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Path Of The Winged Heart Part 1

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Maria sank down into her living room chair. It had been a long day. She closed her eyes and replayed the events of the last few days. There had been another encounter with one of the crippled hearts. When she done replaying the events of the past few days her thoughts drifted back to her first encounter with a crippled heart. It had been 30 years ago when she was 15 years old.

Sally had seemed like a friend, at least on the surface. She appeared to be kind and considerate. It took time to really get to know her. Sally was not who she seemed to be. Initially the crippled hearts that Maria had encountered had not been obvious. They were hidden. Hidden behind masks of make believe. Sally was the first person to befriend Maria after her family had moved to the area. She had known Sally for about a year. That had seemed like a long time. She thought back to the day that she really came to know Sally.

It was in the fall and she had stopped at Sally's house about an hour after school. They were sitting in Sally's room listening to music when Sally told her she had a surprise. Sally reached under her bed and pulled out a large laundry bag. She opened it and slid it off of a pay phone. Sally told Maria how she had noticed it was loose the night before when she used it and she had returned today with a crowbar to pry it off. Sally slid it back in the pillow case, put it under the bed, and told her that she was going to take it to the garage and bust it open the next day when she would have more time before her parents got home from work.

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Maria's expression and comment that Sally was crazy to do such a thing was met by Sally telling her that she was being a 'goody two shoes'. Maria had told Sally that she wanted no part of it. Maria was heading out the door when Sally''s mother came home. Two hours later Maria heard knocks on her door. It was a police officer. Sally's mother had found the phone. Sally had told her mother that she had been watching T.V. when Maria came to the house with the pay phone in the laundry bag promising to come back and pick it up the next day.

Maria told the police officer the truth. He took notes and told her that it would be investigated. The next day it was all over school that Maria had stolen a pay phone, had taken it to Sally's house, and when she had gotten caught had blamed Sally. Maria told her version of the events to a few people who seemed to believe her but the general buzz about school was that she had tried to save her own neck by getting Sally in trouble.

Justice had been served in the end, but it had taken four months. All throughout those four months and even after Sally continued to blame Maria. What had saved her were the words of Mrs. Contega the old woman who liked to sit on her front steps and chain smoke while she watched the goings on in the neighborhood. Mrs. Contega had seen Sally enter the house with the laundry bag and also seen Maria come by empty handed. Sally was put on juvenile probation, ordered to pay restitution and to do 50 hours of community service.

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The following summer Maria and her parents traveled to San Francisco. It was 1977 and there was a ten year anniversary celebration of the Summer of Love. Maria's parents were freshmen students at Berkeley in 1962 when Maria was born. It was an unplanned and unexpected pregnancy but both of her parents had managed to complete college. After graduating they spent the summer of 67 in the Haight-Ashbury district with 5 year old Maria in tow. Maria had remembered it as being like a circus and it had changed a lot in ten years but so had she. It was during this trip in 1977 that she had first heard the term "crippled heart." Her parents had heard that their former Guru of sorts was camping at a rural farm about an hour north of San Francisco and they decided to go see him. Maria had remembered Vee. He laughed a lot and used to caller her Magic Maria.

Vee had remembered her too. When they arrived at the farm Vee hugged her mother and father then looked at her, held his hand low and said, "I knew that you were magic. You have gone from this to this small to this tall", he said as he motioned low and high with his hand. There were others who had come to see Vee. They sat around in a circle outside, reminisced and told stories. Then Vee gave one of his talks. Maria looked around and noticed tears streaking down some cheeks. Vee could do that. He could touch people in a way that could move them between laughter and tears. After his talk Vee retreated to a cabin and several people lined up to see him one by one. Maria asked her parents what the people lining up were doing and her mother explained that each of them had a question for Vee or were seeking guidance about something.


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