Fleeting Gems

“That’s why we don’t name them.”

Dave consoles me after we find the second dead duck of the week. Whereas when the first vanished, I could play pretend that she was backstroking in a jacuzzi pond with a flock of male suitors and snacking on grubs, I didn’t have the luxury with the second. It got real fast because not only did I find a pillow-bashed pile of feathers, but also close by was a breast meat gnawed, head-torqued heap of death. Dave’s idea is that a bald eagle got it.

Down to five ducks left, and I suppose that will have to do.

Thankfully I was given control of the music for half the drive tonight, and it really boosted my mood. If you know me, you know the nostalgic juices flow when nourished with the right 90s country music. So when “Wagon Wheel” came on – the real foot-tapper and hand clapper that it is – not only did it join us for the final stretch of the journey, but it also tripped me down memory lane.

Although ten years ago now, I remember the first time I heard it.

In a backyard in Maupin, Oregon, I sat outstretched on a recliner on a patio slab under a string of lights. One gentleman with a cello taller than him and a few others with instruments began playing songs for their friends. I was there with my birth mom staying nearby in a camper and meeting her cousin’s and aunt’s families for the first time. They owned a gorgeous property with acres of lush green grass that butted up right against the Deschutes Rivers, where they earned a living as fly fishing guides and rented cabins to tourists.

This get-together started a weekend of festivities aptly called “Maupin Days.” I participated in some but not all activities, including white water rafting, helicopter rides, bands, dancing, and food.

But this night, under the stars, kicked back, with the lights, the people, and the song, when I try to explain, loses its luster. Like, seeing a shooting star from the corner of your eye – it’s there and it’s awe-inspiring – but as soon as you turn, it’s gone.

Let’s just say the song and this memory will be on the highlight reel of my life.

Random thought; I like singing but am embarrassed by my voice. With Dave’s daily piano practice, he’s playing songs that, like Ursula in “The Little Mermaid,” pull my voice right out my mouth. So how about tomorrow I find a vocal coach on YouTube, and start practicing.

Also, what I’ll do tomorrow is floss. The visit to the dentist has both Dave and me limping. Poked and prodded, the dentist wagged her gloved index finger at me, “In six months, I won’t use my drill on you if you’re flossing and brushing .” You got it; I don’t want the drill!

Ok, I gotta jet. Everyone’s in bed, and it’s time for me too. Have a great weekend!

Love, Jaclynn

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