Back to schooled


Ripening apple.

Applecrest Farm Orchards, Hampton Falls.

Father and stepmother are visiting on their way home from Nova Scotia and New Brunswick adventures. We cruised the back roads over to Powwow Pond a couple of times yesterday to see my sister and brother-in-law and their new little house on a lilypad-dotted pond cove.

Paddling a canoe on still, fresh water is so nice.

After dinner we played dominoes on the screened porch. I got a text from my youngest daughter in Boston: “Witnessed a gun fight between two black guys in my alley while eating dinner in my kitchen.”

I texted back: “What the hell! You ok?”

She called (I abandoned my position at the dominoes table) and she told me how she was eating chicken nuggets in her third-floor apartment kitchen at 6 p.m. when she heard “pop! pop! pop!” in the alley, looked out the window, and saw a guy holding a black bag aiming a silver handgun at a smaller, slender guy who was running away but turning to shoot back. About 20 rounds exchanged between the two of them, with no apparent injury, then they were gone.

Lots of apartments and shops right there, and people came out afterwards and started calling the police, who arrived in (she timed it) 3 minutes. She was nerved up about it all, and looking forward to moving to her new apartment closer to a major university in a couple of days. That evening, she was going to use her gunfight-witnessing adrenaline to clean the apartment some more.

She will be in her new apartment before the big moving day of the entire year in Boston, September 1st.  “Around here, it’s called Allston Christmas,” she said. “People don’t want to move stuff so they drag it out to the curb and leave it there and you can walk around and get lots of free stuff that day.”

The other day she gave a dollar for the first time to a familiar homeless man on the sidewalk near her apartment. She thought he would say ‘thank you’ but instead he looked up at her very seriously, held her gaze, and said, “Now you be careful around here.”

I told her: I completely agree with that man.