By Susanna Starr
When I returned to New York, after 33 years, to attend a wedding with my
daughter, we were invited to stay with the one and only friend from those
times that I had kept in contact with. She had visited me some years ago,
and we had been in contact ever since. She had also attended one of my
workshops at Rancho Encantado around my book “Fifty and Beyond; New
Beginnings in Health and Well-Being.”
Jennifer was excited to know that we were planning on being in New York and enthusiastically and generously offered to pick us up at the airport on Long Island, take us to her home for a couple of nights and then send us off on the Long Island Railroad to the city where we would spend the next couple of days.
The trip turned out to be so much better than I had anticipated and being
back in a once-familiar environment was sweet. Having Jennifer pick us up
when we returned from our city trip, taking us back to her house, meeting
old friends for dinner, and then taking us to the airport the following
morning was so supportive. And she smiled all the way through the visit,
interspersed with laughter and good humor.
Yes, being with Jennifer was a delight, but equally as delightful was seeing
the life she had created for herself. Divorced from her husband for many
years, she was completely relaxed and satisfied with the way her life had
unfolded and with the decisions she had made.
A former librarian, she was still actively involved with the library in her
small town where she also worked as a volunteer. She lived practically in
the center of this charming North Shore town located on Long Island Sound,
which was quaint and attracted tourists as well as providing ferry
transportation across the Sound to Connecticut. Her house was small and easy to maintain and she had close-by access to the railroad when she wanted to visit her children in the city.
Every year she traveled with friends to a different part of the world and
seemed to thoroughly enjoy these trips. Another avid reader, she had lots of
time to pursue her most enjoyable interest. It’s hard to think of her except
for a smile on her face and laughter in her voice. She’d like to lose weight
but feels that giving up her smoking habit was more important to her health.
Of all the people I know, she seems to have eliminated the word “stress”
from her vocabulary. Now, isn’t that a gift!!