The email finds me late one night, as insomnia stalks me. Curled up in the corner near an outlet, I'm reading emails after midnight. Blue light from the ipad casts a blinding glow across my corner, throwing shadows into the sleeping house.
She's right, of course, my sister. It's been four years since I've seen my grandma, and she was just transferred to a retirement home.
In two long days of driving, we passed corn fields, farmlands, barren strips with windmills, and bobbing carpets of pink cosmos blossoms. State lines ushered in rising temperatures, cotton fields, pecan orchards, and finally, sloping palm trees.
All too soon, it was time to leave. We packed up the car, carefully placed in our bags of shells, and headed cross-country to the midwest. The temperatures fell with each state, and we added layers as we drove. By Minnesota, we raced the brooding snowstorm home, beating it by a few hours.
The next morning's snowfall blanketed yellow leaves, masked my footsteps, and washed away my time in Florida like waves on the sand.
Pinks and yellows strata the horizon tonight, as the sun sinks low. Meat sizzles and sears behind me, and dishes clatter.
Is there anyone you need to call or go see? My sister's right. Do whatever it takes to arrange your schedule to make it happen.
Because, me? I almost missed it. When this trip was first offered to me on short notice, I turned it down twice, not thinking I could pull off a week's notice of cancellations and schedule changes. I almost missed it, would have missed this chance to reconnect with relatives, to meet new ones and to hug and see my grandma. My sister's right.
Anyone you need to call? Pick up the phone, or grab a pen and paper, and don't let this day pass without saying the words you would want them to hear...
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