Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Just A Small Town Girl

Just a small town girl.

Livin' in a lonely world.

It's funny how your mind can be in two places at once.  The boat is bouncing up and down off the coast of Puerto Vallarta.  The music blares from the speaker above my head.  My daughter is face down on a towel.  She writhes back and forth complaining about her stomach and the rocking motion of the ocean. 

I am a world away.  Sitting in my brother's room on a brown bean bag listening to the Journey album that he just purchased.  It's the eighties, and I probably am no more than ten years old.  We listen to the song over and over again as I commit the words to memory. 

She took the midnight train goin' anywhere.

It would be the first song that I memorized all the way through.  I daydreamed that I was on stage singing to a crowd of adoring fans (mostly girls).  Of course, my dreams never came true.  I never became famous.  Yet the song stuck with me through all those years.

Just a city boy.

My daughter looks up at me quizzically.  She no longer has the grimace of discomfort on her face.  Daddy, you used to sing this song to me!  Indeed, she is right.  When she was two years old she had so much trouble falling asleep.  So I would sing to her.  Horribly out of tune since I have no sense of tempo or melody.  And this was one of the few songs that I knew all the words to. This is the first time that she is hearing the original version instead off my warped, poorly executed warble.

All of the sudden, I feel such a strange sense of wholeness.  In a foreign land in the middle of the ocean.  My daydreams of singing this song to an adoring audience in a sense came true.  The lines of my life have twisted and turned but somehow tied these moments together over the decades.

And my dreams are nothing like what I had imagined when I was just a few years older than my daughter is now.  Yet I can't help but feel that everything happened exactly the way it was supposed to.  That indeed all those disparate and disconnected moments somehow have been woven into the pattern of my life.

Looking down into the soft sparkling eyes of my daughter, I feel great calm.  And I try so hard to hold on to the feeling,

because I know, in a moment or two, that it will dissipate. 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Loved it. Life is a mix of the past and the present. This time of year has a way of combining the two!