Memories never surface in no specific order, they fade and surface, only to fade again and resurface; they get deleted, become distorted, details are altered, they may depict something good, something not so good; and many of us cling to them when the present is not pleasant and when the future is uncertain. We cling to memories to comfort us, sometimes when we are unable to make a happy present for ourselves we look back of the days gone by. There is never certainty in our present lives and memories only reinforces us that change is inevitable.
We seek for positive assurance, that is why we dream, fantasize, or hold on to the past. When we are young we are in a hurry to live, as we grow older we began to think back on things we have forgotten, miss, or replaced. We all like certainty, we all like what it brings to our lives. We enjoy security and safety and peace of mind. But is any of it possible?
Growing up, Marigold never questioned Mona’s love. She did not feel uncertain of her affection. Mona cared for her and she cared for Mona. It wasn’t mentioned it was assumed. When Mr. Otto, Marigold’s father came in to her life, nothing changed between her and Mona. They relied on each other as they did before. They traveled to many places during the fall season before settling somewhere during the winter, by spring they traveled some more, going here and there, near and far. Never staying in one place longer than a month. There was always something to do, places to visit, never staying still. Life was exciting, as Mona danced through it, with little Marigold in her arms.
When the the spring gave way to summer, they went back to the little apartment, Mona rented. The best way Marigold remembers that place was the different shades of grey that extended from the inside of the apartment to the outside, where Marigold spent most of her days when Mona entertained her many female friends. Mona’s friends were always a sight for sore eyes, as Marigold thought, with their feminine ways, dressed so perfectly, their hair neatly done, not a strand out of place. Marigold was enchanted by the way they smelt, such lovely perfumes that enveloped them wherever they went. Mona smelt nice herself, dressed so elegantly as her friends. She certainly imbued the very definitional of being a women and enjoyed being one. Marigold couldn’t wait to grow up.
That little apartment became one of Marigold’s treasured memories. It might not have been an opulent place but it was home, where Mona made it feel like every day the sun shined. Why couldn’t everybody be happy, thought Marigold, it made life easier. That little apartment was where Mr. Otto would return to visit Marigold. Mona never liked him, but held her tongue, even when she felt the urge to say something unpleasant. She raised Marigold to do the same when she met someone unkind.
Marigold, spent summers with Mr. Otto, who was a kind man, and she quickly learned he had three sons. They were as handsome as Mr. Otto, tall and virile. All three boys, were going to school to be a lawyer like their father, though, Mr. Otto didn’t practice any longer, he found life as a salesman to be more befitting to him. I think it was in the oil drilling business, Mr. Otto was in, then he moved to bigger and better things, and became profitable along the way. He expected his three sons, to be achievers, including his only daughter, Marigold. She still recalls the time her education was questioned by Mr. Otto.
It was one summer of many, Mr. Otto took to sailing on his yacht, the Royal Mary, as it was called, where it was filled with servants and a crew, something Marigold was not accustomed to, but true to her nature, she learned their names and befriended them. Marigold felt she had left her childhood ways and enjoyed the company of adults, even if that meant polishing the silver. Mr. Otto could always find her with a member of the staff, especially Cecillia, a Norwegian woman. Though, it was Mr. Otto’s boat, it was commanded by a woman name Lucille, Mr. Otto’s love interest. Lucille was a tall, blond, beauty that steered the staff, made sure the silver was polished every day, napkins were washed and ironed, and the whole place was neat and tidy. Lucille was stone cold, she was a forceful woman and unkind to anyone she set eyes upon.
That one summer, Lucille made her presence known, but as soon as Mr. Otto’s sons came aboard to meet their sister, Lucille made herself scarce. She didn’t get along with any of Mr. Otto’s sons and they found her as displeasing as she was to them. Marigold, came to adore her older brothers. There was Mathew, he was a bit of a stuffed shirt as they say, yet, polite with a penchant for wearing suits in all kinds of weather. He was proper, talked well when expected and kept quiet when it was appropriate. Then there was, Dale, a bit more carefree, less stuffy than his older brother, and dressed a bit casual in his khaki pants and buttoned up dress shirt. He smiled a bit more, talked a bit more and laid back. Then came the youngest, Frank, who was a sloppy dresser, with his shirt not tucked in, and his tie slightly askew. He was shorter than his brothers, less agreeable and less talkative. He wasn’t social, and rarely participated in conversations. He was taciturn, grumbled under his breath and felt uneasy under his father’s watchful eye. Mostly no one ever paid mind to him, except his brothers.
Marigold was friendly to all of them, and showed them great respect. She was delighted to be in such a wonderful family, and made sure she did not make too much of a commotion around them. Grown ups can get very impatient around children, especially children they were not accustomed to seeing. Though, at first they pretended to not see her, Marigold, would give them great big hugs and told them how lucky she was to have them as brothers. This favored the father even more, and he doted on his only daughter.