02.14.14 This is the window of the old Napa Auto Parts store, just before you drive into icebox canyon on the way to town. Several years later, I still haven’t bother to stop in, but they obviously sell wedding dresses and beautiful gowns. One year in October, there was a single stunningly beautiful white wedding dress decorated with beads and sparkles, and a big pumpkin sat on the floor next to its sweeping train. All was black and dark behind the dress and a halogen spotlight shone down to the pumpkin, making the beads and sequins dazzle and twinkle. It was pure Cinderella.
In this weary month of February with dirty snow piles and sloppy puddles, I’ve been slowing down to admire this view when I drive into town. It’s best at night, of course, with the black backdrop behind the pinks and reds, and you can see the shimmer on the full skirts in the spotlights. Who wears these sweet dresses, I wonder, out here in the rural hinterlands of northwest Montana!
A long long time ago–55 years ago to be exact–my mother made me a dress, a few months shy of my thirteenth birthday, for my first school dance. It was made of white tulle with crinolines under the full skirt, and she scattered little red velvet bows with rhinestones in the center of each bow, all around the skirt. I don’t remember anything about the dance, if there was some boy I liked, or if the entire evening was awkward and painful. But, seeing these beautiful dresses as I drive by, I do remember how my mother enabled me to feel like I was Cinderella, going to my first Ball. Happy Valentine’s Day, Mom, somewhere up there in the stars!