Today, a distant cousin, Ruby by name, stopped by Grandma Bricken’s before returning to her tiny village in the Alaskan Interior. She is well-known for her storytelling. And, I love her stories.
I grabbed a cup of coffee, sat at Grandma's kitchen table, and eagerly waited to hear another tale about our people, the Denali.
Today, however, Ruby told a tale on herself.
Ruby is one who takes joy in laughing at herself—and anything else she finds amusing. One of her stories was so funny, I wanted to share it—in her words:
Ruby said, “The first time I took an escalator I saw a woman who looked just like me. She was riding the escalator, too. The woman looked back at me all the way down. I watched her and she watched me right back. The harder I stared, the harder she stared. She even had on the same Parkie that I did!
"I told my friends what happened. Do you know what they did?"
"No idea," I answered.
"My friends howled in laughter, then told me I had been looking at my own reflection in a mirror. Then, I told them, 'I didn’t know mirrors came that big!'"
I chuckled at her honesty.
Ruby then said, "I learn something new all of the time. Life would be boring if I didn't."
"It gives a whole new meaning to the phrase, 'meeting yourself coming and going.'" Grandma Bricken said before she broke out in giggles at her own joke.
Grandma Bricken is wise, yes. Grandma Bricken is serious, yes. Grandma Bricken tell and joke? Never.
Ruby and I stared, saucer-eyed, at Grandma Bricken. We broke into a simultaneous laugher.
After I wiped my eyes, I said, "Yes, yes. It does, Grandma."
All of us broke into new rolls of laughter – more from Grandma's uncommon joking than from the elevator story.
This short story reminded me of how odd the ‘civilized’ world looks to someone like this precious family member. And, surprisingly, I felt a stab of jealousy for the life she gets to live. For a moment, I longed for the simple peace of living in a village isolated from this crazy-paced world. Yep, even Ravens Cove, small in its own way, gets crazy—but you know that if you've read the books!
Until next time,