“Somebody should really wash all this stuff.” That’s a note I remember from almost twenty-eight years ago, when Murray and I lived in our first apartment on Willow Way. I was pawing through the dirty clothes one day and found a braille note left in there for me. Another Day I found a note taped to a light switch saying: “This is art. It’s crying out to be gawked at.”
Over the years, I’ve found many others from Murray, in my lunch and in other more unexpected places. He often wrote out words to songs for me—such as one about how everything that’s happening is happening at the zoo—and other sweetie notes.
When I was working, the kids were smart and knew that the best place to leave a note for me was taped to the coffee pot. That was the first place I’d go in the morning, even before I took a shower. Rebecca often left me notes, usually telling me to wake her up either before or after my shower, depending on how late she had stayed up and how much studying she still needed to do.
A note from Sarah warned me not to go into the girls’ room that morning. They’d been up late the night before, putting their bunk bed together, and it was still sticking out in the middle of the room. That must have been before Murray asked me to stop waking everybody up to say good-bye before I left.
Many of these notes I now find in my Bible, especially Rebecca’s coffee pot notes, because I’d sit down and read my Bible while I drank my coffee. I’d slip the notes into the page I was reading from that day. Now they’re a nice surprise when I read those chapters again. Most of Rebecca’s notes ask me to wake her up, usually with “please!!!” included, sometimes a threat of what she’ll do to me if I don’t wake her up on time. A note from Caleb lets me know he was leaving early for work before any of the rest of us got up, because he was filling in for “a dude.”
I love finding these as I’m reading my Bible, but I know there are many other notes packed away in other places. I look forward to finding them someday, and I don’t think about it often, so it will be a surprise and a joy when I do. And it will always be art, crying out to be gawked at.