“Hi, Maga. It’s Abby!”

“How are you dear?”

“I’m doing well. And you?”

“I’m not the happiest person in the world.”

“Oh, no. Why not?”

“I have no close friends nearby.”

“The pandemic makes it feel like that, for sure.”

“It’s just awful.”

It honestly is. In so many ways. And to think that you’ve lived 99 full years only to be rewarded with isolation? It sucks hardcore. I tried hard to think of ways to lift her spirits.

“I heard you got your hair done today by Caregiver M,” I said trying to pivot her attention towards a happy event.

“I did.”

“And how do you feel? All shiny and fresh?”

Maga chuckled, but it was half-hearted.

“Oh my goodness,” she said. “There are a lot of shampoos!”

Is her TV listening to us the same way FB or IG do??? Yikes. Things were feeling topsy turvy, so I decided to throw caution to the wind.

“Maga, do you remember when we went to Hawaii for your 40th anniversary?”

“Oh, yes. That was sort of fun.”

“Sort of?? I’d say VERY.”

Maga chuckled a little more realistically.

“I remember when everyone went snorkeling, but Cousin H and I were too little, so we had to stay behind. You and Jobo stayed with us and you brought McDonalds and we had breakfast in bed.”

“How do you remember that?”

“It was a big moment in my young life.”

Maga chuckled for real.

I went for broke. “How did you and Jobo meet again?”

“Oh, you know, I don’t really remember. He was at MIT. I was at Wellesley.”

“But was it a blind date?”

“Hmm. I don’t know. I think it was through friends.”

“Whatever way it was, it worked. And it worked for my parents too. They met the same way. Ish.”

“He was a good one.”

“I’d agree with that.”

“There are good, medium, and bad ones. He was a super good one.”

Reader, he was a good one. The best. The foundation he and Maga put together for the legacy they’ve created is one for the record books. Well, my record books anyways. And when you’re in the middle of a pandemic and your world has shrunk to a tiny portion of what it once was, it’s a lot easier to feel like you’re queen of that domain and can decree things like “one for the record books” and “queen” and “my domain.”

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