I found out Saturday that my cousin Bob and his wife Lynne were driving down from New Hampshire to visit for a couple of hours and then turn back. Bob said he'd pick me up at the hotel in Holyoke right off the exit. So I jumped into the car Sunday morning, met them, and off we went.
It was good to catch up on the drive that took three hours with traffic. Katie asked me on the phone if we were going to do anything else while we were there. No, just visit at their apartment near the United Nations and look out the window at the beautiful view of the East River.
Lynne had picked up decorated cupcakes, one for each day of the week, and we shared one although it was sad to cut through the beautiful icing.
We have a small family, and I like taking advantage of every chance to stay connected. Marge is my mother's sister and the only relative left from that generation. My mother has been gone six years, and I miss her intensely all the time. She and Marge were two peas in a pod. They called each other Bren after the comedy duo Brenda and Cobina. Each would play a role, one saying "Brenda," and the other replying, "What is it, Cobina?" but they forgot who was Brenda and who was Cobina, so they just called each other Bren.
We looked through old photos such as one of the two of them wearing pearls and sitting at a table with two dashing men at the Officer's Club. There were family dogs, such as the legendary Skippy, who – honest, honest, they said – ran away from their new home in New York City all the way back to their home in Mt. Vernon, N.Y., where he was found sitting on the steps.
Lynne and I ran out for a brisk walk to a nearby Starbucks and then turned back. It was the only outside thing we did, but inside it was warm and cozy and just fine.