Back to my not-so-abandoned home tonight. How I wish my aunt lived closer, so that we could visit on a regular basis. These intense trips have to do for us both. But she is well looked after, with her Scrabble friends, my brother who comes when he can, and especially Pat who phones her every morning, as my mother used to do, and comes at least once a week to help her shop and get around. She has a driver's exam coming up - yes, at 96. It may be that this one, she will not pass, as she has all the others, and probably should not. She's a menace on the roads because she drives so slowly.
This woman was there when my mother was born, when my parents met, when they both died. Stubborn as she is, with a fridge full of rotting food she doesn't want me to throw out, she is a treasure.
And now I'm off to take her, very slowly, very carefully, through the snow to lunch at our favourite restaurant, the Village Café. She will eat an amazing amount for one so small. I will try to do a last pass through the fridge, and get it stocked before I go. And then go.