‘My sad smile corrects her’

Joan’s PET scan came back negative. The doctors don’t know what the spot on her lung is. Maybe just a scar.

Joan turned 89 the week before last. Today she said, “Eight-year-olds are such a marvel. They see and say so much.”

We drank champagne on her birthday and, with her two sons and also with the eldest son’s common law wife, talked about the best traps for catching rats and mice. Elizabeth, her Hungarian housekeeper who’s been coming twice monthly for three decades, came again on Tuesday. She is such a dear. “I spoke with my lawyer last week about changing my will. I’m leaving some things for her.”

In the back garden near the compost bin, Elizabeth tells me her thyroid is growing. Her father back in Hungary is a good man; he is frail. “You’re too young to know death.” My sad smile corrects her.

Joan’s heel is healing slowly and her cough, the one she’s had off and on since winter, is slowly going away.

Further Reading

Andrew Taggart, “When Lois Came to Stay”

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