A Reminder of Stephanie

Sometimes we are reminded of loved ones at the oddest times and places.

Shepard Place Shops in Carpinteria, CA

Last Wednesday I drove out to Carpinteria to help a friend cut down a dead tree, to spend several hours turning it into firewood and sawdust.

With chain saws and rope in the back of my truck, I stopped at a nearby strip mall for a phở lunch.

The name of the strip mall, as you can see here,  is Shepard Place Shops.

Stephanie sprang to mind, of course. I imagine she would have appreciated the new trees and fresh growth planted alongside the sign.

Patrick and Nardele

I received these pictures of Patrick from Suzy a few days ago, taken at Patrick’s house in Deia with Nardele.

Patrick in Deia

Patrick and Nardele

Patrick’s Ring

Patrick’s Ring, a Gift to Him from Gretchen

Years ago Gretchen gave Patrick a small ring, red and silver, which he wore often. When he passed away she asked me to send it back to her, which I did.

A week or two ago I was surprised to see it in my mailbox. She sent it to me, hoping that I’d wear it.

This I am doing, even here at the race track where a year ago (minus two days) I received the news of his end. Like the other little things of his that I keep close, it provides comfort–a wee bit of comfort–for the sadness.

Working on the Wall

Working on the Wall

Patrick and Stephanie worked tirelessly for years to repair and reconstruct the stone walls of their place in Deia.  It was done without concrete, by Mallorquin standards. He told me that each rock must touch its neighbors in five places. I came across this picture in the same place I found several old letters.