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We have moved into our new home. I'm spending my time e-mailing and visiting schools in the hopes of substituting my way into a teaching position. The people here have been so friendly - both on the street and in the schools I've visited- I had forgotten that people are good (in general); I suppose that's not suprising considering my recent history with teaching and my run in with theives in Argentina. I miss D.C. - Alexandria really- the farmers markets, downtown, biking the GW Parkway trail, and most importantly all of my friends - my DC family.

I have made some friends here, we have a built in social network through Eric's department. Plus Alana is here and My cousins are nearby as well. I am significantly closer to my dad and sister.
The town has character and I like it. It seems that I will be able to substitute close to home easily - and hopefully often.

From my back windows - in the reading room, bathroom, kitchen and dining room I have a view of the funeral home next door. I see the families dressed in sombre attire, the hearse, the parade of cars with flags, the street parking meters covered - reserved for the funeral. They seem to host a funeral every few days. Infrequently enough that I am not overwhelmed by death in Pittsburgh. Often enough for death to remain my companion. I am drawn to the funeral home. But what would I say? I've thought it over many times but don't get any farther than "My mother died in January..." I want to crash a funeral - What do other funerals look like? How do other people grieve? Who is dying , and why? The question that haunts me "Why am I dying?" And the pragmatic answer that haunts me too, "You have cancer." Haunts me because it is true, and yet a meaningless answer.

On the plus side I can sleep with my closet door open these days . This is progress.

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You too? Oh my goodness, I thought the closet thing was just some stupid thing of mine!

I am afraid I have some very weird ideas about funerals of other people. Perhaps one day I'll talk about them. I am sorry you are missing your DC friends. E-mails, phone calls and letters are helpful though replies are out of your control. A visit back in a couple of months might be nice for all concerned.
I saw Mara, Mark and my Liam this week. I am tired after my visit. Don't know why.
Maybe I had too much tea and no coffee(one of my daily mainstays). Don't know why my kids don't drink coffee.

Some do drink coffee- but not often. I'm sure it has nothing to do with 8 cups of tea a day Ma used to drink - back in the day.

The funeral home is -despite this posting- a bit humourous to me. Ironic, dark, the universe having a laugh.
It does result in some strange thoughts and situations. For example - this morning I recieved a call to sub for a teacher next week. Her husband died. Shortly after the call - a family arrived at the funeral home. I couldn't help wondering if it might be this teacher's family, preparing for the husbnands' funeral.

Yeah, Mama drank a bunch of tea. By the way, Mimi told Mommy that she, Mommy, was a brunt of a cosmic joke. She never explained it to Mommy so she wondered and worried about it all our married life. In the end she died one year younger than her mother. Perhaps that has something to do with it. I miss her sitting in the 'comfy' chair, knitting and asking me if I wouldn't "mind putting the kettle on?". You know, she used to read novels to me while I lay on the floor at her feet listening for hours. It is a very fond memory. I can still hear her voice sometimes. She said I always made her tea perfectly the way she liked it. Weak, twenty dips of the bag in a nice hot cup of water. Just the right amounts of sugar( one of those tiny spoonfuls she kept in the sugar bowl) and only real milk of course. Now I'm getting nostalgic so I'm going to go to bed and think about Mama till I can go to sleep. See you soon.

I still cannot sleep with my closet door open.