A click of Dorothy's shoes - recognizing we all have innate goodness

Stills from the movie, The Wizard of Oz
Almira depicted as the Wicked Witch of the West. 
 Glinda, the Good Witch of the North.

Terry and I are one of two couples in a restaurant because it’s so early. The other pair sits nearby. A blind woman and her elderly father.

I know she’s blind because she proclaims it. With exasperation, she extorts, “Read me the menu again. Shrimp is not a second course; it’s the first course. Get it right. I’m confused. Just read it.” 

He does. 

“Read it again.” He reads. 

She interrupts, “Mussels, mussels? Is there bacon in the mussels? I just don’t eat meat, and I’m blind, or I’d read the menu myself. Is that a second or third course?”

Her voice and cadence remind me of Almira Gulch, the Wicked Witch of the West in the movie, Wizard of Oz, when she says, “I’ll get you, my pretty, and your little dog too! HAAAA HA HA HA HA HA.”

A blind lesson-bringer is in the room.

Terry raises his eyebrows.

Almira’s Dad seems patient and conditioned to the what-to-eat questions and pointed tone. Perhaps he knows what I do: Almira, the wicked witch, is also Glinda, that kind, angel-princess in a pink dress who, with her wand, says to Dorothy as she touches her red-sequin shoes, “You’ve always had what you need.” Clicking her heels to go home to Kansas is clicking her heels to go home, to recognize her beautiful, basic goodness.

Maybe Dad also sees what I do: his daughter, like all of us, has inner kindness and other capabilities. Glinda goodness. It’s just that Almira doesn't recognize this. (At least not right now.)

As the meal progresses, my feeling is that things might work out in the end.

Or, at least, during dessert.

When Harry’s famous decadent brownie, homemade ice cream, chocolate shavings with a just-right amount of whipped cream topped with a plump, tart cherry arrives, daughter-who-does-not-see loudly says: “Is there whipped cream? I can't have whipped cream!”

Dad says nothing. But he acts. 

He fist-grabs the ice cream with whipped topping and cherry and pops it in his mouth.  With a gulp and a swallow, he muffles, “No!” 

I see him smile.

(First published 12/25/14.)