|The Pier by Scott Leeson|
Michael sat at the end of the pier contemplating his life; where he had been and where he was going. The mid-afternoon sun reflecting off the ripples in the water reminded him how life was like those tiny undulations, filled with highs and lows racing towards the inevitable end. At their peak, the sun reflected off them so beautifully, bringing to light everything that was right in the world - but in the valleys, the valleys were dark and foreboding. The shadows were where bad things happened. Michael didn’t care much for the valleys, but realized they were as much a part of life as when the waves would eventually crash against the shore; unavoidable.
He had reached what he hoped to be the mid-point of his life. He had a great job and a beautiful home, with a plethora of friends and family that loved and adored him. He was a proud grandfather with another grandchild on the way. He was a published author – a lifelong dream of his. He had been to an NHL playoff game, had watched the Cowboys play inside the original Texas Stadium, explored many of the great castles and cathedrals in Ireland, visited the Grand Canyon and the Petrified Forrest, rode the rapids of a mighty Tennessee river, bungee jumped off a perfectly stable platform nearly a 100 feet high, had front row seats to a Cirque du Soleil show, saw Def Leppard, Heart, Ozzy Osbourne, Damn Yankees, and the Beach Boys perform live – all in their prime. He had been shot up in the air a 1000 feet on the Big Shot ride at the Stratosphere, had seen 7 states at once in Rock City, nearly plummeted to his death at Fall Creek Falls, climbed the beautiful rocks in Red Rock Canyon, swam in the beaches of Florida, California, and the Gulf Coast, had adventured through the waterfall magic of the Columbia River Gorge in Oregon, had been deep-sea fishing off the coast of Catalina Island while dolphins and flying fish gave chase. He had held his mother in his arms as she spoke her last words, saw his sister take her last breath, and had witnessed the birth of both of his two beautiful girls.
He had once chatted deeply with the Lord Mayor of Dublin and then was invited back to his mansion for tea, got lost in Pasadena California with The Ladies Man Tim Meadows, was accosted by Tori Spelling’s bodyguard in New Orleans, been inside Jerry Lewis’ closet, was nearly eaten by Siegfried and Roy’s bullmastiff, was insulted by the Four Top’s manager, once made comedian Rita Rudner laugh during a taping of her show, had a in-depth conversation about thoroughbred horses with Zsa Zsa Gabor, discussed the finer points of movie making and baseball card collecting with Charlie Sheen, had lunch and a beer with his childhood hero Dallas Cowboy Hall of Famer Tony Dorsett, played the part of a perpetrator on The Shield, was a loyal activist in the crowd as Martin Sheen and Rob Lowe delivered speeches on the set of The West Wing, had a long and meaningful conversation about life and love-lost in a car ride with Alanna Ubach of Legally Blonde, shared a pretzel moment with comedian Garry Shandling at a Laker game, sung on stage in Vegas in a Christmas special with Larry Gatlin and the Gatlin Brothers, and saw firsthand backstage how David Copperfield performed many of his “illusions.” He had experienced a great many things in his life, but there was one thing that he coveted above all else that had eluded him all these years – true love.
Sure, he had experienced love before. He was divorced after all, but he longed for that kind of love that transcended the ages; the kind of love that bound two hearts together – forever. The kind of love his parents had. He longed to have someone in his life that he trusted beyond measure; that would help carry him over any wall and through any obstacle, that would bring light to the shadows when it came – and he for them. What he desired most was to one day have a best friend to share life’s journey with until the end of days.
With the fading sun low on the horizon, he looked across the vast open water and couldn't help but wonder if that day would ever come. He was hopeful, yet ambivalent.
Michael A. Walker
Have you found true love? Tell me about it.
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