At the Chair Repair Shop

I WRESTLE THE CHAIR into my car and take it to the repair shop, thinking, on the way there, of the chairs turned upside down in my father’s workshop all those years ago.

So many years.
So many chairs.
So many kids in that house being told
“Feet on the floor, not on chair rungs.”

It did no good.

There was always a chair being hauled to the basement for fixing.
Always one out of circulation.
Always one being brought back up,
set in place,
and stern warnings newly issued,
near-threats to life and limb.

But life and limb survived
and here I am, traveling through town with a chair in my back seat.

I was forever down there in the basement,
following him around,
just to see what was going on,
just for conversation,
just to feel safe.

And it seems like he was forever standing over things turned upside down, trying to set them right.

He was the glue.

* * *

I AM PULLED OUT of my workshop memory by the need to find my way.
“If you’ve gone as far as the Baptist Church, you’ve gone too far,”
the man on the phone said.
(a clever title for something, that)

And there it is. I turn onto the stone driveway, park and wrestle the chair back out of the car. A man comes rushing out to help me. People are always rushing to help me now that I look like somebody’s grandmother. And I’m just starting to get the hang of letting them. 🙂

Into the dimly-lit workroom we go.
Furniture stacked on furniture.
The secret recesses of a furniture hospital.

I love to troll through these places
where real work is done.

“Now let’s see what we have here,”
he says,
and the first thing he does
is turn my chair
upside down.

I haven’t stopped smiling.

You might also like At the Shoe Repair.

About Marilyn

Reading, thinking, listening, writing and talking about faith, creativity, ESL for refugees, grief and finding the story in a story. Student of Spanish. Foe of procrastination. Cheez-it fan. People person with hermit tendencies or vice-versa. Thank you so much for reading.
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2 Responses to At the Chair Repair Shop

  1. Fern Boldt says:

    “If you’ve gone as far as the Baptist Church, you’ve gone too far,” the man on the phone said. (a clever title for something, that)

    I laughed, Marilyn! I hope you continue on with that thought. : )

    Your story about the rocking chair and watching your dad repair chairs is interesting.

    We used to get yelled at if we leaned the chair back on two legs. Once my dad hollered at my brother, “Put that leg back on four chairs!” instead of, “Put that chair back on four legs!” Laughing would have been disrespectful. We feared punishment all the time. But I think we giggled anyway.


  2. Annie says:

    great post Marilyn…I see you are beating the procrastination …good to get the chair to the repair shop! and laughing about the baptist church landmark remark.

    this post reminds me of two things

    two of my chairs need the repair man too…the lovely leather has split on the backs of two of the chairs…argh, where do I find someone to fix them…and would they both fit in my smallish car at the same time…dread to have to do two trips! I might be able to make them fit if I put the seats down….and is this the most urgent of all the things that need doing and fixing around here…where to start, where to start?

    Little grandson saw a spoke under a chair pointing out where it didn’t belong..and was insisting on wrenching it all the way out…help…I had to wrestle him to stop him pulling it right out! Guess he thought he was going to fix it. I hope Daddy has remembered to fix it for him.


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