Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Car Trip (07/18/05)
TITLE: Black-eyed Susans
By Karen Deikun
LEAVE COMMENT ON ARTICLE
SEND A PRIVATE COMMENT
ADD TO MY FAVORITES
He bundled her into the car, commenting on the beauty of the weather. She looked back at the sunlight dappling the roof of the house, spilling over onto the black-eyed Susans that stood cheerfully behind the low white fence. They waved softly in the morning breeze as if saying goodbye. She loved her flowers. She hoped someone would water them.
As the miles sped by, James kept up a running dialogue. It wasn’t necessary for her to say anything. He was giving his opinions on everything and would be satisfied with a murmur here and there, believing that what he said was what she thought, too. Couldn’t he see that she sat next to him in tightlipped anger, holding on to her temper with rigid control? Couldn’t he tell that she didn’t want to go? Not for the first time, she wondered how they could think so differently after all these years.
“You’ll like this place. I’ve seen it and it’s really beautiful. The room has a view of lawn out the back and there are Irises along the back hedge.”
Ruby just grunted in reply. Irises! She didn’t like them. She liked yellow flowers – bright happy faces with fuzzy black centers – just like she had at home. He’d helped her dig in the fresh fall dirt and move some of them further along the fence when they’d gotten too crowded in the front. Didn’t he remember anything? Maybe he was getting old and having memory lapses. It happened. She leaned back in the big Buick, refusing to enjoy the comfort of the leather seats. She stared at the passing landscape without seeing any of it.
The hours in the car seemed to go on forever as James extolled the beauties and amenities that she would find at the end of their journey. He rattled on about the food, the décor, the people – her ears were tired of listening to it. She hated meeting new people. She liked her solitude and gossiping with Minna from Moscow who lived next door. She did not like crowds and luxury rooms with private baths. And who would feed her cat, she’d like to know? He wasn’t bringing that up, was he? She’d asked him about in over and over and his reply was always the same: “Don’t worry about it.” But she did worry. Who would worry if she didn’t? The poor cat depended on her.
She wished he would be quiet. What did she care if the room had TV and 105 channels? Did she watch TV? She wanted to spend the summer in her garden, in the fresh air. She wished the trip was over and she didn’t have to sit next to him while the big car purred along the smooth highway taking her further and further away. Why couldn’t she magically turn the car around and make him drive back the way they’d come? Why couldn’t she direct her own life? Why did he always have to push her and push her?
As they pulled up he helped her out of the car. What an act! Did he suppose anyone was watching? He put his arm under her elbow – a gesture she particularly hated – and steered her to the door. The double glass doors parted smoothly as they went inside. The lobby with its soft, piped in music lay before them. The carpet beneath her feet was soft and green. She hated it instantly. James continued steering her to the reception desk. The bright-faced young woman was smiling a ridiculous smile.
“Mrs. Holman! Welcome To Birch Manor! Let me show you your room.” And with that, Ruby’s old life was over as her son James walked away, leaving her in the nursing home without a backward glance.
The opinions expressed by authors may not necessarily reflect the opinion of FaithWriters.com.
Accept Jesus as Your Lord and Savior Right Now - CLICK HERE
JOIN US at FaithWriters for Free. Grow as a Writer and Spread the Gospel.