A bird-like shriek sounds from the kitchen, and I wander in to see whether a stray animal go in somehow, or if Gram’s cuckoo clock has decided to change its alarm once again. I step into the room just as the noise starts over and a small metallic seagull pops out for the next stroke.
When my grandparents decided to buy a beach house fifteen years ago, Gram made it her personal mission to hi every flea market, auction house, yard sale, and second-hand store in the tristate are to find the perfect furnishings for our family’s new vacation destination. Her efforts resulted in a house full of mismatched furniture and enough knick-knacks to keep us grandkids entertained for hours. Of these treasures, the beach themed cuckoo clock we inherited from an antique shop’s going out of business sale quickly became Gram’s favorite and most annoying household item. Aside from being so big it took up the entire kitchen wall, this clock also had the annoying habit of changing tones at random intervals. Just when you start getting used to the chimes and tuning them out, the next hour Jack the Seagull will bring an entirely new squawk to grab your attention. And yet, amongst Gram and Pappy’s mismatched home, this crazy clock somehow made sense.
However, in the bland townhouse we moved to after Gram’s passing, Jack’s changing chimes are maddening. But at least this stupid seagull made me check the clock where I saw that, as usual, I was running late to meet Rose on the boardwalk as promised.
Author’s Note: Like a lot of people know, I’ve been working on a draft of a book since I was sixteen. I haven’t gotten very far, because everytime I sit down I end up erasing everything I wrote last time. I’ve been particularly stuck on how I wanted it to start, but I think I might have finally found my beginning 🙂