Thursday, January 14, 2021

A Note from Fabien

Wednesday was glorious but I stayed inside all day. Because it was clear, it was too chilly for Mr. Sissy Boy to spend time outside—well, except for our walks.

Perhaps the most interesting aspects of the day were Turdball’s impeachment and the news that vaccination of the general population in Canada will begin in April. I’m in the first tear of inoculation, so perhaps by June, I’ll be vaccinated. I hope so.

Last night was torture. I could not sleep. I did, for perhaps a couple of hours, but mostly I just lay there trying to sleep. This is not something I hardly ever experience; I attribute last night’s sleeplessness to anxiety about going to Nanaimo today for supplies and for a White Spot hamburger. Yum!

I awoke to address my usual chores, but I felt foggy. I fed the animals, lit the fire and then I turned on my computer and to my surprise and delight there was an email from a friend who’s never written to me before. Fabien was the eldest child of my French teacher and wonderful friend, Marie-Claude. He was four when I moved in with M-C and her husband, Guy. Later, Fabien came to spend a long time living with my father whilst he attended the high school I’d attended to improve his fluency in English.

He sent me a love letter and I wept. I think it’s the nicest missive I’ve ever received.

Many, many years ago when I was there visiting his parents, he invited us to eat with him and his wife in the village of Cagnes-sur-Mer, just west of Nice where M-C and Guy lived. We arrived to find that we were going to eat at a table in the back garden and we had a magnificent feast of specialties of the area. Fabien has many skills and one of them is cooking.

As we waited for Sophie, his wife, to fetch our dessert, he asked us to fill our glasses because he wanted to make a toast. This story always makes me cry; I’m tearing up as I write. Anyway, he started talking about me. He told me how much he cared for me and respected me for our times together when I functioned for him like an uncle.

And then he explained why we were eating in the garden. We were eating under an enormous Avocado tree and he pointed that out to us all and then he told us it was from a seedling I’d started for him when he was a child so that he could see the root system of a plant. He’d planted it in his grandmother’s garden where he was then living, and he called it a monument to our enduring friendship.

The man has such a soul. It’s as evident in the email I received this morning as it was on that glorious evening under that tree that I will never ever forget. My heart is bursting, and my eyes are wet. 

And now, I’m off to Nanaimo in my new van on a brilliant sunny day with my best friend, Sheba.

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