“I just told them we were all going to get along.”
And with that, Lucy (as I’ll rename her) proceeded to tell me how she managed to fit two ex-husbands, and eight children, around the table at family holidays.
“I didn’t want the children to be here one day, then with their father another day. I just told them we were going to make it work,” Lucy said.
And apparently, they did. The two men and the former wife they had in common created a new home for the children, then their partners, and their children.
I lost track of how many grandchildren there were when Lucy admitted she can’t keep track of all the great-grandchildren. Dozens on dozens.
She said she was in her 60s. I was dismayed, and told her she looked much younger.
We were the only ones on an Amtrak car, cranking slowly out of Portland. There was a lot of time to talk, and listen, enchanted, as Lucy talked about her travels through 41 countries.
“I never know where I’m going to stay,” Lucy said, happily explaining that she’s always comforted, always provided for.
Wealth? Global network?
“Jesus,” Lucy said, with an evident glow.
God bless Americans. Some share their joy in far-off lands; some spread their boundless optimism on Amtrak.
(Lucy agreed to let me share her story here.)