It was a breezy Thursday morning with a piercing blue sky but Sasha sat on her familiar park bench with tears welling in her eyes. She could find no joy in the willow tree that provided the perfect amount of shade or the butterfly that landed on her shoulder. Sasha couldn’t even smile at a group of preschool children passing through the park on a field trip. Lifting her head from her hands Sasha caught sight of Pope Michael pushing his confessional cart down the brick path. The Pope was a banal sight. Today however, Sasha couldn’t hear the shrill of the Pope’s golden choir bell. Sasha watched as the bell swayed back and forth. Other passers-by stopped to acknowledge the sound of the bell but no notes reached Sasha’s ears. Ever since the night when Sasha spent hours scraping paint out of her ears, her hearing has gotten worse each day. This morning when Sasha awoke there was complete silence. The beam of light shining off the golden bell mesmerized Sasha. Her stare was finally broken by three firm taps on her shoulder. Snapping her head around Sasha beheld the oldest woman she had ever laid eyes on. The woman could have only been about four feet tall and her face was cramped with wrinkles. Despite her snowy white hair, her twinkling blue eyes had the youthfulness of a teenager. Sasha’s mouth hung open as the woman pulled a white pad of paper and a pen from her coat pocket. The woman wrote slowly but each word was written in the most perfect cursive Sasha had ever seen. After the woman finished writing she held the pad of paper up for Sasha to read.
“Can you hear anything?”
Sasha nodded no timidly.
“How was this woman able to know about her hearing,” Sasha thought to herself.
The woman started to write again.
“I will teach you sign language.”
Stupefied by the old woman’s declaration Sasha simply nodded yes.
The final note read, “We will meet this afternoon at 4:00. I live in apartment 800 at the Victorian”.
“Thank you,” Sasha managed to yell, unaware of her volume.The old woman smiled as she stood up with ease and walked up the path, past the Pope, and disappeared through the trees.