Dirty Dishes

I had dinner in someone else’s house. Big deal? It’s been a very, very long, a pre-pandemic time.

At the end of an afternoon of a school board retreat, we kept sitting around the table, eating and refiling our plates, and drinking seltzer and beer. Our talking wound through laughter, through gossip, and musings.

Someone relayed the story of a long ocean voyage on a container shipping vessel, how the weeks at sea eroded any sense of time, until his life was simply water and ship and sky. We listened, in no rush at all.

Then, when we had talked ourselves out, we still sat there, unwilling to move, to break this quiet spell.

Rain fell; the sun shone. None of us ran outside to look for the rainbow. We simply sat.

By Brett Ann Stanciu

Brett Ann Stanciu lives with her two daughters in Hardwick, Vermont. Her creative nonfiction book, Unstitched: My Journey to Understand Opioid Addiction and How People and Communities Can Heal, will be published by Steerforth Press in September 2021. Her novel about rural life in Vermont, Hidden View, was published in 2015.

1 comment

  1. I can certainly relate to this! We had our first full family dinner this past week to celebrate my husband’s birthday and we were all so excited to be together, no one wanted to leave the table, so we kept eating and drinking and talking and laughing and I remember thinking at the time how marvelous these (extra)Ordinary conversations were.

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