Dangerous Compassions

found ring #3

We have a date with a monk.  Our friend lived in Sacramento but moved to Santa Barbara.  I realized he lives in the mission–he’s a Franciscan.  Holy crap.

We’re going to pay him a visit in a week.  I was telling Ming–Ming can go in the monastery, as a man, but not me.  I told him they could put my lunch on a tray and push it out into the hall, where I could eat–alone and a lady.  It was a weird fantasy.  The tray in my mind is dark green plastic.

I was excited.  “We’re going to hug a monk,” I told Ming.  They wear the brown robes and rope belt there.  He said he’d give us a tour.

I found a ring in the gutter.  Ming says he thinks the diamond is real–I said fake.  Mom says there should be a stamp on the band saying if the band is gold or what.  My eyes are ok but not like they used to be.  My birthday is soon.

Do you know how many rings I’ve found, in my life?  This is the third that I can think of.

When I was a kid, I found a wedding band in my aunt’s backyard, while I was playing.  That yard also had a clump of four-leaf clovers.  My aunt said it wasn’t hers and I could keep it.

A few years ago in Las Vegas at the Catholic Worker soup line serving site, I found a ring also.  It’s got a yellow stone and was somewhat crushed and misshapen.  I found it in the dirt.

The ring I found yesterday, in the gutter, I didn’t like at first, but I grew to like it.  Made me think about finding stuff, justice, people’s weird beliefs about what they deserve, custom-policies like finder’s keepers.

Ming assumed I would try to find an owner.  I think it’s an inexpensive ring for a kid and probably no one cares about it.  Should I expend a bunch of energy trying to find its owner?  If it’s worth a lot of money, should I?  I think it’s fake because the stone isn’t beautiful.  I thought the whole deal of diamonds is they’re pretty.

Yesterday we went to Nugget in West Sacramento, on our way to Sac.  I was telling Ming, what if Nugget stopped being a grocery store and became a weed dispensary, which I found funny. 

The produce was pretty, and I looked at some flowers, considering buying flowers for the friends we were about to visit with.  There were $10 flowers–little roses and daisies in a mason jar.  Cute, but I passed.

Mostly I wanted to look at the muffins, pies, cookies, breads.  I considered a vegan lemon blueberry muffin, but it was expensive.  I considered pretty cupcakes.  I ended up choosing two small pumpkin muffins in a celebration of the nearness of fall. 

Wow, they were delicious, with a streusel topping that seemed to be mostly brown sugar.  I gave a muffin to Ming.  We sat outside in the shade, and it wasn’t too hot.  We talked about the future.

“Do you think one day we’ll have a diagnosis for my health problems?” I asked him.  “Are we going to look back on this time and say, remember when I didn’t have a diagnosis yet, and how hard that was?”

Ming said yes.  He said we’re persistent, make a paper trail, and will be victorious.  I was giddy with the thought that I could get help and feel better, one day.

“Maybe you have narcolepsy,” he said. 

I was aghast.  “No way!” I said.  “Not supposed to have two people in a relationship with narcolepsy!”

“Why not?” he asked.

I couldn’t explain how that sounded like hell.  And a party foul too. 

There were trashcans with trout heads.  I thought they were whale heads, maybe, but Ming says trout.

He made me some tea.  I was having an annoying dream about a bakery with special disabled areas.  Bakery areas more accessible, their locations, a repetitive fitful bakery dream about a huge multistory bakery on a hill, the bakery itself and drawings of it.

There are at least four rings I’ve lost also.  I lost that wedding band I found in my aunt’s backyard.  My parents gave me a ring when I was a kid, small rubies and a diamond, in a flower shape–I lost that one, not sure when.   I had a silver toe ring I lost at Waller Park–I think it was my 17th birthday.  Well, it was a regular ring too small for a finger, so I wore it on a toe. 

Then a wedding ring from my previous marriage–I carried it around in my wallet for a long time.  Then one day a homeless person was begging, and I had no dollar bill, so I gave him almost all of my change–later I realized my ring was gone.  I think it was probably around a nickel.

I was in the past, in my mind, thinking about those rings–vivid ring memories.  Our friend told us there’s a craigslist lost and found I could check for a “lost” ad for the ring I found.  We were eating special pizza.  I was in an energetic mood and had trouble maintaining my level of conversation.

By Laura-Marie

Good at listening to the noise until it makes sense.

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