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Geese

January 2, 2016
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One thing follows another.

 

January 1, 2016

There has to be a word, a single expression for this longing I feel for ones long gone. Grief, certainly. A young lovely woman, and my father. My uncle, my mother, and my brother.
Shit.
Too often my sadness is misperceived by P. as anger. I have been angry before, but I don’t feel that way.
So last evening P. and I hiked several miles across Rochester, Minnesota, from our daughter’s to a nursing home. P. and our daughter’s three children had decided to go spend their Christmas money on toys, but also on gifts to donate to those who live in a nearby nursing home. Nearby if one drives, of course, but a substantial hike in cold weather in Minnesota. I had to pee on the way, so I peed on a fence in an empty field. Well, it was about 6 p.m. and almost dark. Maybe 5 p.m. and not dark, but getting dark. Probably closer to 4 p.m. I still had jet lag from visiting our son in Bethesda, Maryland. And his family. I don’t think anyone saw me pee in the field. But then, they might have. So what?
Anyway we hiked on a plowed trail along the Zumbro River without the faintest idea of what the nursing home looked like, or even where it was, exactly. Soon we saw a woman who walked two dogs. I asked P. to inquire about the nursing home. She declined and we said, “Hi.” She returned the greeting. Long story short, we hiked another 15 minutes, got cold, turned around, and encountered the same woman coming back.
This time I said, “Excuse me, is there a nursing home near here?”
“Yes,” she said, “my mother lives in that one over there. Do you have someone in there too?”
P. explained about gifts for the ones living in the facility. She asked the woman to recommend some gifts. She recommended blankets or throws.
When we walked back home along the Zumbro we saw hundreds, if not thousands of geese in the water near our side of the riverbank

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