A friend kindly sent me this photograph of my driveway in Maine. It was a long winter there, as it was everywhere in New England, and I have not been able to go to Maine since Christmas, so it is a treat to see my daffodils in bloom, such a reminder that May does follow the cruelest month, and that things are renewed again and again.

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I have been mostly silent on this blog because for 18 days I have been spending hours each day in the hospital at Martin's bedside and have been wrung out by evening. Friends have stopped by again and again, bringing food and wine and conversation and sympathy and yes, even laughter , such an important commodity in tough times.

Tomorrow he will be discharged and I will take care of him myself with help from Hospice nurses and aides. It won't be easy. But if it's possible, people should be in their homes, with their famliies...and dogs! Martin is so eager to see Alfie!...as their lives come to an end.  Hospitals are astonishingly noisy; privacy is a lost cause; the food sucks; and there is never a parking place. Aside from that?...well, the doctors and nursing staff are dedicated and compassionate (though overworked) and the technology is state of the art. There is much to marvel at and to be grateful for.

But now it is time to come home.