Blowing Rocks and other Stones

“It’s a long way down,
We’re so high off the ground,
Sending for an angel to bring me your heart”– Chris Brown “Forever” 2007

I  finished the last sip of my dark roast black coffee and slid into a seat in the back of the theatre auditorium for our university convocation. I had a couple of journal articles to read so that I wouldn’t get bored with all of the speeches. I had decided to listen with one ear and read in bliss. Let’s see, “Viral Bronchiolitis” was calling my name at this point and more interesting the the “Stand Up and Be Recognized” speeches by the Academic Vice-President.

I always sit on the end of a row in back so that if paged, I can slip out; answer the call without disturbing others. I take great care, as most physicians will, to make sure that my phone is on vibrate and dimmed. We always sit in the back row as today, but I was slouched down in the seat with my legs tucked underneath me; papers spread on my lap.

A somewhat tall, exquisitely thin gentleman leaned over and pointed to the empty seat next to me. He smelled of cigarette smoke but I moved slightly so that he could get past my boots on the floor.

After the morning address by the VP and one of the Deans, I find that that  the man sitting next to me is the chair of the theatre department and someone whose assistance I needed on a couple of projects. It also turns out that he filled me in on a couple of things that I didn’t know about a very dear friend.  When he finished telling me a bit of background, of which I was unaware.

My friend, who took my breath away and part of my soul at the same time in less than one minute, hadn’t said anything to me for months after sharing so much. I attributed this to something that I had missed in our conversation but it turns out so differently. I questioned why he came into my life with his gifts and his clear blue eyes but now I know. I have not pressed him and have given him plenty of space but now I know why.



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