There are a number of people, who have quietly touched me over the past few months. Most of them didn’t even know it. But for these twenty people (and many others), I am deeply grateful.
2. For Marcia, for inviting me to go to Kitty Hawk, and the conversation with the retired teacher at Vilai’s Thai Kitchen.
3. For Jackie, for insisting on printed menus for Christmas dinner.
4. For the unknown woman at the Bayville Farms dog park on March 19th at 3:30 in the afternoon who gave Bindi water – after my puppy had emptied the community water bowl, thereby “ruining it for everyone.”
5. For Patrick at Petroni Vineyards, for lingering.
6. For my coworkers, for giving me months and months of moments with my daughter, and more joy than I could ever repay. Your generosity is overwhelming. Seriously.
7. For JH who lives in my neighborhood, for your unending kindness for the unhappy people who spend hours every day on Facebook pointing out how terrible things are, and how much worse they could be. (I secretly love you for this, JH.)
8. For my students who stayed late the last day, for giving me so much more than I ever gave to you in math class.
9. For Caroline who writes, for writing. You make my daughter happy with every letter she receives from you.
10. For the artisans at The Blue Point, for aging Bulleit Rye Manhattans in smoked barrels and making your own boozy cherries. (You should always have your own boozy cherries.
11. For Tanya, for sharing your personal connection with the universe so freely.
12. For Chris, for telling me you miss me. (I miss you more than you can ever know, and your mom and I might secretly pray for more blizzards and nor-easters, in the hope that they might convince you and V to move closer. I’m okay with playing the long game if that’s what it takes.)
13. For mom, for sending tulips.
14. For M at Total Wine, for sharing your story of how you traded a career that promised prestige, money and travel – for more frequent dinners with your fiancé. (I'll remember your story every time I have a bottle of Soldiers of Fortune Pinot Noir - Sonoma Coast.)
15. For Don, for sharing your secret caramel corn recipe with Abi.
16. For Joan Didion, Morrie Schwartz, and Paul Kalanithi for having the courage to share your own stories, and also providing so much material for #processpirate.
17. For Jonathan and Lizzie for being co-conspirators, and for hanging hundreds of balloons on the ceiling for Pearl Jam 2018. (p.s. I’m still finding tape.)
18. For Sarah at The New Leaf, for so enthusiastically remembering my name on Christmas Eve when Abi, John and I came in for flowers – even though you weren’t supposed to – and for agreeing to do a class that you don’t really do.
19. For the people in my neighborhood who quietly pick up dog poop that others leave behind.
20. For Burt, for appreciating Marcia and telling her so.
To each of you: thank you for your thoughtfulness, your courage, and your generosity. You're the actual best.