As I sat down to write my tea day entries I looked over a very long expanse of time. I was taken back by how many things had happened on this day, how many people of note through the ages had been born, and just how staggering this day was and might always be. So I instead turned away from the history pages and took a walk. I took what I call the long walk that would take me into the local town. When I reached town I found my feet unconsciously leading me towards my most favorite of spots in this place: Etta Diem’s Attic Shoppe.
As I moved through the shoppe’s front doors I was greeted with the oddities, strange things, and all around dark beauty of this place. Sometimes it can be hard to find another whimsical soul with the same amount of dark spice thrown into the mix. Since first meeting her, I knew Etta was my kin. She would never allow herself to be pinned down between the darkness and the light. She would never let anyone say there weren’t a pantheon of characters who moved through both places. I can honestly say she was the one person who helped me embrace all things about me. This is perhaps why I sought her out on this day.
“Miss Pagona! My little Poppy Seed!” the infamous Etta greeted me with as she moved from behind her attic shoppe’s front counter. She was as she always could be found: Dressed in dark Victorian attire with plenty of brooding and bruised color blooms to decorate her hair and attire. She smelled like white water flowers and orange ginger. When she wrapped her arms around me for her friendly hug it felt like a mother’s hug and for a moment I could forget that my own mother had been gone for so long. It allowed me to take a moment and exhale.
“What is weighing you down my dear? Your face has a shadow across it that has nothing to do with the sun and obstructions. Come now! Tell auntie Etta.”
I took a breath and soon found words falling from my lips. “Aunt Etta, it’s such a strange thing. I wrote my tea notes about things that have happened in time, and then focused on someone and something far more bright. I couldn’t find that today. As I looked over the histories of this day I saw so many things that were dark. The few highlights I encountered were simply the end of something that had been so dark. I needed something bright to write about and I could find none. It darkened my thoughts so deeply that I couldn’t turn a clear eye to the immediate world around me and find something better.”
The look on Etta’s face was what I needed. It was the perfectly understanding with just a slight hint of a smirk: She knew something. “Come with me.” she whispered.
Etta turned the open to closed sign on her front door as we moved out onto the front porch. She beckoned me to follow her as she moved from the main street to one of the side streets of Orange Moon Downs. The hustle and bustle of the main street gave way to the more subdued sounds of the Orange Moon residential parts. I could hear all the many breeds of birds singing to the world around me. Every now and then a humming bird darted from feeder to flower even though their season here should have been about over.
We walked until we came to a small, though beautifully constructed and decorated house two blocks from main street. Its front lawn was a wild flower garden at the peak of chaos. And somewhere among all of that was the sound of two voices hidden within the tall grass and wild blooms. I could only catch glimpses of the owners of these voices. It wasn’t until the duo burst from the floral havoc that I saw twins, a boy and a girl, taking a pause on the narrow sidewalk that led to the front porch of the house.
On the left side of this path the little girl twin turned and spoke to things unseen in the tall grass. She promised cream, ribbons, fresh rhubarb roots, and Butterfly Circus tea. On the right side of the sidewalk the little boy twin promised he would lend over his electric torch to a creature afraid of the dark, a collection of shoelaces so the creature unseen could braid to its heart’s content, and Seaweed Mint tea. Then the twins giggled and ran towards the house and disappeared through the front door.
“What was this?” I asked.
“This is a new generation Poppy.” Etta answered. “These are children with the natural desire to see and the will to never forget their vision as they grow older. We should not dwell on the past or continue to allow it to make us sad, though always remind us. The only way to correct those old mistakes, those old sins, is to move forward and nourish and inspire the young ones who would make the future brighter. So perhaps when you write of this day you will think of these beautiful little souls who will spend their lives putting magic back into the world. Magic and tea, because I know that message is deep in the heart of them both.”
This was what I needed as we moved closer to a day of giving thanks. I’m not one for large dinners or traditional customs. However, I am one for all those many small things that remind me to be grateful for this world and give thanks. So I thanked my friend and adopted a new tradition: I would from that day forth always stop back in to check on these twins and see how the world was moving them or how they were moving the world.
NOTES: My custom is to pick a day and look up all the events of that day throughout history to add to the start of these short stories. I was quite shocked by just how much had happened, for good and bad. November 20th is a big day for history and this world. So I wanted to make something a little light and happy to counter the thoughts that came from my research. 😉
is copyright 2017 Bethalynne Bajema. All Rights Reserved.