I met someone today. My life will forever be touched having the fortune of making the acquaintance with this beloved woman.
She entered the room with a gate of grace. Her body was tall and lean. She voluteered the information that she was 6′ 1″ and weighed 151 pounds. She said, “I have had this same figure since I was 16.”
Her hair was a strawberry blonde. A very subtle shade, not too bright, not to dull. It was clearly dyed by a professional, perfectly groomed. As her hair hit her shoulders it turned up like June Cleaver’s of Leave it to Beaver. She showed a great
resemblance to June, just a taller version. She had a wisp of bangs that veiled her forehead.
The makeup she wore was pure perfection right down to the mauve pink lipstick she wore. I’m sure she had applied the lipstick and carefully folded a tissue to blot her lips before entering the room. The rouge she wore also a pale mauve was applied just along her perfect cheekbones. No eyeshadow, too bold for a woman of her years but yet her hazel green eyes sparkled. Her eyelashes flourished which must have been thickened and lengthened by a light application of mascara.
Her waist was accented by a wide belt she wore and a flaring skirt. The length of the skirt was perfect, just below her knee. The blouse she wore (maybe it was a one piece dress) was ironed to perfection with the top two buttons undone to reveal the string of pearls she wore around her feminine neckline. She wore pantyhose the exact color of her skin. The sleeves of the dress had a crease vertically down her arm and the cuffs were rolled up mid-way of her forearm, just enough to show off the pearl bracelet that adorned her left wrist. The shoes she wore were pumps with just a slight heel to give her a dressy yet casual look. Virginia’s shoes were the same color pale green as her dress. I am sure those shoes probably added an inch to her height, adding to the elegance.
Virginia would not have been complete without the vintage purse she hooked in the bend of her right arm. She held her arm just high enough to hold the purse in place in the crook of her elbow. The purse of iridescent beads reflected the pale green color of the dress to match impeccably.
I sat in a chair in the far corner of the room as Virginia entered. As Virginia crossed the room the fragrance of Chanel No. 5 filled the air. I knew the pleasant smell, the same perfume my grandmother wore. She approached the closed door that visably went back to the attorney’s private office. I had thought she was there for an appointment (as was I). As Virginia opened the door with a gracious turn of the door knob entering what appeared to be a long hallway, I was surprised. The door clicked shut behind her and she disappeared from my sight for what seemed like 10 or 15 minutes.
As the door opened, she re-entered the room where I sat. All of her attire still perfectly in place. Her purse of iridescent beads still hanging seamlessly in the crook of her right arm.
As she came closer, the slight fragrance of her cologne more familiar, she began to speak. Just the sweet, kind voice I would expect to come from a woman that looked-liked June Cleaver.
Virginia explained to me that she had been married to the same man, her darling Fred for 50 years. Fred and the attorney were friends. She called the attorney Ben, his name as it appeared on the sign outside the office read “Benjamin F. Fuller, Attorney at Law. She explained that Ben and Fred were friends from college and had kept in touch even after being drafted to the Korean War and entering two different branches of military service.
Virginia went on to explain that Fred had not come home for sometime. She thought the Ben might have seen Fred. Maybe Fred had called to tell Ben about taking Virginia out to dinner. I one sentence she said it had been a few days and in the next sentence she said a few years since Fred had been home. I did not question. I just listened.
Virginia said that Fred was suppose to come home and take her to dinner that is why she was dressed as she was. She said she loved to dress nice for Fred. Fred liked it when she dressed up. She said he especially like the smell of the Chanel No. 5 cologne and the lipstick she wore.
The sparkle in her hazel eyes became glazed as she seem to fade away for a second, going to another place in her mind. As she placed her left hand on her hip, she said, “That Fred, maybe he will be at home waiting on me when I get there and then we can go out.”
At that moment, she sat down in the chair beside me and placed her hand on mine. Her hands were thin and cold but very soft. Her nails were natural with a coat of clear finger nail polish. Each nail filed identically. “Honey,” she said, “I hope I haven’t forgotten something.”
With an instant reply, I said, “What do you mean?”
Virginia said with question in her hazel eyes, “Ben, you know the attorney,” said, “Virginia, sweetie, like I told you yesterday, Fred will not be coming home.”
As Virginia stood tall, she bent and kissed me on the cheek leaving a trace of her mauve lipstick and said, “My name is Virginia, nice to meet you.”