Due to unforeseen circumstances, or a dip not seen on a walking path, I find myself back in an Aircast, this time for six weeks.

Feeling sorry for myself, I realize that yes, it could be worse. “It wasn’t an amputation,” said one helpful friend. No.

However, maybe a warning about old age and what could be coming?

This past summer two male acquaintances, an elderly friend from York, and a high school classmate all died, a grim reminder of my own mortality.

But instead of dwelling on who’s gone, I try to appreciate who’s still here.

I am blessed with many good friends whom I’ve known for years. Now that Lydia has retired, we have time to walk and shop together in her hometown of Kennebunkport.

There is my new friend Lisa from my USM class, whose former life in an ashram makes for some fascinating conversations. I am thankful that I have reached out and reconnected with friends from years past, among them the Riellys, the Nisbets and my friends from Auburn, the Keenes.

And I am happy that I’ve stayed connected to my aunt and uncle in Mississippi and my mother’s friend Shirley in Harrison.

However discouraged and frustrated I get by this strange new world, I am pushing myself to be more optimistic and to remember all the good things in my life.

I like my job. But I miss the students. Tutoring from home doesn’t give me much company.

My soccer announcing at South Portland High School was a go this fall, so this hobby allowed me to get out and see my fun co-workers. I must say it was strange to have no fans in the bleachers, though.

Because of my work schedule, I can take day trips on a whim.I have traveled to Cornish and Naples and Bridgton.

Thanks to Amazon and the Burbank Branch Library, I have been able to get plenty of books to read. And although my chosen books haven’t been too thought provoking, they have given me the comfort I need.

I have great medical care, and my primary care provider Alison is helpful and understanding.

Of course, during our lockdown last spring, I had an issue with a tooth. Fortunately, my dentist asked me to text a picture of the offending tooth to him, a daunting feat. But after seeing the picture, he was able to diagnose the problem over the phone.

Our glorious summer weather allowed for much outdoor dining. And these warm bonus days in November have added a little extra cheer.

I have been thankful for the many Thanksgivings over the years I have shared with my cousins in Rumford, the many I spent with my parents, and the few I spent with my Aunt Theresa in Rumford.

This year because of COVID, I am going to spend Thanksgiving by myself. Although I would prefer to celebrate with my friend Diane and her family again, I must remind myself to “count my blessings.”

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