Lillian here, delighted to host this April 1st OLN at dVerse. This is your opportunity to share one poem of your choosing, any form, any genre of poetry. There is no prompt. Specific directions are given below….after my April Fools Day tale – which is absolutely true! If you don’t want to read what happened to me on April 1, 1997….just skip down to the directions and post your poem. BUT, I promise you, this is an April Fools’ Tale for the ages! Sometimes Mother Nature can play a trick on us and boy did that happen in 1997!
In March 1997, my husband and I were living in Iowa as we had been for 20+ years. We’d grown up in the Midwest, met in college, and stayed in the Midwest. At age 50, we decided it was time for a change. We’d look for positions in the same city….someplace entirely different from the Midwest. I was the first to land an interview – in Boston! It was with Suffolk University, an urban school, to become Director of their MBA Program. At the time, I was Director of the Executive MBA at The University of Iowa. Beautiful spring weather was in the long-term forecast so I arrived March 31st bringing a lovely linen suit, my suede high heels, and a light weight trench coat. I also brought jeans, a casual shirt and Doc Martens to tromp around and see the sites a bit, if I had time. I’d just had a hair cut, permanent and style the day before. I was booked at a hotel which amazingly, is just down the street from where we now live and about a 6 block walk, uphill, to the Suffolk campus. I landed in the afternoon, got to the hotel, and found out snow was being forecast for overnight and through April 1st! WHAT???? My interview was on April 1st! I found my way to a Macys and looked for gloves, a wool hat, scarf, etc….of course, nothing wintery was to be found. Finally, in a bin in their menswear section, I found a flannel brown plaid scarf. I then went outside and found one of those carts that sells sweatshirts and baseball caps and low and behold, found a pair of burgundy chenille gloves with a ruffle at the wrist. I didn’t care….by now it’s getting cold and blustery. Shivering all the way, I made it back to the hotel to eat in their restaurant and prep for the interview.
April 1, 1997. I woke up to my alarm, said a little prayer for maybe a few snow flurries, opened the curtains and saw nothing but a blanket of white….blowing sidewise! A blizzard! The entire city was shut down. No taxis. Schools closed. By the end of the afternoon, Boston had a total of 25.4 inches of snow….in the city! My phone rang. It was the Dean’s secretary and she indicated the Associate Dean, Rich T., lived in the North End and was willing to walk over to the hotel and meet me for a breakfast interview. Whew! No outside for me. About 90 minutes later, I went down to the hotel’s restaurant and there was this man taking off a huge parka with furry hood, heavy gloves, and the scarf that had been covering his face. He had on the biggest galoshes I’d ever seen. We had a wonderful breakfast and I felt the interview was going quite well. Then he said something like, “If you’d like, the Dean of the Business School and three faculty members can be at Suffolk at about 11:30. They all have apartments nearby. They would love to meet you. We can walk up to the campus.” Did I mention it was 6 blocks uphill? That I had Doc Martens, a lightweight trench coat, a men’s flannel scarf and snarky burgundy chenille gloves with a ruffle at the wrist? But what could I say if I wanted the job? I went up to my hotel room, exchanged my heels for socks over my nylons, put on the Doc Martens, the light weight trench coat with scarf around my neck, and the lovely gloves…shoved the heels in the hotel’s plastic laundry bag…and met Rich in the lobby. We walked out into the RAGING BLIZZARD and first thing Rich did was push me backwards a bit, just under the hotel’s awning, so he could adjust his hat. BAM! A huge amount of snow slid off the awning onto my head! No scarf; no hat; newly permed hair. I was sopped. He apologized like crazy and all I could say was, “Oh it’s okay….really!” and smile.
We TRUDGED up the hill….through all the snow piling up and the blinding snow swirling everywhere. At one point, Rich turned around, grinned and said “We’re putting all the applicants for this position through an Outward Bound experience and this is yours!” I think I laughed politely. When we finally got to the building, I asked for the restroom, praying they would have paper towels to dry off my hair and my coat. Nope. Only those hand dryers. Thankfully I could turn the nozzle up so at least I didn’t have to get down on my hands and knees. I dried my hair as best I could. Do you know what happens to newly permed hair when it’s wet and then goes under a hand dryer? FRIZZ and lovely eau de perm scent! What else could go wrong? Oh….did I mention that when I left Iowa I’d just taken my 81 year old mother to the dr. only to find out she had conjunctivitis? Yep. When I woke up that morning in Boston, before I even opened the curtains to the blizzard, my eyes were caked shut!!! Conjunctivitis is extremely contagious!
So now, I’m in the interview with the big Dean. It goes well I think….praying he can’t smell my hair. He’s in a sweatshirt and pants and I’m in a lovely linen suit. THEN the Dean says, “If you’re game, we planned a lunch for you at the Omni Parker House Hotel. It’s a very famous hotel and dining room here in Boston. It’s just two blocks away. Three faculty are there waiting for us.” “OF COURSE!!“ I say. “Would you mind if I put back on my heavy shoes and socks?” I did. And gamely donned my lightweight soggy and cold trench coat, the men’s scarf and the ridiculous burgundy chenille gloves with ruffle at the wrist. The Dean led the way. We got to a corner where there was a huge pile of slush, leftover from the plows salting in the early morning. The Dean leaped over it, turned and gallantly held out his hand. I was supposed to stretch, reach his hand, and he’d help me leap over it. Do I really want this job this badly? Yep. Evidently I did. I grabbed his hand, started the leap, only to have him slip a bit and let go. My left foot made it across but not until my right foot landed in the icy slush! The Dean apologized and apologized and of course, I said, “No problem” smiling through gritted teeth. In the restaurant Rich confessed that although he nicely said he’d carry my heels in the bag over to the restaurant, he’d forgotten them. So there I sat, eating a first course of the infamous Boston Clam Chowder (I HATE clam chowder) and trying not to shiver because my right foot in its nylon stocking, heavy wool sock and Doc Marten, was sopping wet and FREEZING cold!
And here we are in Boston on April 1st, 2021. Yes. I got the job and loved it. I progressed to Dean of MBA Programs and Director of their Global MBA, traveling the globe by myself to recruit students and land global internships for our students. It was all worth it. But I’ll NEVER forget April 1st, 1997!
And that entire diatribe is absolutely true. NO exaggeration. I told that entire tale at my rejuvenatement party (never say retirement) and had every one in stitches. It would make a great comedy routine, don’t you think?
Photo below is from a more recent Boston snow storm of maybe 12 to 14 inches. Imagine 25.4 inches in blizzard conditions.
So – back to OLN. Any ONE poem of your choosing….A foolhardy one fit for April Fools Day….or a serious one…a haibun or sonnet or limerick….whatever you would like! Your choice! See you in the pub!
New to dVerse or need a reminder of what to do?
- Choose ONE poem – any form, length, genre, topic. Your choice.
- Post your poem to your blog AND add the exact URL for your poem to Mr. Linky below.
- REMEMBER to either TAG dVerse in your post, or include a link at the end of your haibun that leads readers back to dVerse (https://dversepoets.com).
- If there is no Tag or link back to dVerse, I will gently remind you to add it or remove your post from Mr. Linky. Sorry to be so harsh…..but this is just part of the requirements AND it will bring you more readers and lead more folks to dVerse so they can participate as well!