A couple of days after we buried Megan and Rob’s beloved cat Ramona under the chinquapin tree on the family property, I came home to find a Fed Ex package waiting for me. I rarely, if ever, get Fed Ex packages. Even the Grand Jury summons came by humble mail. So I was both mystified and curious.
Inside, there was a selection of photos – you know, the actual printed ones – in a plastic bag with no note. The photos were of Ramona and her sister Harriet as kittens, along with some of me as a kitten and some of Dad at what now appears to me to be quite a kitten-ish age, though he was likely a bit older than I am now in most of them. John had found them and sent them to me.
Here you can see Ramona on the down-filled couch and her sister Harriet on the carpet at my now million dollar former apartment in San Francisco in December, 2001, freshly arrived from their rescue from southern California.
I thought it was an amazingly kind gesture and thanked him accordingly. Even by email, it was clear that he was both self-deprecating and embarrassed, which is what I would expect after knowing him for more than 25 years. As I observed to a friend, he is the best ex-husband ever.
A few days after that happy surprise, I got a less happy one. John texted me saying that he was in his local ER with high blood pressure and a racing heart. Fortunately, it was an anxiety attack rather than a heart attack, and all tests came back clean – his heart is fine. He has since seen his doctor and hopefully all is now under control. He said it made a big difference knowing that I was prepared to go down there and look after his cats, including the irrepressible Jack, the last of our cats together. We’ve been in touch every day ever since* and he is doing fine. I’m thankful that he is healthy and well, and that we are still friends and have each other’s backs, no matter what.
*He texted me yesterday to say “Thanks for checking in with me every day. It means a lot.”
A YEAR AGO: A young man with a bow tie is rather naughty. Also: a culinary challenge.