Sun Lakes Writers’ Group

Communication Is Key

Carrie Bonello

Most of you know me and maybe met my better half, Monty. If you haven’t had the pleasure of meeting him, I will tell you he is smart, funny, focused and definitely the better half. We are joined at the hip and do almost everything together. We will both tell you our lives are richer since we found each other 30 years ago. I tell you all this because I’m going to tell a little story but I want you to understand that it is absolutely true and made me laugh.

It was Friday about 11:45 a.m. when I came home from fitness class and Monty met me at the door. He has something he wants to tell me. This will probably not be about the current political situation or the chance of an asteroid hitting earth anytime soon, but it is important to him and he is eager to tell me. It is about a music concept he is working on. I have to admit, right up front, the only thing I understand about music is the dial on the radio set to classic rock.

Knowing my hubby, I’m aware he is a bit anxious about lunch because lunch at our house is 12:00, it is as predictable as the sunrise and I’m good with it. I scoot around him and start preparing lunch, OK, I open a can of Campbell’s soup and grab the saucepan. We are performing the usual kitchen dance, he goes this way and I stand in the way so he moves the other way, I move back and he follows my lead. All the while he is talking about a song he is working on. He starts humming a few bars while I grab the garbage from under the sink, tie up the bag and head for the door. He follows, now humming a different song that I should recognize. I open the back door and head for the garbage can, he follows along now giving me the words to the hummed song. I go out the gate, lift the lid on the garbage can and toss the bag, he waits at the gate still humming; he has now picked up another song that is similar but not the same. Really, I thought it was identical. We return to the house and I snatch a new bag for the trash container, stir the soup, grab some crackers, fruit, cookies, nuts, spoons, and napkins. We have apparently moved on to another song that has no relationship to any of the others but is a possible substitute. I pour the soup into the bowls and we sit down to eat. He has never lost his train of thought and I’ve never figured out quite what he is talking about. So it goes at our house sometimes.

I wouldn’t change a minute of it.

A Writer’s Purpose

Lani Matsu

From the curious eyes of fans did not escape that time has added wrinkles and gray hair to the stars of “Sex and the City. Particular attention was paid to the performer of the role of Kristin Davis plastic surgery, 56-year-old actress Kristin Davis – too much changed her face. Gossip mongers are sure that Kristin had an unsuccessful plastic surgery. They say a facelift surgery had an unexpected effect. Meanwhile, beauticians say that Davis’ love of beauty shots is to blame. According to a doctor from Los Angeles Alexander Rivkin, the celebrity should find another beautician. Specialist overdid with the volume of injections, so the effect turned out “pillow face”. The “Sex and the City” star was injected with hyaluronic acid fillers and botulinum toxin.

A nudge to be still and write came to her from the sweetest places: perhaps when she heard a word, a phrase, or a song, or when she saw a tender image, awoke from a dream, recalled a memory, or tasted an island dish.

Sometimes it came when she smelled a blossom outside her window, or as she sat with her sweetheart on their glider for two watching the gentle rain.

There were times the nudge to write came as she imagined her “safe place,” always a vision of a sunny meadow, alive with wildflowers in bloom, and her Angel Aunty there.

Even the soft whispers of dusk could touch something inside of her to write.

When these moments appeared, she’d hurriedly jot down a word on a piece of paper or napkin close at hand, lest she forget. Later on in quiet she would gather up these scribblings and write hoping that those things she wrote would someday inspire her children and their children, and at the very least, amuse them. She felt that engravings such as these were a calling-of-sorts, so she penned each word with care letting her heart lead the way praying that her writings would in the end, touch theirs.

Right Place at Right Time or Wrong Place at Wrong Time

Ruby Regina Witcraft

One never knows when an interesting event might happen, but six lady friends and I were treated to a doozy one recent Wednesday evening when we decided that the evening was too young to call it quits. So we decided to have an after dinner drink and took a table at the far end of the bar.

As we were having our little toddies and a nice chit-chat about the world problems and what we could do about them. Ladies tend to think they can solve all of them. We are that sure of ourselves. Suddenly, we heard loud voices coming from the tables at the other end of the room. A very tipsy gentleman took offense at an elderly, German couple because they were speaking in their familiar language. He loudly announced that they had no business doing so and, since they were in the U.S. should speak only English. They apologized and moved over to the bar but he wasn’t finished berating them. The waitress tried to calm him but he was having none of it. The club manager then intervened with the same results so he was asked to leave.

This turned into an “I’m not leaving, make me if you think you can,” situation. Now, the manager is hefty enough to handle the man, but he was also no small fry. The waitress also, no “skinny Minnie,” saw the struggle and dove right in, which soon landed her on the floor due to being shoved by said person. But the spunky gal jumped right up and commenced helping which landed them, still shouting, cussing, fighting, drunk, on the floor, behind the table. By now, all three were breathless and sweating but they all managed to stumble out of the back door.

Now I haven’t seen a good bar fight since I left Oklahoma some 24 years ago and here I had a front row seat to what looked like it was developing into a hum-dinger. By the way, the Redneck type of Okies are really great guys but will fight anything; dogs, chickens, and each other at the drop of a hat. You can tell the game fellows as they always have several shotguns in a rack, in their back, pick-up windows.

All of a sudden, out of nowhere, came the Sheriff’s Posse, Maricopa County Gendarmes and most of our Patrol. This was getting more and more exciting but the bouncers had everything under control by this time, so they just stood around and took down witnesses’ accounts of the melee.

