My mother and I were waiting for my sister Deborah in the backseat of a mortuary limousine in front of my parents’ condo when a manifestly bow-legged man walked passed us. My mother started to cry.
“What’s the matter?” I asked.
“Every time, that man walked past our building, your father would say, “Oh what manner of man is this who wears his balls in parenthesis.”
The limousine driver chortled, accidentally hit the accelerator, and, for a moment, it looked like we were going to rear end the parked car in front of us.
My mother’s crying became sobbing. “I’ll never hear your father say that again,” she gulped between sobs, “I miss him so. What am I going to do?”
Deborah got into the backseat and asked, “What’s the matter?”
I shook my head and mouthed, “Don’t ask.”
“Are we all here and ready to go?” the driver asked solemnly, his composure restored and his professional mourner’s mask back in place.
My parents’ marriage was not just a marriage; it was a life-long love affair.