Monday, August 18, 2014

Circle Game

My ex-husband died two weeks ago. Can it really be 2 weeks already? It was a huge shock to me. Still very sad, but not such a shock to those who had seen him in the last few months. He was quite ill. I hadn't seen him since my mother died in November. For at least the last 6 months of her life - probably longer - he visited her every Sunday. She had always enjoyed his company. He brought her goodies like a pie, or a cake, candy, whatever caught his eye. I got to know him a little again also. He was so kind to my mother, anything negative from our past melted away. Even though I hadn't seen him since November, it hit me hard when my brother called and told me Michael had died the night before.

Following that very sad time, I was contacted by two women I hadn't seen in at least 20 years. Michael's cousin Sandy, and his aunt by marriage who we lovingly called Uncle Debbie. I am now friends with both of them on Facebook and enjoy glimpses into their lives, opinions, and views  through that medium. Deb and I have also been emailing, trying to catch up on 20 years of separation.

About a week after "being found" by Sandy and Deb, I learned that Steve, a friend I hadn't seen in probably 15 years, was coming up from Key West to Connecticut for his Dad's 90th birthday. I gave him my number and told him to give me a call if he had some free time and maybe we could meet for coffee. He got in touch with me on Saturday and we made plans to get together on Sunday.

I picked him up in New Haven and we were talking about what to do. We decided to surprise our old pal Fritz - someone else I hadn't seen in forever. We took a shot that he would still be living in the same house. As we pulled into the parking area at the top of the driveway, there was a man outside playing a stand-up bass. Definitely not Fritz. Then Steve said "That's Bob". A bonus surprise! Last time I saw Bob, he was a member of a very popular R&B group. He was known for hanging upside down while playing the saxophone.

Following hellos and hugs and some chatting, Bob brought us in the house. "Fritz, you've got company". Steve and I stayed in the living room. Fritz turned the corner, stopped in his tracks and looked at us like he didn't know who we were. Suddenly, this huge grin appeared on his face and I thought his eyes were going to pop out. He called Steve by his last name (Fritz does that) and just laughed out loud. The two of them broke into this animated conversation and I blurted out, "Don't say Hi to me Fritz" and he looked at me like he hadn't noticed me before. "Deneen! Holy shit. I can't believe you guys are both here!" Then he asked Steve about a couple of tunes he used to play. We went outside, Steve got his mandolin out of my car (Yep, this is "Mandolin Steve", for those of you who know him) and played a couple of tunes.

Fritz had the biggest smile on his face the whole time. We sat out on the back deck for at least an hour, drinking coffee, laughing, and talking up a storm. Steve had a jam to get to and someone was picking him up at Fritz's, so the guys walked down the driveway (a very long driveway) and I drove down so Steve wouldn't have to carry all of his stuff. Lots more chatting, catching up until Steve's ride arrived. Steve is on his way back to Key West, Fritz and I are both back at work, but our day yesterday is one I'll never forget. And I have the feeling we really made Fritz's day.

I don't know if the universe is trying to tell me something, but in the last two weeks, 5 people I haven't seen in many, many years have circled back into my life. First Deb and Sandy, now Steve, Fritz and Bob. I don't know why this is happening, but I love it!!