Friends and neighbors on moving day
Friends and neighbors on moving day

It was comforting to know our neighbor was pecking away in the light filled room at the back of the house next door. I imagine a writer’s work is never done. Even while socializing you always get the sense that you just might be material for repurposing. So it was a sad day when their year lease ran out. We’re still sleeping with our bedroom windows open and it is much too quiet over there.

When the phone rings at 6 AM you know it’s going to be a strange day. My dad asked my mom to call 911 because he felt terrible. She called my sister next and then my sister called us. At a certain age it seems you have to check in at Emergency a few times a year just to keep things moving along.

Lots of tests and a host of the usual problems but no smoking gun. Could it have been the knockwurst sandwich, the German potato salad and or the vanilla milkshake that my dad had for dinner at the Highland Diner? Or maybe a general sausage buildup due to the the meal my dad had the day before at Brew & Brats outside of Naples? The doctor said, “It could be.”

The staff at Highland Hospital was just fantastic, thoroughly professional and attentive, all the things you hope for when things spin out of control, but also very friendly. The Spanish speaking maintenance man was just a delight, the technician who looked exactly like one of those tall, skinny African “inmigrantes” you see on the streets in Spain with blankets of designer contraband spread out in front of them. He had the most beautiful, charcoal black skin. The nurse who my niece, a wedding photographer, had met when she tried to liven up a really boring wedding, demonstrated the dances she did on the emergency room floor. The “Lawnmower, The Shopping Cart” and the “Lawn Sprinkler.” The doctor, who was going to medical school in the Scorgie’s days, told us he had one of our Personal Effects lps and had seen Margaret Explosion at the Little and better yet, he has a copy of my dad’s “Brighton Brick” book at home.

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