Remembering Joseph on St Joseph’s Day

We’ve lived in this neighborhood for 13 years now. The neighborhood is in flux, older houses being torn down, apartments and condos filling in empty lots. In the time that we’ve lived here, nearly all of our neighbors have moved. We’re now a part of the old guard.

A few years ago Jospeh moved out. He had lived in his house for over 60 years. He raised his six children there, and then nursed his wife, Phyllis until she died. It was time and past time that he not be in the house alone. He was unsteady on his feet, and he took the cell phone his children had gotten him and threw it in the toilet!

Joseph had the best raspberry bushes and a grape arbor that covered most of the backyard. In the summer, we could help ourselves to this bounty. After his wife died, his kids got him a kitten to keep him company. One more excellent reason for us to visit!

He loved Snickers and kept a stash hidden. He wasn’t supposed to eat them. But he always made sure our pockets were full when we left.

After he moved to a care facility, his children emptied out the house. They gave me a philodendron that had lived in a window box on the upstairs landing. It’s happily growing on our sunporch now, trailing across the windows above my desk, blessing me every morning when I get up to write.

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