I have a friend who vacuums the floor as if she’s exorcising evil spirits from the carpet.
She has the cleanest house you've ever seen.
Packed weekend bag by the door, in that weird window of time when you’re ready to go but your ride isn't there, she decides to vacuum the hall.
Reaching to turn off the vacuum, she saw it.
Her engagement ring was still on her finger, but the diamond was gone.
She flipped out. Hard.
She scoured the floor, tried to remember the last time she knew the diamond was there and grabbed the Hoover bag.
She laid out a garbage bag and spread dusty, dirty contents on her dining room table.
Frantic and in tears, she searched.
She wrapped up the mess and threw the bag in the trash as her friends turned in the drive.
She told us entire story through tears.
Someone walked to the trash took out the plastic bag and said,
“You vacuum like you’re conducting an exorcism. It’s got to be in here.”
Holding the bag of "evil spirits" she looked at B. and said,
"You’re in no condition to look for it now. We’re going to enjoy our weekend. When we get back, we’re going to open this bag outside in the sunlight and look again. It's in here. I guarantee it.”
Standing over a picnic table in the backyard, B. emptied the bag again.
Within a minute of spreading all that mess the sunlight reflected off the diamond. Voilá.
When the stakes are high, you aren't yourself.
None of us are.
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