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  • Writer's pictureJane Rubin

Richie Havens

Updated: Mar 8, 2023

Oh, that bongo drum – setting the beat for my first day of retirement. Does anyone still play bongos? Geez, I love that sound. Get on my sweats, get out the door, get those ear buds in and turn him on. Because, that man can get me going! I feel him from my earbuds to my toes – at least the toes I still have feeling in. Come on Jane, it’s only a mile….


Oh, dear, can my feet catch up with his beat…… there we go, don’t think about the hill up there ahead, just keep breathing and go. ‘I ain’t nothing but a dream…’ First actual day of the space between, what are you thinking about….?


Do something for yourself today, do something for your family, do something for others – just do something.


Oh, that beat – “here comes the sun, it’s all right”. I am bouncing my head; I am turning in circles and the high school kids up ahead at the bus stop are laughing at me. Me, the crazy lady who lives up the street is laughing too! Have they ever heard of a bongo drum? Or Richie Havens? Oh, what they have missed! I wish them a great day like I did with my children two decades back and keep bouncing along.


“FREEDOM, FREEDOM…”, oh Richie, taking me back to high school and the Viet Nam war. Boys going to a place I had never heard of – so much fear around us. For the rest of us in school, the tide carried us to a very rebellious place. Politicians sending the innocent to fight on behalf of their egos – what would their deaths bring back for everyone…? My father cursing at home – ‘won’t those bastards ever learn!” I can only imagine what he’d have to say about our current leader…? Senseless – all while we try to cure the sick on this side of the ocean.


Ok, enough of that – there’s that hill. I can do that but at half beat perhaps? Always negotiating…. can’t seem to stop that habit. I wonder what everyone at work is up to. People were so kind to me these past weeks. Shucks, I am going to be sad…. I am going to miss them all. Do they realize how much good they bring to others every day? I hope so, I hope I helped my team realize that they could always make a difference. It is never all about the money, the savings, about market share. It will always be about the sacred trust placed in their hands by the sick, the desperate, the dying. How well they do that part will always be their purpose. If they do that well, the rest will follow. I hope they believe that – in their hearts.


They are such fine people and I will miss them.


“Here comes the sun, here comes the sun, and I say, it’s alright” ….

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