Prompts: Still a vigorous man, three doors where your life is headed, work clothes come off, modern attachments, the French was on the boards, ride my indoor bike, mosaics with flowers, part of the humor of everyday life
Madelaine sat in a straight-backed chair, arranging the broken pieces of crockery into a pleasing design on the table top. This one would be a mosaic with flowers, a mandala to serenity, for this ritualistic hobby did help Madelaine feel serene. She liked to engage in at least a half hour of mosaic work before dinner, after she got home and her work clothes had come off. She sat cross-legged on the chair, in baggy jeans and flannel shirt.
This new hobby was proving useful ever since her Grandpa Ed had moved into her bungalow. Still a vigorous man, though very forgetful, Ed insisted on helping with the housework and yard upkeep. He felt this was necessary because Madelaine needed him. She always worked so hard.
Ed loved sweeping up with Madelaine’s new vacuum cleaner, the one with all modern attachments, the long hoses and the big wheels. The upside was that Madelaine’s house had never been more dust free. But Ed was rather clumsy, and Madelaine often came home to discover shards of broken dishes and vases strewn about the kitchen counter and living room floor. Hence, the mosaics. She put a daily dollar in a jar to buy a new set of china and then, she’d just start gluing. What can you do? It was part of the humor of everyday life.
One day as Ed rode his indoor bicycle up the stairs from the basement to the back porch just west of the kitchen, he saw the setting sun sinking through the window and he realized there was more to life than broken crockery. In his mind’s eye, he saw three doors for Madelaine’s life. But which would she choose? Behind door #1 was a French man on a surf board who would teach her to ride the waves, no matter how tumultuous the years might make them. Behind door #2 was the mythology of the night sky, dozens of stories, told in constellations and roving planets. He saw Madelaine traveling all over the world with her notebook and pens, collecting stories from native tribes and city dwellers wherever she went. Behind door #3 was a thousand broken dishes, arranged in a magnificent sculpture that ran down the Pacific Crest Trail from Oregon to Mexico, and Madelaine’s children were creating it.
He continued to ride his bike over the back yard, the rose garden, the basketball courts, the skyscrapers, down the river to the ocean. He knew he could do this because he knew Madelaine would be all right. She had a great talent for creating beauty from what is broken.