A sweet missive on New Year’s Eve

This year, I spent New Year’s Eve at my friend’s bar – a music club in the city. It’s a comfortable place to hang out  with friendly bartenders, a great micro-brew selection, quality food and live music almost every night of the week.

Tom and his buddies, during their boys nights out, always ended their evenings at this Irish pub with roots that go back to the late 1800s.

This year, some of my friends were going to sporting events or dinner but said they would drop by before the midnight toast. They arrived about 11, and the tone of the place, which attracts a young crowd, was astir. Patrons began ordering fresh beers and shots — Jamison’s, Jack, Fireballs, tequila.

Right before midnight, my friend George, who was my husband’s closest friend, and his wife told me they wanted me to come over to the look at the bar top. (This was not totally a surprise because I saw George earlier in the week and he told me he had something to show me next time we were at the bar.)

The bar top at this place is interesting. Roughly eight years ago, the owner decided he wanted to layer the bar top with a variety of guitar picks. Many of them had sayings or initials or designs done by friends and customers. Some picks had professional logos; others were blank but colorful. After gathering the picks, he had his friends (Tom included) glue them randomly to the top of the bar. A layer a shellac was applied over them to give the top a waterproof but artful, music-oriented surface.

I vaguely remember hearing about this effort because the owner was upset that the shellac smeared what was written on many of the picks. But, irregardless, I think it was a great idea, and it still looks quite good.

Back to New Year’s Eve. As I walked over to the couple with their phone flashlights illuminating the bar top, I was told to look carefully. There among dozens of colorful picks was a pearl-colored one. In black handwriting I know so well read “Tom loves Marti.” Midnight struck and my friends gave me a hug.

I got a little teary but not overly emotional. A couple years ago seeing this would have made me sad and, no doubt, set off a swell of tears. That night, it made me feel good and reminded me that someone loved me a lot for many years. I’ve sat at that bar probably a dozen times since Tom’s death, never knowing there was a personal, little missive to me. Thanks, Tom, for the reminder. And thanks my friends for waiting to show me. It was a good way to start the new year.









About Marti Benedetti

I'm a longtime writer and a widow. I want to share my thoughts and experiences of being single in my 50s and beyond after being married to the same man and raising kids for 28 years. It's not the journey I signed up for, but the one I'm living with. I hope I can offer up some thoughts, chuckles and comfort for those in a similar boat.
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6 Responses to A sweet missive on New Year’s Eve

  1. dswidow says:

    How wonderful! What a great way to start the new year. And, that bar sounds delightful; I’d love to stop at a place like that.

  2. Raye Holden says:

    Thank you Marti, I always enjoy your missives. My husband passed away in June of 2015 and twice now going through files, etc purging documents I’ve become reacquainted with love letters from my husband. What a special gift.

    • Thanks, Raye, for reading my blog. I love when I come across an old card or letter from years ago. It’s reassuring to know someone thought I was fabulous because often times now I’m dealing with rejection when it comes to men.

  3. Chris Dehoff says:

    Very Sweet! I know the handwriting too and sometimes my own reminds me of Tom’s! Nice to know you’ve got that permanent reminder, in a favorite place, of all the love he had to give you.

  4. Karen Mantyk says:

    Sorry it has taken me so long to respond to this story. I really loved it. What a great connection you were able to make to Tom. I hope 2016 stays as positive for you as it started out. xo

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