Call Me Martha


NaBloPoMo DAY 5:


Amelie and friends. Amelie’s the one holding Oliver.

There’s this girl in my neighborhood. Her name is Amelie. Cute and smart, with a pretty smile. She just started third or fourth grade, I’m not sure. Well, whenever she sees me out walking the dogs, Sir Henry and Young Oliver, she stops whatever she’s doing with her friends and runs over to us, shouting with utter delight.


And I say, yes. So she pets them profusely and gushes all over them until Oliver is squirming and Henry is trying to high tail it out of her chokehold. She then asks me all sorts of questions about the dogs, and frankly she now knows everything there is to know about them, including how I came to find Oliver in the streets and brought him home, infested with mites and worms.  She loves hearing that story and has asked me to retell it many a time.

One day Amelie finally gets around to asking me my name. I tell her.

She gives me a pained look and finally says, “That name is going to be hard for me to remember. Mind if I call you Martha?”

I consider this request. Monica is three syllables after all, while Martha is only two.  Maybe Amelie has a point. So I agree. And she’s been calling me Martha ever since.

Except the other day she asks me, “What’s your name again?”

I reply, without giving it too much thought, “Martha!”

“Oh yeah, that’s right,” she says, adding, “Hi, Martha!”

Then, on the second week of school, she and her mom stop by my house. She’s selling gift wrap for her school.  I buy some and then I realize I have to write down my name and order. I hesitate for a moment.  Should I write down Martha?

I decide I better write down my actual name, since that is what’s on my check. I hand her the check and my order, expecting confusion or at surprise.

Amelie looks at the floral-printed check with a quizzical eye and exclaims, “Wow, Martha! That’s a real pretty check!”

She then matter-of-factly slips it into a large envelope and, as she walks away, I can hear her say to her mom, “See Mom? I knew Martha would buy something from me. I told you we can count on her!”

Maybe later, when she’s turning in the orders and checks to the school, she’ll notice a floral-printed check that says “Monica,” and be stymied as she tries to figure out who Monica is, while wondering what happened to Martha’s order??


(Note: I’m taking part in NaBloPoMo, more sensibly known as National Blog Posting Month. Thirty days, 30 posts. This is #5.  If you have suggestions for a post, please let me know. I may be getting desperate for ideas soon!)

12 thoughts on “Call Me Martha

  1. I love that you bought wrapping paper from her. You can always use it and I have found the school-sold wrap is very customized with front and back to choose from. Goodness gracious, she would have a time with my name! Martha? No way you’re a Martha…you are a Mo-ni-ca, all three syllables and vowels worth. There’s only one vowel in Martha…but we get three from Monica.

    • Georgette, I find the gift wrap the schools sell are among the best. So high quality, with such beautiful prints. I especially love the gift bags, so I got some of those, too! And I agree. I’m not a Martha, though I once had a roommate by that name.

  2. Firstly, what a beautiful little girl and I love that name – like the movie Amelie.
    I had to giggle, then chuckle because Martha is so cute. Although you are so not a Martha. Maybe it is easier to pronounce. Don’t you love buying wrapping paper? I do.
    Good on you Monica, post #5. Um, my name is generally so difficult for people, I have an alias. It sounds like my name but no one bothers to check or pronounce it properly. I think I might do a post on it one of these days. By the way, I would be all over your dogs myself, my girls included.

    • I know, MM. Isn’t she darling? She’s really a pleasure to talk to and the dogs love her. Five posts in a row–can you believe it?? I can’t. Don’t know if I can keep it up! I do hope you write the story of your name. I think it’ll be fascinating!

  3. Dallas never fails to garner hugs and appreciation from “the masses,” Monica — he’d be all put out if he didn’t! Good for you, buying school stuff from your new young friend. I wouldn’t have wanted to disappoint her, either!

    • Thankfully, my critters like to meet new people and don’t mind being petted and pampered. I ended up buy school stuff from two different kids. The other was Grant, the kid who sometimes walks my dogs. How could I say no to him?

  4. Dogs are great for getting people to speak to you.
    Amelie seems to be a bit of a character.
    Some people have called me a few different names over the years, but none are printable here!!!

    I am enjoying your blogs this month very much.

    • When I first got Henry, I’d already been living here for about 8 years, but it was the first time I started meeting and talking to my neighbors. Before that, I only knew two of my neighbors. Now I know everyone with a dog and a few more.

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