Well, here it comes ... Wed, 6/15/16

In the midst of negotiating the nightmare interstate system and interchanges from New Jersey to New York and into Connecticut, including crossing the Hudson River on the George Washington Bridge (cost: $84 Bucks, yikes!), where careful attention must be paid to navigating, I received a text message from my sister-in-law, Anne. My oldest brother, her husband, Rus, the catalyst for our family reunion in Boston, had gone into Cardiac ICU at Mass General the night before, the eve of our arrival. I called my sister (driving in from Baton Rouge) and my youngest brother, Rob, (driving in from Mobile AL) to tell them the news. We were all shocked. Completely flummoxed. This is the post I didn’t want to write. Rus was in grave condition.

What could we do but continue on to our destination? We had reservations for the week at Circle CG campground in Bellingham MA (the closest c/g we could find to my brother’s house in the Boston suburbs). We made it in Wed afternoon. My sis and BiL pulled in shortly after we did. Rob wasn’t camping; he drove in much later to his motel in Sharon, MA. Now what?

No more news could be had; a visit now was out of the question. Jimmy brewed us a pot of coffee and shared it with Nannie and Bubba (sis and BiL) who were camped next to us. I pulled out a box of leftover paella from a dinner at Vivo Tapas Lounge in Newark MJ a few nights back ... it was so much food that it still fed the four of us this evening!

The next morning Rob came to the c/g and the five of us waited together. Anne called to say we could come visit Rus after lunch. I’m not going to go into a lot of detail, except this trip into Boston was the first of many. Traffic was usually not much fun. Rob drove once or twice (in his Prius) and we also took the train in. Our oldest brother was very sick. The timing just seemed so bizarre to everyone.

Nannie and I wore our Crazy Sister shirts the first day to see Rus, but he really didn't notice.  Here we sit in the Cardiac ICU waiting room.  We spent considerable time waiting.

At the Charles River the next day.

We spent time with our brother, and then we wandered around downtown Boston.  Jimmy said to me that there's one thing about our family ... which is, that we make the best out of everything.  We may have shed a tear or two, but we didn't mope or wail or wring our hands helplessly. 

Nannie, me and Rob at Boston's Hatch Shell.

On the train into the city.  From left -- Rob, hiding his face; our nephew, Jon; and Jimmy. Opposite, back row is Bubba and Nanny, then Matt and Jenny. 

Beantown is famous for its lobster rolls.  Yum!

From the train we had between a one-mile or two-mile walk to Mass Gen.  Today was the two-mile, and half of us didn't have the correct footwear, but we managed!  Bubba at left, Nannie, Rob and Jon in front, Matt and Jenny, and Jimmy looking at me.

I'll add more posts as I get time.  This is not the reunion we pictured or planned, but this is what we got.  It is grand to see everyone, regardless.


  1. OH NO..So very sorry, Nickie, but then again, at least you are all there to lend support. How much harder would it be if you got the news and were in California, or off in the Himalayas or something. I do hope that your brother does get better. Such a great family, and I would bet that Mass Gen is no doubt a very good hospital, as hospitals go at least. Wishing you well

  2. So very sorry to hear this unhappy news. I am sure it is still nice for your brother to see you all and I hope that he improves quickly. Glad you are trying to make the best out of a bad situation.


  3. What a bummer. Best wishes for a speedy recovery.

  4. So sorry to hear the news ... delayed though my reception has been. Waiting and wailing and wringing hands don't do anyone any good.


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