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"That Road"

The apartment on Beacon Street outside of Boston was unenchantingly serviceable and close by the trolley so that Harold could get easily and quickly to work with downtown customers remaining in business through the roll-down from the stock market crash that had rendered him surprisingly broke for the first time since high school.

In the first few weeks, while his Packard was still running, he'd driven Marjorie May and little Dorothy to maternal kin for safekeeping within their New Jersey estate. Soon heartsick for his loving wife's company, he'd contacted his older sisters still teaching from their Hartford Connecticut rowhouses to retrieve his little family for watchful care in the familiar stability surrounding his youth and extended kin where Harold soon joined them for strategizing a future suddenly shaken to its leggings.

They would postpone, of course, buying the spacious brick house in Newton Highlands but he must continue his Irish country club membership for uninterrupted deluxe entertaining of sales prospects for the high-end line of business stationary produced by his popularly well-regarded and lifetime employer, Holyoke Paper Company, out in the hinterlands of Massachusetts, for whom he'd been a natural ace since high school graduation. He never regretted foregoing the Ivy League football scholarships in lieu of plunging glad-handedly into the bustling workaday world that would fulfill his intent to be a millionaire, in his own right by his own gleanings, at 40 years of age.

Finding himself, precipitously and near-pennilessly, in a depressing ditch of unregulated markets and banking gone bonkers he assured the supportive women of both matriarchal clans that he, America and the world would soon rebound -- jounce out of the pothole -- on the sure road to greatness and they would be repaid in every way by their faith for the meanwhile.

Breakers sneaking onto the Fort Lauderdale sands soothed the stars glittering hard down onto her lone condo balcony and through a passing reverie of Harold chuckling before a cooling dive into the seaside pool. A seagull gloated loudly that it could flap and float to any span or boat it chose and leave her wondering too. Marjorie May turned through the doorway for her comfort ritual of Elizabeth Arden creams and lotions and bandings. The single room and narrow bed dared her to sleep, to dream and live alone after all the beloved souls had departed. She reached to turn the knob.

"If the lazy sons of witches at town hall had put a traffic light there, it wouldn't have happened."

"Sir, you're yelling, you know. I can hear just fine from this radio tower to the night. So, you blame Mayor Kopler and not the driver or the dog's owner?"

"Durn right. they just changed all the meters from nickels to dimes. There's no excuse....."

Her own soft snore woke Marjorie May with a start into the streaked lights of early dawn on the querulous quarrels of old age with widowed wanderlands.

(489 words 2972 characters)

Author's Note: Micro WordArt above is a very imaginative Creative Nonfiction assemblage of reminiscent fragments of family lore regarding my gentically-Celtic Harris/Scranton grandparents. A lifelong radio devotee of serialised soap-operas for diversionary amusement, in later decades my grandmother listened with curious intent to call-in shows during the wee hours of the morning. In daylight she loved quietly observant and knowledgeably kind "people watching" also. All of which made her a sensitively good and popularly appreciated portrait artist. She and my grandfather were ever-staunch "turtle-doves" who traveled and talked together cosily closed in amicably avid intimacy -- excepting the menopausal decade of her western state solo-fling as a temporary divorce' through Reno NV, San Diego and Los Angeles CA.

"The way of the Cross is not easy, yet it is the tuneful, the rhythmic, the beautiful, the lovely way."
-- Edgar Cayce, Association for Research and Enlightenment

Original text and graphics c. A Country Rag, Inc. and Jeannette Harris, Jonesborough TN, April 1996, January 2015.