Girl watched the old woman moving away, surprised to feel no need to say goodbye. And she imagined that multicolored ribbons were streaming behind the old woman, floating in the breeze. Then she remembered something for the first time.
“Ah!” she said, and called after the old woman, “Ma’am! Uh—ma’am? What is your name?”
The old woman looked back, brightly.
Girl had decided to climb one of the changing hills. In one hand, she clutched loops and loops of red ribbon, and in the other, she held her ripe green pear. She felt light and clean, even as her feet sank into the earth with every step. She felt smooth and strong, even though she was greatly tempted to eat her pear. Girl was climbing to the top of a hill. She thought she could see far from up there.