Pages of my life…

Lasting Impressions…the kindness of a stranger named Paul

Posted on: November 6, 2009

Every once in a while I am reminded of special people places and things whose presence in my life have made a difference.  Not every relationship needs to be a long one…and not everyone that comes along leaves an indelible mark.  Some people just seem to instinctively know how to become a passage in the journal of your life.  There are but a few among us…living life in such a deeply personal way… whose actions and interactions…stand out boldly on our pages…as though they were written in India ink.  Most people leave the mark of a nice ball point pen…and the occasional soul comes around with a manner so unassuming or unnoticed …the impression they form is no more visible than a faint pencil line.  In the process of sorting through old photos from which to extract favorites to scan…I ran across a few of the prettiest pictures ever taken of me.  It was not the softened beauty of my middle aged face or the pure untouched sweetness that radiated from within…whose memory caused me to smile.  It was the image of someone who had indeed made a lasting impression.  I was on the California coastline…in a place I had loved for as long as I can remember.  As luck would have it…someone had suggested a perfect spot to get hitched…on the beach… where a large cross served as a backdrop for blending religion…nature and lovers wishing to be joined at the hip.  I am a curious sort of soul…and part of me could not resist the urge to breathe in the air…and enjoy a glimpse of the place where I would repeat vows the following day.  It might have been the glow of happiness on my face…or the sheer ecstasy I feel whenever I am near waves crashing to the shore.  For whatever reason…there was magic in the air.  I have spent my entire life smiling ear to ear… talking to strangers…until they were strangers no more.  On that particular day…an artist was busy working on a painting …and the weather was perfect for my little jaunt down the cascading stairs.  I bounced my way to the beach below …and when I ascended to the top…the artist and his friend asked if they might take a photograph of me…from which to paint.  I have graced more than one canvas in my lifetime…and I readily accepted the invitation to pose.  This painting appears within the confines of my web page…coupled with a written work of art that is both heartfelt and apropos.  As I began my trek across the street…a kind looking gentleman smiled at me from across the way.  He was working in his garden…clearly enjoying the flowers and his nicely landscaped home.  We exchanged pleasantries along the lines of noting what a beautiful day it was…and I explained that I was to be married the following day on the beach below.  He inquired what time the wedding was to take place…what our plans might include…and asked me to please stop by his home after the ceremony.   The wedding was very simple…but sweet…and on the way back up from the beach…we were greeted by a smiling face…waving wildly.  The gentleman…Paul…invited us all into his home.  Like pied piper…a trail of wedding party participants and the minister all followed our impromptu host.  Once in the door…we all gasped with excitement.  Paul had prepared an entire wedding reception by himself.  His home was a magnificent tribute to this gracious gentleman.  The bar area was lined with champagne and glasses…and every sort of beverage.  There was a gorgeous wedding cake…and a thoughtfully assembled collection of every kind of food.  Paul beamed ear to ear as guests drank in the ambiance and  were encouraged to play pool or ping pong in a massive room with a vaulted ceiling that opened on command.  His tour of the home revealed artifacts from the Incas and Aztecs and stunning pieces of art any museum would have been proud to possess.  The party went on for hours… and a fast friendship was made with this gentle man among men.  His wife had departed prematurely…and there is not a doubt in my mind that he loved her until the day he died.  His children and the craft he wisely honed were topics on which he would dwell.  His keen business acumen afforded him ownership of a popular ski resort and mountain.  Another home further north comprised of a country club…acquired and then divided the land into portions for farming…cattle, almonds and  corn.  The clubhouse was modestly altered to become a warm and charming place to hang his hat. Over the years we would enjoy a friendship that would endure much  longer and hold more meaning than the once hopeful wedding whose ceremony and longevity were diminished by secrets not my own.  I shall remember my forever friend with every trip to that special place by the sea.  Paul’s story is the first in a series I have lovingly entitled…lasting impressions.    

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2 Responses to "Lasting Impressions…the kindness of a stranger named Paul"

I’m really loving the theme/design of your weblog.
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Thank you for your interest in my little blog page. I know very little about the format options. I was in writing mode a few years ago and combined some of my efforts, more as a personal documentation effort. Unfortunately, I am not in a position to render suggestions or ideas as to what may or may not work. It truly was a labor of love stumbling through a few items to build the page. Best wishes in your approach and formatting for your efforts.

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  • justmebethb: Thank you for your interest in my little blog page. I know very little about the format options. I was in writing mode a few years ago and combined
  • best psychics in boston massachusetts: I'm really loving the theme/design of your weblog. Do you ever run into any internet browser compatibility problems? A small number of my blog audi
  • justmebethb: Thanks Lori...I could not agree more. And, of course, the first daffodil ever planted at this house, bloomed yesterday...on Ray's birthday. Makes se
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