1984 – alfred jameson by jmforceton

6 Jun

September 17, 1979: He was looking at a blank screen. After a long struggle and false hope, Julia died of breast cancer. Two weeks later, September 29, Lisa, his granddaughter made her first appearance.

It was not until 1984 that he appeared to let Julia go; that was not the truth, he would never in his lifetime let her go, but he began to write then, and the pages of his life began to fill again.

At least he had the power to keep Mary Mayville alive forever.

*     *     *     *

Today, Saturday, September 29, 1984 was Lisa’s fifth birthday, and Lisa had made it clear she wanted to sail with her grandfather on her birthday. The day was sunny and cool, but perfect for sweaters and windbreakers as they motored out of the harbor on Julia IV with Lisa at the helm. Sixteen-year-old Paula complained about the all-day trip on the water, but had conceded, and was on the bow taking Lisa’s favorite sheer red jenny, otherwise known as a genoa jib, out of its sail bag. Their 13-year-old brother was with his best friend’s family for the weekend, at a soccer tournament in Nashua, New Hampshire.

“Grampa, I like the red jenny.”

“Well so do I.”

“Grampa, what else do you like?”

“I like you and your sister.”

“Will I be beautiful like Paula?”

“You’re both beautiful.”

“Grampa, I don’t have boys coming to see me.”

“Oh, but you will. Head off a bit to starboard…perfect. Ok Paula, go ahead and haul the jenny up.”

“Grampa, where is Paris?”

“Paris, what do you know about Paris?”

“You just went to Paris.”

“Yes I did. Paris is on the other side of this ocean, over there.”

“Can we go there today?”

“No, it would take us weeks and we don’t have enough food or water.”

“Can we go another time?”

Alfred hesitated a second, “Yes, maybe we can, maybe we can.”

“You always say Gramma liked it there. Is Gramma there?”

“I think she would be there if she could.”

“Was Gramma beautiful?”

“Yes, just like you.”

*     *     *     *

That year he was editor-in-chief and had insight into many complex current issues, all the same, there were so many things he didn’t understand. Fortunately, in his 1984, Big Brother was alive but not all-powerful, and couldn’t know how he really felt.

He would retire in 1989 at sixty-two. His second novel, with Mary Mayville as a central character, would be a best seller in 1991, changing his life again.

He was a full time writer and successful author. He loved travel and research into topics that interested him, digging for little known facts and obscure connections that resulted in commonly seen and well known events. He loved facts and truth, but only wrote fiction; in fiction, he could control the outcome.

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