Along the Lakeshore: July 17

In memory of Ann Wiles

Last Saturday I was reclining in the chair watching the golf tournament. I’m a lousy golfer, but a great watcher. I was very envious of a 19-year-old who has earned $900,000 this year on the tour. This summer my 21-year-old grandson is doing a no-pay internship with the New Jersey Devils hockey team. Being a hockey player, Henry has great back muscles and great 45-degree drives from the tee, but never a straight one.

I was sort of getting out of my induced stupor when Sue said to get up and look out the window at the front of the floating dock where six white birds were paddling along. Their necks seemed kind of long and they were too big to be gulls. We have seen white ducks traveling with the mallards, but we deduced that these had to be white geese. We checked two books and decided they were Ross White Geese. They had black tails, but were not Snow Geese, as they are doing their thing in the arctic until November. They seemed much more stable and less flighty than the arctic white snow Goose. We were so busy with the book that I did not take a picture. I am very disappointed about that.

My sister Elizabeth Ann Wiles died last week after a short bout of pneumonia. She had a busy Sunday with my cousins from Columbus, Ohio, and Susan delivered her mail and chatted with her on Monday. She seemed to be her usual animated, cheerful self. She had been very alert and read about two to three books a week with comprehension and recall. Monday night she went to bed and called for help because she was having trouble breathing. The ambulance came and off to Crouse Hospital she went. She was received well and she got a lot of attention from all the folks who had been taught by her during her many years at Crouse Nursing School. When it became apparent that there was not going to be any improvement in her situation, she returned to the Athenaeum for hospice care. She seemed to be very happy to be back in her surroundings of the last two years. Once all the welcoming was over, she settled down for a snooze and did not wake up.

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