gaze as she walked by my car, turned to look me in the eyes, and gifted me with a smile so genuine and warm, a smile of such depth, a smile of intensely wise knowing, a smile the likes of which only women of a certain age and wisdom have the capacity to bestow upon other women. A smile bereft of competition, insecurity, or envy.
And I left the Island feeling as though I could, possibly, make it through another week of intense human suffering, and perhaps, even lessen the burden for some, because: 40 hours and her smile.
~Marcela: focusing on the beautiful, in the midst of ugly all around us.
December 06, 2020