When riding the streetcar I have often admired this lady's accessorizing. Recently the only seat available in the front section of the streetcar was across from her. I sat down and told her that I always enjoyed seeing what she was wearing and I asked if I could take her photo. She said that I could. After I took a few photos we started chatting and she told me all sorts of fascinating things about herself. When she spoke her soul shined through her quiet slightly accented voice.
She introduced herself as Miss Ellie. She said that's not my real name but, it's what people call me. Her real name is Eleanor.
She has traveled to Hawaii quite a bit and picked up her habit of wearing flowers from over there. She said that when she goes into Nordstrom the sales people will say here comes the flower lady.
She said that you can make yourself happy, that happiness comes from within. I told her that I most heartily agree.
She told me I love wings, wheels, and water. Meaning that she loves to travel. She has three children- one lives here in Portland, another in England and the other in the Dominican Republic. She lived for awhile down in the Dominican Republic. She goes to a different country in Europe each year. She has visited all of the European countries.
She was born in South Africa. She had a farm there where her and her husband raised thorough bred horses. They moved to the US in 1985.
When I asked where she was heading to she said she was going to go to the mall and then she might head out to the airport. She said she likes going there because there are shops on one side and restaurants on the other.
Miss Ellie is who I hope to be when I am an older lady: well traveled and well accessorized.
This post was originally published on December 3, 2013.