During the five years that our son Seth wrote The Frugal Traveler column for The New York Times, his lucky parents got to join him on a trip once each year, five memorable adventures.
We’ve just had ten days with him, this time without traveling, because he came to Washington to help out with Peter’s broken femur recovery while my skin cancer surgery prevented me from bending or lifting anything that weighed more than ten pounds for a week.
Besides allowing me not to worry about Peter, Seth did the following: Took me to and from my day surgery, rushed to the post office to overnight-mail some tax document that didn’t get to our accountant, and spent an entire morning taking my car someplace I didn’t want to go for a scheduled service.
Because he can work from anywhere, our dining room table became his office. He took a part of a day to film Washington’s famous Cherry Blossom Festival for his Amigo Gringo YouTube channel and we were impressed by his ability to author, star in and edit the video.
We listened to him chatting in Portuguese or English as he planned an upcoming trip to give a talk in Sao Paulo. We watched him with his brother’s family who joined us here for pizza one night. His nephews adore him.
And then suddenly, he was gone. As usual, I laundered the sheets and towels and tried to quickly put away all evidence of his visit. I’ve been quickly eliminating evidence of his visits for decades.
It never gets easier to say goodbye.