Thursday, August 19, 2010

A few hours at the Edgewood Diner

Tuesday evening I had dinner with thirteen or fourteen former Ash/Craft colleagues: all of them women, most of them retired and several of them in the process of preparing for their yearly migration to places where the winter weather has fewer character-building qualities. By coincidence, Mrs. Harris and her husband were having dinner at the restaurant. Mrs. Harris is the mother of Tom Harris, a municipal judge in Conneaut. A few years ago on St. Patrick's Day, Nancy and I went to a performance of Irish music. While we waited for the program to start, a voice behind me asked, "Aren't you Tom Harris?" "Yes, I am," I said. "I'm Tom Harris' mother," she said. So, in her role as Tom Harris' mother, she came over to me Tuesday and me told to be sure I behaved myself with all those women.

Maxine was there, too, with her wonderful Canadian accent and dry, self-deprecating wit. She wore a ball cap to hide the smattering of hair that has sprouted since the last round of cancer treatment. She was full of life and of stories and never said much about what ails her. But as everyone was getting ready to leave, she looked at me in the wheelchair and said, "How could this have happened to two such wonderful people as ourselves?" Neither of us had an answer to that, but Max did talk about this being her life and, while she can't do much about her health, that she is determined to make the most of each day she has.

There is a very wise woman behind that Canadian accent and dry, self-deprecating wit.

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