Left my house at 6 this morning for the 6-hour drive to New York to visit Mamacita. The full moon was still hanging in the western sky as dawn began to break. The drive was uneventful, just the way I like it. A few snow flurries going through the mountains, a considerable temperature change from yesterday. Arrived at my sister’s and had a late lunch then drove to Mama’s residence. She was sitting in her chair reading in the waning light when I arrived. I pulled up a chair and we talked for about an hour. She reminisced about the different places she lived while growing up and where her dad was stationed during WWII and the Korean War. Then we went for a walk around her floor, stopping to say hello to the resident cat before settling in the common room. I wanted to see the baby and child blankets she was helping to make with the sewing club (my sister is the organizer). Two were setting out on the table and the fringe needed finishing off. So we sat down and began tying off all the fringe. One of the aids joined us and we talked about her home of Jamaica.
Mamacita’s tums had been upset all day but I persuaded her to eat a little supper anyway. I walked her down to the dining room and got her seated before saying goodbye until tomorrow. Back at the ranch, Sis, bro-in-law, a neighbor and friend, and I had a takeaway supper, and then the four of us went to a musical performance. The neighbor-friend’s husband is a professional guitar player and instructor. He, a bassist, a percussionist, and singer-pianist did a Joni Mitchell tribute in a downtown theatre. The first half of the show was everything from her iconic Blue album; the second half was a mix of her work. Although some of her songs can be depressing on the one hand, her introspective lyrics is the poetry of the human soul—that woman is Scorpio through and through. I was thinking about bringing her CD “Night Ride Home” with me on this trip and now I wish I had. It’s been years since I’ve taken a long drive alone and listened to music (it’s all audiobooks and NPR these days).
We learned tonight that another one of Mamacita’s best friends died on Monday. One of her daughters left a voicemail on my cell phone saying that Kaye had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer about eight weeks ago; at that point it was already stage four. Kaye’s husband and my dad were fishing buddies, and when he died the year before my dad died, it was hard for Daddy-O to lose his close pal. Now my sister and I have the unpleasant task of telling Mamacita (tomorrow) that another of her closest friends is gone. She has outlived all her best friends. An ocean away in England, my stepdaughter is nursing her boyfriend through stage four cancer.
Time for some introspection.