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  • Writer's pictureAlexsondra Tomasulo

Saving Face While Acting The Fool

She lived in the woods, and still does for that matter, thankfully, some things don’t change.

The following is just one of the many stories that I share about my time with Thea, who captured my heart, and my trust, now going on 4 decades ago.

It was early in our relationship, so early, that I wasn’t even certain she considered me a friend, all I knew was that I trusted her and her guidance.

She appeared somewhat magical, her strawberry tendrils delicately reaching out into the universe, offering pathways for the muses to enter her being.

Her eyes sparkled playfully, lovingly yet she had a center that was steady, like a metronome, beating to a reliable rhythm, a rhythm one could count on. I still count on it.

My apologies, I digress.

One day, she was performing a live storytelling on her deck, in the back yard.. I found even her deck magical, as it was made around nature. “Who is so loving as to build a deck with openings for the trees”, I wondered. Well, on this day, she asked if I would help, assist her with the event. I was so enamored, I would have scrubbed the floors, if she had asked, a chore I detest. All she wanted was, for me to bring out a platter of hors d’ oeuvres, and to serve her guests. I was honored. So honored, that I had every intention to make a grand entrance onto her deck(stage), now filled with perhaps a dozen or so people. I felt important, like I mattered, and my contribution to this event mattered. The trees allowed the sunshine to lace the deck with moving shadows. Most idyllic setting. It was my time to serve. I wanted to make a grand presence onto the deck. I wanted to step out with a flair of elegance. Grand it was! With platter in hand, I exited through the screen door. When I say through, I mean I did not open it first. There I stood, platter still in hand, though for sure some of the contents were now strewn across the floor. Maybe some had even fallen in the laps of those watching. I was literally wearing that screen door. I was humiliated, embarrassed, and felt terrible that I had ruined her event. There was no escaping this, no bluffing my way out. Frozen in my shame, I looked for someone to rescue me. Faces in the audience fell on mine, mouths open in awe. I looked further to the only person that mattered. The only person, I had grown to trust. The one who could make me feel safe. And there she was, completely doubled over in laughter. My emotions ran wild, betrayal? abandonment?.., or was there some other grand lesson I must learn? I have no memory of what happened next or two actually assisted me in the disrobing of my wire mesh garment. None of that mattered. To this day, I remember the feeling of the screen door around my waist, wondering how I could possibly bluff my way out of this situation. I remember the stares on the faces of the people in the audience, and I remember Thea’s laughter. The sting has long gone, leaving only the love of a person willing to be real. The lesson learned? Just because someone is laughing, it may not be at you, but simply the over the top humorous event.. learn to laugh, and laugh I do, every time I retell this story.

I have told this story many times now, each time my voice, ribbons around the specifics of the event a wee bit differently, but the events remain the same.


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