rings and things
I did not have a story for the Blog for the final weekday of this week until I went to the beach.
I was involved in stay-at-my-room stuff until about 12:30 when I drove over beachside and went for a walk and for a coffee and reading at Pannikin. Then I drove to the Moonlight parking lot and walked down, boogie board under my arm, the sky clouded over and the air cooler, running into my friend Brad in his motorized chair, on the phone with his sweetie, who, he yelled out, said to say hello to me. Then I walked onto the beach – right or left – went left, set the board down and my towel down, took off my running shoes and socks and hid my keys in the sock stuffed into one of the shoes, took off my tank top, and got up to go boogie-ing.
It was then I noticed a woman directly in front of me moving her hands slowly through the sand, and a guy beyond her to her right doing the same. “Did you lose something?” I asked, and she said yes, his wedding ring. I experienced a wave of sadness. I asked if I could help look and I moved my feet and my hands, standing up and kneeling down, for about 15 minutes before an idea came to me, and it was one of those “right where I’m supposed to be” times. Surely. I’ve never taken off my wedding ring these last approaching five months, my only jewelry I’d say to myself, I like the way it feels when I twirl it with my thumb I’d say to myself, it just shouldn’t come off I say to myself. But I looked at the guy and said, “Do you want to try this one on? I’m not being weird, my wife divorced me four months ago and I haven’t been able to take it off.” And he said “Okay.”
He tried it and said it fit pretty good and what felt like the enormity of giving away my wedding ring – been on that finger 11 and a half years – had me wonder aloud if maybe he’d consider borrowing it until he came across another he knew was the one for him, and they could mail mine back to me. His name is Alex and his wife’s name is Amy, they’re in Encinitas for a Saturday wedding and couldn’t not come to the beach, she said. They said okay and I gave Amy my info, which she put in her phone. I looked some more for his ring and then walked out into the surf, but the fact is my boogie-ing mostly sucked today, I was not all “there” for it, and after a short time I came out and spent another 10 minutes looking for Alex’s ring. No dice. They thanked me again and I walked off the beach and found myself in tears for I think all the right reasons. Mostly for feeling so alive these days, even when being alive aches like crazy. On the way up to rinse the board and my feet I ran into Brad again and told him and cried a little more, and I said a month or so ago, looking for a pair of socks in the travel bag on the floor by my bed, I thought I saw a wedding ring – it would be my wife’s ring and she would have thrown it in there without me knowing and that broke my heart some more when I saw it, but I was going to go back now and look for it. And Brad said don’t put on your wife’s wedding ring.
But I knew I would if I found it, and I’m looking at it on my ring finger now. It’s my new jewelry. My thumb is already playing with it. If the other shows up one of these days from Arizona, where Amy and Alex live, I’ll take this one off and put it back in the bag and put mine back on.
I woke up today, this Friday, feeling sad. I still do. I also feel useful, in a help the planet along way. My old running buddy Frenchie, from back in my early 80’s Somerville days, always use to say, “I don’t know nothing about nothing.” Some days I really dig that.”