Tom and Darrell
The phone call came mid morning, a Saturday in October. "MJ, do you know of any very inexpensive place we could stay here in Memphis? Our return flight to L.A. is next Saturday, and the family made it clear we are not going to be staying with any of them."
(We knew Tom and Darrell were going to meet Darrell's family just outside of Memphis, hopefully to get answers and explanations for Darrell and more research for the book Tom was writing.)
Over thinking a situation has never been my strength... in fact just the opposite. Impulsive. That describes me... at least most of my life. Although I am practicing the art of procrastination in these more recent years.
So we determined they would stay in the motel for one more night, and hubby and I would drive to Beale Street and pick them up the next afternoon.
Hubby spotted Darrell first. Standing outside the door of The Hard Rock Cafe.
Tom had just stepped inside to check out the Tee shirts... for his collection... and left Darrell to watch for our arrival... explaining to Darrell that he would recognize me by my hair... long and white/gray.
When hubby spoke Darrell's name as we approached, Darrell, mildly startled, turned to see who would know him on Beale Street at this time in his life, and immediately embraced the big stranger in a warm hug. Then turning to me, embraced with assurance, our friendship. Tom came out the door just in time to see this tender encounter, and got in on the hugs and greetings.
That first five minutes grew into a week long sharing of love...laughter...fears... and dreams...plus a lifetime of loving friendship that is priceless. The details of some of this can be found in the book.
TRUST: belief that someone or something is reliable, good, honest, effective
In a world where a trip to the market can end tragically, trust is a thin leg to stand on when asking strangers for help. OR it can define the character of who you are.
A sidebar to that first night in our home in Melbourne , Arkansas, a three hour drive from Memphis, where we spirited Tom and Darrell away from the world for one week. Once settled into bed for the night, I , in a very paranoid moment, voiced my concern to hubby. " What if they are some psychotic, crazed murderers, who come in during the night and bludgeon us to death... and NO ONE knows who they are, because we told NO ONE what we were doing... bringing strangers into our home for a week?" Then with a nervous chuckle, he dismissed my thoughts as yes, paranoia, and we slept like babies. Now, the humor in all of this, is to tell you that, in their own little 'heaven in Melbourne', in the Funfinder RV in the yard, Tom and Darrell shared the same moment of fears about US !!
I love that you posted this Mary. Darrell wants to let you know that it was actually 4-year-old Jimmy who turned around and hugged Bo. We definitely had our fears, not about meeting you, but certainly about being spirited away to Melbourne. Scenes from "Deliverance" danced in my head for sure.
Allow me to return a favor and plug your involvement with "Which One Am I?" a bit. For the uninitiated, both Bo & Mary have chapters named for them and Mary wrote a really sweet introduction. And we all -- me, Darrell and all the kids inside him -- think of Bo & Mary often and love them with all our hearts.
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