An Odd Evening Long Ago

After I stumble my way out of bed in the morning, after coffee & meds & cigarettes kick in, I sit on my stool, start up my laptop & begin my day reading messages, checking the stats on how many people read my column, opening emails – the usual.

I did not expect a Private Message popping up on my screen from my former neighbor & close friend from Missoula, Mr. R__. I won’t share with you his opening comment (this is a PG-13 column, most of the time,) but I will tell you it involved him walking into a bedroom. Both his girlfriend and me were in the bedroom.

Nothing bad or horrible happened that night. It was a very “special” night. A night, apparently, the two of them talked about a lot.

That is not what I want to remember, though.

I remember Ms. T__ giving my son a hotdog for free. She worked at a Food Court of sorts at the front of a Sam’s Club. I want to remember the three of us in our drunken brilliance & ridiculousness on Trivia Night on Thursdays.

(Those nights could be epic, loud with laughter & raucous insults at one another.)

I have not seen them, Mr. R__ & Ms. T__, in over ten years. And I found out I will never see Ms. T__ ever again. Never again will her short & stout arms hug-on me hard & real & full of life.

Both she & her mother died in a car accident.

I responded to Mr. R__’s message. And we had some usual funny reminiscences. Finally, I asked if he & Ms. T__ were still together.

Noooo….. she’s DEAD.


That was all I could come up with. He informed me it was a car accident. That her mother died in the wreck, as well.

We finished up our Messaging.

Something in me was numb. I played some of the memories over in my head. I needed to go do something; needed to get OUT of my head.

For the past few weeks, I have been putting off improving the fence around the pigpen. Twice since I have been here, some of the smaller pigs have crawled & pushed their way through the bottom. They have hooved & dug spaces just enough to get out. And getting them back in can be a REAL big pain in the ass. Especially when your mind is not into it.

Hammering wooden stakes, straightening-out bent fencing, and affixing a feeding trough to the fence seemed like a far better thing to be doing than being morose.

I know it will never make sense to me. And I know it is going to happen more & more as I get older. More of them will die. One day, it will be my turn.

It felt good to work on the pig fence.

I wish for all of my tomorrows to be as good as today has been.


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