My Shining Flower

When Flora got home, she relayed to me the horror that was on the streets. I guess traffic had come almost to a standstill throughout the city. I was pretty grateful that the restaurant that I wanted to take her to was just across the street. There would be no driving involved but even the 2 minute walk was almost unbearable. Let me tell you, minus thirty Celcius is nothing to joke about. With the windchill factor, temperatures felt more like forty-five below.

Here in Edmonton, we get weather warnings about these things. It never ceases to amaze me how startled I am each and every time they relay how many seconds it will take for exposed skin to freeze. I suppose its something I will never get used to, with good reason!

After our lovely light dinner and we continued our scintillating girltalk all the way to the YardBird Suite. Although the drive was only 5 minutes, I couldn`t believe I had ever been colder. What was this?!? Antarctica? Jeez!

Flora set me up with the videocamera and I settled in with a hot coffee while waiting for the night to begin. I know most others were enjoying wine and other harder drinks but the coffee was enough for me. Flora popped out just before things were about to get underway and I gave her a goodluck hug, not that she needed it.

“I wish you had a date!” she remarked with a slight pout. It was really too bad Sebastian wasn`t around because he enjoys jazz so much. I scanned my mental database for someone who could join me. Suddenly, I saw my good friend James face pop into my head. I called him up and moments later, he was by my side. What a guy! He was almost as excited to hear the jazz which he confessed was a secret love of his, as I was to see him. James is someone who I never get to see enough of and truly is one of my favorite people on this earth.

The club had gotten quite full, especially for the sub-zero temperatures that were enough to scare away the hardiest of Eskimos. The hardcore jazz junkies clapped heartily when Flora entered the room. She would be performing with the Charlie Austin Trio and they all took their places. Seated behind the piano, bass and drums, Charlie, John Taylor and Jamie Cooper readied themselves for the opening song.

I was taken off guard by the smooth velvety voice emanating from my sweet unassuming friend. I am not a fan of jazz music but if I am to be truly honest, I have never really given it a fair chance. It is different when you are listening to someone you know personally carving these songs into a bouquet for the ears. I was amazed at how the marriage of deep heady bass, light flutter of the piano and steady chatter of the drums could capture my attention. Add to that one enthusiastic yet demure vixen merging the melodic elements into one harmonious symphony. Flora really floored me with her talent and sultry style. It was apparent that the rest of the jazz club felt the same way with their supportive calls, appreciative whistles and heavy applause.

I was so flattered and felt quite special when in the middle of her set, Flora singled me out with a love dedication, Black Magic. At the end of the night, I was so proud of her as I watched her “fans” buying up her CDs asking for her autograph. Perhaps my favorite part of the night, came when I could feel the absolute delight when Flora saw her name up in lights as we
drove up.

“That`s the first time my name has been on the marquee!” she exclaimed with childlike glee.

It really is something to see someone you love reaching for the stars and touching them so graciously.

Grateful for musical gifts.

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