Monday, October 06, 2003


Sat next to a ninety-three year old man at church yesterday, just as I have most Sundays for the past year. He sits alone in the sixth pew, although once a visiting granddaughter and her boyfriend sat with him. He fits the word spry, with his energy and wiry build. He drives himself to church.

We greet each other the same way each week. I slide into the pew, stop about eighteen inches to his right, look at him and say," Good Morning. How are you today?" He smiles widely and replies, "Always room for improvement." We laugh at our shared wittiness. He is happy for the attention, and I again feel a fleeting remembrance of my beloved grandfather. He invariably nods off during the service. He is mentally sharp, but yesterday seemed confused. He couldn't find "How Great Thou Art" in the hymnal. I found it for him, but he was unable to follow the four stanzas of lyrics. He completed a weekly attendance card, but couldn't recall what to do with it. He dozed longer than normal.

It is fall now, and children are back in school. The weather has turned cooler, and leaves are changing colors. Football season is well underway again, and baseball fans ponder the excitement of another World Series. Life and seasons move on without our permission. I look forward to seeing my friend again next week at church.

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