I’ve grown resigned to the wonky knee, the shock of seeing my mother in an unexpected glimpse of a store mirror, and the difficulty of staying out and awake past 10 at night.
This week, though, a reminder of the stage of life I’ve reached hit home in a very literal way when reading the on-line version of my hometown newspaper.
Not having grown up in the town where I live in Massachusetts, my network of friends and acquaintances is probably smaller than others in the area. Maybe that’s why it startled me so when on each of the past three days I still managed to see the name and picture of someone I’ve known. In the obituaries.
Each was from a stage of my working life.
The first was a beloved superintendent of the large school system in which I ultimately became a teacher. I met Mr. Donohoe, though, up in a helicopter, of all places, when I was taping footage for some show or other the cable company was producing. A charming, courtly gentleman.
The next was Mary, who had been already working as a nurse’s aid for years before I was hired as a part-time secretary on the pediatric floor. She was a baby-whisperer who probably knew more about nursing kids than anyone with a four-year degree.
The third was Mitch, who taught in two of the same schools that I did. He was less renowned for his teaching skills than the old Corvette that he drove to school every day.
I’m not Irish, but I’m reminded of references to the obituaries as the “Irish social pages,” where you can get caught up with the people you