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home : columnists : columnists May 24, 2016

7/18/2014 9:06:00 AM
View from the Valley

I promised to relay this story a while ago, but life got in the way. So here goes. My friend and I went to Starbucks in Fountain Hills to get our usual lift. We sat outside because the weather was fabulous. As we chatted, we noticed a very attractive middle aged woman sitting by herself having a cup of joe. She kept looking our way and finally made her way to our table and asked if she could join us and we gladly said yes. She told us her story. She was the wife of a doctor in Scottsdale and very frequently visited our Starbucks when visiting friends. She at one time owned a jewelry store where she sold all of her own creations. Life became complicated and so she closed the store and just sold her wares from her home. The day we met her she carried a big bag of her creations. She said she no longer saw the need to sell it and was giving it away. She opened her bag and dumped the stash on our table and we were blown away. All the necklaces and bracelets were stunning and were all precious gems and Swarovski crystals. Again we were blown away. Then she said to each of us to please select two items that caught our eye and they are yours. Well, you can imagine all the thoughts that rushed through our minds. Was she for real? Was it a scam? Were they stolen? As we chatted further, she shared that she was a member of the Morman faith and that she had recently been diagnosed with early onset Alzheimers at the age of 48. She wanted to pay it forward while she could still enjoy the reactions to her gifts. So I selected two necklaces and matching earrings. My friend did the same. She would not take any money, but asked us to pay it forward. I gave both of my necklaces to two friends who utterly adored the workmanship. I returned to the same Starbucks several times, but never saw her again. This experience will go down in my memories. She was truly a beautiful individual and I wish her well on her journey.

I just learned that if you write a check with a gel pen it will not read out and the check appears blank to the bank's equipment. I did not know this. But, what I do know is that the grammar we are using these days is atrocious. So many anchors on TV use the phrase "I mean". It has absolutely nothing to do with the question or comment. Dr. Besser on GMA is always using the phrase and then he continues to address the statement. The word "basically" is so overused that I almost scream when I hear it. Even Judge Judy will not allow the word in her court room.

I would like to extend my sympathy to the Scott family in the tragic loss of their parents. Accidents are truly what the name implies, but this was a tragedy of all tragedies. One does not expect to be plowed over when merely enjoying a day in town. The area of the accident is where people are coming and going for lunch or shopping or gas fill-ups. The posted speed limit is 45 mph and I have to wonder how fast the officer was going when he impacted the Scott's car. No emergency call should have to end up with two lives tragically lost. This is a well traveled side road for our locals. I hope with time, hearts will be healed.

How many of you rely on your sense of smell to get you through the day? In my home I am known as the nose. It can be a good thing or a bad thing. For instance, the smell of pig manure just about kills me while the smell of pop corn in a movie theater makes me salivate. We don't realize how much the sense of smell enhances our enjoyment of life. I just finished reading a book entitled "The Perfume Collector" by Kathleen Tessaro. It is a lovely tale of a young woman in London who receives a mysterious inheritance that brings her to Paris and eventually to an old perfume shop. "The Perfume Collector" is a crackling, beautifully paced story that weaves the world of fragrance into the lives of two women in a way few have experienced. Inhale deeply and continue to read.


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