“It was so good to see you this weekend,” Maga said. “Are you home now?”

“I am. Just a little bit ago. I’m now doing laundry.”

“It’s inevitable after a trip like that, isn’t it?”

“It sure is.”

“I can’t believe I’m as old as I am, but I guess I am. According to the statistics.”

“It’s quite the accomplishment!”

“Thank you. What was your favorite part of this trip?”

I took a moment to ponder all the meals out and car rides and outings and stories told and games played and laughter. “I think your birthday cake presentation at Cherry Hills.”

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“Oh, yes. That was quite a moment.”

“What was your favorite part, Maga?”

“The time with you all. Each visit was perfect.”

That’s about the best thing I could have hoped to have accomplished this weekend when Maga turned 97!



“Oh, Abby, hello!”

“Sorry to call so late. Traffic was terrible.”

“And were you out at that bar playing that game?”

“Yes and yes.”

“Oh, Abby. I’m so lonely.”

“Maga! I’m so sorry to hear that. But remember, you have a big group coming for you this weekend!”

“That’s right! I’m going to be 79.”

“Umm.” I wasn’t sure whether to agree or disagree.

“Oh my goodness,” Maga said. “I’m not going to be 79, am I?”

“Not quite. But I knew what you meant.”

Because, hey, at almost 97, momentary lapses and loneliness are valid feelings. But family members crowding in to celebrate you are also valid life events, so, Maga, prepare your hearing aids and wheelchair, we’re coming in hot!

(Well, actually, I’ll be fleeing from the forth nor’easter in three weeks, so technically, I’ll be coming in ice cold, but you get me, right??!?! :))



“Are you out at that bar?” Maga asked.

“Nope. Stuck at home due to a blizzard.”

“Well isn’t that the pits?”

“Sure is.”

“How’d you get into work?”

“I didn’t. Work was canceled today. The worst of the storm was this morning and afternoon, so commuting in was dangerous.”

“And you don’t have a car, right?”


“That must be difficult in this day and age.”

“Well, living in a big city helps. Also, patience.”

Maga chuckled her agreement. “Oh, did I ever thank you for that green, umm, bag thing that you heat up in the microwave?”

“The last time we spoke about it, you said you hadn’t gotten it yet.”

“I did get it and it’s just super. It’s warm and toasty. I microwave it to get it warm.”

“Yes! Isn’t it wonderful? My friends L and N made them and I just knew you’d enjoy it.”

“It helps greatly with aches and pains. You can put it on your neck, or back or knee. It’s just wonderful. Thank you so much.”

“I’m thrilled to hear you love it so much. I’ll be sure to let my friends know.”

“What’s inside it?”

“Corn. It’s really good at retaining heat.”

“Dried corn? How interesting.”

“I know, right? My friends are very good with natural products and repurposing items. And, like I said, I just knew you’d love it.”

“I really do. Well, I want to tell you to keep a stiff upper lip, kiddo.”

The abrupt change of topic left me with nothing to do but laugh. “Umm, why?”

“So you can face the weather and get into work safely tomorrow.”

“Oh, okay. If that’s what it takes, I’ll do that.”

As I pondered the expression “stiff upper lip” and how very New England it sounded, she said, “And I’ll hope your weather is sunny from here on out.”

Her wish had a summery tone, but at this rate, I’d settle for spring first!



“Did you have your Trivia game tonight?” Maga asked.

“I did! And then I got stuck in major traffic getting home, which is why I’m calling so late. Sorry about that.”

“But you saw I called?”

“Twice. Yes.”

“I was calling you back. Did you call earlier tonight?”

“Nope. Not me. I called last night.”


“Because I knew tonight would be busy and I wanted the chance to chat for longer. But I got Jobo’s voice on the answering machine and so I figured you were out and didn’t leave a message.”

“Was I out?”

“It sure seemed that way. Who was with you?”

“Oh! Uncle T was in town because Aunt J is out of town. He was keeping me company. That’s where I was. Did you eat dinner and have a drink at your Trivia game tonight?”

“Yes. Dinner and drinks while we play. We multitask.”

“That sounds nice.”

“What was your cocktail of choice when you drank?”

“Hmmm.” Moments of silence followed this.

“Beer? Wine? A margarita?” I prompted.

“I never liked beer. I might have taken a margarita or two. What was that last one you said?”


“Oh, yes, wine. That’s always been good to drink. How come you keep having Trivia on Tuesdays?”

“That’s just the night of the week it is. They don’t know it’s our night to talk.”

“They aren’t people who know me,” Maga said.

They are not, but I am the lucky one who does.