There's this lady I work with at the temple, Irene. I actually grew up going to church with her, though my only memory of her was that she was old and her husband was dying so we went as a youth group to clean up their house. It's 15 years later now and she's got that wobbly head thing going on where it always looks like she's nodding in agreement, or maybe trying her hand (head) at a good old fashioned Indian head shake. She's about 4'10", maybe shorter with posture, and has the kind of wrinkles that I love shout that I want some day, because they show a life well-lived. My mom says wait 'til I'm her age and I'll rethink the beauty of wrinkles, but Irene's skin and small pouf of silvery white hair make me think I could like aging, if I could end up as cute as her.
I just noticed Irene again tonight, up close towering over her. I don't think I've ever had 4" on anyone over the age of 10. It's funny how old people, to me, feel made up, like they're out of a story or a movie or something. I see the wrinkles and make up stories in my head of years that made them wiser. Sure, they've had those years, but they've also had things like a pick line up their arm for weeks at a time and husbands dying and a lot of normal days full of dinner and errands.
When I first started at the temple, none of the ladies asked about my love life. It's considered rude, I guess, to ask a young girl who might just be starving for a life partner about the presence of such a man. But the first time Irene made the connection that I was a Knudson girl, Wendy's daughter, from her neck of the woods, the first words out of her mouth were 'So, you got a man?' Tonight when asked questions that I would story up in my head to be answered like Nanny Wendy from Hook, instead, she was matter of fact and to the point. Dark penciled eyebrows and no messing around.
Just noticed and am still thinking about it. I could be pretty happy to end up like Irene.