Lockdown Lemonade #7 by Hillorie McLarty

The Movie of Moving

I am in my carport in North Hollywood, California. John is on a step stool unloading a storage area. There is a lot of dust as he reaches into the storage area and lifts out box after box.

I stand as an audience of one, watching my possessions come out of storage. How did we get so much in there? And where were the birds who constantly crapped on my car all spring? The birds are gone.

Like everyone else in the world, I am in the midst of a worldwide pandemic and to top it off I am moving 2,000 miles. Today we are all separate from each other. We wear masks and gloves and we cannot gather.

The apartment is ablaze with boxes, books and CDs laying on the floor and I am careful to not step on pieces of plastic that have broken off from cd boxes. I have packed up the things I am taking. I have taken the photos out of the photo books and now I have a stack of them, looking a little forlorn, in a box.

I am an audience of one, here in my bedroom. The shelves have been ripped off the wall and given to the neighbors.

I stand as the audience of one in my hallway and stare into the eyes of the painting of John’s grandfather. He looks solemn yet a slightly perceptible touch of glee is hiding behind his eyes.

The paintings of John’s mother and father line the other wall, just in front of the mirror. His mother looks young and very chic in a black veil. His father looks stern behind his glasses. These are the faces that I see when I go into my bedroom. “What are you kids doing in there?” he seems to ask.

I am the audience of one, walking through my tiny apartment, soaking up the memories. I have been forever changed here.

Pandemic be damned, I try to soak up the smells of the lemon tree and commit to memory the sound of the birds. Those birds that I am still afraid of. I am an audience of one. I am taking me with me. That is all I will need for the next part of this journey.

~ Hillorie McLarty, Nashville TN graduate student in English, Belmont University.  Marketing & Advertising Manager, Music Connection Magazine. Live music advocate, owned and loved by rescue pets.

In an attempt to keep us connected as we continue to find our way through these often stressful times, some in our extended community have been sharing their experiences, lessons learned and hope as they’ve dealt with Covid, lockdown, boredom, lack of inspiration, etc. We are all looking for ways to make lemonade out of the many lemons! This column will continue on a weekly basis and postings will be released at 10 AM Pacific every Monday, so watch for them! For guidelines and submission details, please contact Julie Zipperer at juliez@far-west.org or Marlynn Block at marlynn@far-west.org. Submissions will be posted based on approval from the Lockdown Lemonade Committee.

4 thoughts on “Lockdown Lemonade #7 by Hillorie McLarty

  1. Judy Nazemetz - December 7, 2020

    I wish you all the best in Nashville. You and I are the only ones I know (yes, I’m North Hollywood, too) to use crapping birds in our writing. Mine’s in my song Road Song. Hope you can listen on your ride…https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hr_jThSTDSk Much success and happiness in Nashville.


  2. Duff C Ferguson - December 8, 2020

    A very evocative portrait, so honestly and beautifully captured! Thank you for sharing and best wishes for a smooth ride in the next leg of your journey.

  3. Arielle Silver - December 8, 2020

    So much about right now feels like an audience of one. Lovely read, Hillorie!

  4. Virginia Watts - December 9, 2020

    Wonderful! Love the “audience of one” phrase. Captures lock down beautifully.

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