California! The name still held the same magic as it did when she was young, when the first dreams of leaving her small town began to form. For a young girl in Depression-era Illinois, California held everything that was bright and beautiful, exciting and promising. Maggie had a zest to see the world, to have adventures, to stretch her wings and see what she could do. Becoming a nurse had been the best way out of the Midwest and into her dreams.
Maggie had made her way to Santa Barbara, a town so like the picture postcards she had seen as a girl. One of those pretty, coastal towns with red-tiled roofs and palm trees and a blue, blue sky. She had dreamed of the ocean ever since she was a girl, imagined standing in the surf with the salt spray on her face.
The ocean never ceased calling to her, even after she returned to the rural Midwest. Frank wasn’t much of a traveler, so it was long years before she saw California again, after their eldest son moved out there. She imagined herself now, standing in the same surf, with bony feet and a slight bend in her back. My ocean, she always called it.
In Santa Barbara, Maggie lived alone in a pretty stucco apartment building with a small fountain in the courtyard. Flowers bloomed year round, which never ceased to amaze her – pink roses, orange poppies, and exotic flowers that reached up from spiky succulent plants. The palm trees never lost their leaves, like Midwestern trees. Their green fronds glistened eternal-like in the ever-present sun.
Click Follow to receive emails when this author adds content on Bublish