We are left on the ground with empty arms. Staring into the sky.
Over the past couple of months my niece was feeling a bit dissatisfied at the hair salon where she worked so she decided to open her own place. At the old salon there was some politicking going on that made her feel uncomfortable. She decided to set out on her own, opening her own shop. She found a quaint (tiny, needs work) shop on the other side of town between a scuba dive shop and an environmental business. The landlord, a man and his wife owned the building and worked in both the scuba shop and at the environment business that actually sandwiched the hair salon. Lots of people and business coming in and out especially to the dive shop.
Opening day for the hair salon was July 5th, a Tuesday. Lots of elbow grease, hard work, money, and late nights working while the kids stayed with grandma. Special preview opening for stylists was held on Sunday, July 2nd. Ran sent a beautiful bouquet of flowers.
I stopped by the new salon on July 7th, a Thursday, to pick up Hannah, take her back up the mountain to my house so Bella, Hannah and I could hang out. When I pulled up to the salon with the top down on the VW, sun-shining bright, the girls, Hannah and her wicked step-sisters rushed the car along with a white standard poodle that belonged to the landlord, the man who was standing just inside the door of his environmental business watching all he commotion in our arrival. His assistant, a woman came out to greet Bella. She loves corgis! Who doesn't? It was a big moment of chaos though lots of fun, this greeting. Everyone was excited, the dogs nuzzling each other. One of the stepsisters wanted to go with us. I said "Not enough room in the car. Sorry."
We said goodbye to the ebullient assistant and their big white poodle, the wicked step-sisters. I remember we had a great afternoon. Hannah, Bradley, me and Bella hung out. Bradley had put his arms around Hannah in greeting, a very sweet moment. I remember wishing I'd had my camera but I was too lazy to get it out of the car. That very afternoon while we were having fun at my house, the man who had been watching our joyful chaos in the parking lot, and his family were killed in a plane crash in Watsonville.
My niece is still in her new salon, alone most days except for people visiting the scuba dive shop to leave flowers and offerings of grief. Both the environmental business and the scuba shop are closed. I visited my niece yesterday. I walked over to the scuba shop where there are messages on the windows written from friends and family on the windows, mementos, fresh and dead flowers, expressions of grief.
My niece opened her own salon; she was diligent and worked hard, accomplishing the dream of owning her own place There'll be no politicking at this new place -- for the present, not a soul to bother her at all.