Teresa Alexander: Fiction: Nov 2021

Southern Legitimacy Statement:  I was born in north Alabama to a mom from Alabama and a dad from Georgia. Even though I was raised in the north in southern Ohio, my southern legitimacy runs generationally deep.  I am sweet tea drinking, fried chicken eating, SEC loving gal!   I am currently living in Florida spending time writing flash fiction and poetry.

Everyday

The day started out bright and clear, as were her eyes as she gazed into the bathroom mirror.  It was a gorgeous, warm, and sunny day.  The temperature was in the eighties which was normal for her part of the world.  She did not have to hit the snooze button several times this morning, she got up as soon as the alarm went off.  She felt on top of the world.  She was happy and hopeful.  She gotten about seven hours of good sleep and there was no lingering headache or upset stomache this morning.  She dresses for work in a lightweight cotton suit, takes time with her make-up, and then heads out the door.  This is the way every day should be.

As she gets into work, she smiles and greets her co-workers with a “Good morning!”, or “How are you today?”  Others smile and answer back with “Morning”, or “I’m good”.  She thinks to herself, this is why I shouldn’t drink during the week.  I feel awesome today.  She is so very glad she resisted the bottle of red wine that was in her refrigerator.  This is the way every day can be.

Five o’clock finally arrives.  She has thoughts that keep running through her mind.  She says to herself, maybe just one glass of wine with dinner.  What would it hurt?  Once she leaves work and is driving home, she has almost decided not to open the bottle.  She thinks why did I even pick it up?  If it was not in the house, I would not be in this situation.  But she knows in the back of her mind that if the bottle was not at the house, she would be stopping by the store anyway.  To take her mind off the bottle chilling in her refrigerator, she grabs her cell phone out of her purse and quickly dials a friend’s number.  “Hey there”, she says into the phone, “would you like to come over tonight for dinner and a movie?”  Her friend declines, saying “Oh, sorry, but I already have plans tonight.  My boyfriend and I are heading into San Francisco to see a play.  Maybe this weekend?”  Driving on, she doesn’t even see the beauty of the landscape around her – the vineyards which stretch for miles on either side of the road. She feels a little let down.  Is this really the way everyday should be? 

As she arrives home and walks into the kitchen of her little cottage on the edge of valley in the shadow of the mountains, she feels a pull toward the refrigerator.  She tries to resist it by going to the bedroom and changing into comfortable sweats and a “Got Vino” t-shirt.  She then bypasses the kitchen and goes to the laundry room to start washing a load of towels.  She is feeling productive and strong.  But she is then drawn back to the kitchen, to the refrigerator.  The deal making begins to start.  She says to herself, I will just have one glass while I am reheating my leftovers I am having for dinner.  She gets the bottle of wine from Flora Springs Winery, a new local winery, out of the refrigerator and opens it, then pours a herself a glass of red wine.  She revels in the taste and smell of her wine.  The deal goes out the window with the second glass she poured.  Is this how everyday will be?

Three hours later, the wet towels are forgotten in the washing machine and the remnants of her dinner of fish from a little fish shack on the coast she visited over the weekend are left on the kitchen counter.   She stumbles to her bed after remembering to lock up.  She barely remembers to set the alarm for work tomorrow; it is only done because of habit.  The bottle of red wine, empty now, sits on the kitchen counter next to her empty wine glass.  This is how her everyday seems.