Sunday, January 22, 2017

A different era...an eternal love

I've been offline for a week or so due to computer problems--thankfully just an AC adapter replacement for "Penelope". (Doesn't everyone name her lappy?) But the situation pushed the decision on the purchase of a back-up computer, so yesterday I welcomed "Sam" into the fold. If you've read the Penelope Pembroke Cozy Mystery Series, you'll understand the monikers--and the fact that royalties from same paid for both! But I digress...and here is the blog intended for last Monday!
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   With all the technology in our present world, it's difficult to hark back to a time when there was none. Some if us remember, but soon, like the Dodo, we, too, will be extinct.

   Writing "vintage" to fiction dictates staying true to the era, so of course you won't find any if the characters in Ruthann's War making calls on their cell phones or checking email. It was a simpler time, those post-war days when the world let out its collective breath and slowed the frantic pace of living like there might not be a tomorrow.

   The small town of Camden, Texas,  reconstituted the Fall Fest in the city park. Rationing and a wartime dearth of luxuries had changed the face of community activities. 

   "How do you like our annual celebration?" Drew asked Ruthann.
   She didn't look at him. "It's very nice."
   "We have something in the spring, too. Everything scaled down during the war with all the shortages, but now we're coming back."

   A new restaurant on the edge of town drew crowds for dishes unavailable during the war. War-themed movies continued to be popular in reruns 

   He reached for her hand across the table. "I'm sure you've seen Casablanca, but it's back at the Ritz for another run. Would you like to go on Saturday afternoon? Or we could drive out to Sorrells' Woods, and you could watch me paint--though I think watching Humphrey Bogart might be more appealing to you."
   "Actually, I always found Paul Henreid to be more suave and romantic."
   "So an older man does appeal to you after all?"

   With gas rationing eased, Drew and Ruthann could take long drives as they became acquainted, and their courtship included picnics the lake where Drew could pursue his love of painting. 

   On the first mild Saturday in March, they took a picnic to his hidden refuge at the lake. Ruthann refrained from mentioning his difficulty navigating the path from the car. She spread the blanket and settled down to wait while he painted. After a couple of hours, he called her to join him on the shore.
   "This is for us,"he said, gesturing toward the canvas. "I'm not much of a portrait painter, but I take my cue from the impressionists. " He chuckled. "I give the impression of folks."
   She rested her chin on his shoulder and gazed at the freshly created painting of two somewhat gauzy figures in the very spot where she'd set up their picnic. "It's us, isn't it?"
   "It's our present. I wish our future were clearer."

   Just talking over coffee, uninterrupted by  checking text messages on an iPhone, led to deeper relationships.

   ...spent several hours together in the coffee shop on Sunday afternoons.
.........................................................................................................................
   He laid his open hand on the table and smiled when she placed hers in it. "Tell me your dreams, Ruthann."
   "I don't know if I have any."
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   "What about you? What did you want when you were growing up?"
   "Well, let's see. Mainly I wanted to have enough to eat and shoes to wear in the winter. And a good coat."

And problems didn't come with instant technological solutions 

   "I don't care about your leg. I care about you."
   "Have you thought about what life would be like with an amputee? They're not going to just trim the thing--they're going to chop it off at the hip. The leg's a mess."
   "Is that what this is all about?"
   "I'll have to learn to walk again and manage without the ability to bend at the knee--unless they've improved on peg-legs since the first time I saw one. I won't be able to drive. I might not be able to..."
   She put her hand over his mouth.
 
   True love, however, still triumphed, surviving years of tragedy and loss...and stronger, perhaps, because of them.




"...a sweet love story...like spending time with a friend..."

"...like wandering into the neighborhood Bijou Theater and watching a swift-paced movie from by-gone days..."

"...a clean, sweet, and enduring story of true love...not your typical predictable romance..."

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