by Nancy Scott
It started with my maintenance request. Roger showed up to caulk bathroom tile and check the toilet flush mechanism.
As we stood there after he finished those tasks, I laughingly said, “You have to see what this door does. Of course, I caused it myself. The door was screeching like a spooky movie and I couldn’t stand it. So I sprayed the hinges with WD-40. The screeching stopped, but watch what happens now.”
I moved the bathroom door from full open to a little more closed. And the door, by itself, very slowly continued to move all the way shut.
Roger laughed. He said, “It’s like a little ghost is moving it.”
That was the perfect description.
“But I can’t find a good position to make the shower steam escape,” I complained. “And when the door does manage the perfect openness, I forget, get out of the shower and promptly hit my head on it.”
Roger has a blind relative. And he’s used to me, so he laughed some more. I did, too.
“I might be able to fix it,” he chuckled and went to his toolbox. I think he brought a hammer. He reached up and banged three times. He said, “There. I tightened the hinges you loosened. Try it now.”
And it worked. Perfectly. No matter where I angled the door, it stayed put. Wonderful. Glorious!
This was an unexpected, immediate benefit only for me. It made me have just a little more faith in my fellow man. It made us both more in love with the world for a few moments. It was easy and it will be helpful for a long time. Everything hinges on other things.
Sometimes good happens in just that way— a task, a conversation, an opportunity, a tool and some knowledge to use it, and a long-term outcome. Life, and writing, are often like that.
Nancy Scott’s over 650 essays and poems have appeared in magazines, literary journals, anthologies, newspapers, and as audio commentaries. She has a new chapbook, The Almost Abecedarian (on Amazon), and won First Prize in the 2009 International Onkyo Braille Essay Contest. Recent work appears in Breath and Shadow, Braille Forum, Disabilities Studies Quarterly, Philadelphia Stories, and Wordgathering.