My cousin, Joanne (age 86), didn’t get to see her friend, Peter, as often as she would like. So I was happy to play chauffeur for a Valentine’s Day lunch.
I had had lunch with Joanne and Peter before, so I knew to expect lively discussion on a range of topics… from children (his and hers) to grandchildren (his and hers)… to Joanne’s recent trip to Burma… to politics…to the elementary school boy Joanne tutors in reading… to my shoot at a prison, all while enjoying great French food.
As the meal drew to a close, Joanne thanked Peter for all of the Valentine’s cards he had sent. Without missing a beat, he smiled widely at her and responded, “Oh good. You got them.” To which she replied, “Not a one.” And they both laughed.
It was one of those intimate moments, reflective of two people who know each other well and truly enjoy each others’ quirks. It was the perfect close to a Valentine’s Day celebration.
I saw Peter several times after that, but his health declined quickly and, sadly, he passed away a few weeks ago.
I was so lucky to have known Peter and to have been able to spend time with him together with Joanne over the past few years.
He will be missed.