When I was making the bed this morning I saw that all of the roofs on the houses across the street were white. They are not usually white, they are black. That meant that we'd had frost overnight. The grass blades were shaded white and glittered when the sun came out.
The recipe today was an old favorite: Unstuffed Cabbage Rolls. It's really a ground turkey stew with onions, mushrooms, diced tomatoes, and cabbage. A Lot of Cabbage. I cooked up another pot of brown rice so that I could put a serving of rice on top of the stew when I portioned it out.
Making the stew meant that there was three-quarters of a pound of ground turkey left without a place to go so I mixed up a half-batch of the Mini Turkey Meatloaves that I made the other day. I'm never comfortable leaving ground meat hang around for more than a couple days and it was easier to whip up more meatloaves than to freeze the meat and figure out what to do with it down the road. I saved one for tonight's supper and the rest went into the freezer for eating later.
I wanted to try making a cast toe sock with some chunky yarn I had left over from making a hat but couldn't find a pattern so I made one up. There isn't much to it, just knit 2, purl 2 around and around until it's long enough, then decrease for the toe. Knit 2, purl 2 rib is very stretchy so I figure that it will be better for someone with bigger feet. Like a man.
12 November--Barbara Malcolm, The Seaview.
The next morning when I came out of the water from an early swim, there he was. He leaned against the stairs with his blue chambray shirt sleeves rolled up to his elbows, his forearms looking strong and gorgeous. He had a bit of gray at the temples and his jeans fit him very well. I raked my hair back off my forehead and hoped I didn’t have snot dripping from my nose. He straightened and watched me approach. Just as I got to him Silas looked out the door and hollered, “Uncle Iggy, that’s Mrs. Lambert.”
I smiled and put out my hand. “I’m Rose Lambert.” His hand was warm and strong in mine and I could feel calluses from years of hard work.
“I am Ignatius Solomon,” he said in a low rumble.
I felt a jolt of electricity as he took my hand and I felt cold and hot at the same time. I dropped my fins and pulled my towel off the railing behind him, wrapping it around myself and drying my face with a corner of it.
“I am early, Mrs. Lambert, I apologize. I can visit with Silas and maybe look around while you dress.”
“Uh, good,” I managed to stammer. I watched him go into the Seaview before I bent to pick up my fins and hurry to my room to shower and dress. I couldn’t stop thinking of Mr. Solomon, about his strong arms and hands, about his voice like warm honey, and how my name would sound when he said it. I hurried into my nicest khaki shorts and a v-necked white tee-shirt that I think looks especially good on me, shoved my feet into sandals and hurried back down the road.
As I walked back toward the Seaview, I saw Mr. Solomon stood by the tree in the center of the garden. He looked tall, over six feet, and strong. He straightened as I turned into the yard past the dumpster. I saw that he was older than I thought at first glance, maybe close to seventy if the white hairs curling over his ears were any hint. I smiled at him and he brushed his hands over his pressed blue jeans and smiled back.
“I'm pleased to meet you Mr. Solomon,” I said when I reached him and extended my hand.
He wiped his hand one more time on his pants leg and put his hand in mine. I felt the little jolt of electricity again at his touch and a shiver ran up my arm. I knew that he felt it too because our eyes dropped to look at our joined hands and then popped back up to look at each other.
“Yes,” his voice was deep and smooth, “I am pleased to meet you too, Mrs. Lambert."
We stood staring at each other and holding hands while I tried to gather my scattered thoughts. I pulled my hand back and rubbed it on the side of my shorts.
“Yes, um, yes, I, uh, need an electrician and Johnno tells me you’re licensed.” He nodded and his hand reached around to his hip pocket for his wallet. I stopped him, saying, “Let’s go through to the front porch and we can talk about whether you have time to do the work I need and whether I can afford you.” I was pulling my keys out of my pocket so that I could unlock the back door when I saw that the padlock was not latched. “Dammit,” I said under my breath, “I’m going to murder that boy.”
Just then the back door of the Seaview opened and Silas stuck his head out. “You should have told me you were going to sleep here again last night,” I said to Silas. “I thought that you’d forgotten to put on the padlock.”
"You saw me inside the front door when you came out from swimming." He shrugged. “I mean to stay here until I can be sure no vandals will be snooping around again. I put the fear of God into Micah and I think Johnno had a word or two with the sergeant about the night shift officers, so things should stay fairly buttoned up for a while, until someone gets careless." He swung the door wide so that we could go in.
Mr. Solomon indicated that I should go first and his hand touched the small of my back as I stepped in front of him. Another spark jolted along my spine making me catch my breath. I led the way through the demolished rooms wondering if I wanted to have a man who seemed to generate his own electricity working on my hotel. He might start fires without needing matches. I heard his footsteps slow behind me as I made my way down the short hallway between what would be my apartment and the lobby and sitting room. Silas and Edward had left all of the old wiring in place so that the electrician could see how it was wired and use anything salvageable.
“Oh my,” Mr. Solomon said in a soft voice. “It is a wonder this place is not a pile of ash.” I turned to look at him. He had turned to Silas and had a hand on the young man’s bare shoulder. “Silas, is there any power on in here?”
“Yeah, Hughes, the Anguilla Water and Electric guy turned it on the other day.”
Mr. Solomon reached and touched the wire that hung between the wall studs in front of him. “Well, go shut it off.” When Silas didn’t move, his uncle shoved him hard. “Go. Shut it off right now before we are all burned up.”
Silas turned on his heel and went back into the kitchen where the breaker box was and I heard switches flip: one, two, three, and four. “That’s it, Uncle Iggy.”
Mr. Solomon let go of the wire and looked at me. “Touch the wire.”
I did. It was hot.
Silas came back to stand next to his uncle who said, “Thank you, boy. Now you get over to Johnno’s and clean up.” He put a hand on my arm. “This young lady and I need to have a chat.” He steered me through the lobby and out onto the front porch.
Today's toss was a smaller box of Christmas ornaments that had been Durwood's mother's. I know, I know, they're old and probably collectible but not by me. Someone will find them at Goodwill and be thrilled. I am happy for them.
I'm still hanging in there with NaNoWriMo,getting words down every day. I'm not on pace for the challenge but I am happy to be still in the game. Today my wedding ring kept twirling around on my finger, getting caught between fingers, and sliding off so I took it off. It feels very weird not to have that small weight on my hand. I don't know if I'll leave it off or just take it off when I type. I put it back on. Too many feelings.
The exterminator came for the last time today. We still didn't catch any mice but I am convinced that the mice went back outside when it warmed up and now that it's cooling off they sealed up the house so the mice can't come in. That makes sense, don't you think?