Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Kyle and His Nana's Little Adventure

Mitchell's on one side, Harmony in Life on the other, my apartment
house in the middle, and two elegant clocks, the fancy one dating to 1642.
On either side of my house are two small businesses: Harmony in Life, an eclectic shop that sells gifts, candles, some jewelry and offers yoga classes and massage (both very popular), and Mitchell’s Clock Shop, which sells and repairs clocks and watches. 

“Have you been in these stores,” my 9-year-old grandson Kyle asked one day, after we had lunched at the Dragonfly (where, uncharacteristically, he ate a whole chicken salad sandwich). We were strolling leisurely up the street to my apartment house, a few doors away.    

“Lots of times in Harmony,” I answered, “but never in the clock shop. Can’t believe I’ve never been in there.”

“Well, let’s go the clock shop,” Kyle said brightly!  I admired his sense of adventure. 

“Have you ever been in Harmony in Life?” I asked Kyle. He had not. 

“Okay, well let’s go there, too!”  And thus began Kyle’s and my little adventure.    

Kyle liked Harmony in Life.  It smells good, of sweet soap, candles and incense, and it has lots of interesting items for the mind, body and spirit.  The lovely owner, Gale, was happy to meet Kyle and urged him to look at the collection of stones for sale especially, all kinds of wonderful stones with special spirits and magic powers.  Kyle took his time looking them over and selected two stones.  I picked out one.  We had shopped locally, chatted with a neighbor, and left the shop with those lucky stones in our pockets.   

Then we walked past my apartment house to the clock shop.    

We were greeted with a big smile by owner John Mitchell, whose bright blue eyes twinkled as Kyle and I oohed and ahhed at the clocks he had.  “Call me John,” he said.  He showed us around and talked about his shop and the house it’s in, which turns out to be “the oldest house on the block.”   Wow, Kyle and I agreed.   

John Mitchell pointed out a masterpiece, too: A clock made in Holland in 1642!

 "1642!" Kyle repeated, appreciating its antiquity. It was beautiful and still going.  I have to go back and ask John for more details, but my historian’s curiosity got to me. I wondered if that elegantly crafted clock had been brought to America by Dutch immigrants who had first settled in New York state, maybe in the town of new Amsterdam, NY, then had moved West to Ohio, bringing their prized possession with them.  I know there’s a great story behind that clock, I said to Kyle, who nodded at the possibilities.   

Another clock, which had a shining gold pendulum and looked old, was new by comparison, John said, perhaps an early 20th century piece. 

The clocks are so pretty, I said to John.  “I’ll tell you what’s pretty,” he responded.  "Those flower pots going up your stairway. I look at them every day.“ Well, thank you! Such a lovely compliment. It pleased me and Kyle. I never met a clock man I didn't like, I thought to myself.  Such gentleman and scholars. I smiled at the thought.

"Aren't you glad we went into the clock shop," Kyle asked as we walked over to my place.  "I sure am. I'm especially glad I went with you. Thanks for a great little adventure!" Kyle smiled. We were both happy as could be.

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