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Have you ever had one of those ‘strange’ moments?

You know, the kind when you are able to suspend your disbelief for just a single second?

Our family has been experiencing a lot of those lately.

You see, back in the day my mother would call 6:30-ish or so each evening.

The daily calls began in January 2010 when Mother’s husband Jim died. I felt it important that I talk to my mother at least once today and let her know that I loved and cherished her.

Somehow though, over time she ended up being the one calling me every day.

The telephone calls usually coincided with dinner.

You could set your watch on it.

For a while our family had a pool going and bet each other to see who could come the closest to the time mother would call that night.

My daughter Jen usually won.

Now to be honest with you, I’m not a telephone kind of person. I believe I began disliking the telephone when I first went to work the midnight shift in 1995.

That was my mother would call during the day. Heck, what am I saying… everyone called during the day.

Further, I’m not one for small talk…. Especially on the phone. Especially when I’m working nights. I’m usually just too groggy.

Nevertheless, Mother would ritualistically call and ask me the following questions:

How are you?
How is everyone?
What’s new?

My responses would be:


I would then ask her what she had to eat that day. The answer was usually included mangos, avocados and prosciutto.

For variety, I would from time to time hand the phone over to my daughter Jen. They would talk for a few minutes and the phone would be handed back to me.

Then after an exchange of “I love you” and “Goodbye’ we would hang up.

The total length of the call was usually maybe about five minutes long.


This seemed to concern my mother.

Time and again she would call and tell me that she phoned so and so and they spoke for three hours or so and so called and then they spoke for two hours.

I felt bad.

Okay, now let’s get back to the topic at hand…

Which was about very unpredicted moments when you have to wonder the reality begins and ends.

It’s been over a month now since mother passed away.

And do you know what?

Strangely enough each day the phone rings between six and 7 o’clock…

…. the same time that mother would normally call.

And so picture this:

Phone starts ringing….

We all jump.

Collectively, we all look at the clock at the same time.

With eyebrows raised we collectively look at each other and then simultaneously back at the phone.

Tentatively I would then reach for the phone, pick it up and say…


But of course, it’s never her.