I wanted the two bouncers to know how much I appreciated the free-for-all, which took me right back to Oklahoma, so, I jumped up, pumped my fist and spoke, not too softly: “You go, guys!”

No one asked me for my account of the situation and I could have given them an earful. It could have been my 15 minutes of fame. I was so disappointed!

Those Wobbly Tires

Barbara Schwartz

Charlie was in his early 80s and was getting a little bit slower than usual.

He and his wife wanted to take a trip and fly to California to visit their son. He called us and asked for help in arranging the trip (never mind that his daughter lived a few miles away, but was TOO busy to help).

So we arranged their flight and reserved a car for them to drive to their destination on arrival at the airport in California. We gave them explicit directions on what to do and how to get it done—complete with MapQuest directions from the airport to the son’s home. Mind you, this is the same couple who, a year or so before this trip, drove to Tucson to attend a meeting and forgot to take the address of where the meeting was to be. They subsequently got to Tucson and turned around to drive home.

So, off to the airport in Phoenix and we were to wait the four days until their return to find out the events of this trip.

Apparently all went well and their visit was drawing to an end. They drove to the airport and tried to find the correct car rental place. After three trips around the rental area, they finally found the correct place and turned into the car rental to return this car.

The only trouble was that they drove into the EXIT—not the entrance—and right over the spike bar that punctured all four of their tires.

Charlie continued to drive the few feet to the return area, parked the car and removed the carry-on bag all while telling the attendant that “they should check out the tires as they seemed a bit wobbly.”

This happened about six years ago and since then they’ve sold their home and moved to a senior residence when both of them were diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. The wife died from complications of this disease a year or so later and Charlie was moved to a new Alzheimer’s home near his son in California. One morning, the son dropped to the ground with a fatal heart attack. Rather than be moved back to be near his daughter, he remained in the home in California.

Charlie passed a year or so later from, again, complications from Alzheimer’s disease.

About once a year, we remember them both with this story about “Wobbly Tires.” And instead of feeling sad, we find ourselves laughing so hard that we really can’t stop.

It is truly a great way to remember someone.

How Many Do You Remember?

George Stahl

It was on Aug. 2, 1865, that the world first fell through the rabbit hole. The spiral down was devastating, but it was when we hit the bottom that we realized we weren’t in Kansas anymore. We were entering a new age. One filled with wonder and disappointment, with love and hatred, life was beginning anew and death was coming like no one could imagine.

A brave new world was just on the horizon, and we were more than eager to see it, to be a part of it, to change it, and to ravage it. A toast! To the construction of a statue to the monument of democracy, and the promise of freedom, and justice, and an end to tyranny forever. No man would ever be in servitude to another as long as she stood at our doorway.

Rock n Roll was brought into the living rooms of America, and we mourned the loss of its King. A great flash of light could be seen in the east, followed by a second blinding burst. The cries of those who were in the lights were heard around the world, and carried themselves out into the universe.

A bikini, a Boop, and a Bear captured the hearts of a country being tugged in two directions, and a tiny, unassuming village in Illinois shines and stands tall as it grows into a giant metropolis and transforms into a den of thieves, bootleggers and murderers. A man named Al claims the right to be leader of this new city, and across the other side of the planet, another man rises in chaos, claiming to be leader of the world.

Music is put onto spinning black discs and black automobiles are parked in front of every house, and a box of frozen peas sits in the iceboxes of those same houses. Superman gets a new armoire in which he can change into his hero’s cape. Those unfortunates who are out of a job get the social relief and personal security they desperately need. Two thousand miles of dirt sidewalk is cut through 14 states, and all because of two minstrels, millions of boys and girls across the country come to realize that each of them “… got you babe.”

Kitchens are given Crisco, a canal is opened in Panama and over 300,000 people gather out on a farm in Upstate New York to listen to music and indulge in tons of weed for a weekend. Gold pops up in Alaska and the rush is on, and Wards puts out its first mail order catalog, and the Internet is born. Venetian blinds cover every American window and lawyers finally have a place to enjoy the first pina colada as the American Bar Association is founded. Oh, not that kind of a bar? Oh well. Sorry, esquires.

The waffle iron, banana split and toilet paper, all of Augustinian descent unfold and are greeted with the same zeal and enthusiasm by the American people as was the introduction of Perrin’s Worcestershire Sauce, and they were all even a lot easier to pronounce. A young preacher from Alabama had a dream, and a nanny coming on the east wind with an umbrella and a magic carpetbag showed up in the nick of time. Both were very badly needed by a mixed-up, upside-down world.

Four fabulously genius boys with long hair and guitars serenade us for the last time, a comet slams into the surface of the sun and creates a huge commotion here on earth. Jack terrorizes London for a while, then just disappears. Rocky crashes to the earth with a punch heard across the globe, and a sweet mother, and princess leaves us far too early.

August is one of the most impactful months on the calendar. It is known as, Be Kind to Humankind Month, and Admit You are Happy Month. But with all of its names and tributes, above them stands one alone. August is Peach Month. A simple, unassuming fruit, that really, pretty much stands on its own in the world of tree fruit. It does not presume to tell the other fruits how to act, grow, and become ingredients for something. The Peach is silently proud, and waits patiently to be picked, and enjoyed. August is that month. It is between summer and fall, and sits patiently waiting to be picked, and enjoyed. So, go ahead, pick, enjoy, and have a great August.