“I was there. I saw the star. I knew something was happening,” said Tellias who is over 2,000 years old. He was right in my face almost yelling.
He tells us that every single year but he never gives us any details. We’ve stopped trying to get information out of him.
I am the one who watches the elders, the ancient Vampires.
They speak in riddles and metaphors, not because they are wise but because they are tottering and annoying. They are confused and trying to get control over their lives that seem so out of control.
Today I took them out to a sing-a-long and a bell concert under the rotunda in State Capitol building in Sacramento. It is a beautiful building restored to how it was in 1880. A good size crowd showed up too.
Tellias was wearing a vest embroidered with snowmen and snowflakes, a large black top coat and a top hat. Eleora wore a red plaid skirt down to her knees, red flats with white lace tights, a sweater with a felt reindeer on it, complete with bells on the antlers and a red cap that hung down her back with a white pom pom. Had it been anyone else I would have told them to change, but since they look like they’re teens it was sweet. Had they looked like the really old people they are it would have been super sweet. Anyone else it would have been just tacky.
It was just Tellias, Eleora, my teenage daughter Clara, my brother Val and me. Garrett, off from college on break, was at my parents in San Francisco for a few days. My husband Teddy was working and everyone else was busy too, or just not to be found.
On the front steps of the Capitol building a photographer was taking photos of a happy wedding party. The bride was beautiful in a strapless dress of pure elegance and fluff. Clara and Eleora discussed the dresses in detail. Val and Tellias walked together discussing architectural details of downtown buildings and what the new arena would do to the character of the area. I took in the view of the park and Capitol Building under the cold overcast sky.
Eleora was in a good mood today. She has been grouchy and temperamental lately and overly critical of everything and everyone. A sweet thing by nature the turn to a grouch hasn’t been good. With that has come hoarding – something that another family member, Grandmama Lola has said NO to. I hope Lola has put a stop to the clutter and papers and obsessions that Eleora has started to take on.
Tellias just sighs and gets depressed, going on walks around his orchard and visiting with his neighbors way too much.
When we entered the concert area in the rotunda the two elders lit up like Christmas candles. Eleora put her arm around my waist and kissed my cheek. Tellias looked pleased and happy to see Eleora laughing in delight.
They listened to the bell concert with great patience. Behind us sat a mother and her little boy. They were delightful. It reminded me of when my own children were small and we’d go to all sorts of concerts and events.
When I was small Tellias and Eleora would take Val and I to concerts and events. We were active and unruly but we’d calm for music and poetry. We’d sit still by the river bank while our dear Ancients told us about the calls of the birds and of giant fish who swam in the waters.
They’d hold our small hands and guide us through the night and teach us that with love there was no fear.
I glanced at them walking by the front of the State Library making a joke about how cold the couple sitting out in front (two statues) must be on this December day.
Things change. People change. Time passes.
But the love we have, even when it pains us, is there. We love and remember and share those memories. But most important – we need to keep making memories.
~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman