Utopia in 3 Parts
Something to Hold On To
“Oh…what a day!” African Princess sighs, lounges longer on the side of Aquatopia. DL and PP smile and nod. Every day is a long day if you ask PP. “All day I was directing traffic. And all the people. Picking up trash. We’d clear one street, then the trash was covering it…” She sighs deeply. “It was such a mess.”
“You were in the City today for the Giants’ parade?” DL asks.
“That’s right.” She shakes her head. “It was a mess. We didn’t write no tickets today at all. It was a free for all. Everyone got away with murder. People were crazy. There were so many of them. It was insane.”
“I wonder why the Giants winning the World Series is such a big deal,” PP muses aloud the unspeakable.
But there’s careful thought going on in Aquatoipa: “People have nothing else to hold on to,” In the Corner of the Hot Tub Woman nods. Serious.
And all the women nod. Serious. Knowing that it’s true.
Kissing Make You Sick
“You make the ginger, the lemon. You put in a cup of red wine. You drink it and you not sick. No more!” Diabetes Woman nods her dark head, waves her arm dramatically to any and all in the Utopia Sauna.
Does this really work? PP wonders. She’s not gonna try it since she can’t drink red wine.
“You’ll just pass out asleep then,” Sandy laughs.
“No. You try it. If you get the sickness. Then this will stop it. I always take it. When I take care of babies, they always kiss me. They try to kiss me on the mouth.” She demonstrates, puckering her lips, “ but then I turn away, give them my cheek. They kiss me there. Not on mouth. Babies want to kiss on lips. But then you catch their sickness.”
“Now I know why I don’t kiss babies!” PP exclaims. Everyone laughs except DW who just plows on. “It is how babies are. My own babies. They were this way too. Always kiss on the mouth. But no no no. I say, here.” She points to her cheek. “Then you make the red wine one cup with ginger and lemon and you not sick. No more.”
PP comes back from her shower to hurry into her clothes before getting kicked out of the locker room. DL is in deep conference with Liver Transplant Woman, Sally. They’re head to head, whispering. DL is mostly nodding while Sally is almost crying. PP can tell she’s close. She does cry easily. But this can happen when you’ve had a liver transplant, you’re off your meds, and your grandfather is dying.
Hell, anyone would cry.
But yet, DL holds her own. Says something soft and soothing every few words, placing a gentle hand on Sally’s shoulder. PP marvels at DL’s therapist abilities so late in the day at the end of Utopia. How does she do it? PP wonders.
Later, trudging up the stairs, PP asks DL what it was all about. But DL can’t really articulate it. Too overwhelming. Something about Death of her Person.
Cause we all have Our Person/s. For PP it’s her Gram and her Niece. For DL it was her dad and her aunt. For Sally it is her grandfather.
It has been a long day, PP thinks, as they walk out into the dark breezy night. But thinking about her Persons, now, at this moment, she has something to hold on to.