I have recovered sufficiently since coming home from Amsterdam in August to have reconnected with many people and places in my community. In fact, I’ve never better understood the dearness this place holds for me.

Of course, I’d never lost the connection with our dear daughter: Victoria was bedside with me in the ICU and welcomed me back to the United States at her workplace, Shands Hospital. She was at my side when we returned to Shands earlier this month for a clean CT scan.

At the Butterfly Exhibit, Florida Museum of Natural History, Gainesville FL

My South Florida neighborhood friends have gone out of their way to encourage and support me. My friend Maria Consuelo (Coni) and I do a pool workout every Sunday morning, catching up on each other’s lives and racking up a whole lot of strength-producing activity.

April, another neighbor, has driven me to Weight Watchers once a month. It’s a program I’ve been a part of for a decade now. I have gained about 30 of the 35 pounds I lost in Amsterdam using the healthy WW food and activity structure. Food for thought?

This week I closed the loop with two more critical parts of my pre-Amsterdam life: my car and writer friends.

My husband and I have spent more time sitting next to each other during the past six months than we have in many, many years. It’s is one of the multiple silver linings of my medical saga.

My ten year-old Prius sat in our driveway for the three months we were in Amsterdam, and it sat for another three months while I slowly recovered my body and my wits at home. My car and I are so simpatico that it actually died while I was away, leaving a ghostly, weed-filled outline on our driveway.

My ten year-old Prius
A sandy garden sprouted under my car while it waited for me to recover.

Since our return, my husband has been my dedicated chauffeur, ferrying me to doctor’s appointments, physical therapy, blood labs. A couple of weeks ago, we switched seats, with me driving his Highlander and he in the passenger seat: like a teenager on training wheels, I drove slowly around the neighborhood for a few days, and eventually pulled through the gates into the larger world.

This week, Ray put a new battery in my baby, and I sat myself down in the driver’s seat for a solo lap around the neighborhood. Felt like I was finally home. Off I went for a massage and a doctor’s appointment, aware of my surroundings and profoundly grateful. I I have not fired Ray as my go-to chauffeur. But now he has a go-to chauffeur in me, too.

Al Pessin’s hysterical murder mystery

And this weekend I spent a wonderful evening with writer friends. The occasion was the production of Al Pessin‘s new murder-mystery farce, Murder at the Butcher’s, winner of the Florida Writers Association Royal Palm Literary Awards Dahris Clair Award for Best Play of 2019.

Scroll in for a chuckle. Al swears he did not pose for this creepy creation.

It was silly: one character had the notion to open an Elvis Presley-themed garden center called Thank You Very Mulch. It was nerdy: the butcher delighted in identifying figures of speech mid-dialogue. It was a madcap evening in which murder, love, language, and cue cards played with a happy audience and everything turned out just right. I hope many more audiences, far and wide, will have the opportunity to enjoy this romp.

Al and friends onstage “at the butcher’s”

The production was in the Willow Theater at Sugar Sand Park where we must return during the daylight: what a great family complex with a community center, a science explorium, an athletic facility, and a carousel!


Yesterday’s Virgo horoscope describes the way my husband and I now approach life:

Wherever you go, arrive as a tourist: it’s the heightened awareness that helps you see everything as new, interesting, and delightful.”

Virgo horoscope, pbpost November 24, 2019

Wishing you such an outlook!

4 thoughts on “Together, Again!

  1. Glad you are out and having fun. My oldest son, Jeremy, was one of the designers of the original science playground at Sugar Sand and my mother’s closest friend, Elaine Kleinman, was the person who fought opposition and then fund raised for years to get the carousel there. So I was extra pleased to see the park being praised.

    On Mon, Nov 25, 2019 at 7:52 AM Raised in the Foreign Service wrote:

    > raisedintheforeignservice posted: ” I have recovered sufficiently since > coming home from Amsterdam in August to have reconnected with many people > and places in my community. In fact, I’ve never better understood the > dearness this place holds for me. Of course, I’d never lost the connect” >


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