Is That You?
Long before I moved to China the second time… before Jennifer had kids and when I had a moustache, I use to see Jennifer every week on Tuesday nights at 6:30pm. She taught a class right before my evening yoga class and her class always ran over time. At first Vicki and I would stand in Karate USA, as it was called back then, look at each other, then the clock and say when is she going to wrap that class up; after a couple weeks of being subtle we would just storm in at 6:25 and Jennifer would chuckle and say we gotta cool down because the next class is here. No matter how much noise Vicki and I would make as we barged in, Jennifer would always be smiling as we chatted while I turned off her eardrum bursting music and changed the mood to a nice funereal yoga beat. Jennifer would always tell me how she should really take one of my yoga classes because her hams were soooo tight. Having watched her cool down week after week, I would agree: her hams were tight as a drum.
One day she shyly came into my Thursday morning yoga class and begged me to be gentle with her since she had no flexibility. I told her to stay right by me Honey… there is always room next to the teacher. She grunted and groaned; and man did she ever sweat; I kept throwing towels under her down dog to help mop up some of her puddles; she’d grunt thanks!
Life goes on and our Tuesday-Thursday ‘get togethers’ continued. I finally got her trained to watch the clock; Vicki and I didn’t need to make so much noise.
Len came home from work one day and said you will never believe what my boss asked me today – I knew immediately we were on our way back to Shanghai. One of the last times I talked to Jennifer before leaving for China she told me she was pregnant and due in December; I told her I couldn’t believe what she was saying because my sister was pregnant and due in December as well! In 2 years they would both have 1½ year olds when I got back.
The 2 year assignment in China became a 3 year assignment, and then I returned to Woodbury…
To help get over the jet lag and to keep my body moving since I wasn’t walking as much as I did in Shanghai, I jumped right into Debra’s Push classes. It was a great way to wring out all the travel blues, sweat and see my EPF friends from long ago. In classes I would see someone and know I knew them, but just not able to remember their name – after 3 years I did have a bit of an excuse… One day Jennifer came into Push and said WAYNE!!!! I’ve missed you so much! I haven’t taken a yoga class since you left! I said, “I’m back”. She replied, “but none of your classes have childcare.” I sort of paused… thought… it was starting to come back to me… did she have a baby? Through the fog I thought, yea, that’s right, I think she was pregnant when I left like my sister. She said, “2 babies”, WOW was all I could say. We chatted a bit before Debra arrived with her famous “SQUAT!!!!!”
The next week I went to Push and saw Jennifer again. I could tell she was being incognito because she wasn’t wearing any makeup and her hair was a little more combed than her usual Push instructor look. We were talking for about 5 minutes and I asked how old were her kids and what were their names. Afterwards, I paused a moment and said you look great after having 2 kids; how close to your deliver date did you teach? She said I’m Jonelle, Jennifer’s twin sister, I don’t teach…. That’s right I think I knew Jennifer had a twin, but I don’t think I had ever met her “pre-China”, they really are identical twins.
A couple weeks later I was at Home Depot walking towards check out and I saw Jennifer, then I thought maybe it’s Jonelle? She wasn’t wearing makeup, but she sort of responded like Jennifer [well they both respond like Jennifer, er, I mean Jonelle] I sort of squinted and said is that you? She said it’s me… We both laughed and said, “I can’t believe I’m running into you here!?”
A few days later I was at Target Super Store and looked up from my shopping list; again… Is that you? It’s me! As we were talking I glanced down at Jennifer’s shopping cart and saw organic green beans, whole wheat bread, fresh eggs [the expensive one’s] and said you really eat healthy as I pointed to all her organic foods. Just then I saw something red and shiny tucked away underneath something organic and pull back the corner just enough and saw "100% Double Cream Whipped Cream", she sort of smiled and squirmed, saying it’s for the kids… Then I saw a HUGE “Value Pack” containing at least 500 Oreo’s Double Stuff! I start pulling back more and more of her ‘organic’ food and saw boxes and bags of junk food. I could see her face flush slightly and she started to stammer saying, "oh these are for Justin… and these are for Jonelle, I’m buying these as a treat for Debra…" I turned to her and said I love them too! We pushed our carts to a back corner of the store, sat on the floor and opened the bag of Oreo Double Stuff; I pulled a gallon of milk out of my cart and we passed it back and forth. I said ‘life is good!’ We had probably gone through ¾ a gallon of milk and 300 Oreos when Jennifer hears "Mama!" and jumps to her feet and says OMG I need to get home! Justin is waiting for me!!! BYE!
A couple weeks later I was in the garden department at Home Depot and they had a bar-be-Que fired up and were grilling Home Depot Hot Dogs. I bought a Dog, loaded it with the works; I started to take a bite as I walked back to my cart and I said, is that you? It’s me… I love these Dogs; me too…
The next day I was at Target and turned around, is that you???
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