"We should write letters to Grandma, tie them to balloons and release them," Daughter said as we discussed what we wanted to do.
I loved the idea of writing a goodbye letter, but I thought putting our letters together into a bottle with a cork and releasing it into the ocean was just as nice. Daughter loved the suggestion. It took a few minutes to decide exactly from where we wanted to send off the bottle, Sunset Beach, Shore Acres, Horsefall or Bastendorf. After running through the list, we settled instead on the rocky banks of Coos Bay near Mom's home, not far from where she liked to take walks.
There were two criteria for what we wanted regarding the kind of bottle to carry our love letters to Mom. It needed to have a cork, and the glass was to be green. My mother was known for collecting green glass.
We settled on this bottle:
Daughter shook her head, "No. I think we said everything in our letters."
Poised on the shore, taking a deep breath, I tossed our hearts into the bay.
The bottle landed quite a few feet away. It bobbed a few times, then started drifting towards the currents that weave around the bend of the bay. Standing solemnly with tears brimming my eyes, I watched the vessel drift further away with our last loving words to my mother.
Suddenly, a tug boat came into view pulling a huge barge. Really? Right now? I threw my arms up in the air and started laughing. I turned toward my daughter who was also laughing and we began to speculate the fate of the bottle.
We were certain it was going to be brought back to shore in the wake of the waves created by the barge and tugboat after they went by, but to our delighted astonishment, the bottle surfed over the top of each wave and continued to move outward and seaward, albeit slowly.
Satisfied with our mail being successfully sent off, Daughter and I turn away from the shoreline as a bottle of love floats out to sea.