Sunday, April 17, 2011

My friend Margaret

Yesterday I visited my dear elderly friend Margaret in the hospital.  She's had a stroke, and is making pretty good progress. But Margaret is a fish out of water in the hospital. She misses her books, even though she is still too weak to hold them. A smattering of magazines and a few soft covered picture books are not enough to feed Margaret's lively curiosity and active mind.  She's one of those people who has read at least a book a day since forever.  She can discuss Virginia Wolf, the latest Margaret Atwood, or the appropriateness of the ending of Lane Smith's It's a Book, with equal ease.  Unfortunately, talking books don't work for Margaret as she is a little deaf and is in a room with several others.

Every Thursday since Margaret has been housebound (several years now) she has held a "salon" day where friends dropped by toting books and ideas.  Lively discussions, wonderful snacks, and exotic teas have always been part of those Thursdays which I have missed since Margaret's illness.  Still, Margaret is tenacious, and although she desperately wants to be home, with her books, and the lovely garden that her husband Ernst has created, Margaret is still with us. For that I am grateful. There aren't many people in this world as generous, kind, loving and cracker-jack smart as Margaret.  Today after work, I will bring along my Kobo, and my boyfriend's iPad to see if either work for Margaret. I have my fingers crossed that one of them will do the trick.

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