After 15 months of being separated from my 92-year old mother, we finally reunited this past week! Can you imagine the feeling of hugging your mom and sister after all that time? My mother had spent a month in the hospital and a rehab facility in November and early December and I was unable to see her during that time. It broke my heart.
From our new location in South Carolina it was an eight-hour drive to San Antonio, Florida, right outside Tampa. After stopping to say hello to Forest Gump at the Georgia Visitor Center, we arrived in Florida on Wednesday afternoon and brought pizza to my mom – she loves pepperoni pizza and very seldom gets it, so even though she seems to have lost her sense of taste and smell, she truly enjoyed it.
On Thursday, Bill and I played golf while Mom attended a Zoom meeting for her PEO chapter – a wonderful organization that loves to provide women money for education in the form of loans, grants and scholarships. I offered to cook dinner to give my sister a break, so we enjoyed a lovely meal of shrimp with lemon butter sauce and pasta.
Many of my mother’s activities have been curtailed due to Covid, but the constant has been her Friday Mahjong game with three girlfriends. We insisted that she play, so after a Cuban sandwich for lunch, we played golf again while she spent time with her friends. Since we weren’t really comfortable going out to a restaurant, we ordered from Outback and had dinner delivered. All I can say is that it was excellent as my mother exclaimed, “This is really the best filet I have had in my life!” Again, we had a wonderful evening filled with laughter and lots of reminiscing.
Saturday morning brought our departure but only after massive cinnamon buns and coffee. My mother has developed an intense desire for sweets – transitioning from nightly ice cream to cookies of any kind! She made me smile as she repeatedly said, “Please, eat! Eat anything from that sweet basket…have more carrot cake…how bout more cookies… take these Oreos home with you!” I told her she sounded like an Italian mother and I loved every word!
I know it sounds like we ate our way through the visit – which we did – but I just can’t express how wonderful it was to see my mom and how great she looked. She’s walking with a cane and riding an elliptical bicycle for 12-15 minutes a day…not bad for 92!
Although we made the trip down in one day, we decided to stop for the night in Savannah to take advantage of a restaurant gift card my son gave us for Christmas! We ate at the Little Duck Diner and enjoyed the City Market area – although I must share we felt somewhat uncomfortable in the mask-less crowds we encountered on the streets of the city!
We had made plans to meet a friend from home on Sunday morning at J Christophers in downtown Savannah which was wonderful. We hadn’t seen Tom Sinsheimer in 18 years so we had a lot of catching up to do! In another 3 and a half hours we were home in Murrells Inlet – with two days to regroup and pack before leaving for a three-week stay in NJ! And who said we would slow down when we got off the road!! Whew!
Stay Calm and Travel On…