narrated by: Myra
Since Cole was a toddler, I’ve ran my own Farmer’s Market, after the passing of Randy, I sold it. I moved to Millwood, and I didn’t think I’d be able to continue running it, since it was downtown South Port. I haven’t stopped my gardening though, and decided that if a local opportunity arose, I’d look into starting it up again.
I started my searching in the winter, and hadn’t been dedicated to the idea. If I found myself with some free time in the evening I might peruse the local real estate ad. Once summer got here though, it was no longer a whimsy of mine. I upped my searching, and spread the word that I needed a small plot of property.
There was a decent sized building for sale, with a gorgeous stone patio that would be perfect for my produce. I had no use for the building though, and it turned out that there was another local woman who had wares to sell but no place to do so. We started talking via email, and landed with a deal. I offered to sell Rebecca’s pottery as a trial. I paid $2,000 for several pieces of her work, and if they sell well, I’ll buy more.
Norma had been a big help with landing all the information about the property and Rebecca even. On my opening day, I invited her over for some produce on me.
I also needed one last bit of help from her, I needed someone to help me run the shop. I always had Randy, and then a part-time stock boy for busy Saturday mornings. Now I was alone, and needed some type of help.
She recommended Brooklyn Lange, a young girl who wouldn’t mind having a summer job. I arranged for her to come in for an interview, and hired her on the spot to run the cash register, Randy’s old job.
I also hired Monty to run the coffee stand. There isn’t a single coffee place in Millwood, and I’d like to get a piece of that market.
We had barely been open a week, when my oldest granddaughter, Alice called me one night begging that I hire her.
I loved the idea of having her by my side, I spend most of my summer with them since Cole is busy with his law firm and Mayor duties, and Lucy is busy helping him. It was her idea that I come over when she asked her parents about taking the summer job.
Lucy was surprised by the question, she didn’t realize that Alice could work at fourteen. Cole spent most of his time quiet, listening to Alice’s pro-list of why she should get a summer job. She was very thorough, she would save money for college (which isn’t necessary), she could earn my personal scholarship by working at a local business, which is also not necessary. It was very mature, and rather sweet.
By the end of Alice’s presentation, both Cole and Lucy agreed that a summer job would be good for Alice and keep her out of trouble. Which none of us are even concerned about with Alice.
I’m only open Friday through Sunday, so it’s a short week. Alice was put in charge of customer service and selling to the customers. I wanted to see if she had a knack for it like myself, and she certainly does. She wants to be an actress when she grows up, and I’d normally think something like that isn’t very probable, but I don’t feel that with her.
Cole made an excuse her first weekend working to come in and buy some peppers. I know he just wanted to check in on Alice, but it wouldn’t be “cool” if he did that.
Alice and Brooklyn really hit it off, apparently they had gone to grade school together. Friday is the only day that we are open until dusk, and the girls usually sit outside at the table if there’s no customers.
Sometimes a local boy, Isaac comes by to sit with them. I had a feeling he liked Alice, but it seemed to me that Brooklyn liked him.
I found out while restocking one evening that Alice returned the affection towards Isaac. Brooklyn was probing for details on a kiss, and while she was trying to keep her voice down, these old ears still caught the general drift of the conversation.
The previous weekend, Alice and Isaac had kissed near the small parking lot to the side of the building. I was surprised that I hadn’t witnessed it myself, and didn’t know if I was obligated to inform Cole of this information.
Alice was pretty excited about the whole ordeal, and I didn’t want to dampen it by telling on her. I know that her parents forbid her from dating an older boy, but I didn’t think Isaac could be that much older than her.
I decided I’d just watch the situation, and then decide from there. Since I have the grandkids over most days anyhow, I figured I would be able to handle that.
Outside of the market, Alice spent most of her time hanging out Julia, and she still seemed like my logical, wise young granddaughter that she’s always been.
I feel a little old to be hanging out at the pool. I don’t feel comfortable donning a swimsuit after all these years, and it’s hot sitting in a dress under the shade of the umbrella. But seeing the kids go down the slide, and sweet Itzel being so timid about it, makes up for my lack of comfort.
Plus the kids get tired being at my tiny home, so the pool is the best option since it’s just one block away. At the house, I can’t keep Itzel and Milo out of the apple tree. It’s not good for the branches to have them hanging on it, but I hate to be a grumpy grandma and tell them to stay out.
One afternoon that the kids were at home, Cole surprised me with a visit. I don’t see him very often now that he’s a busy Mayor, so a visit is always a pleasure.
He seemed much more serious than he usually is, and I grew concerned that he’d found out about Alice’s kiss with Isaac. I’m not sure if I was relieved when I found the purpose of his visit was me. He wanted me to move in with him and Lucy, something that was mentioned just after Randy died.
He was really nervous bringing it up, but they were concerned for me living out here and all alone. I reminded him of my cat, but he didn’t smile at my small attempt at humor.
When I tried telling him no, he insisted that I think it over, and to come to dinner the following week to talk it over some more. I didn’t have anything to think over, but I agreed to dinner.
I realize that by being stubborn, and living alone, that I have a high chance of passing away on my own. It’s a lonely thought, but I’m not willing to give up my freedom of living for the chance to avoid my dead body laying unnoticed for a day. It just doesn’t make sense to me, I want to enjoy myself while I’m alive, and not cater to a specific fear that in the end, has no baring on my actual life.
When I went to dinner the following week, Lucy was all a flutter in the kitchen, nervous to have me in the house for sure. I’ve known her since she was a teenage girl, and she doesn’t mean anything ill behind this.
I stepped outside to watch the kids play down by the water. I hadn’t considered moving here for a second, it’s a large house, but only three bedrooms, then the entire walk-out basement is Cole’s office. Which if none of that were enough reason for me to stay, it was the simple fact that there property was not optimal for a garden. I could tell them this, but they’d think I loved plants more than them, and that simply isn’t true.
Over dinner, Alice and Milo fought to hold the conversation and spot light. Which was a relief to all the adults in the room that felt awkward about the large elephant in the room.
It’s always a wonder to me how kids can come up with so many things to say and ask, there is not one moment of silence when the kids are around.
Half-way through the dinner, Itzel timidly spoke for the first time to ask if I was moving in with them. Bless her heart, but I explained to her, and the rest of the room, that I wasn’t. Maybe someday these old bones will need to live with them, but right now it wasn’t necessary.
She seemed a little disappointed, but got over it quickly, when I reminded her that if I moved we couldn’t walk to the pool. It seemed to satisfy Cole and Lucy, as they didn’t bring the subject again.
Notes: So Alice and Isaac kissed! I was a little surprised at that pairing, but Isaac seems to like the girls quite a bit. I couldn’t say if there would ever be more than just a kiss though. Alice’s wants weren’t wavered by him at any rate.
At the dinner table, Itzel only spoke one time (shes extremely shy), and when she did, she did it so timidly! I thought it was pretty cute. Myra isn’t the most outgoing ether, so I feel like she can relate to Itzel on that level.
Someday Myra may move in with them, but right now it doesn’t make sense. As boring as an elder woman is to play, her house fits her so well, and I don’t see her burdening her son. Plus there really is no room for her at Cole’s house, even as large as it is.
Thanks for reading!