I’d tried to like sewing for eleven years. I thought all women should sew and cook and clean. I had the cooking part down—one out of three, not bad for an overwhelmed mom of three.
So, when the thought came to me, “Go check on Gilmore Girl,” I immediately left the sewing project—that had been picked-out as often as it had been sewn—and stood on the front porch. The little band of neighborhood children was crossing the road, single-file—oldest to youngest. My girl was the last in line. There was a big gap between her and “Twitchy”—not his real name but not far from his real name—she was the youngest by two years.
Twitchy’s dad, Macho Man was leaving for work and had stopped to talk to his child. By the time my girl got to the front of his car Macho Man was finished talking to his boy. He patted Twitchy on the head.
Let me back-step a minute and tell you about Macho Man. He was a teenager masquerading as an adult. He brought a boom box outside every Saturday and we all listened to The Beach Boys as he did his outside chores—people a block away enjoyed it as much as we did. When he drove into the cul-de-sac it was high speed—it didn’t matter that the neighborhood was filled with children—he didn’t exactly screech, accompanied by a cloud of dust, into his driveway, but almost. When he left the cul-de-sac he floored the gas pedal.
I stood on the porch, horrified. There wasn’t time to get to Gilmore Girl. I felt Macho Man get ready to slam his foot on the gas pedal. There is no other way to explain it. I simply felt it. Her life depended on me.
“STOP!” I yelled.
Macho Man looked up to see what was the matter with me. In three or four seconds Gilmore Girl toddled far enough that she cleared the front of his car and in another two seconds he saw her movement out of the corner of his eye and turned to look at her.
He said something to me, in a laughing sort of way. I don’t know what it was. I was beyond hearing. He said something again but by then there was no one else in the world but my little girl. I walked over, scooped her up and buried my face in her neck. The smell of my little summer child was like nothing I can describe. I have loved the smell of summer skin ever since. It is like a gift, straight from Heaven.
As was the message: “Go check on Gilmore Girl.”