Monday, July 16, 2012
I have mentioned her previously here—ageless, gorgeous, a knock-out, smart, funny, perpetually a Kindle in her hand (she not only reads great books, she once owned a bookstore). We dance Zumba together, when I'm very lucky. She shows up all blonde and coiffed, I show up all frizzy haired and old eyelinered, and we do it up. She goes crazy for the Charleston. I'll give her that if she'll dance my tango.
Her name is Joy, and I flat out love her. I refuse to believe the things she tells me about how old she is. Not even close. Not for a minute.
Today I barely got to Zumba on time. I didn't think, in fact, that I'd make it, but I finished a client call with seconds to spare and made a mad dash for the gym. Looking back, imagining myself a no-shower for Zumba, imagining that client call gone just five minutes longer, I feel bereft. For I would never have seen Joy in her joyful frenzy, plastering Xeroxes of The New York Times review of Small Damages all over the club town. When she saw me she ran for a hug, Xeroxes in hand, then orchestrated a round of applause among the gathered dancers, then went about telling all the ladies I Zumba with that I'm an author in disguise.
I watched her with awe. I listened to what she said. I caught a glimpse of the mess of me in the mirror and tried to reconcile my image of myself with the beauty of her. Not possible. She rushed by as the music was getting started and said,
"I'm as proud as if I were your own mother."
Genuine happiness is genuine gold.