As soon as I finished writing to you yesterday, I went downstairs into the basement and discovered that a hot water pipe had developed a pinhole leak and was spraying water everywhere.
This was the low point of my day. Things did get better. I cried. Then I called my friend Steve, who helped me figure out how to temporarily stop the spray. Then I called Tom and wailed about how much I hated everything involving home ownership. Then I called the plumber, who came over within an hour and charged me less than I thought he would. If nothing else, the incident proved that I'm still far too good at over-emoting. You'd think all these years up here would have taught me a more useful version of stoicism.
Anyway, the sour taste of plumbing was erased when my Chicago son called and said that he's coming home for Christmas . . . which means we'll be cramming two more people into our little apartment, but who cares about space when we can all be together: five adults squashed into three rooms, eating takeout Chinese food for a holiday meal because the kitchen's too small for a feast and taking a long walk by the sea afterward? The vision makes me so happy. I will give everyone wine and cannoli as gifts, and we will make the cat learn to love his leash, and I will buy one of those tiny Christmas shrubs carved out of a rosemary plant and decorate it with paper cut-outs and half a string of lights, and the cat will not tip it over.